Sampson Boxing Renews Promotional Agreement with Lightweight Powerhouse Edwin De Los Santos

Promoter Sampson Lewkowicz proudly announces he has renewed his long-term promotional contract with WBC and WBC #4, WBO #9 and IBF #10 lightweight Edwin “La Granada” De Los Santos (16-2, 14 KOs).

The 24-year-old De Los Santos, a hard-punching southpaw from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, has been with Lewkowicz’s Sampson Boxing for most of his career and found success in the United States, with nationally televised victories over fellow contenders, Luis Acosta (then 12-0), Jose Valenzuela (then 12-0) and Joseph Adorno (then 17-2-2).

De Los Santos has also picked up the WBC Continental Americas Lightweight Championship along the way and unsuccessfully challenged for the WBC World Championship last November, losing a controversial decision to a highly reluctant Shakur Stevenson. MORE

Sampson Boxing Signs Undefeated Super Bantamweight Bryan Acosta to an Exclusive Multi-Year Promotional Contract

Sampson Lewkowicz of Sampson Boxing proudly announces the signing of undefeated super bantamweight prospect Bryan “Latino” Acosta to an exclusive multi-year promotional contract.

Acosta (20-0, 8 KOs) is a skilled counterpuncher with a dazzling boxing skill. Hailing from the traditional boxing hotbed of Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico and raised in the U.S. until he was nine, the 25-year-old Acosta turned professional in 2016 and won his first title, the WBC Continental Americas Featherweight Championship with a tenth-round TKO over fellow Mexican Benito Sanchez Garcia in May of 2022.

Another significant victory for Acosta doesn’t appear on his official record because of the AIBA’s controversial history, however, earlier this month, he dropped and knocked out fellow prospect Alberto “Impacto” Melian of Argentina in the eighth round for their IBA American Championship. MORE

Fundora Promoter Offers Tszyu a Rematch

Sampson Lewkowicz, the sole promoter of brand-new unified WBC and WBO 154-pound world champion Sebastian “The Towering Inferno” Fundora, wishes to clarify his position on a potential Fundora rematch with now former champ and previously unbeaten Tim Tszyu.

“We were all so eager to make this fight that many of our agreements were made verbally. There wasn’t enough time,” explained Lewkowicz. “But I wish to make it clear that Team Fundora will honor the agreement. My word is always equal to a signed contract. Tim Tszyu, your rematch is ready when you are.”

Lewkowicz says the Fundora vs. Tszyu rematch will happen, with the only deciding factor being if Tszyu would like to do it immediately or if he prefers the fighters take an interim fight each beforehand.

“It all depends on Tim Tszyu,” said Lewkowicz. “If he doesn’t take the rematch, we will take the WBO mandatory or Spence, whatever the WBO says, but the first priority is the rematch with Tim Tszyu.”

 

Fundora’s Towering Advantage
Raises Concerns For Tszyu

 Sebastian Fundora, 6’5″, towered over the 5’9″ WBO junior middleweight champion Tim Tszyu today during their media workout for their upcoming 12-round headliner clash on March 30th on Prime PPV at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Tszyu (24-0, 17 KOs) may have more problems than boxing fans suspect with the lanky giant Fundora (20-1-1, 13 KOs) for their two-belt unification fight. These two looked like they didn’t belong in the same ring when they stood for the face-off today, Fundora craning his neck to look down on the smallish Tszyu. MORE

Sampson Boxing Signs Welterweight Nicklaus Flaz to a Promotional Contract

Sampson Boxing proudly announces the signing of streaking welterweight prospect Nicklaus “La Bestia” Flaz to a promotional contract.

Since suffering his second career defeat, a shock first-round knockout in October 2020, Flaz (12-2, 8 KOs), from Vega Alta, Puerto Rico, has gone on a tear, scoring three impressive upset victories; knocking out an established durable veteran and taking the undefeated 0 records from two promising up-and-comers along the way.

The 28-year-old Flaz started his remarkable winning streak by scoring a majority eight-round decision over then 13-0 Brian Ceballo in October 2022. Next came another eight-round majority decision over then 10-0 Jahi Tucker in July 2023.

But Flaz really got the boxing world talking last Wednesday (March 13) by becoming the first to knock out capable veteran Luke Santamaria in the co-main event of a globally streamed ProBoxTV event in Plant City, Florida. MORE

David Benavidez: Time To Abandon 168 And
Target Light Heavyweight Glory


By Dan Ambrose

Former two-time WBC super-middleweight champion David Benavidez discovered last week that he’s not in Canelo Alvarez’s plans for his two fights in 2024. What this means is Benavidez (28-0, 24 KOs) will need to continue to bide his time by fighting non-stars in lower-paying fights, waiting for an opportunity that may never come to challenge Canelo for his undisputed super middleweight championship.

Certainly, Benavidez can stay at 168 if he wishes, keeping himself in limbo and likely being ignored by the only fighter he’s interested in fighting in the weight class, Canelo Alvarez. Benavidez is kind of like a guy who has been rejected continuously by a girl. But instead of getting the hint, he keeps hounding, hoping she’ll change her mind one day. Instead, she reports him for stalking or goes to HR and informs them of the harassment.

In Benavidez’s case, he needs to get the hint that Canelo is NOT interested in fighting him, and he NEVER will. He needs to understand this and stop thinking that Alvarez will eventually give him the shot he’s been pleading for all these years. If it were meant to be, Canelo would have fought him back in 2018 when he still held the WBC 168-lb title. MORE

Sampson Boxing Signs Unbeaten Brazilian Cruiserweight Lucas Pontes da Silva to a Promotional Contract

Sampson Boxing proudly announces the signing of undefeated Brazilian cruiserweight prospect Lucas Pontes da Silva to a promotional contract, with plans to feature the hard-punching South American on ProBoxTV.

Hailing from Belem, Para, Brazil, Pontes da Silva (7-0, 7 KOs) has close ties to one of his country’s greatest champions, as his father and trainer, Ulisses Pereira, has worked with former WBO lightweight champion Acelino "Popo" Freitas for more than two decades.

“My godfather of boxing is Acelino Freitas,” said Pontes da Silva. “I’ve been training with him and my father my entire life, so I am heavily influenced by him."

After going 53-3 as an amateur, Pontes da Silva turned professional in 2017 and won the Brazilian national title in just his third fight by stopping then 8-1 Fernando Rodrigo Simoes de Almeida in two rounds. He has since added the WBC Feconsur Cruiserweight title by stopping Maximiliano Jorge Gomez in one round last year and, in his last fight, picked up the Universal Boxing Organization World Cruiserweight Championship via first-round knockout over Venezuela’s Reinaldo Gonzalez in July. MORE

PROMOTER SAMPSON LEWKOWICZ GRATEFUL FOR HIS INDUCTION INTO ATLANTIC CITY BOXING HALL OF FAME

Promoter Sampson Lewkowicz wishes to thank the Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame for his induction, as part of the 2024 class of honorees, for his “extensive contributions to the boxing industry.”

A staple of professional boxing for over three decades, the well-liked Lewkowicz has been credited with discovering several of the sport’s breakout superstars, including Manny Pacquiao, Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez, Sultan Ibragimov, David Benavidez, Jeison Rosario, Jorge Barrios, Chris John, Michael Katsidis, Sebastian and Gabriela Fundora, and many more.

Born in Montevideo, Uruguay, Lewkowicz, began his career in the fight game as a matchmaker for Murad Muhammad’s M & M Sports and later, in 2008, graduated to his own promotional firm, Sampson Boxing.

The South American visionary has guided the careers of, currently, 39 world champions, done shows all over the world and been an ardent supporter of South American amateur boxing by sponsoring several prestigious annual tournaments in conjunction with Mauricio Sulaiman and the WBC as a sponsor in Mexico. MORE

Sebastian Fundora: I Fell Asleep For A Second
[Against Mendoza] And I Paid For It

By Keith Idec

Sebastian Fundora received a devastating reminder regarding focus last April 8.

The then-undefeated Fundora comfortably outboxed Brian Mendoza during the first six rounds of their fight that night for Fundora’s WBC interim super welterweight title. The 6-foot-6 southpaw shut out Mendoza on the scorecards of judges Lou Moret (60-54) and Zachary Young (60-54) and won five of the first six rounds according to judge Nathan Palmer (59-55).

All it took was a split-second lapse in concentration for the hard-hitting Mendoza to tattoo Fundora with a left hook that abruptly altered the course of their careers. As soon as Fundora stumbled backward, Mendoza quickly followed up with a punishing right-left combination that knocked Fundora flat on his back.

Fundora (20-1-1, 13 KOs) wanted to get up, but his body wouldn’t cooperate. Referee Ray Corona counted him out 39 seconds into the seventh round of a “Showtime Championship Boxing” main event at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California. MORE

GABRIELA FUNDORA STOPS CHRISTINA CRUZ

By Diego Morilla

A statement was needed, and a statement was produced.

In the first title fight of the Jaime Munguia-John Ryder undercard, IBF women’s flyweight champion Gabriela Fundora improved to 13-0 (6 KOs) with a stoppage of former amateur star Christina Cruz (now 6-1, 0 KOs) in the tenth and final round of a fight that took place in the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

Fundora, rated at No. 3 by The Ring at flyweight, controlled the center of the ring and the pace of the fight since the very beginning, working behind a stiff right jab from her southpaw stance and keeping Cruz at bay. Fundora’s height and wingspan made the difference in the early going, but Cruz managed to break through with some mean-intentioned combinations in the middle rounds.

However, after a few disputed rounds that seemed to give Cruz some hope of building up a surge towards the end of the bout, the final rounds were all Fundora, as the Californian unloaded on her Puerto Rican/Floridian foe with power and precision until a barrage of punches forced Cruz to go into a shell and turn her back to her foe. Referee Chris Flores made the decision to halt the bout when less than a minute of time remained in the fight. MORE

GABRIELA FUNDORA SIGNS CO-PROMOTIONAL DEAL WITH GOLDEN BOY PROMOTIONS

By Ryan Songalia

IBF female flyweight titleholder Gabriela Fundora has signed a co-promotional deal with Golden Boy Promotions, it was announced Tuesday.

Fundora (12-0, 5 knockouts) of Coachella, Calif. is also promoted by Sampson Boxing, which also handles the career of her brother, junior middleweight contender Sebastian Fundora.
The 21-year-old southpaw Fundora is slated to make the first defense of her belt on Jan. 27 against former amateur star Christina Cruz (6-0) at Footprint Center in Phoenix, Ariz. The fight will be broadcast live on DAZN as part of the Jaime Munguia vs. John Ryder card.

“I am ready and prepared for my first title defense and I feel like nothing can stop me from winning,” said Fundora, who won the title on October 21 with a fifth round KO of Arely Mucino. “Christina Cruz is a good fighter, but I am building my legacy as a champion and no one can stop me." MORE

Sampson Lewkowicz: Zerafa NOT Involved

Regarding an incident on Wednesday, December 13, 2023, at the WBA Convention in Orlando that is virally making the rounds on social media, promoter Sampson Lewkowicz wishes to clarify that Australian WBA #1 middleweight Michael Zerafa was in no way involved in the violent altercation captured on video.

After a disagreement over mandatory bouts and interim titles at the convention, Lewkowicz was attacked and humiliatingly spit on by the son of Zerafa's manager, CEO and Founder of Grant Gloves, Elvis Grant Phillips. 

However, recent news reports could be interpreted as linking Zerafa to the melee that ensued and Lewkowicz wants it known that the fighter was not involved in the attack. In fact, Zerafa and his fiancée have since contacted Lewkowicz to offer their concerns for the 72-year-old veteran promoter’s wellbeing.

Lewkowicz has filed battery charges with the Orange County Sherrif’s Office over the cowardly attack.



Benavidez Stops Andrade After Six Rounds, Calls for Fight With Super Middleweight Champ Canelo

By W.G. Ramirez
Photo: AP Photo/John Locher

LAS VEGAS (AP) — David Benavidez retained the interim world super middleweight belt by stopping Demetrius Andrade after the sixth round Saturday night.

In what was billed as clash of styles that could go the distance between unbeaten 168-pounders, Benavidez (28-0, 24 KOs) looked more like a clinician with a dominating performance before Andrade’s corner requested the stoppage after the sixth round.

Andrade (32-1) suffered the first loss of his career.

Benavidez is widely recognized as the world’s best super middleweight after Canelo Alvarez. Immediately after his win he called for a match against Alvarez to unify the super middleweight title as an announced gathering of 9,585 fans roared their approval. MORE

 



Michel Rivera Rebounds with Decision Against Sergey Lipinets

Parviz Iskenderov
Photo: Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions

Michel Rivera returned to winning ways when he faced Sergey Lipinets on Saturday, November 25 at Michelob ULTRA Arena in Las Vegas. The pair battled it out on the top of prelims, leading to David Benavidez vs Demetrius Andrade live on pay-per-view.
T
he 10-round bout went the full distance. The Dominican super lightweight claimed the win, defeting former world champion of Kazakhstan by unanimous decision. The scores were 97-93, 96-94 and 97-93.

With the victory, Michel Rivera improved to 25-1, 14 KOs. Miami-based 25-year-old rebounded from his first career defeat suffered last December by unanimous decision against Frank Martin.

Woodland Hills, California-based 34-year-old former IBF super lightweight champion Sergey Lipinets dropped to 17-3-1, 13 KOs. MORE

 

David Benavidez vs Demetrius Andrade Preview – Winner to Face Canelo Alvarez

Benavidez Defends Interim WBC Super Middleweight Title Against Andrade in Las Vegas

NEWSWIRE

Undefeated David Benavidez and unbeaten Demetrius Andrade battle it out at Michelob ULTRA Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday, November 25. The scheduled for 12 rounds super middleweight bout is set to determine the next contender to challenge Canelo Alvarez for his undisputed 168-pound crown.

Phoenix, Arizona native David Benavidez (27-0, 23 KOs) is a former two-time WBC super middleweight champion. Las Vegas-based 26-year-old brings to the ring his interim WBC super middleweight title.

Demetrius Andrade (32-0, 19 KOs) is a former two-division world champion, who held the WBO and WBA super welterweight titles and the WBO middleweight belt. The 35-year-old of Providence, Rhode Island looks to conquer a new division.

The event airs live on Showtime PPV in the United States. International live stream is to be determined.

In the UK and Australia, Benavidez vs Andrade airs live on Sunday, November 26. MORE

Amilcar Vidal Scores Knockout Win in Montevideo

By Francisco Salazar
Published Thu Oct 26, 2023, 11:34 PM EDT

Middleweight Amilcar Vidal Jr. continues to rebound from his lone setback.

Vidal knocked out Victor Pinango with one punch Saturday night at the Club Atletico Stockolmo in Vidal’s hometown of Montevideo, Uruguay.

The 27-year-old Vidal improved to 18-1, 14 knockouts.

From the opening bell, Vidal was the aggressor, throwing and landing combinations behind a steady jab. Pinango was game, staying in the pocket to exchange, but Vidal was connecting with the more effective punches.

About a minute into the first round, Vidal threw and landed a left hook to the body, dropping Pinango to the canvas. Pinango struggled to get to his feet as the impact of the punch prevented him from doing so. Referee Matias Morales counted Pinango out at 1:13.

Vidal suffered his first defeat as a pro at the hands of contender Elijah Garcia on March 4, losing by knockout in the fourth of a competitive fight between unbeaten middleweights. MORE

Gabriela Fundora Stops Arely Mucino, Wins First World Title

Michael Rothstein, ESPN Staff Writer
Oct 22, 2023, 06:55 AM

Gabriela Fundora threw punch after punch, finding the face and body of IBF flyweight champion Arely Mucino over and over again. It was clinical from the opening bell until the fight was stopped less than 10 minutes later.

Fundora (12-0, 5 KO) scored two knockdowns en route to a fifth-round TKO victory over Mucino to win the IBF flyweight belt in her first title fight.

"We just stayed calm," Fundora said in the post-fight interview on DAZN. "We're not going to go rushing into the fight. That's not smart. So, we just stay calm, stay focused and stay on the attack.

"And honestly at the end of the first round, we saw that she was hurt so I knew from there it was going to be a long night."

A long night, at least, for Mucino (32-4-2, 11 KO), who was making the first defense of the title. She had also held the IBF, WBC and WBO flyweight belts earlier in her career. MORE

 

SAN ANTONIO’S RAMON CARDENAS LOOKING TO SMASH OPEN DOORS BY FACING UNDEFEATED RAFAEL PEDROZA IN MAIN EVENT OF SHOBOX: THE NEW GENERATION® ON FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 15

Exciting Tripleheader to Be Broadcast Live on SHOWTIME® at 9:30 PM ET/PT

September 11, 2023 – San Antonio’s own Ramon “Dinamita” Cardenas is putting the finishing touches on training camp to face undefeated 122-lb Panamanian prospect Rafael Pedroza for the WBA Continental-Latin American Super Bantamweight Championship in the 10-round super bantamweight main event of a SHOBOX: The New Generation telecast on Friday, September 15 at 9:30 p.m. ET/PT live on SHOWTIME from Boeing Center at Tech Point in San Antonio, Texas.

Previously ranked as high as No. 5 by the WBA, Cardenas has won his last 10 bouts dating back to 2017. He earned a career-best victory at The Alamodome in July 2022, defeating once-beaten Michel Banquez via unanimous decision.

Hard at work with trainer Chato Martinez at Chato’s Boxing Club in San Antonio, 27-year-old Cardenas says it’s all finally coming together for him and his career. With the prospect of winning a nationally televised main event in front of his hometown friends and family, while gaining access to even bigger opportunities after that, Cardenas says he will leave no stone unturned when it comes to his preparations for the big fight. READ MORE

NEW WBC BANTAMWEIGHT CHAMP ALEXANDRO SANTIAGO EXPECTS KEEPING THE TITLE WILL BE EVEN HARDER THAN HIS UPHILL CLIMB TO WIN IT

TIJUANA VETERAN TRAINED FOR FIGHT AGAINST DONAIRE LIVING IN A PARTIALLY BURNED HOUSE WITH PARENTS, WIFE AND NEWBORN SON
         
Despite overcoming several pre-fight distractions and challenges in the weeks and months leading up to his title-winning victory over legendary four-weight world champion Nonito Donaire, newly crowned WBC World Bantamweight Champion Alexandro “Peque” Santiago says the truly difficult part of his veteran career starts now.

Fighting on the televised undercard of the Errol Spence Jr. vs. Terence Crawford pay-per-view superfight on Saturday, July 29 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Santiago (28-3-5, 14 KOs), from Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico, notched a unanimous decision victory over “The Filipino Flash” Donaire by scores of 115-113, 116-112 and 116-112.

The victory was made even more impressive by the fact that Santiago trained for the fight while also welcoming the birth of his son less than two months earlier, the fight being rescheduled from its original date of July 15 last minute, and his family duplex partially burning down on June 30.

“It was an accident,” explained Santiago. “The top floor of the house, where my relatives were staying, burned down. I live with my parents right now and, thankfully, the firefighters were able to stop the fire before it got to the first floor." MORE

SANTIAGO BEATS DONAIRE FOR WBC BANTAMWEIGHT TITLE

By Jeff Zimmerman at ringside

Bantamweight Alexandro Santiago (28-3-5, 14 KOs) hammered out a twelve round unanimous decision over future Hall of Famer Nonito Donaire (42-8, 28 KOs) to claim the vacant WBC bantamweight title formerly held by Naoya Inoue on Saturday night at the sold-out T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

In round one, Santiago threw punches while Donaire pressed, showing feints, patiently waiting for the big punch. Santiago established the jab in round two, as Donaire continued to come forward. The action picked up as Santiago landed a body shot to close the round.

In round three, Santiago got Donaire to the ropes and landed a few wild shots, before Donaire countered with a huge left hook that sent Santiago backwards. Both fighters exchanged shots in round four and five as Santiago landed an impressive three shot flurry in round six. From round seven to the final bell, Santiago stepped on the gas and landed three straight combinations to the head and body. Santiago also suffered a cut in the corner of his left eye after the two collided. After a quick check from the doctor, the fight continued. In round eight and nine, Santiago went for the knockout but could not put Donaire away. Santiago teed off again in round eleven with fast combos as Donaire just could not let his hands go enough. He tried valiantly to land his patented left hook he learned from Nicaraguan legend Alexis Arguello, but Santiago was able to take his best shot tonight.

The scores read 115–113, 116-112 twice as Santiago earned the WBC bantamweight title in his second attempt at a world championship. He earned a draw in his first attempt in 2018 versus Jerwin Ancajas.

The question is where does Donaire go from here? He would have become the oldest world champion today at 40 and is no doubt a first ballot hall of famer when he decides to hang up the gloves. He lost to “The Monster” Inoue twice with two wins in between versus Gaballo and Oubaali, so he could still compete at the highest level. He told Jim Gray in the ring post-fight that things were not clicking, but he gave no indication he was retiring. MORE

Sampson Boxing Signs Undefeated Welterweight Powerhouse Freudis Rojas Jr. to a Promotional Contract

Sampson Lewkowicz, President of Sampson Boxing, proudly announces the signing of undefeated Mexican American welterweight prospect Freudis Rojas Jr. (10-0, 10 KOs) to an exclusive promotional contract.

The 24-year-old Rojas, also known as Freddy to his friends, was an accomplished amateur boxer for the United States on the international stage, winning a bronze medal at the 2017 World Championships, as well as serving as a 2020 Olympic Alternate. 

Standing 6′ 2″, the powerful Vegas-based southpaw turned professional in January 2021 and hasn’t had to go more than four rounds while amassing his perfect record.

In his most recent outing, he knocked out durable veteran Gilbert Venegas in less than a round in February of this year. Despite having faced a long list of undefeated prospects and contenders, Venegas hadn’t been stopped in six years previous to facing the hammers in Rojas Jr.’s fists. MORE


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