Dan Rafael: Daryl Cunningham
May, 16, 2013
By Dan Rafael | ESPN.com
Chris Farina/Top RankMiddleweight Andy Lee recorded a first-round KO in his second fight with new trainer Adam Booth.Middleweight contender Andy Lee returned with a vengeance on Wednesday night in New York, needing just 87 second to knock out Daryl Cunningham on promoter Lou DiBella's "Broadway Boxing" card at BB King's Blues Club.
The win was Lee's second in a row since getting stopped in the seventh round in a middleweight world title fight by then-titlist Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. last June in El Paso, Texas.
It was also Lee's second fight with new trainer Adam Booth, who Lee hired after longtime trainer and close friend Emanuel Steward died in October.
Ireland's Lee (30-2, 21 KOs), 28, who now trains with Booth in England, stunned fellow southpaw Cunningham (28-5, 11 KOs), 38, of Detroit, with a left hand and was all over him. He trapped Cunningham on the ropes and let his punches fly. Cunningham was taking heavy punishment when referee Benjy Esteves Jr. stepped in.
"Onward and upward from here," Lee said after the fight. "I feel like I am at the top of my game right now and obviously the No. 1 guy in the middleweight division is Sergio Martinez and that is the fight I want. We have the same promoter in Lou DiBella, so I feel like it is an easy fight to make and one that is very attractive for the middleweight division. I know that Sergio is taking some time off [because of a knee injury], but I'll be ready for him once he is ready to go."
DiBella was impressed with Lee's performance.
"It was very explosive," DiBella said. "He came out like he had the intention to hurt him from the get-go and he did. I thought it was very impressive. Adam Booth told me before the last fight, 'You gotta give me a couple of fights with him because we're working on some things, so it won't happen in one fight.' But Andy looked like a beast.
"I think he's ready to go into a more substantial fight and there are tremendous fights to be made in the middleweight division."
With Martinez on the sidelines, probably until at least next spring, DiBella mentioned some other potential opponents for Lee, including Martin Murray, Darren Barker and the winner of the June 29 fight between titleholder Gennady Golovkin and Matthew Macklin.
With Lee being from Ireland and Murray, Barker and Macklin (who is Irish) all being from England, DiBella noted that those fights are a natural.
DiBella also said that he would like to try to get Lee a shot at titlist Daniel Geale of Australia, whose next fight likely will be in the United States on promoter Gary Shaw's HBO "Boxing After Dark" card in August.
"That's a fight we would be very interested in and I think that would be a helluva fight in the ring," DiBella said.
May, 8, 2013
By Dan Rafael | ESPN.com
Chris Farina/Top RankAndy Lee is looking for his second straight victory after losing to Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.A little of this and a little of that from the boxing world:
• Middleweight contender Andy Lee (29-2, 20 KOs), 28, of Ireland, gets back in action May 15 on promoter Lou DiBella’s Broadway Boxing card at B.B. King Blues Club in New York. Lee will be seeking his second win in a row following his seventh-round knockout loss to then-titleholder Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. in June. Lee will face Darryl Cunningham (28-4, 11 KOs) in a scheduled 10-round bout. It will be Lee’s second fight since the untimely death of longtime trainer and close friend Emanuel Steward. Lee has since moved his base from Steward’s hometown of Detroit back to the United Kingdom to train with Adam Booth.
"I'm very much looking forward to this fight,” Lee said. “Having lived in New York for two years, I know firsthand what a great fight town it is. The New York fight fans are a very knowledgeable crowd, and I intend on putting on a first-class performance for them. I want to thank my promoter Lou DiBella for giving me this chance to showcase my skills as I look to rebuild myself into title contention.”
• When featherweight titlist Miguel Angel “Mikey” Garcia makes his first defense against Juan Manuel Lopez on June 15 in Dallas, the HBO co-feature will feature Terence Crawford in a lightweight fight against Alejandro Sanabria (34-1-1, 25 KOs) of Mexico, according to Top Rank vice president Carl Moretti. Crawford (20-0, 15 KOs), 25, of Omaha, Neb., had his coming-out party March 30 when he filled in as a late substitute to face junior welterweight Breidis Prescott on the HBO-televised co-feature of the Mike Alvarado-Brandon Rios rematch. Crawford dominated, but when he faces Sanabria, he will drop down to his more natural lightweight division, Moretti said.
• Welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s lopsided decision win against interim titlist Robert Guerrero in Saturday’s Showtime PPV main event at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas will be replayed on Saturday night (Showtime, 9 ET/PT). The telecast will open with a replay of Abner Mares' ninth-round knockout of Daniel Ponce De Leon to win a featherweight world title, the third weight class in the past three years that Mares has won a championship in.
• The hunt for an opponent for Cleveland junior middleweight contender Willie Nelson (20-1-1, 12 KOs) is, at last, over. After weeks of back-and-forth between DiBella, Nelson’s promoter, and HBO, they finally settled on Argentina native Luciano Cuello (32-2, 16 KOs), who will face Nelson on June 29 in the opening bout of an HBO tripleheader at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Conn. Middleweight titlist Gennady Golovkin (26-0, 23 KOs) defends against Matthew Macklin (29-4, 20 KOs) in the main event with super middleweights Thomas Oosthuizen (21-0-1, 13 KOs) and Brandon Gonzalez (17-0, 10 KOs) meeting in the co-feature. Cuello’s only two losses came against well-known Mexican stars before they won their world titles -- a unanimous 10-round decision to Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. in 2009 and a sixth-round knockout against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez in 2010.
• Junior welterweight titlist Khabib Allakhverdiev (18-0, 8 KOs) will make his first defense, a mandatory, against former titlist Souleymane M'baye (40-4-1, 22 KOs) on July 13 in Monte Carlo, Monaco. Allakhverdiev was supposed to defend his title for the first time against Prescott on March 30 on HBO on the Alvarado-Rios II undercard, but he injured his right elbow and withdrew. The fight will be on the same card as the final of the Monaco Million Dollar Super Four final between Denis Grachev (13-1-1, 8 KOs) and Edwin Rodriguez (23-0, 15 KOs), who will meet at a catchweight of 171½ pounds because Grachev is a light heavyweight and Rodriguez is a super middleweight. In the March 30 semifinals in Monte Carlo, Grachev advanced with a decision win against former light heavyweight titlist Zsolt Erdei and Rodriguez outpointed Ezequiel Osvaldo Maderna.
• Covina, Calif., lightweight John Molina (25-2, 20 KOs) is on the comeback trail seeking his second win in a row following his 44-second knockout loss to Antonio DeMarco in a September world title fight. Molina, who rebounded for a fourth-round knockout win against Dannie Williams in January, will face Andrey Klimov (15-0, 8 KOs) of Russia in a scheduled 10-rounder on June 7 at the Little Creek Casino and Resort in Kamilche, Wash., in the main event of ESPN2’s "Friday Night Fights,” promoter Dan Goossen announced. In the super middleweight co-feature, Farah Ennis (20-1, 12 KOs) of Philadelphia meets Anthony Hanshaw (23-2-2, 14 KOs) of High Point, N.C.
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