Monday, July 09, 2012

Final Update on Saturday Keystone Boxing Show and Coverage Thereof!

Here is how the Keystone Boxing card on Saturday, July 14 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center will shape up:

Six Rounds, welterweight:  Dusty Harrison (6-0, three KO's, Washington, DC) vs. Reggie "Two-Guns" Nash (10-29-1, two KO's, Grand Rapids, MI)

Six Rounds, junior middleweight: "King Shango" Ivan Ziglar (6-2-1, three KO's, Washington, DC) vs. Jimmy "The Dream" LeBlanc (12-21-4, four KO's, Weymouth, NH)

Six Rounds, light heavyweight: Thomas "Top Dog" Williams, Jr. (8-0, five KO's, Fort Washington, MD) vs. Ariel "Iron" Espinal (8-21-3, four KO's, Brooklyn, NY)

Four Rounds, junior middleweight: Kevin Borders (pro debut, DC) vs. Eric Marion (pro debut, Columbia, SC)

Four Rounds, junior middleweight: Harold "Sweet Lee" Parker (1-0, one KO, DC) vs. Antonio Sadler (1-0-1, Columbia, SC)

Four Rounds, middleweight: Josh Rupard (1-0, one KO, Charlotte Hall, MD) vs. Donnie Holden (0-6, Canton, OH)

Four Rounds, super middleweight: "The Golden Greek" Elias Bouloubassis (6-0-5, four KO's, Baltimore, MD) vs. William "Bam Bam" Armstead (2-16, one KO, Columbus, OH)

Four Rounds, heavyweight: Duane Mobley (3-0, two KO's, Upper Marlboro, MD) vs. Antonio Robertson (0-3-1, Alexandria, VA)

Now, about the coverage -- due to another commitment I have the entire weekend -- I will be the public address announcer for the Nike Global Basketball Challenge Tournament at Episcopal High School in Alexandria, VA -- I will not be able to attend at the entire card.  My plan is to come from Alexandria as soon as the basketball is finished.  This is a huge Under-19 tournament feature three teams from the United States as well as squads from Brazil, Canada, China, Lithuania and Puerto Rico.  It's also big, not only because it is in an Olympic year, but some of the top recent draft choices in the NBA have played in this tournament in recent years including Anthony Davis, Austin Rivers, Kyrie Irving and the Wizards's John Wall.

Before you say "this card wasn't good enough for Digital to attend," Anybody that knows me that it would have to be something out of the ordinary for me to miss a boxing card.  This is an opportunity I couldn't pass up.  The tournament starts on Friday, July 13 and goes until Sunday, July 15 when the championships will be held at the DC Armory.

Juan Marshall of ProAmFightTalk will be handling the bulk of the coverage of this card -- including the results of each bout. Join him throughout the event on Saturday to get the updates.


Anonymous said...

fugget about the haters, do what you do digital

Anonymous said...

I can't beleive the DC Commission approved those bouts.

Ms V said...

One does not hate as long as one has a low esteem of someone, but only when one esteems him as an equal or a superior.

Ask Missy.Com said...

If you have problems with the DC Commission, then stay in Maryland. This show along with all others held in DC will be sold out. I doubt that they are going to miss you. It's very obvious that DC is doing something right and being though you are not involved, you cannot help yourself from being a hater. I am not a hater by no means, but I must admit that I'd hate to you. You let things that you have no control over ruin your week. Just be happy! Looks are not everything, it's what inside of you that counts.

Micky Ward said...

I commend the promoters for not being swayed by the naysayers and allowing these boxers to grow into their own in these types of fights. It shows they care more about building the fighters than building their bankroll. Fighters like Ziglar, Harrison and Williams will inevitably step it up in due time, but its fights like these that prepare them to be successful at higher levels of competition. Kudos to Keystone.

Brian said...

It will be a good night of fights. The DC Commission approved these fights because they understand boxing and know what it takes to build up a fighter.

Trust me when I tell you there is something more for these guys coming down the line, the fighters needs just a little more fine tuning against veterans and then bring on whomever.

Keystone Boxing is about the fights period and putting on good ones. Everyone cackled about the match ups in Baltimore and look what happen 4 barn burners!

Brian said...

So come on out and see the fights

Anonymous said...

you say this is the way to bring up fighters and thats fine. But who in the hell besides the fighters friends and family would wanna watch this garbage.

Anonymous said...

Quit patting yourself on the back Mr Dillon for this garbage.

TJ said...

Brian doesn't care about your feelings. The man has a job to do and he does it well. He is arguably the best match-maker on the East Coast. All local fighters and managers love this guy. Promoters love him too. He is doing a terrific job. So get a life-LOSER>>>>

Gary Digital Williams said...

For right now, the friends and family are a good way to start. It's like the old advertisement for the shampoo -- "you'll tell two friends and they tell two friends and so on, and so on..."

That is how fan bases get built. It's not just because there are boxing people. Let me give you examples through Beltway Boxing History of what I'm talking about.

One of the most popular boxers I ever covered in this area was Boone Pultz. Now Boone had credentials -- the first-ever WBO Cruiserweight champion. But what was so incredible about his fan base was that Boone could take years off from the sport, come back and still draw fans. This was because -- as he often told me -- they weren't boxing fans, they were Boone Pultz fans.

This is what boxing needs -- a fan base that people can see grow and then, if the talent grows with the fan base, the big networks and promoters take a shot. Sometimes, this is called the Gamache-Mesi factor, named after Joey Gamache and Joe Mesi who did this extremely well in their respective hometown areas.

And as I said before and Brian Dillon has reiterated -- boxing needs the journeyman fighter who will give the hometown heroes some rounds.

That way if the hometown heroes win, their fan base grows. If they lose, chances are they will find something else to do.

Gary Digital Williams said...

We have guys who are and have been what I like to call "Franchise Boxers" -- guys who draw well in their respective hometowns. Jimmy Lange, Scott Sigmon, Fernando Guerrero and Andrew Farmer are prime examples. Many of the fans of these boxers are not hardcore boxing fans -- they are fans of the boxer as a person.

There is nothing wrong with that -- that is a way to bring new fans who normally would not go to a boxing card into the building.

Brian said...

Not really patting myself on the back as of yet, I will wait to late Saturday night after another successful keystone boxing show

Ross M. said...

I probably shouldn't even dignify the anonymous peanut gallery, but they can just ask Ty Barnett if these fights mean anything. Without a platform like this, he wouldn't be the main event on ESPN2 in August. Our local boxers need club fights like these to get to the next level.

Anonymous said...

Gary - your "franchise boxers" point is a double edged sword in boxing and I'll explain. You are correct, people buy tickets to boxing shows to see individual boxers. The flip side to that statement is that people do NOT buy tickets to boxing shows to see BOXING! And THAT'S a problem.

I'll give you an example and I know you're a wrestling fan so I'll start with the WWF. Up until the 1980's the WWF promoted around individuals. It was Andre The Giant vs. Gorilla Monsoon in the Main Event. Or it was Superstar Billy Graham vs. Bruno Sammartino in the Main Event. When pro wrestling and the WWF really gained mainstream popularity was when the WWF brand name became bigger than the individual's name. Now when the WWF rolls in, it's a sell out no matter who is in the Main Event. They've got weekly shows and storylines that people follow and care about. The sign on the billboard at The Arena doesn't say Hulk Hogan vs. Ric Flair now, it says WWE or Wrestelmania now and the fans respond.

You know who copied this marketing model to a T? It's the UFC - Ultimate Fighting Championships which of course promote MMA. They promote the Main Event, sure, but they have done a great job of developing MMA fans, not just fans of individual fighters. Now MMA is getting coverage on Sports Center and that rarely happens for boxing now. Their The Ultimate Fighter series is highly rated, they are developing fan followings of fighters with little of no pro experience, and people tune in to watch MMA. Hell, their action figures are even in Toys R US! There is only 1 boxing figure I've ever seen in Toys R US and that's Muhammad Ali!

Now I get to boxing, which is just plain old boxing. Pro Wrestling and The WWE are almost one in the same. UFC and MMA are almost one in the same. Boxing is just well, boxing. And because of how boxing is run on the big stage, that type of promoting filters down to the club shows and it hurts the club shows.

The average sports fan doesn't know who 99% of the type flight boxers in the world are and that's a huge problem. If there was a league of professional boxing, or even a promoter who ran 95% of boxing, it would be a huge boost for boxing. Think about it, is there more than 1 NFL or NBA? Not really. And that's a good thing for those sports and it would be a great thing for boxing.

Gary Digital Williams said...

I understand your argument but you are overlooking one thing. You are comparing what is regional to what is national. The two are apples and oranges in this case.

To continue the wrestling analogy, The WWE (which, by the way, technically began in Washington, DC when Vince McMahon's grandfather, Jess, began promoting at old Turner's Arena as Capitol Wrestling) began life as a regional promotion. They needed names because they were a regional promotion (From Maine to DC) and the names helped bring the crowds in.

In those days, Bruno Sammartino was the "franchise wrestler" in the old WWWF. Verne Gagne was the man in the AWA, Jerry Lawler in Memphis, Fritz Von Erich (and later his sons) in Dallas and so on.

The national expansion of wrestling pretty much eliminated the need for the franchise wrestler and wrestling shifted their focus in the opposite direction by limiting the number of house shows an organization had. The TV shows and pay per view were more important. It used to be that TV was used to get people into the house shows -- now that's not the case.

What we deal with here on this blog is boxing on a regional level. So the analogy you talk about really doesn't apply as well. In order to get to the national level, boxers need to establish themselves in a territory to get a fan base so the major networks and promoters will take a look at them.

This is closer to minor to major league baseball (minus the fan base part of the analogy) You establish yourself in Triple-A then you move up to the big time. It's still pro ball, but at a lower level.

That may be the future problem with MMA. If you just focus on the national level and your talent pool dries out, what happens then?

That is why the "Franchise Boxers" are so important.