The temperature rose immensely Thursday night at Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, CT, as fighters took the scales to weigh in for Friday night’s scheduled fights.
Jimmy Burchfield, Classic Entertainment and Sports, in association with Global Boxing, have put together an extravagant ten bout card featuring top global and domestic championship contenders, along with significant up and coming New England prospects.
The main event has Mariusz Wach (24-0, 12KOs), the fast rising Polish phenomenon now fighting out of North Bergen, NJ, taking on former Mike Tyson conqueror and Brockton, MA, native, Kevin McBride, for the WBC International Heavyweight title.
For McBride, it’s a chance to recap the short lived fame that followed with his surprising upset win over Iron Mike Tyson, while for Wach, it’s another opportunity to showcase to the western world his unique blend of European and American boxing skills that have assisted in successfully positioning him into Friday night’s limelight.
The co-feature puts local fan favorite and former title contender Elvin Ayala (23-5-1 ,11KOs) of New Haven, CT, against last minute replacement, the rugged and durable Derrick Findley (18-5, 11KOs) of Gary, IN, the town made famous by legendary Middleweight champion Tony Zale.
Ayala, who is currently in a successful resurrection phase of his career, was originally set to take on Israel “Pito” Cardona, of Hartford, CT, who was not licensed by the Mohegan Sun Athletic Commission.
The sudden twist in events now puts Ayala against a much more formidable opponent, whose only losses have come against top level opposition, including current and former world champions. The two will be battling it out for the USNBC Middleweight Championship.
Mohegan Sun is expected to have a large crowd on hand Friday night with many coming to cheer on both Wach and Ayala. In my time spent with the two men, both have expressed confidence in their ability to come out victorious.
Sitting back comfortably with his trainer, Juan De Leon, brother of four-time Cruiserweight Champion Carlos “Sugar” De Leon, Wach had very little to translate through the Polish interpreters when he stated that all would be demonstrated in the ring on Friday night.
When asked what his future plans were after the McBride fight, Wach responded that the only focus was on the task at hand of beating Kevin McBride.
DeLeon, Wach’s trainer, was a different story. He spoke out loudly, “Don’t leave your seat for this one!” while he and his group held up the Puerto Rican and Polish flags shouting, “PPP,” which stands for Polish Puerto Rican Power. He says this represents the unity of the two cultures and the impact they will have together.
Ayala was smiles as always. He seemed most happy about making the Middleweight limit comfortably. While demonstrating that he could live up to the commitment level needed to stay amongst the top players in the game, Ayala did not pat himself on the back, but humbly gave the majority of credit to his team members and management.
He gave special acknowledgement to CES Promotions for giving him the chance to rebuild his career at a point when he was considered down in the gutters. Ayala says that he feels more comfortable than ever and is finally prepared to live up to the championship potential people say he has, and to be the champion he feels he can be.
Along with these two exciting fighters there is a wide variety of talent spread out amongst this card, all whom have their own intriguing story. This makes for a classic case of Friday Night Fights. I highly recommend tuning in or following up on the action.