Heavyweight Factory boxing director, Henry Rivalta, presents #1 WBA welterweight contender, Brad “King” Solomon (16-0, 7 KOs), who defends his WBA international title, against Demetrius “DHop” Hopkins (30-1-1, 11 KOs), on this week’s edition of ESPN Friday Night Fights, at the Seminole Hard Rock Live in Hollywood, Florida.
The sullen, somewhat surly Hopkins parsed his words, explaining: “I don’t talk much but I’m on a mission. Come Friday, I’m gonna leave with a victory. It’s do-or-die for me. My camp was good and I’m ready. That’s all I’m gonna say.” He then confided his thoughts on Solomon’s abilities with: “He’s a Roy Jones Jr. wanna-be. But Roy won’t be in the ring with him Friday.”
Rivalta saved the last word for the rapidly-rising welterweight sensation Brad Solomon. The “King” flashed his 24-karat gold-toothed smile as he declared: “You all know what time of day it is. I’ve put in a lot of hard work in the gym and everyone will see how that will pay off for me. Demetrius says he’s ready and in shape. That’s the kind of fight I like, I like someone who will fight back. I will be like Ken Griffey Jr. and I’m going to knock the stitches off the ball. HBO, here I come.”
As the two combatants stood millimeters apart for their faceoff, a hush fell over the collective group. This animosity was real and it was simmering. As the two stepped back, Hopkins uttered: “Roy (Jones Jr.) can’t save ya.”
Not missing a chance to fire back, Solomon responded: “His mouth moves, but we’re gonna see if his hands can do any talking.”
Cuban 2004 Olympic gold medalist Yan Barthelemy (11-2, 4 KOs) will face Dominican boxer Francis Ruiz (9-3, 4 KOs) instead of previously-scheduled Californian Chris Avalos (18-1, 15 KOs) for the 10-round super featherweight co-main event. Avalos cited a hand injury suffered during a recent Sunday sparring session as the reason he could not face the southpaw Barthelemy.
Atlanta-based heavyweight contender Cedric “The Bos” Boswell (33-1, 26 KOs) will face former WBC world heavyweight champion Oliver “The Atomic Bull” McCall (55-10, 37 KOs).
ESPN Friday Night Fights at the Seminole Hard Rock Live March 18th. Doors open at 6:30 PM. First fight starts at 7:30.
Individual tickets cost $35, $55 & $105. All seats are reserved and available at the Hard Rock Live Box Office; open Tuesday – Saturday from noon to 7 p.m. and on Sunday & Monday – only open on event days at noon. Tickets also are available at all Ticketmaster outlets online at www.ticketmaster.com or charge by phone: 1-800-745-3000.
Photo by: THF/Katty Peraza
Brad Solomon 145.5 vs. Demetrius Hopkins 147
Cedric Boswell 226.25 vs. Oliver McCall 259
Yan Barthelemy 120.25 vs. Francis Ruiz 120.25
Eric Mitchell 159.25 vs. Domonique Dolton 156.75
Yasmay Consuegra 241.5 vs. David Williams 228
Erik Leander 253.25 vs. Albert Jimenez 253
Dieuly Aristilde 216.25 vs. Lujan Henderson 274.25