Dan Rafael: Anthony Ogogo

Ogogo added to May 3 undercard

April, 8, 2014
British middleweight prospect Anthony Ogogo, who claimed Olympic bronze in front of the hometown crowd at the 2012 London Games, will make his Las Vegas debut on May 3 on the Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Marcos Maidana undercard at the MGM Grand, Golden Boy Promotions announced on Tuesday.

Ogogo (5-0, 2 KOs), 25, who turned pro in April 2013, fought his second pro bout in Atlantic City, N.J., and is returning to the United States for a coveted spot on one of the year’s biggest cards.

"It's an honor for me to be on the show, and I can't wait for May 3," said Ogogo, who does not yet have an opponent. “I've had a great training camp and hope to be in the best shape of my career for this fight. Some British fighters never get the chance to fight in Las Vegas, and to do so in my sixth fight is a real achievement and will be a fantastic moment for me."

The fight will be Ogogo’s second of the year. He won a six-round decision against Greg O’Neill on March 21 in Glasgow, Scotland, on the Terence Crawford-Ricky Burns undercard.

"British fans already know the great potential Anthony has and the charisma he possesses in and out of the ring," Golden Boy chief executive Richard Schaefer said. “Now on one of the biggest nights of the year in boxing, fans and media in Las Vegas will get to see what all of the excitement is about.”

Return in the works for Russell

June, 27, 2013
Gary Russell Jr. and Roberto CastanedaTom Casino/ShowtimeGolden Boy is working on moving unbeaten Gary Russell Jr. to an Aug. 24 tripleheader on Showtime.
A few notes from around the boxing world:

• Featherweight Gary Russell Jr., the 2011 ESPN.com prospect of the year, has missed some fights because of injuries. But when his most recent bout was called off, it wasn't his fault. Russell (22-0, 13 KOs), recovering from a fractured hand, was supposed to fight July 13 on the undercard of Bernard Hopkins' mandatory light heavyweight title defense against Karo Murat before the Showtime-televised card was canceled because of Murat's visa issues.

Golden Boy's Richard Schaefer told ESPN.com that he is working to move Russell to his Aug. 24 card in Carson, Calif., and that the Showtime broadcast would become a tripleheader. Featherweight titlist Abner Mares defends against former titlist Jhonny Gonzalez in the main event with junior featherweight titlist Victor Terrazas facing former bantamweight titlist Leo Santa Cruz in the co-feature. Schaefer said he likes that spot for Russell because he could eventually challenge Mares, sooner rather than later.

"I'm not like some promoters who like to let fights marinate. I don't like to marinate," said Schaefer in a dig at Top Rank rival Bob Arum, who lost a very big fight between Juan Manuel Lopez and Yuriorkis Gamboa because Arum said he wanted to "let it marinate" and Lopez got knocked out.

• Former junior middleweight titlist Cornelius "K9" Bundrage, who lost his belt to Ishe Smith in February, hopes to be back this fall against former titlist Miguel Cotto, who is coming off a December loss to Austin Trout in a title bout. "My sights are set on Miguel Cotto," Bundrage told ESPN.com. "Team K9 [is] working to make it happen. Gabriel [Penagaricano], who is Cotto's adviser, has been in communication with my adviser and management. Gabriel is a good guy and I have much respect for Cotto and his heart. ... We are warriors. This [proposed] fight will be the new Arturo Gatti and Micky Ward fight. I am so ready to get this battle of warriors done."

• Adrien Broner's Showtime debut last Saturday was a hit for the network. Broner, one of boxing's most polarizing figures, outpointed Paulie Malignaggi to win a welterweight title. Showtime announced the fight drew an eye-catching 1.3 million viewers, the second-largest audience for a Showtime bout since it began tracking individual fights in 2009. Showtime also said the average viewership for the tripleheader was the second highest average since Nielsen began separating Showtime from its multiplex channels in 2004. This is just a continuation of increased viewership for the network's boxing events over the past two years.

• Joan Guzman (33-1-1, 20 KOs) faces Vicente Mosquera (32-2-1, 17 KOs) for a vacant interim junior welterweight title in a battle of former titleholders Friday night (Telemundo, 11:30 ET) in Kissimmee, Florida. Guzman is coming off his only loss in November, when he was unable to continue in the eighth round after hurting his leg on an unintentional foul. It resulted in Guzman losing a technical decision to Khabib Allakhverdiev for a vacant world title. Guzman, a former junior featherweight and junior lightweight titlist, said his leg is fine. "I'm 100 percent recovered from my injury," Guzman, 37, said. "I'm looking forward to showing the boxing world that I'm still a force to be reckoned with."

• Middleweight prospect Anthony Ogogo, a 2012 British Olympic bronze medalist has been added to the July 13 card in Hull, England headlined by the pro debut of teammate Luke Campbell, the bantamweight gold medal medalist. Ogogo (2-0, 1 KO) will face an opponent to be determined in a six-rounder. The card also includes the rematch between welterweight contender Kell Brook and Carson Jones. Ogogo's addition to the card was made possible because his promoter, Golden Boy, was able to make a deal show promoter Eddie Hearn.

"It's great to be on the same card as my Olympic teammate and one of my best friends outside of the ring, Luke Campbell," said Ogogo, who turned pro in April in England and had his second fight May 18 in Atlantic City, N.J. "I expect a spectacular performance from Luke and I'm planning on delivering one myself and really give my home country fans a show."

Amir Khan set to return April 20

January, 25, 2013
Amir KhanTom Casino/ShowtimeAmir Khan battered Carlos Molina in December to rebound from dispiriting back-to-back losses.
Former junior welterweight titlist Amir Khan of England is ticketed to return to action April 20 on Showtime, Golden Boy promoter Richard Schaefer told me on Thursday.

Who will Khan fight and where will it take place? Schaefer said those questions haven't been answered yet.

"We have earmarked April 20 for Amir, but I can't say whether it will be from the U.S. or the U.K.," Schaefer said. "If it's up to Amir, he wouldn't mind doing a fight from the U.K. It's important to keep the U.K. tie. As for the opponent, I have been on the phone with [Showtime Sports boss] Stephen [Espinoza] and we're talking about it."

Khan has a multi-fight contract with Showtime, which will have substantial influence in the fight location and opponent.

"Showtime is open to doing a fight from England, but the question then will be the license fee and the opponent," Schaefer said. "When Amir entered into the multi-fight deal, it was tied to some pretty big names. But if you are fighting in the U.K., it doesn't make sense for the big names because of the time difference [meaning an afternoon fight in the U.S., which means less money from the network]. The license fee for an overseas fight will be less, so we are talking about it."

Khan (27-3, 19 KOs) lost two title fights in a row -- a controversial split decision loss to Lamont Peterson in December 2011 followed by a fourth-round knockout against Danny Garcia in July -- but returned with a win in December in a lopsided 10th-round knockout of Carlos Molina.

Schaefer said that if Khan fights in America, Josesito Lopez -- who stopped Victor Ortiz and then was wiped out by junior middleweight titlist Canelo Alvarez -- is a potential opponent.

Schaefer said he would like to make a Garcia-Khan rematch later in the year because the timing doesn't work for that match to be their next fight. Garcia fights Zab Judah on Feb. 9 and Khan is fighting in April -- too soon to make a Garcia rematch if Garcia beats Judah.

Khan is tied to April because he wants to fight before his wedding in May. And then comes the Muslim holiday of Ramadan, which means Khan won't be back until the fall.

Three names are being discussed, from what I'm told, if Khan fights in England -- although Schaefer didn't want to discuss the list. Nonetheless, those potential opponents are former lightweight titlist Humberto Soto, former interim junior welterweight titlist Pablo Cesar Cano (who lost a debatable decision in October versus welterweight titlist Paulie Malignaggi) and former welterweight titlist Vyacheslav Senchenko, who knocked out Ricky Hatton in the ninth round in November in Hatton's comeback bout.

Schaefer did say that if Khan fights in England, British middleweight Anthony Ogogo, the 2012 Olympic bronze medalist who recently signed with Golden Boy, would make his pro debut on the undercard.