(photos from Ed Diller/DiBella Entertainment)
(June 6th ) Unbeaten light heavyweight contenders Marcus Browne and Seanie Monaghan went face-to-face Tuesday at a press conference to discuss their all-New York showdown taking place Saturday, July 15 in Premier Boxing Champions on FOX and FOX Deportes action live from the newly-renovated NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, the first live boxing card on Long Island since 1986.
Televised coverage begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and is headlined by a matchup between exciting former world champions Omar "Panterita" Figueroa and Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero plus Artur Szpilka meets Adam Kownacki in an all-Polish heavyweight showdown that promises fireworks.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by DiBella Entertainment, start at $50 (not including applicable fees) and are on sale Thursday, May 25 at 10 a.m. ET. Tickets can be purchased online by visiting www.ticketmaster.com, www.nycblive.com, or by calling 1-800-745-3000. Tickets are also available at the Ticketmaster Box Office at NYCB LIVE beginning Friday, May 26 at noon. Group discounts are available by calling 516-231-4848.
Also in attendance at Tuesday's press conference were local Long Island favorites Tommy Rainone (26-7-1, 6 KOs), Alicia Napoleon (7-1, 5 KOs), Patrick Day (13-2-1, 6 KOs) and Vincenzo D'Angelo (2-0).
Here is what they had to say from the JetBlue Overlook the Coliseum:
"Everyone knows that we know each other. But the buddy-buddy talk is out of the window. This is a fight. We both have kids to feed. I have a destiny that is already written, and Seanie is in the way of that.
"Come July 15, my feelings about Seanie won't mean a thing. I'm going to have to win. I know this guy trains like a dog and he's no pushover. All that sparring and stuff you've heard about doesn't' mean a thing, it's just going to be me and him and I have to win.
"I can't wait to go to work. I've fought my friends before and at the end of the day it's business. I'm going to become a world champion and no one is stopping me.
"I was raised defense-first by Gary Stark Sr. We are defensive specialist. I'm going to show everything that I have in my arsenal.
"Seanie and I came up in the amateurs and won Golden Gloves on the same night. We have history but it means nothing as of today and on July 15. This isn't sparring, there are no do-overs.
"July 15 is going to be fireworks. These undercard fighters are amazing and it's a fantastic card for Long Island. I'm just blessed to be able to show my talents in this building. I wish I could wake up tomorrow and it would be fight day. We aren't friends on July 15. Staten Island is coming out on top over Long Island."
"I've been chipping away at a title fight for a long time. When they asked me about Marcus, I first was thinking that it wasn't the fight I wanted. At this point in the game, it's may the best man win.
"Training has been going great. We might have to pull back a little bit because we already did a five-week training camp when I thought I was fighting Adonis Stevenson, which turned out to be a good thing. He's a southpaw just like Marcus so we were already sparring with a lot of really good southpaws.
"Marcus does everything well. He's fast, he's slick and he punches pretty hard. I like to fight and come forward and make it that kind of rough style on fight night.
"I've mastered the ability to control my emotions on fight night. I'm a professional in my 29th fight so it's not my first time at the rodeo. This is strictly business, it's my time.
"I definitely want Adonis Stevenson if I can get by Marcus. That's the fight everybody wants. I want to be a world champion and I will be a world champion one day.
"This is a dream come true to fight at this venue. This is going to be the biggest night of my life. It's do-or-die for me."
"I'm very thankful to Lou for giving me the opportunity. I've fought on a lot of great cards at a lot of great venues. But being a Long Island boy who has come to this venue my entire life and to be a part of brining this kind of event back to long island is a dream come true.
"Being on this card and having this venue here is all the motivation I need. I'm going to be in great shape on July 15 and do my part and handle business."
"I am so glad to be here, especially being from Long Island. It's a wonderful feeling to be on this great card. We're going to make Long Island proud.
"The last time they had boxing here was the year I was born. It's almost destined that I was going to be first woman to fight at this venue for a world title.
"I'm thankful that I have an opportunity to showcase women's boxing, because we're not just fighters, we're athletes. We sacrifice just as much and I'm excited for this fight."
"I live 15 minutes away and the fact that there is an arena of this magnitude in my hometown, it really means a lot. It feels like it's meant to be and I'm going to enjoy it.
"The Long Island boxing scene is on the rise. With this Coliseum being renovated, it's like a Long Island Barclays Center. The scene here will become even more competitive as time goes on.
"I like to box. I'm a pure boxer. I stick and move hit and don't get hit. I'm not going to fight down to anyone's level, I'm going to fight at my level."
"I'm just excited to be here and back in the ring. I have a lot of friends fighting on this show and I can't wait for all of us to show our skills. There are a lot of great boxers on this show.
"I'm preparing to put on a great performance for the fans and get another win under my belt on July 15. I'm going to make it a memorable debut in my hometown."
LOU DIBELLA, President of DiBella Entertainment
"It's thrilling to me to be able to promote the first show at Nassau Coliseum in 31 years. The last event featured Mike Tyson and we have a terrific card on July 15 that represents the best fighters from Long Island, plus three fights that can stand on their own featuring fighters that deserve to be there.
"The undercard will be very representative of Long Island. It will be consistent with what we've always done as far as promoting cards that are exciting from the minute the doors open through the final bell.
"I'm thrilled that this is on FOX and FOX Deportes and that everyone will be able to see this building rock on July 15. I'm also thrilled with the kind of show they're getting. What you have is a consistent few hours of unbelievable action. All three of these fights are wars.
"Seanie has been working his way up and just winning fight after fight. He's been looking for a title shot for a long time. Marcus came into the pros with a lot of noise, but he's kept winning at every step. This is going to be a really good fight and I don't think it's going the distance. You can bank on the fact that the winner of this fight will get a shot at the light heavyweight championship of the world."
BRETT YORMARK, CEO of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment
"When we envisioned recreating the Coliseum, the goal was to fuel it with world class programming and I think we've done that. We've had world class artists, the end of a great run of the circus and in the month of July we will host Brooklyn Boxing on Long Island.
"We've had the opportunity to host incredible boxing events in Brooklyn and now we can do it in Long Island. It's about being able to be somewhat aspirational. The fight community can grow up dreaming of fighting here in the Coliseum. I'm thrilled we can do that for Seanie and the other fighters on the undercard.
"It's been 31 years since we last had a fight here at the Coliseum and it's a thrill to bring it back with some great people. The building is for the community and this will be the first of many boxing events that we host here.
(May 23th) A matchup between exciting former world champions Omar "Panterita" Figueroa (26-0-1, 18 KOs) and Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero (33-5-1, 18 KOs) headlines an action-packed night of Premier Boxing Champions on FOX and FOX Deportes on Saturday, July 15 in the first boxing event at the newly-renovated NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum. Televised coverage begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT from the first boxing event at the Coliseum since Mike Tyson headlined in 1986.
"I'm looking forward to getting back in the ring and showing fans what I'm known for - exciting fights," said Figueroa. "I've been quietly training and preparing in Indo, California with Joel Diaz and now it's time. I'm looking forward to a great fight with Robert Guerrero on July 15 in front of a New York crowd. I can't wait to show everyone at the Coliseum and on FOX and FOX Deportes what 'Panterita' is all about."
"Both me and Omar Figueroa like to bang on the inside, which should make for great entertainment, but Omar is going to find out on July 15 that he's facing a man who has his back against the wall and is going to leave everything in the ring," said Guerrero. "I'm going to give the millions who'll be watching on FOX and FOX Deportes a fight to remember. This is going to be a classic Mexican war and I'm coming out on top."
The FOX and FOX Deportes broadcast will see unbeaten contender "Sir" Marcus Browne (19-0, 14 KOs) battling undefeated Long Island native and fan favorite Seanie Monaghan (28-0, 17 KOs) in a light heavyweight showdown.
"I have fought more times at Barclays Center than anyone, so it's exciting to get to fight in a new venue not too far from home," said Browne. "We might be in Seanie's immediate backyard, but I'm just down the block, so he really isn't any more at home than I am. I know he's a hard-nosed fighter with a come-forward style. I'm preparing for a tough opponent. A win won't come easy, but we have to take care of business. I am just ready to display my talent on national television and continue my climb toward a world title."
"It is a dream come true to be fighting at the Coliseum, which is literally right next to the track where I run every day," said Monaghan. "It is an honor to represent Long Island in the first boxing event held at this venue in 31 years. I've been waiting for an opportunity like this for a long time, and I feel that this bout will bring a new chapter in my career. I have a lot of respect for Marcus Browne, but let the best man win. On July 15, I am putting everything on the line."
Also televised in prime time, Artur Szpilka (20-2, 15 KOs) meets Adam Kownacki (15-0, 12 KOs) in an all-Polish heavyweight showdown that promises fireworks.
"I can't wait to get back in the ring and give my fans another exciting fight," said Szpilka. "With two Polish heavyweights fighting, you know there will be power and pride on display. I'm training harder than ever to get this victory in front of the great Polish fans in New York. This will be my first step towards getting back to fighting for the heavyweight world title."
"I can't wait to fight again," said Kownacki. "Most of my past fights were at Barclays Center, so fighting at the Coliseum will be a new and exciting experience. I am training very hard. A win on July 15 puts me one step closer to becoming a world champion. Szpilka will not stand in my way."
"Boxing's grand return to Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum is going to be wall-to-wall action," said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. "The PBC on FOX and FOX Deportes main event between Omar Figueroa and Robert Guerrero is destined to be a bloody slugfest. The co-featured bout between Staten Island's light heavyweight contender Marcus Browne and Long Island's undefeated 'Irish Rocky' Seanie Monaghan will bring the heat on a summer night in Long Island. While Marcus and Seanie will bring in a big local crowd, the heavyweight grudge match between Poland's Artur 'The Pin' Szpilka and Polish American Long Islander, by way of Brooklyn, Adam 'Baby Face' Kownacki will pack the house with Polish fans. As a Long Islander, I am proud to promote the first fight card at Nassau Coliseum in 31 years. July 15 will be a fun, action-packed night of boxing entertainment from beginning to end; the remainder of the card will be stacked with old-school brawls including local talent."
"The Coliseum has a rich history in boxing, having hosted notable fights with the likes of Mike Tyson, George Foreman, Joe Frazier, and Gerry Cooney, among others," said Brett Yormark, CEO of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment. "We are thrilled to build on the sport's heritage on Long Island, and to bring boxing back to the venue 31 years later with a major event on network television."
A high volume puncher with an exciting style, Figueroa has returned to training with Joel Diaz in California leading up to this fight and looks to make his presence felt on July 15. Representing Weslaco, Texas, Figueroa is undefeated since turning pro in 2008 and won a lightweight world title by defeating Nihito Arakawa in a 2013 Fight of the Year standout. He followed that victory up with successful defenses against Jerry Belmontes and Daniel Estrada. The 27-year-old most recently defeated former world champions Ricky Burns and Antonio DeMarco in his last two outings.
Born and raised in Gilroy, Calif., Guerrero is always in exciting contests having gone toe-to-toe with Danny Garcia in a FOX main event in 2016 and Keith Thurman sandwiched around a hard fought victory over Aron Martinez. Prior to 2015, the 34-year-old picked up victories over Andre Berto, Secluk Aydin and Michael Katsidis while winning world titles in multiple divisions. The brawling warrior has been in several "Fight of the Year" candidates throughout his career, including a memorable brawl in Southern California with Yoshihiro Kamegai in 2014, and he also challenged former pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather in 2013.
The undefeated Browne enters this fight after an electrifying performance in February that saw him drop former title challenger Thomas Williams Jr. before knocking him out in round six. The 26-year-old defeated previously unbeaten Radivoje Kalajdzic in April 2016 after a big 2015 that saw him defeat veteran contenders Gabriel Campillo, Aaron Pryor Jr., Francisco Sierra and Cornelius White. The 2012 U.S. Olympian fights out of Staten Island, New York after an exceptional amateur career that saw him win the 2012 U.S. Amateur Championship at light heavyweight.
One of the most popular fighters representing Long Island, Monaghan looks to solidify his first world title shot when he faces Browne on July 15. Monaghan competed in the 2009 New York Golden Gloves before turning pro, reaching the final before dropping a memorable contest to fellow Long Island-native Joe Smith Jr. He has yet to taste defeat in as a professional while battling a slew of veterans eager to test his championship mettle. Monaghan added two more victories in 2016 as he stopped Janne Forsman in five rounds and beat Fernando Castanedo in December.
The always entertaining Szpilka returns to the ring after a defeat at the hands of heavyweight world champion Deontay Wilder in 2016 as he attempts to get back on the path towards world title contention. The aggressive-minded 6-foot-3 Szpilka, had a four-fight win streak entering the Wilder bout as he picked up a 10-round unanimous decision over former cruiserweight world champion Tomasz Adamek in 2014 and stoppage victories over Yasmany Consuegra, Manuel Quezada and Ty Cobb in 2015.
A two-time New York Golden Gloves champion, five of Kownacki's last six victories have come at Barclays Center and he now hopes to bring that winning mindset to the Coliseum. Originally from Poland but now living in Brooklyn, Kownacki stopped previously once-beaten Joshua Tufte in January of this year after 2016 saw him earn a stoppage of Jesse Barboza in June and a decision over Danny Kelly in January. He will take on the toughest test of his career in his countryman Szpilka.