Three undefeated champions will defend their titles in this lighter weight class boxing card.
Most boxing pundits will tell you that in boxing today, the best and brightest fighters are in the lighter weight divisions. And that’s not lost at all on Top Rank Boxing, which brings a Saturday night fight lineup to the Adrian Phillips Ballroom at Boardwalk Hall dubbed Featherweight Fury (March 26, 7pm).
The main bout of the evening is a matchup between WBA and IBF featherweight champion Yuriorkis Gamboa of Miami, Fla., against interim featherweight champion Jorge Solis.
Also on the card is undefeated Matt “Sharp Shooter” Remillard of Manchester, Conn., defending his NABF & NABO tiles against No. 1 ranked Mikey Garcia of Oxnard Cal.
Both fights will be televised on HBO Boxing After Dark.
But the most compelling bout of the night could be Teon Kennedy of Philadelphia defending his USBA Jr. featherweight crown against Jorge “Exit 9” Diaz of New Brunswick, two fighters who are regulars in Atlantic City.
And the most intriguing fight pits the NFL’s Tom Zbikowski against, well, someone in his second fight since the NFL lockout. His opponent hasn’t been named in the likely four-round bout.
Gamboa, pictured at left, (19-0, 15 KOs) is the top name on the card. The four-time Cuban national champion and 2004 Olympic gold medalist is heavily favored to take care of Solis.
Still, Solis (40-2-2, 29 K0s) from Guadalajara, Mexico, won the interim WBA super featherweight title in February 2010 and has only lost once in the last four years. He could always pull off a surprise.
Remillard (23-0, 13 KOs) vs. Garcia (24-0, 20 KOs) puts two undefeated and well-regarded fighters in the ring together. The two fighters still have something to prove and both could use a quality win (which one or the other will get, barring a draw). The winner could actually put themselves in line for a shot at Gamboa.
Remillard holds the NABF and NABO featherweight titles while Garcia is the IBF’s top ranked featherweight.
While not on HBO, the show stealing fight could easily be Kennedy (16-0-1, 7 KOs) and Diaz (15-0, 9 KOs). Kennedy won the vacant USBA 122-pound title in 2009 and has successfully defended the title twice. He’s ranked No. 3 by the IBF.
He also won the 2004 Golden Gloves flyweight championship.
Diaz is coming off one of the most exciting fights in the resort in 2010 — an October decision over Emanuel Lucero at Bally’s. His aggressive style has made him a huge fan favorite in Atlantic City.
With a win, Kennedy could put himself in position for a world title shot, but he’ll probably have to go toe to toe with Diaz at some point, something he’s never been shy about doing.
And while details are still sketchy as of this writing, Zbikowski has been gaining a lot of attention for himself as the NFL’s labor strife gives him a chance to pursue his boxing passion.
Zbikowski scored a TKO over Richard Bryant in just 1:45 of the first round in Las Vegas earlier this month. Though he’s fighting for a second time in as many weeks, reports say the Baltimore Ravens safety didn’t even break a sweat his first time out.
Put together, the four fights from Top Rank give the city a marquee boxing event and should rock Boardwalk Hall.
Where: Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City
When: Saturday, March 26, 7pm
How Much: $50, $100, $200
Atlantic City's boxing days are back and Atlantic City Weekly is proud to bring our readers a brand-new column by boxing guru Rob Scott. Here is the first installment of 'Boxing Notes: In the Ring with Rob Scott.'
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