Featherweight World Championship Is Co-Featured Bout To WBC Heavyweight Showdown - TONEY vs. PETER Sept. 2, 2006, on Showtime Championship Boxing, 10 p.m. ET/PT
An already spectacular night of boxing just got better!
International Boxing Federation (IBF) 126-pound champion Eric “Mighty Mouse” Aiken (16-4, 12 KOs) will put his title on the line when he faces Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero (18-1-1, 11 KOs) at STAPLES Center Saturday, Sept. 2, 2006 on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the west coast), it was announced today by co-promoter Dan Goossen.
The explosive match-up, featuring two of the busiest and hardest hitting featherweights in the business, will open the SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast before headliners James “Lights Out” Toney and Samuel “The Nigerian Nightmare” Peter go toe-to-toe in what promises to be an electrifying World Boxing Council (WBC) heavyweight elimination bout.
The 25-year-old Aiken is a remarkable story. On March 13, 2006, his record dipped to an unimposing 14-4 when he dropped a decision to a boxer with a 5-0 record (Johnnie Edwards) in Columbus, Ohio. But the amazing Aiken manufactured major upsets in his two starts since.
In a bout in which he was thought to be little more than a tune-up for Tim Austin, he scored a sixth-round TKO over the former world bantamweight champion on April 1, 2006, in Cleveland. Then, six weeks later, in Boston, in a match he took on short notice, he wrested the IBF title from the heavily favored Valdemir Pereira on a disqualification.
The referee’s decision to disqualify Pereira (24-0 going in) wasn’t a popular one with the fans, but at the time the highly entertaining fight was stopped, Aiken had twice knocked down the defending champion and had a three-point lead on one scorecard; the fight was even on the other two. Three low blows by the Brazilian, two of which resulted in point deductions, led to the DQ.
“Ghosts don’t scare me,” said Aiken, of Marysville, Ohio who is aching to get Guerrero in the ring. “I am looking forward to defending my title against Guerrero in front of his hometown fans. I plan on being aggressive and fighting like a champion and coming out with a victory.”
The Pride of Gilroy, Calif., the popular Guerrero avenged his lone professional loss when he knocked out Gamaliel Diaz in the sixth round on “ShoBox: The New Generation” on SHOWTIME on June 23, 2006.
"I wanted to prove that my loss to Diaz (in our first fight) was a fluke, and I did,’’ said Guerrero after dumping Diaz twice in the first and once more in the sixth that ended matters at 2:33. “I put a hole in his body and broke him in half. I went out and attacked. When I am focused, I am a hard man to conquer.
“My focus now is on Eric Aiken and his IBF title belt. He may think he can hit a ghost, but I can absorb anything he throws at me. The punishment I can hand out is downright scary, and, as Diaz would tell you, impossible to absorb. Aiken doesn’t stand a ghost of a chance.”
Unusually tall and rangy for a featherweight, the North American Boxing Federation (NABF) 126-pound champion is known for tremendous defense and speed. In his first outing after losing the thrilling, action-packed slugfest to Diaz that wound up as one of 2005's most shocking upsets, Guerrero scored a third-round TKO over Sandro Marcos on May 18, 2006, in San Jose, Calif.
“The Guerrero-Aiken championship bout is a great fight to add at STAPLES Center and SHOWTIME,” said Goossen of Goossen Tutor, which is promoting the scrap in association with Art Pellulo’s Banner Promotions. “Both Robert and Eric possess aggressive styles and are among the hardest hitters in the lighter weight divisions.
“They won’t need a 20-foot ring for this one. These guys could put on a great fight in a phone booth with a referee inside. “The Ghost Versus Mighty Mouse.’ It should be a real treat for the fans at STAPLES and those watching on SHOWTIME.”
The “No Risk, No Reward’’ Toney-Peter WBC heavyweight title elimination bout will be promoted by Goossen Tutor Promotions, Don King Productions and Duva Boxing.
Tickets priced at $300, $150, $75, and $50 are available at STAPLES CENTER box office or www.Ticketmaster.com.
For information on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING and “ShoBox: The New Generation” telecasts, including complete fighter bios and records, related stories and more, please go to the SHOWTIME website at http://www.sho.com/boxing.