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Thursday, March 21, 2013

As a trainer, you work some long hours. Here's a photo of Joe Vargas (front left) leading his band of renown down the hallway of the local Sheraton Hotel on fight night.

As a trainer, you can work some long hours. Here’s a photo of Joe Vargas (front left) leading his band of renown down the hallway of the local Sheraton Hotel in San Diego on fight night.

Today, the head boxing coach at the Undisputed Fitness & Training Center gym at 16th and K Streets in San Diego’s Downtown filled us in on his daily routine: “One day in the life of Joe Vargas: Up early to teach the 6:00 a.m. boxing class, 7:30 he takes his team of boxers for a run, then at 8:30 a.m. he makes his own kids breakfast, 9:00 a.m. he’s back to training Jonathan Koppenhaver a.k.a War Machine, 10 a.m. he gets Ulises Sierra ready for his 7 rounds of sparring, 11 a.m. he trains Christian Bojorquez and Jose Toribio for there fights on March 29th in Tijuana, 12:00 noon, he’s teaching his future lawyer Kile Jason, 1:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m. he’s has to collect money from his boxers’ sponsors Quality WashEmpire Bail BondsMR Tacos and Beyond Dentistry/Norma A. Ramirez DDS. He then crosses the border into Mexico to take the money to the Tijuana Boxing Commission for their sanctioning of his upcoming event on March 29, 2013, at the Municipal Stadium in Tijuana. He then has to hurry back and train the amateur boxing team from 4:30 till 6:00 p.m. followed by the pros from 6:00 p.m. until 7:30 p.m. And then most importantly, he comes home to be a good husband to his lovely and supportive wife Lorena Romero. I know it’s a grind but I love it, says Joe Vargas.

The Ben Khoshaba vs Ramon Hernandez fight from Saturday’s Xplode Fight Series Show, on March 16, 2013, at Valley Center, Calif.

Must see video for boxers striving for excellence in the sport.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Golovkin vs Ishida – the size difference. When you see them standing next to each other it really makes you think. The WBA/IBO Middleweight champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (25-0, KOs) of Kazakhstan, who now lives and trains in Stuttgart, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, does not look that big and he will be facing the 6’1″ Nobuhiro Ishida (24-8-2, 9 KOs) of Osaka, Osaka, Japan. Granted, Ishida is 37 years-old and he did lose his last two matches – both unanimous decision losses – one to Paul Williams and the other to Dmitry Pirog.

This bout was added to that March 30, 2013 fight card at Salle des Etoiles in Monte Carlo, Monaco which is located on the French Riviera. The one that San Diego resident Denis Grachev (12-1-1, 8 KOs) of City Boxing Downtown is involved in. Grachev has been training to fight Zsolt Erdei (33-0-0, 18) in the first stage of this Golden Gloves promoted Monte Carlo Million Dollar Tournament.

Saturday, March 16, 201Mark your calendar! At Municipal de Tijuana, B. C., Mexico: V & B Promotions presents super bantamweight Christian Bojorquez (9-0 with 2 KOs) vs. Cesar De La Mora (3-3-1, 2 KOs); flyweight Jose Toribio (1-0) vs TBA; super bantamweight Prince Tiger Smalls in his pro-debut vs TBA; and light heavyweight Ulises Sierra (1-0-1) vs. TBA. The names are all too familiar to San Diegans – we wish them luck. 

Thursday, March 7, 2013:

Ari Soltani, the owner of the Legacy Training Center in Vista, has officially become a fight promoter in the state of California. His first show, half MMA, and half Boxing will be at the 1,800 seat Optimist Club in Vista, CA on May 17, 2013. If the timing is good for you, the matchmaker for this show is Billy Dean. He’s already started to line up the fighters for the show. Two heavyweights plus “Johnny Boy” Quiroz and Ricky Gutierrez were mentioned.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Former light middleweight champion, Paul Vaden, sent us photos from Tuesday evening when he attended Mike Tyson’s one-man show. MIKE TYSON: UNDISPUTED TRUTH which is the rare, personal look inside the life and mind of one of the most feared men ever to wear the heavyweight crown. The one night stand, directed by Academy Award nominee Spike Lee, was at the Balboa Theatre in downtown San Diego.
As a theatre reviewer, Vaden mentioned he thought Tyson did a great job and the show left no stones unturned in the fighter’s very colorful but troubling life. Here comes the rub. If they had advertised the show properly, I’m certain they could have had a longer run.

To show his support for Mike Tyson, Paul Vaden attended Tuesday night's show.

To show his support for his friend Mike Tyson, Paul Vaden (l), the former light middleweight champion attended Tuesday evening’s performance.

For weeks all the talk has been about the trio of San Diego heroes

Headline: Tiger Smalls recipient of keys to the city from Mayor Bob Filner 

Over the years head boxing trainer Priest “Tiger” Smalls of the San Diego Combat Academy has had to be a prizefighter, father, a coach, trainer, manager, disciplinarian, and role model for a great many youngsters and young adults – especially those who have hopes of becoming a champion in the ring. Those are the best reasons I could come up with for the current mayor to select him for the high honor of receiving the key to the city of San Diego. Like Smalls, 90-some percent of coaches are selfless individuals giving everything they have every day to make out of shape athletes into champions.

From the early years till the present, Tiger Smalls has certainly been front and center in the world of boxing.

From the early years till the present, Tiger Smalls has certainly been front and center in the world of boxing. (photos top left to right) As a youngster, Smalls was involved in a publicity stunt with Muhammad Ali. Then, there were the championship years. (Bottom l to r photos) show Smalls with former champions Roy Jones Jr. and Robert Garcia of Oxnard, CA.

Photos (l to r) show former San Diego Champions, Puerto Rican World Champion Felix Trinidad, Mayor Filner with Tiger's sister, Tiger and his wife and then the ceremonial key to the city.

(l to r, top to bottom) photo shows former San Diego Boxing Champions; next, Tiger Smalls (r) is with former World Champion Felix Trinidad; then we have the Mayor of San Diego Bob Filner (l) visiting the San Diego Combat Academy in Mission Valley to present Smalls with his ceremonial “Key to the City.” On hand for the presentation was his wife (r) and sister (center).

Smalls has been a champion in many strata, especially when it comes to self-promoting. There’s no doubt he’s up there with the greats like Money Mayweather. Muhammad Ali was an early mentor. After reaching some of the highest honors in his sport, he had to re-invent himself. His website and succeeding videos speak volumes in this regard: “Talk about me” and “Looking for a hero.”
Jovial comments from his peers: 

“David Letterman has 14 writers on staff to write his nightly monologues. When it comes to trash talking, Money Mayweather uses just one, Tiger.”

“In the history of Boxing, Tiger Smalls has to be ranked in the Top 10 of the sexiest male boxers.”

“The new mayor must have one crack team of researchers to overlook such a checkered past.”

“Scary! If Tiger has been given the keys to the city, local locksmiths must be working overtime.”

“Filner hasn’t stopped thanking Tiger for introducing him to his new favorite pastime … reading tweets on #WhitePeople Activities. Sample tweet: #WhitePeopleActivities go to Penn State, #BlackPeopleActivities go to State Penitentiary.”

Suggestion: Next boxer to receive the keys to the city should be Sergeant David Rodriguez of the San Diego Police Department. Rodriguez, an outstanding USA Amateur and Battle of the Badges winning Heavyweight will be making his pro debut at the Taft High School Football Stadium in Woodland Hills, Calif. on Saturday, March 23rd. The event will be presented by KO High Boxing in association with All Star Boxing Promotions.

Surrounded by fellow members of Team Unified, the 2011 Battle of the Badges Champions, David "Average Joe" Rodriguez (Center) led his team to victory by defeating the favorite Chayin Osgood in Bout #9, the Main Event, to give his team the three bout to two lead over the defending champs, the R. J. Donovan Correctional Facility Team.

Surrounded by members of Team Unified, the 2011 Battle of the Badges Champions, David “Average Joe” Rodriguez (c) led his team to victory by defeating the favorite Chayin Osgood in the Main Event, Bout #9, to give his team a three-bout to two victory over the defending champs from R. J. Donovan Correctional Facility. Photo: Jim Wyatt

UFC’S Liz Carmouche suffers defeat, but still makes History

Monday, February 25, 2013 – 11:27 a.m. by Dani Heffernan, Media Research Associate at GLAAD:

Congratulations to mixed martial artist Liz Carmouche who on Saturday competed for the UFC bantamweight title in a historic, first-ever women’s fight against Ronda Rousey. Though early in the fight it looked like Carmouche had the upper hand, she eventually was defeated. But she can certainly claim victory for shining a spotlight on female athletes and openly gay athletes around the world.

On SB Nation’s Bloody Elbow blog, Tim Burke named Carmouche one of the night’s real winners along with Rousey, stating, “Carmouche deserves to be called a winner for a few reasons. She may have lost her bout, but she made it an exciting fight. She was an excellent representative of WMMA (Women’s Mixed Martial Arts) all the way through this, even down to the post-fight press conference. Forget making history for a second – she made a lot of fans last night. And I’m one of them.”

Carmouche wrote two guest blogs for us about her journey from being a former U.S. Marine to practicing mixed martial arts. In the weeks leading up to the fight, she gave interviews to several mainstream and LGBT media outlets, and overall the media did a wonderful job of telling her remarkable story.

Carmouche received a well-deserved standing ovation for her efforts in the Octagon on Saturday night, and GLAAD congratulates her on her history-making fight. We know she will continue to be a strong presence not just in her sport, but in our culture as well.

Note well: Rousey and Carmouche made much less money than their male counterparts – Dan Henderson and Lyoto Machida. But there are a few things to consider as the money disclosed is only what promoters are required to report by law.

Here are the reported salaries of the top five fights:

Ronda Rousey: $90,000 (includes a $45,000 win bonus) for defeating Liz Carmouche: $12,000

Lyoto Machida: $200,000 (no win bonus) defeats Dan Henderson: $250,000

Urijah Faber: $100,000 (includes a $50,000 win bonus) for defeating Ivan Menjivar: $17,000

Court McGee: $40,000 (includes a $20,000 win bonus) for defeating Josh Neer: $16,000

Robbie Lawler: $105,000 (includes a $10,000 win bonus) for defeating Josh Koscheck: $78,000

Liz Carmoche completes our trio of San Diego heroes.

Liz Carmouche completes our trio of San Diego heroes. Top left photo shows the event poster for the UFC 157 show; top right, shows the ladies facing off for a promotional shoot; bottom left Carmouche applies a headlock on Rousey who then bit her way to victory; and finally we have Carmouche in a photo with fellow MMA star Urijah “The California Kid” Faber. It’s been rumored the two are related. Some say Faber is Carmouche’s long-lost twin.

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