Hopkins holds open media workout in Philadelphia

Story & photos by John DiSanto –

Bernard Hopkins held court with the media today at an open workout at the Joe Hand Boxing Gym in Philadelphia. The event was in advance of Hopkins’ highly anticipated light heavyweight title bout with Sergey Kovalev, scheduled for November 8th. At the workout to help publicize the fight was promoter Oscar De La Hoya, founder of Golden Boy Promotions. Hopkins and De La Hoya answered questions and Hopkins conducted a light workout.

Oscar de la Hoya: “Kovalev has never fought an athlete like Hopkins. So the question is, ‘How is he going to react when they hit the 4th, 5th, 6th round?’ It will be very interesting, but obviously we’re with Hopkins 100%. Hopkins is fighting with no pressure. He is already in the Hall of Fame when he retires. He’s already going to be talked about as one of the greats in any generation. So he doesn’t have that added pressure to prove himself at this point in his career.”

Bernard Hopkins: “He a dangerous puncher. He has over 90% knockouts. And anybody who fights this guy has the opportunity to not be the same. But I don’t get caught up in what the other guy might or can do. I train. I study. I know me. There’s no fighter in the world that would not put my record up to beat on any given day in this era, in any class. And that’s how I feel. That’s not being cocky. That’s being confident. To be confident you have to have a track record and put that work in to be taken seriously. You can talk about it, but to be about it, is whole different concept.”

Former IBF President Hiawatha Knight Passes

IBF Statement: We were deeply saddened when we learned of the passing of our former President Hiawatha Knight last week. Hiawatha was part of the fabric of the IBF/USBA. She was a founding member of the organization and held a position on the board of directors until recently. Hiawatha became a leader in the sport when it wasn’t common to see a woman in such a position. She was one of the pioneers creating a path for many more women to come. Her passion and enthusiasm for boxing, and her dedication to this organization will always be remembered.


Over the past few days we have received many condolence messages which we deeply appreciate. So many remember her with such fondness, but the common thread in all these messages is, “Hiawatha was a class act.” While our hearts are heavy with this loss, we join the Knight family in honoring and celebrating Hiawatha’s life.

Services for Hiawatha Knight will be held on Thursday, October 30, 2014 from 4pm – 8pm in the Northwest Chapel at Swanson Funeral Home, 14751 W. McNichols Road, Detroit, Michigan. A Celebration of Life will be held Friday, October 31, 2014 at Carter Metropolitan C.M.E. Church, 1510 W. Grand Boulevard in Detroit. Family Hour at 9:30AM, funeral immediately following.

IBF Convention 2015 in Montreal

Dear Members and Friends:

     On behalf of the IBF/USBA, I am glad to finally inform you that our 32ndAnnual Convention will take place in Montreal, Canada at Le Centre Sheraton from May 17 – 21, 2015.  During our past convention in Atlantic City there was a great deal of discussion regarding the convention potentially taking place in Wonju, Korea.  Unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances we could not make this a reality for 2015.  However, Asia is a region of great interest to us and we hope to host our convention in 2016 either in Korea or another country in the region. 

     We are optimistic that our convention in Montreal will be as successful as those that have taken place in the past few years.  Montreal is an exciting city with so much to offer.  It is a city full of culture and history with something going on at all times.  There are continuous festivals, shows and museums to visit. You can stroll the cobblestone streets of old Montreal or shop the latest fashions in new Montreal or the Underground City.  If you want to get away from the busy city you can visit Mount Royal and enjoy a beautiful view of the city in a tranquil park setting.  The city of Montreal is also a hub for sports in Canada, with boxing being extremely popular there. Lastly, with over 6,000 restaurants serving food from all over the world, you can’t go hungry in Montreal.

     Le Centre Sheraton, located just a few blocks from the well-known Bell Centre, is easily accessible from Pierre Elliot Trudeau Airport.  Depending on the mode of transportation you choose, it is a 30 to 40 minute ride.  You can take a taxi from the airport to the hotel for $40 CDN.  All taxis leaving from the airport and the hotel accept credit cards.  You can also take the 747 bus from the airport, which cost $10 CDN one way, and drops you off right by the Le Centre Sheraton.  Additionally, for those living in the northeastern United States, or visiting the area at the time, getting to Montreal by car is easy and not a very long drive depending on your location. 

     The room rate at Le Centre Sheraton for the convention is $189 CDN (approximately $169 US) per night for single and double occupancy. Club Level rooms, which include breakfast and evening hors d’oeuvres, are $239 CDN (approximately $214 US) a night for single and double occupancy.  Both room rates include complimentary wifi, 24 hour access to the health club and 2 bottles of water in room daily.  These room rates are not inclusive of taxes and fees.  If you choose to participate in the hotel’s Make a Green Choice Program by forgoing housekeeping any time during your stay, you will get a $5 CDN rebate per room per night to use on food and beverage at the hotel, or 500 SPG points if you are a member of their loyalty program.  The discounted room rate at Le Centre Sheraton will be available from May 14 to May 24, 2015. 

     We are currently working on obtaining airline and car rental discounts, as well as additional travel and transportation information for Montreal.  This information will be sent to you in the coming weeks along with hotel booking instructions and a tentative schedule so that you can begin to make your arrangements.  We are also looking into the ABC certification again for judges during this convention and will keep you informed on this.


     I thank you again for your continued support and look forward to seeing you at the convention in 2015.




                                                                                               Daryl J. Peoples/President           




Barthelemy defeats Saucedo

Rances Barthelemy defended his IBF junior lightweight world championship against Fernando David Saucedo with a dominating unanimous decision, scored 120-108 by all three judges, Saturday night at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Conn. Barthelemy (21-0, 12 KOs) controlled the bout from the opening bell and was the more active and accurate fighter, throwing 819 punches to Saucedo’s 382. Saucedo (52-6-3, 8, KOs) tried to counter, but he wasn’t quick enough to land anything meaningful against the elusive Cuban. Barthelemy, who landed 50 percent of his power shots, employed a diverse attack of uppercuts, hooks and jabs and fought with his hands down and by his side for most of the fight.

“It was a good fight,” Barthelemy said. “Saucedo is a veteran guy. In one moment, I thought I was going to knock him out, but he knows how to make the fight last. I want Mikey Garcia. They say he’s the best. I say I’m the best. Let’s settle it.”

Saucedo didn’t win a single round and was outclassed in his United States debut. “I did everything I could,” Saucedo said. “We gave it our all but he is just a stronger and bigger guy. He’s a very good fighter, but he’s too big for this weight division.”

Soliman and Taylor Make Weight

Both IBF Middleweight Champion Sam Soliman and challenger Jermain Taylor were respectful to each other and thankful to their teams during a press conference/weigh-in held at the Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, in Biloxi, Mississippi, in advance of tomorrow (Wednesday, October 8) night’s championship fight. Soliman and Taylor are headlining a mammoth 14-fight card that also features Andre Dirrell and a host of up-and-coming prospects and proven contenders. ESPN Wednesday Night Fights will broadcast the two main events and a four-rounder between Ahmed Elbiale and Dakota Dawson live.

Sam Soliman 160 vs. Jermain Taylor 159.8
(IBF World Middleweight Championship)

André Dirrell 169 vs. Nick Brinson 168.8
Ahmed Elbiale 174.6 vs. Dakota Dawson 171.6
Carlos Velásquez 131.6 vs. Jean Javier Sotelo 131.4
Steve Lovett 176 vs. Ricardo Campillo 177
Phillip Jackson Benson 172.2 vs. Michael Gbenga 173.6
Joey Hernández 162 vs. Jose Miguel Rodríguez 157.6
Mario Barrios 125.4 vs. Abraham Rubio 127
Walter Castillo 142 vs. Shad Howard NA
Justin DeLoach 156.2 vs. Joshua Snyder 155
Gervonta Davis 126.8 vs. German Meraz 125
BJ Flores 203.8 vs. Kevin Engel 190.8
Regis Prograis 142.2 vs. Mario Hermosillo 142.2
Erick Bone 142.6 vs. Peter Oluoch 144

Venue: Beau Rivage Resort & Casino, in Biloxi, Mississippi
Promoters: DiBella Entertainment and Warriors Boxing, in association with Soliman Stanley Promotions
TV: ESPN Wednesday Night Fights (9 pm EST/8 pm CT)
Tickets: priced at $89.95, $69.95, $49.95 and $29.95, plus tax and service charges, and can be purchased at the Beau Rivage Theatre box office, or through any Ticketmaster outlet or online at Doors open at 5:00 pm, with the first bout scheduled for 5:30 pm.

Cunningham family thanks boxing community

Two-time cruiserweight world champion and current top-10 heavyweight contender Steve “USS” Cunningham and his family would like to thank the boxing community for the contributions to the Kennedy Cunningham Fundraiser on Kennedy Cunnungham is the 9 year-old daughter of Steve & Livvy Cunningham and is awaiting a life-saving heart transplant surgery. The fundraiser was set up this summer with the proceeds going to out of pocket expenses for the Cunningham’s which included finding a new home close to the hospital for the potential surgery in Pittsburgh. Within the two months, the goal of $25,000 was reached with most of the donations coming from members of the boxing industry.

“We are humbled and grateful for what everyone has done to pitch in,” said Steve Cunningham. “These donations came from all over the world from promoters, managers, television people, fighters and everyone else.”

Said Livvy Cunningham, “We are truly touched by the outpouring of help from everybody. Because of the contributions from everybody, We are as comfortable as we can be in this situation and we found a place minutes away from the hospital. It truly shows that when people get together, they can make a huge difference in people’s lives.”

Steve “USS” Cunningham returns to the ring on Saturday, October 18 at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia when he takes on undefeated Natu Visinia in a 10-round heavyweight bout that will headline a card on NBC Sports Net