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Friday, November 11, 2011
Ayi Bruce looks to impress on Pacquiao-Marquez undercard

By Michael Woods

So you'll recall that Joshua Clottey is slotted No. 6 in our NYC P4P list. Well, we have a challenge, compliments of manager Gunther Fishgold, the Albany-based dealmaker who manager Ghana-born welterweight Ayi Bruce. Bruce, fighting out of Albany, fights tomorrow night on the Pacquiao-Marquez III undercard at the MGM in Las Vegas. He'll take on 40-4-5 Filipino Dennis Laurente.

Fishgold told NYFightBlog that he thinks Bruce should be in the NYC P4P Top 20, and would quite possible beat Clottey, also a Ghana native, if they clashed. The 20-4 Bruce toils at 147, but Clottey is now campaigning at 154, so that clash is unlikely to occur.

Fishgold said Bruce is a boxer/puncher, has a big jab, looks more like a 154-pounder and isn't unlike Ghana notable Ike Quartey. Laurente, he's not as sure about. Fishgold couldn't find even a second of video on the guy. "But I expect a win tomorrow. The guys he's squeaked out a win against we would blow these guys out."

The manager's specialty is "rehab" fighters, boxers who may have been mismanaged or been on a streak of bad luck. Fishgold, whose great grandpa "Kid Herman" Schneider was a solid pug in the early 1900s, oversees Emmanuel Lucero, a 26-7-1 Mexican who fights Diego Magdaleno (20-0) at the Mandalay Bay tonight.

"I have fruit and nut manufacturing plants and do import/export, so I travel to these countries and have a good feel for the different cultures," Fishgold said. "That's a big part in getting trust and signing people."

If Bruce wins, he'll have that much of a better case to enter our Top 20 ... and, the manager said, land a big bout against a name guy. "If a guy like Andre Berto thinks he needs a tuneup, we have no problem beating guys like that. That would be an ideal fight; he's tailor-made for us."