Chisora-Pulev II set for July 9 in London

Derek Chisora and Kubrat Pulev will meet for a second time at The O2 in London on Saturday July 9, live worldwide on DAZN (excluding Australia, New Zealand and France), over six years on from their 12-round battle for the European Heavyweight Title at the Barclaycard Arena in Hamburg, Germany.

It was Bulgarian star Pulev (29-2, 14 KOs) who came out on top on that occasion, winning a tough split decision that saw him progress in their IBF World Title Eliminator and claim the vacant European crown for the second time in his career.

British favourite Chisora (32-12, 23 KOs) has since faced some of the biggest names in the Heavyweight division, including WBC World Title challenger Dillian Whyte twice, WBA and IBF World Title challenger Carlos Takam, unified Heavyweight World Champion Oleksandr Usyk and most recently two slugfests with former WBO Champion Joseph Parker.

Two-time World Title challenger Pulev, who’s only losses came against modern legend Wladimir Klitscho in 2014 and former unified king Anthony Joshua in 2020, dominated Jerry Forrest to win a unanimous decision on the Sergey Kovalev vs. Tervel Pulev undercard at the Kia Forum in Inglewood, California last month.

“I’m delighted to get this fight over the line,” said Matchroom Sport Chairman Eddie Hearn. “Initially we worked on some other opponents for Derek, but this fight came out of nowhere a few days ago and I absolutely love it! I think the strapline, ‘Total Carnage’, is absolutely perfect for this fight, in terms of the build-up and in terms of the fight itself. Expect the unexpected but expect a thriller at The O2 on July 9. Both men have been longstanding fixtures of the World Heavyweight division and it’s all or nothing at The O2 for both, as defeat could lead to the end of the road. Fans can expect a huge undercard and a brilliant main event for another brilliant event live on DAZN.”

Hearn on Fury-Joshua: ‘It’s the biggest fight in boxing’

Anthony Joshua dominated and then floored mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev to score a ninth-round knockout and retain his IBF, WBA, WBO & IBO Heavyweight World Titles at The SSE Arena, Wembley on Saturday, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and Ireland and on DAZN in the U.S. and more than 200 countries and territories on its just-launched Global platform.

With 1,000 ticket-buying fans allowed into the building for the first time at a British fight since the COVID-19 pandemic began, Joshua’s entrance was met by a huge roar from the crowd.

Joshua floored Pulev heavily on three occasions, twice in the final round, and ended the fight with a vicious right hand. The explosive performance from Joshua would have demanded the attention of WBC ruler Tyson Fury – they remain on a collision course to decide an Undisputed Champion in 2021.

Joshua told Sky Sports afterwards: “I started this game in 2013. I’ve been chasing all the belts. I’ve been dealing with mandatories.

“Of course I want the challenge. It’s not about the opponent, it’s about the legacy and the belt. Whoever has got the belt, I would love to compete with them. If that is Tyson Fury, let it be Tyson Fury. It’s no big deal.

“It’s one fight at a time, picking them off one by one. That’s all it’s about for me. I’ve got to stay focused.”

“There’s been a lot of talk,” Eddie Hearn told Sky Sports. “As he said, it’s less talk, more action. Since he came into the office, he wanted to be the Undisputed Champion of the World.

“We’re going to be friendly, we’re going to be nice. We know what we have to do. Starting from tomorrow, we make the Tyson Fury fight straight away.

“It’s the only fight to be made in boxing. It’s the biggest fight in boxing. It’s the biggest fight in British boxing history.”

Credit: Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing

Pulev: ‘We see a lot of mistakes from Anthony(Joshua)

Kubrat Pulev is supremely confident of derailing plans for the biggest fight in boxing – an all-British Undisputed Heavyweight World Title showdown between IBF, WBA, WBO and IBO ruler Anthony Joshua and undefeated WBC king Tyson Fury.

The former World Title challenger (28-1, 14 KOs) arrived in London over the weekend ahead of his second shot at world honours at The SSE Arena, Wembley this Saturday, shown live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and Ireland and on DAZN in the U.S. and more than 200 countries and territories on its just-launched Global platform.

Bulgaria’s Pulev says he can see himself exposing the flaws of Joshua in the same manner as Andy Ruiz, who famously dropped the superstar four times on route to a shock seventh round stoppage win at Madison Square Garden in June 2019.

“We see a lot of mistakes from Anthony,” said Pulev. “A lot of bad sides to him. I think these mistakes, and the bad sides, stay. The most important thing is how I perform on Saturday night. When I am good, I beat him well. Right now I feel very good, strong and powerful. I am very strong heading into this fight.

“We will see how Joshua performs. I don’t know what to expect from him. It doesn’t matter to me. For me it’s only important what I do in the ring and how I prepare. How is my strategy? How is my boxing? This is what is important. I will perform very differently because I have a lot of experience from the Klitschko fight. I will be a new Kubrat Pulev.

“This fight is not only for me. This fight isn’t just for boxing. It is for all of Bulgaria. Nobody from my country has ever been Heavyweight Champion of the World. That’s why it will be so good for my country and my people. Bulgarian fans will be really happy.

“This was my late father’s dream. That is why me and my brother are here. His project was to have sons, and for them to become boxing champions. And we are now real, this is now fact. He looks down from above and I’m sure he’s happy. He wants to win on Saturday night with me.

“I feel healthy and happy. I have a lot of energy. After the fight and after the win, I will be really happy. I think after this fight I’m going to fight with Tyson Fury. It will be good. I don’t believe that the Joshua vs. Fury fight is going to happen because I will win on Saturday night. I think the world needs a new World Champion like me. I am the new World Champion. I am coming.”

Joshua vs. Pulev tops a huge night of action in London, Hackney Cruiserweight star Lawrence Okolie (14-0, 11 KOs) takes on Poland’s undefeated Nikodem Jezewski (19-0-1, 9 KOs), Manchester Heavyweight contender Hughie Fury (24-3, 14 KOs) returns against Poland’s Mariusz Wach (36-6, 19 KOs), Martin Bakole (15-1, 12 KOs) and Sergey Kuzmin (15-1, 11 KOs) fight for the vacant WBC International Heavyweight Title, Northampton Super-Welterweight Kieron Conway (15-1-1, 3 KOs) clashes with Wythenshawe’s Macaulay McGowen (14-1-1, 3 KOs) over ten rounds, London-based Albanian Welterweight sensation Florian Marku (7-0, 5 KOs) makes his keenly anticipated Matchroom debut in an eight round contest with Derby’s Alex Fearon (9-2) and Leeds Super-Bantamweight Qais Ashfaq (8-1, 3 KOs) looks to return to winning ways against Ashley Lane (14-9-2, 1 KO)

Joshua-Pulez set for December 12

Unified Heavyweight Champion of the World Anthony Joshua will defend his IBF, WBA, WBO and IBO World Titles against Mandatory Challenger Kubrat Pulev at The O2 in London on Saturday December 12, live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and on DAZN in all of its nine markets including the U.S., on a show promoted by Matchroom Boxing in association with Top Rank and Epic Sports and Entertainment.

Joshua (23-1, 21 KOs) recaptured his belts and position as the Unified Heavyweight World Champion with a masterful unanimous decision victory over Andy Ruiz Jr at the Diriyah Arena in Saudi Arabia on an historical night in December that saw the Heavyweight World Titles contested for the very first time in the Middle East.

December 12 will be ‘AJ’s’ first fight on UK soil in over two years, since he defended his crowns with a devastating seventh round knockout of Russia’s Alexander Povetkin at Wembley Stadium, and the former Finchley ABC man will be aiming to deal with Pulev in style to set up an Undisputed showdown against WBC Champion and fellow Brit Tyson Fury in 2021.

Pulev (28-1, 14 KOs), the IBF’s No.1-ranked Heavyweight Mandatory Challenger, gets his second shot at World honours after his defeat to modern legend Wladimir Klitschko in 2014 – the only loss of his 29-fight professional career. He has won six fights in a row since then, including victories over Derek Chisora and an IBF Eliminator win over Hughie Fury in 2018.

The Bulgarian superstar was set to challenge Joshua at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium in October 2017 but was forced to withdraw through an injury and will now get his opportunity to ruin the champion’s plans to face Fury in an all-British blockbuster showdown in the future.

“December 12 is the date and once again the Heavyweight belts go up in the air and it is my sole focus to make sure that come December 13 they are in their rightful place in the UK,” said Joshua.

“The O2 is the original lion’s den, I have a lot of history with the arena, but without the fans something huge is missing. I am really hoping that, safety permitting, we might be able to bring some boxing fans in, but we will have to see.  I respect every opponent and I respect Pulev. I wish him well during his preparation.”

“For a small country of Bulgaria to stand up for the Heavyweight Titles is a great accomplishment,” said Pulev. “This fight is for my late father and all Bulgarians around the world! I’m coming to London to seize the Heavyweight Championship of the World.”

“After a challenging year for everyone, to end with the unified World Heavyweight Championship is very special,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “Over a year after regaining his crown, Anthony Joshua takes on yet another dangerous opponent in Mandatory Challenger Kubrat Pulev. AJ’s resume is unrivaled, and this is the final hurdle until we challenge for the undisputed crown next year.

“Whilst it’s unusual to think of an AJ fight without tens of thousands of fans in attendance, we will be doing everything we can to lobby for the safe return of fans to this event, we have to move forward together. I know Team Pulev and Bob Arum will be doing all they can to become World Champion on Dec 12 but AJ constantly evolves and improves and I expect a dominant performance and a spectacular KO to close out 2020.”

“Anthony Joshua returns to the ring, a year after recapturing his World Titles from Andy Ruiz Jr, and Britain’s Unified World Champion will be determined to reign supreme in a hotly-contested Heavyweight division,” said Adam Smith, Head of Sky Sports Boxing Development.

“Kubrat Pulev has proven pedigree, with just that sole defeat to Wladimir Klitschko, and he’ll be hoping to send more shockwaves through the sport with an upset victory, but I know that AJ has been training tirelessly, priming his explosive power for another night of fireworks.

“Tyson Fury will of course be watching – as an Undisputed World Title fight is within touching distance – and AJ cannot afford a slip-up in a blockbuster ending to the boxing year.”

DAZN is currently available in the U.S., as well as Austria, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain and Switzerland.

Joshua-Pulev set for 6/20 in London

Unified Heavyweight Champion of the World Anthony Joshua OBE will defend his IBF, WBA, WBO and IBO World Titles against Mandatory Challenger Kubrat Pulev at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Saturday June 20, live on Sky Sports Box Office, on a show promoted by Matchroom Boxing in association with Top Rank and Epic Sports and Entertainment.

Joshua (23-1, 21 KOs) recaptured his belts and position as the Unified Heavyweight World Champion with a masterful unanimous decision victory over Andy Ruiz Jr at the Diriyah Arena in Saudi Arabia on an historical night in December that saw the Heavyweight World Titles contested for the very first time in the Middle East.

June 20 will be ‘AJ’s’ first fight on UK soil in nearly two years, since he defended his crowns with a devastating seventh round knockout of Russia’s Alexander Povetkin at Wembley Stadium, and the former Finchley ABC man will be aiming to deal with Pulev in style to set up an Undisputed showdown against new WBC Champion and fellow Brit Tyson Fury down the line.

Pulev (28-1, 14 KOs), the IBF’s No.1-ranked Heavyweight Mandatory Challenger, gets his second shot at World honors after his defeat to modern legend Wladimir Klitschko in 2014 – the only loss of his 29-fight professional career. He has won six fights in a row since then, including victories over Derek Chisora and an IBF Eliminator win over Hughie Fury in 2018.

The Bulgarian superstar was set to challenge Joshua at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium in October 2017 but was forced to withdraw through an injury and will now get his opportunity to ruin the champion’s plans to face Fury in an all-British blockbuster showdown in the future.

“On June 20, I am defending my Heavyweight World Titles,” said Joshua. “I’m back in my home city after some time away. A spectacular stadium has been built in North London, and I’m honored to bring the boxing community from all over the world to witness us make history with the stadium’s first Heavyweight World Title fight. The belts go back up in the air and nothing will stop me from being victorious.”

“I am happy to have the opportunity to show the world how strong I really am,” said Pulev. “Becoming a Heavyweight World Champion has always been my mission in life and on June 20 2020 I will fulfil my destiny!”

“I’m so excited to see Anthony Joshua return to the capital, 70,000 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium is going to be very special,” said Eddie Hearn. “2019 was a crazy year that had everything – the only thing missing was a UK fight and as we go into what I believe will be the biggest year of ‘AJ’s’ career so far, all our attention turns to Kubrat Pulev in an absolute must win fight. Pulev is undefeated in six years and his team and especially Bob Arum really fancy this. I think you are going to see something special from ‘AJ’ on June 20 – a destructive performance on the road to undisputed.”

Bob Arum, Top Rank Chairman, said: “Kubrat Pulev has earned his ranking, and he is going to enemy territory prepared to pull off the upset. Ever since Top Rank signed Kubrat last year, I have seen a determined Heavyweight on a mission to win the Heavyweight Title. He has been in this situation before, and he won’t be intimidated by the tens of thousands of Joshua fans at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. June 20 is going to be another historic evening in the Heavyweight division.”

Kubrat Pulev returns on 11/9 against Rydell Booker

IBF No. 1 heavyweight contender Kubrat Pulev returns to the ring to face Rydell Booker in a 10-round clash Saturday, November 9 at Chukchansi Park in downtown Fresno, California.

Pulev-Booker will serve as the co-feature to the Jamel Herring-Lamont Roach Jr. WBO junior lightweight world title bout and both fights will live stream on ESPN+, starting at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.

The entire undercard will stream on ESPN+ beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT.

“Kubrat Pulev is ready to fight for a heavyweight title today, but he has one final test before that can become a reality,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum. “He is motivated to knock out Booker and get ready for his title shot in early 2020.”

“This fight with Rydell Booker is very important because of what’s at stake,” Pulev said. “Everything is on the line. I am the top contender in the heavyweight division, and I am the mandatory challenger for the winner of the Andy Ruiz Jr.-Anthony Joshua rematch. I want the winner. It doesn’t matter who it is.”

“It’s a big deal for me. This is a chance for me to show everyone that I still have it,” Booker said. “I haven’t missed a beat. This opportunity couldn’t have come at a better time. I was in camp with Oleksandr Usyk for six weeks before I got the fight. The numbers made sense, so I jumped at the opportunity.”

Pulev (27-1, 14 KOs), one of Bulgaria’s most prominent sporting figures, has won seven fights in a row since challenging Wladimir Klitschko in a failed bid for the unified heavyweight title in November 2014. He earned the IBF No. 1 ranking last October with a unanimous decision over Hughie Fury in his hometown of Sofia, Bulgaria.

Pulev maintained his ranking with a seventh-round knockout over Bogdan Dinu in the main event of a Top Rank on ESPN telecast March 23 in Costa Mesa, California. He faces Booker (26-2, 13 KOs), a 38-year-old Detroit native who is 4-1 since returning in February 2018 from serving a 12-year prison term for a drug conviction. A cruiserweight contender in the early 2000s, Booker now hopes a return to boxing can help him outside of the ring as well.

In other undercard action:

  • Middleweight sensation Janibek Alimkhanuly (7-0, 3 KOs) hopes to bring his brand of “Qazaq Style” to Fresno when he defends his WBC Continental Americas and WBO Global belts against former NABO and Canadian middleweight champion Albert Onolunose (24-2-1, 8 KOs) in a 10-rounder. Alimkhanuly is trained by Hall of Famer Buddy McGirt and has knocked out two of his last three foes.

  • Longtime middleweight contender and 2012 Olympic silver medalist Esquiva Falcao (24-0, 16 KOs) will continue his march up the rankings in a 10-rounder against Manny Woods (16-8-1, 6 KOs). Falcao was the first Brazilian boxer to reach an Olympic final and is ranked No. 7 by the IBF and No. 6 by the WBC.

  • The pride of Stockton, California, Gabriel Flores Jr. (15-0, 6 KOs), will see his hometown fans head south to watch him face Aelio Mesquita (19-4, 17 KOs) in an eight-round lightweight fight. The 19-year-old Flores packed more than 10,000 fans into the Stockton Arena back in May and is perhaps the sport’s top ticket-selling prospect

  • Former world title challenger Amir Imam (21-2, 18 KOs) wi.ll make his long-awaited ring return versus Marcos Mojica (16-4-2, 12 KOs) in an eight-round welterweight fight. Imam, who recently signed with Top Rank, hasn’t fought since a March 2018 decision loss to Jose Ramirez for the vacant WBC super lightweight world title.

  • Robeisy Ramirez (0-1), a two-time Olympic gold medalist from Cuba, will look to rebound from a shocking defeat in his professional debut against Fernando Ibarra De Anda (2-1, 0 KOs) in a six-rounder at featherweight.

  • David Kaminsky (5-0, 2 KOs), the 19-year-old Israeli-born middleweight prospect, will face an opponent to be named in a six-rounder.

Photos: Kubrat Pulev stops Bogdan Dinu

Kubrat Pulev wanted to send a resounding message to the big names of the heavyweight division, and he did so by scoring an emphatic knockout victory in front of a sold-out crowd at The Hangar.

After recovering from a flurry of punches that caused a dangerous cut on his left eyebrow in the fourth episode, the Bulgarian contender blasted Bogdan Dinu by technical knockout at 2:40 of the seventh round.

“This is just part of being in a fight. The cut was not such a big problem. Sometimes blood makes me very hungry”, said Pulev. “I was very well prepared. I was ready for anything. At this moment I feel I can do anything inside the ring. I showed very good boxing skills. I also showed that I have good punching power and a good strategy”.

Photos/Top Rank/Mikey Williams:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.