Teofimo Lopez Threatens Josh Taylor's Life!
(May 30th) In an live and recorded interview today on podcast Punsh Boxing, Las Vegas, Nevada, based Brooklynite, former unified lightweight champion Teofimo “Takeover” Lopez, 18-1, 13Ko’s took another walk to the wild side sounded, speaking about the need need to “kill” Haddington, Scotland, upcoming unbeaten opponent Josh “The Tartan Tornado” Taylor, 19-0, 13Ko’s inside the ring so that he can put “fear” in the minds of his future opponents.
Taylor-Lopez and Zayas-Cruz will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+ at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.
Promoted by Top Rank, tickets are on sale now and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com.
June 10: Xander Zayas To Fight For
2nd Annual Miguel Cotto Award
In Co-Feature To Taylor-Teofimo at The Theater at MSG!
(May 23rd) Junior middleweight phenom Xander Zayas (15-0, 10 KOs) will have an extra source of motivation for his upcoming fight.
The 20-year-old standout will fight Ronald “Diablo” Cruz (18-2-1, 12 KOs) on Saturday, June 10 for the second annual Miguel Cotto Award, which is presented by Top Rank and Madison Square Garden Entertainment. The Miguel Cotto Award celebrates the remarkable career of the legendary four-division world champion and upholds the tradition of hosting a major fight card during Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend. Cotto, who achieved notable wins against Muhammad Abdullaev, Paulie Malignaggi, Zab Judah, Joshua Clottey, Sergio Martinez and Daniel Geale during this festive weekend, will present the award at The Theater at Madison Square Garden following the June 10 bout.
Zayas-Cruz will be the co-feature to the junior welterweight showdown between WBO and Ring Magazine world champion Josh Taylor and former unified and lineal lightweight king Teofimo Lopez.
Cotto said, “For me, it’s a great honor and a great pleasure that Madison Square Garden and Top Rank have an award with my name to continue the tradition of fight cards during Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend. This award will motivate future generations to deliver their best in each fight.”
“Miguel Cotto has made an immeasurable mark on boxing at ‘The Mecca’ - Madison Square Garden,” said Joel Fisher, executive vice president, Marquee Events and Operations, Madison Square Garden Entertainment. “We’re thrilled to celebrate Cotto’s warrior legacy during the Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend with the presentation of the second annual award to the winner of the Xander Zayas v. Ronald Cruz fight on Saturday, June 10.”
Zayas said, “I’ve always said that in the world of boxing, Miguel Cotto is my favorite fighter. He is the reason I decided to become a fighter. It’s a total honor and a dream come true to have the opportunity to fight for an award that has his name. This confirms for me that we are on the right path, and it motivates me to keep working hard to continue accomplishing my dreams. I want to unite my Island and all of the Puerto Ricans in the United States in the same way that Miguel did. That is my biggest dream, and I will achieve it.”
Lightweight Contender Jamaine Ortiz
Signs Multi-Fight Co-Promotional Contract With Top Rank!
(May 4th) Lightweight contender Jamaine “The Technician” Ortiz is set to take his career to new heights ahead of an action-packed fight night in New York City.
Ortiz has signed a multi-fight co-promotional contract with Top Rank, who will work in conjunction with Jimmy Burchfield’s CES Boxing. Ortiz will return in a 10-round clash against an opponent to be named Saturday, June 10 at The Theater at Madison Square Garden. His fight will top the ESPN+-streamed undercard of the junior welterweight showdown between WBO and Ring Magazine world champion Josh Taylor and former unified and lineal lightweight king Teofimo Lopez.
In the 10-round co-feature, Puerto Rican junior middleweight phenom Xander Zayas will take on Ronald “Diablo” Cruz.
Ortiz (16-1-1, 8 KOs) is a native of Worcester, Massachusetts, who is of Puerto Rican and Dominican descent. A seven-year veteran, he experienced his most significant year as a pro in 2022. Ortiz secured the NABF lightweight title in February after outpointing Nahir Albright, then followed up with a 10-round unanimous decision victory against former world champion Jamel "Semper Fi" Herring in May. In October, the 27-year-old used his size and strength to take an early lead against former lightweight champion Vasiliy “Loma” Lomachenko before losing the tightly contested battle via unanimous decision.
Ortiz said, “It feels great to join a stable that has created so many Hall of Fame champions. I’m looking forward to becoming their next one. It's been a long journey fighting my way up to get the respect I deserve. With Top Rank working with CES, I’m now hoping for bigger and better fights.
“It feels good to be back in New York to get some redemption after the loss to Lomachenko. I gained many new fans that night, and a lot of people thought I won. People know I’m the real deal now. I’m motivated to improve and take over the lightweight division. I only took 10 days off after that fight and went straight to the gym. I’m coming to make a statement on June 10 that I’m not to be played with.”
Ortiz joins a previously-announced ESPN+-streamed undercard featuring two all-Puerto Rico battles.
Henry “Moncho” Lebron (17-0, 10 KOs) will lock horns against Christian Tapia (15-1, 12 KOs) in a 10-round junior lightweight tilt. Lebron is coming off wide decision wins over Andy Vences and Luis Lebron, while Tapia looks to rebound from a competitive decision defeat to Cleveland standout Thomas Mattice.
Rising prospect Omar Rosario (10-0, 3 KOs) squares off against Jan Carlos Rivera (8-1, 6 KOs) in an eight-round junior welterweight bout. Rivera has won four straight fights after suffering a decision loss inside the MGM Grand Las Vegas Bubble.
The loaded undercard also features a pair of rising stars in eight-rounders, both of whom fought on the Shakur Stevenson-Shuichiro Yoshino bill in April.
Brooklyn featherweight prodigy Bruce “Shu Shu” Carrington (7-0, 4 KOs), who knocked out Brandon Chambers in the second round, will face an opponent to be named.
Polish heavyweight dynamo Damian Knyba (11-0, 7 KOs), who stopped Curtis Harper in the eighth round, will fight Helaman Olguin (9-5-1, 4 KOs). Olguin was last seen dropping a unanimous decision to former Tyson Fury foe Otto Wallin in January.
June 10: Xander Zayas-Ronald Cruz Jr Middleweight Clash Added as Co-Feature To Taylor / Lopez Title Showdown!
(April 12th) Junior middleweight phenom Xander Zayas is set to shine on the eve of Puerto Rican Day Parade in New York City.
Zayas will return in a 10-round re-scheduled battle against Ronald “Diablo” Cruz Saturday, June 10 at The Theater at Madison Square Garden. Zayas-Cruz will serve as the co-feature to the junior welterweight showdown between WBO and Ring Magazine champion Josh Taylor and former unified and lineal lightweight king Teofimo Lopez.
Zayas (15-0, 10 KOs), from San Juan, Puerto Rico, is on the fast track to super stardom. He signed with Top Rank at 16 and has maintained an unblemished record. He is coming off an impressive 2022 that included eight-round decision wins over Quincy LaVallais and Alexis Salazar, along with a fifth-round TKO against Elias Espadas. The 20-year-old was originally scheduled to face Cruz in the April 1 co-feature to the Robeisy Ramirez-Isaac Dogboe main event, but a training injury forced him to withdraw. Zayas is ready to settle unfinished business on the eve of the Puerto Rican Day Parade atop an undercard that will feature several of his countrymen.
"I cannot wait to fight at Madison Square Garden in front of my people on the eve of the Puerto Rican Day Parade. This is a dream come true," Zayas said. "Ronald Cruz is a tough, durable fighter, and I expect the best version of him on June 10."
Cruz (18-2-1, 12, KOs) is a Los Angeles native who has never been stopped as a pro. After suffering his first loss in 2015, he went 16-0 before drawing against Kevin Ottley in 2021. In his last fight, the eight-year pro went 10 competitive rounds in a unanimous decision loss to Damian Sosa.
“I’m beyond excited to be fighting Xander Zayas," Cruz said. "My whole life I’ve been waiting for this opportunity to test myself against top opposition on the biggest of stages. I look forward to starting a new rivalry, El Salvador against Puerto Rico. June 10, you will have two hungry lions battling it out. I can’t wait.”
The undercard, streaming live and exclusively on ESPN+, features two all-Puerto Rico battles.
Henry “Moncho” Lebron (17-0, 10 KOs) takes on Christian Tapia (15-1, 12 KOs) in a 10-round junior lightweight tilt. Lebron is coming off wide decision wins over Andy Vences and Luis Lebron, while Tapia looks to rebound from a competitive decision defeat to Cleveland standout Thomas Mattice.
Promising prospect Omar Rosario (10-0, 3 KOs) squares off against Jan Carlos Rivera (8-1, 6 KOs) in an eight-round junior welterweight bout. Rivera has won four straight fights since a decision loss inside the MGM Grand Las Vegas Bubble.
The loaded undercard action also features pair of rising stars in eight-rounders, both of whom fought on the Shakur Stevenson-Shuichiro Yoshino bill in Newark, New Jersey. Brooklyn featherweight prodigy Bruce “Shu Shu” Carrington (7-0, 4 KOs), who knocked out Brandon Chambers in the second round, makes his third appearance at The Theater at Madison Square Garden.
Polish heavyweight dynamo Damian Knyba (11-0, 7 KOs), who stopped Curtis Harper in the eighth round, will fight an opponent to be named.
Josh Taylor-Teofimo Lopez Jr.
Welterweight Title Showdown Set for June 10th
At The Theater at Madison Square Garden LIVE on ESPN!
Tartan or Takeover?
Undefeated junior welterweight king Josh Taylor will defend his WBO and Ring Magazine titles against former lightweight kingpin Teofimo Lopez Saturday, June 10 at The Theater at Madison Square Garden.
“This is a super fight on both sides of the pond, the junior welterweight king in Josh Taylor stepping up against the young, dynamic Teofimo Lopez,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum. “I cannot wait for these two supreme talents to step into the Madison Square Garden ring. It’s going to be a special night.”
Taylor (19-0, 13 KOs), “The Tartan Tornado,” is the former undisputed junior welterweight champion, having collected all four major titles in a remarkable four-fight run that included wins over Ivan Baranchyk, Regis Prograis and Jose Ramirez. He debuted in the paid ranks in 2015 and captured a Commonwealth title in his second year before defeating fellow unbeaten prospect Ohara Davies via seventh-round TKO. The 32-year-old then beat former world champions Miguel Vazquez and Viktor Postol before entering the World Boxing Super Series in 2018. Taylor stopped then-undefeated contender Ryan Martin via TKO before capturing his first world title with a decision victory over Baranchyk. His wins over Prograis and Ramirez left no doubt as to the world’s supreme 140-pound practitioner. Taylor returns more than one year after his last performance, a competitive split decision nod over Jack Catterall.
Lopez (18-1, 13 KOs) is the former unified and lineal lightweight champion of the world. In December 2019, he captured the IBF title with an explosive second-round knockout of Richard Commey. The following October, he bested pound-for-pound king Vasiliy Lomachenko to win the WBA, WBO, and WBC Franchise titles. Thirteen months later, he lost the belts via shocking split decision to George Kambosos Jr. The 25-year-old then made his junior welterweight debut in August 2022 by stopping Pedro Campa in the seventh round. Last December, Lopez edged Spanish southpaw Sandor Martin by split decision. Before becoming world champion, he was the buzz of the boxing world with highlight-reel knockouts over Diego Magdaleno and Mason Menard. Lopez now has his sights set on another southpaw and hopes to become the sport’s latest two-division ruler.
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About Top Rank
Innovation has been the standard at Top Rank since it was established in 1966 by Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. The boxing industry’s leading promotional company, Top Rank has shaped, developed, and promoted the careers of top international pay-per-view superstars and Hall of Famers, including Muhammad Ali, Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Tommy Hearns, George Foreman, Sugar Ray Leonard, Aaron Pryor, Alexis Arguello, Oscar De La Hoya, Manny Pacquiao, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Miguel Cotto, Erik Morales, Terence Crawford, and Vasiliy Lomachenko.
Top Rank has promoted some of the most memorable fights in the sport’s history, including 26 Ali events, Leonard vs. Hearns, Pryor vs. Arguello, Duran vs. Leonard, Hagler vs. Hearns, Leonard vs. Hagler, Foreman vs. Holyfield, Morales vs. Barrera, De La Hoya vs. Trinidad, and the most lucrative fight in boxing history, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao. In addition to the previously mentioned super fights, Top Rank possesses one of the largest sports libraries, which includes nearly 10,000 fights.
Known for creating strategic collaborations between athletes, sponsors, and television networks, Top Rank has been an architect of boxing’s global growth by staging high-profile events in landmark settings around the world, including Madison Square Garden, MGM Grand Garden Arena, Staples Center, Wembley Arena, Araneta Coliseum, The Venetian Macao, Yankee Stadium, Radio City Music Hall, The “Fabulous” Forum, and AT&T Stadium. Top Rank has also been the leader within the boxing industry in creating unforgettable in-arena experiences for fans and embracing 21st century technological advancements to distribute world-class fights and shoulder programming across a variety of platforms.