Larry “Razor” Sharpe, he fights Jungle Boy Friday at The Target Center

Larry Sharpe

Larry Sharpe

“Look for me to press the action. I am coming to fight.” Larry Sharpe

 

When the undercard to Abell/Butler was starting to fill out, many were surprised to see Larry “Razor” Sharpe fighting Zach “Jungle Boy” Walters. I have to admit I was one of them. Sharpe has spent much of his time fighting around 154lbs, but given recent fights and call outs it really has become the norm. Vanda wanted Walters earlier in the year and ended up taking care of Phil Williams. Both Walters and Williams have a pretty large weight edge on Vanda but that didn’t seem to matter in Vanda’s last two fights with Williams and Teddy Muller. The Predator actually had an easier time with Williams than he did against Ted Muller in my opinion. But I have no doubt that Williams would take out Muller, Walters did it in 3 rounds, while Vanda went to the judges. I guess what I am getting at in a horrible fashion is that styles make fights. Size matters if used properly.

 

I had the opportunity to talk with Sharpe a few nights back. He started the boxing portion of his fighting career only 6 years ago at the age of 29, but had been involved with professional Thai Boxing since the age of 24. Razor Sharpe knows he is coming into Walters home and doesn’t expect to be able to outbox him. Sharp said of his opponent, ” He is quite a bit taller than me and has a much better pedigree in the sport, its also being fought in his home. I need to focus on cutting the ring off and turning this into a brawl.” I asked him if he had seen any of Walters fights, “I have watched a few on YouTube, he looks like a good boxer.”

 

The big question in many peoples minds is how will Larry Sharpe look with the added weight and fighting right around 170lbs. I made the mistake of asking Sharpe this question, and he pointed to his last fight. “I knocked out Bruce Rumbolz in the first round of my last fight, he weighed 173lbs.” It should also be noted in Rumbolz’s prior fight he beat Shawn Hammack, the same guy who changed the course of Walters career a little over a year ago. Sharpe added, “I carry some pop at this weight. It was hard for me to get down to 154 and I felt I lost a lot after shedding those pounds. I plan to campaign the rest of my career at super middleweight.”

 

At the close of our short conversation I asked Sharpe what we should expect from him in this fight? “Look for me to press the action. I am coming to fight.”

 

Larry “Razor” Sharpe vs Zach “Jungle Boy” Walters this Friday at The Target Center.

Raphael “The Silencer” Butler

“I guarantee it wont go 10 rounds. I will embarrass Joey so bad he never wants to fight me again. I want to make him quit.” Raphael Butler

 

Raphael Bulter, Courtesy SnapLocaly.com

Raphael Bulter, Courtesy SnapLocaly.com

I was able to talk with Raphael “The Silencer” Butler last night, and man does he sound ready. I really get the feeling he is more motivated than he has ever been in his career, actually he told me so. We talked about his future goals and his new motivation, his daughter. He also shared that his friendship with Abell should actually make this an even more entertaining fight. Who wants to get beat by a buddy? Butler said some of the greatest fights have come between friends. After talking with Butler, there is no doubt, he has no plans of letting Abell have that one-up. Below is our conversation.

 

M….Why boxing?

 

Butler….I found out early on that I was too competitive for team sports. I was always yelling and getting mad. Boxing is the perfect sport for me. My mistake is my mistake, you only have yourself in the ring.

 

M….Have you always trained under Dan O’Connor?

 

Butler….Always, he taught me how to fight. I was about 15 when I started the amateurs and turned pro in June of 2004 when I was 20.

 

M….What has been your biggest moment in boxing to this point?

 

Butler….Winning the 2004 Golden Glove tournament. That sparked me going pro. It was the first tournament I took seriously. I learned that if I put my all into something nothing could stop me. Before, I had always been told I couldn’t do anything.

 

M….Where do you see yourself next year at this time?

 

Butler….If things go to plan, I will be back to where I was a year ago, fighting top 10 guys. I have always felt that I have the talent, but now I also have the drive. The birth of my daughter has given me a new outlook, and more motivation.

 

M….In one of your radio interviews leading up to this fight I heard you mention that you would like to face Chris Arreola. Any reasons as to why you want to fight him?

 

Butler….He is just not what boxing is about. He is what those who don’t know boxing think it is. He has a loud mouth and doesn’t respect the sport. I would like to take care of that. The great fighters I have worked with are humble and respectful.

 

M….How would you describe Joey Abell as a fighter?

 

Butler….Joey is a decent fighter, he does a good job. I think Joey has a lot to learn. I don’t believe Joey is on my level and I am getting sick of hearing people compare us, I have fought top guys and worked with fighters like Klitschko among others.

 

M….Do you think Abell possesses world class power?

 

Butler….He has huge power, maybe more natural power then me. I have only been hit harder by a couple guys, one being klitschko.

 

M….How would you describe yourself?

 

Butler….Always learning, I am like a sponge in camp. I take something new from every camp I’m in. I am a well schooled fighter who knows how to adjust once the fight starts.

 

M….Do you feel like you want this win more than Abell?

 

Butler….Well, from where I stand he just seems almost like he doesn’t care. I care, I have to do this. Joey has never been where I have, and I have to get back there.

 

M….What made now the right time for this fight to finally happen?

 

Butler….We are both at a point in our careers where we need to get things going. A win against the other can do that. I want to shut down all the talk comparing the two of us.

 

M….Do you have any predictions?

 

Butler….I guarantee it wont go 10 rounds. I will embarrass Joey so bad he never wants to fight me again. I want to make him quit. I like Joey and we are friends, but this is a sport and I think you want to beat your friends more than any other. You don’t want to have losing to them hanging over your head.

 

I would like to thank Raphael Butler for taking the time so close to his big showdown to talk with us. Raphael  Butler vs Joey Abell, this Friday night at The Target Center.

Fight of the night? Dec. 4 at The Target Center is loaded with possibilities.

People are taking notice of this fun card because of all the heavyweight fireworks that should happen. Joey Abell (25,4) vs Raphael Butler (34,8) is sure to please. But the undercard is also loaded with well matched fights that could steal the show. We will be going through some of these match-ups throughout this week leading up to Friday night’s fireworks. We also plan to have some interviews with the contestants of this highly anticipated event. (We had an interview lined up with Zach Walters by Laura Zink, but Walters decided he wanted his actions in the ring to do the talking.) Below is one of the fights that could steal the show.

 

Gary "Stone Cold" Eyer ready to unload.

Gary "Stone Cold" Eyer ready to unload.

 

 

VS

 

Levi Cortes unloading, courtesy SnapLocally.com

Levi Cortes unloading, courtesy SnapLocally.com

 

Gary “Stone Cold” Eyer (6,0,1) is looking to silence some of his critics. While having an undefeated record there are those that have said he has not fought anybody yet. His biggest wins have come against Scott Robinson, he did that in back to back fights. Eyer has not yet faced and opponent with a winning record, this Friday he gets his chance against fellow undeated fighter, Levi Cortes (3,0). For Cortes’s part, he has faced the stiffer of competition in his three fights.

 

I have had the pleasure of watching most of Eyer’s fights while only catching Levi Cortes’s most recent bout. What I have been told and saw for myself about Cortes, is that he is one tough customer. The time I did see Levi in action, he was non stop in your face and throwing with bad intentions on almost every exchange. After that fight I turned to Laura Zink and told her I cant wait to see this guy again. December 4th I get my wish, and its against another fighter that is must see for me.

 

Gary Eyer has more slickness to his game than his opponent, but is not afraid to stand in front and pick his guy apart. Eyer has some of the sweetest chopping body shots in the state and I think they will be on full display on Minnesota’s greatest stage. The styles of these two combatants make for sure entertainment in the ring when they square off. Look for Cortes to be on the attack from start to finish while Eyer uses his superior boxing skills to get angles and chop down his attacking foe. This is my pick to be fight of the night, don’t be surprised to see 6 full rounds of action.

Abell/Butler December 4 at the Target Center, You’re not going to want to miss this one.

Nothing stirs the imagination of fight fans like a heavyweight showdown, this card has two. There are a combined 84 knockouts between the four big fellas entering the ring. On top of  that, there is the return to the Target Center by Minnesota’s light heavyweight champ, Zach “Jungle Boy” Walters, who has 19 KO’s of his own. Judging from the crowds at the last couple shows, you may want to grab your tickets sooner rather than later. Below is the fight card.

 

targetpostersmallproofJoey “Minnesota Ice” Abell (25,4) vs Raphael “The Silencer” Butler (35,8)- Minnesota’s two best Heavyweights vie for the Title. All but one of Abell’s wins have come by way of knockout and Butler has 28 of his own. You like power, you like KO’s, you’ll love this one.

 

Zach “Jungle Boy” Walters (24,4) vs Larry “Razor” Sharpe (23,7) – Minnesota’s light heavyweight champ takes on Canada’s Larry Sharpe.

 

Travis Walker (33,3,1) vs Yevgeniy Shishporenok (6,1)- Another heavyweight bout. Walker has 27 KO’s and Boris “The Russian Giant” has KO’s in 5 of his 6 wins. This should be a fun one.

 

Ronnie Peterson (3,0) vs Tomi Archambault (0,1) -  This fight has revenge written all over it. When Peterson and Archambault first met October third, Tomi originally was giving the victory even though Ronnie had him down two times in a four round fight. North Dakota’s boxing commission reviewed the tapes and judges score cards and made that one a no contest. You can bet Archambault wants to get that W back and Peterson wants to leave no doubt as to who the better man is.

 

Gary Eyer (6,0,1) vs Levi Cortes (3,0)- This one just might take the night. Levi Cortes is a tough non stop fighter while Eyer isn’t going to back down from anyone. Look for fireworks and body shots. I really think this could turn into fight of the night.

 

Dave Peterson (11,0) vs Silas Ortley (4,7) – The Prodigy looks to stay unbeaten.

 

Saverino Garcia (0,0,1) vs Allante Davis (0,3) – One of these guys will leave with a W on their record.

 

I also believe Tony Lee is on this card facing  Hector Orozco but this fight is not listed yet.

Ronnie Peterson “even his team thought I won that fight”

Ronnie Peterson, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

Ronnie Peterson, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

I sought out Ronnie Peterson after the press conference held October 27 at the Target Center to discuss his fight with Tomi Archambault. He said for their first fight he weighed in a couple pounds under the fight weight of 130, but it took Archambault a few tries to get down to that weight. Their rematch will also be set at 130 pounds, but Peterson said that will be the last time we see him at 130 or above. “Tomi is the bigger guy, I was tired and sick the night of our fight, but even his team thought I won that fight.” Peterson went on to say “I’m the youngest guy in this weight class, I’m still trying to prove myself. It doesn’t look good when I go against a guy who is (0,1) and don’t get the win.”

 

As we reported a few days back, that fight has now been ruled a no contest due to some scoring issues. I asked Peterson what he thought about his opportunity to get payback on Minnesota’s largest stage. ” It hasn’t hit me yet, I haven’t been in the gym since that fight. Ive been doing other sports like basketball and football, things I played in high school.” His fight in Minot ND on October 3rd really hit him hard, he said he was still out of it in terms of boxing. In fact, that day after the press conference was the first day back in a boxing gym. Ronnie told me right after the fight he told his dad he was done. “I don’t want to have to explain, I’m done”. Fortunately for us he isn’t done and will be hoping for redemption December 4 on the under card to Abell/Butler.

 

Before we ended our conversation, Ronnie had this to say, “Everyone was blaming the judges after that last fight, I couldn’t believe I didn’t finish him. I kept thinking I would stop him but just didn’t have the energy to do it.” I have a pretty strong feeling both Peterson and Archambault are going to try and end things without score cards.

 

Note: Peterson had Archambault down 2 times in their first fight.

3 big cards in 5 weeks

Minnesota is boxing! We have had more professional fight cards this year than any in recent memory. And there are at least three more coming. Three very big cards and two have huge Minnesota vs Minnesota fights on them. Its a very good time to love the local boxing scene. Having three big shows is great, but it does make for a juggling act by those trying to cover them to the fullest. We have been, and will try to continue to cover them all to the best of our abilities. The week leading up to each of these events we will try and dedicate all our resources to that show. Breaking news aside, all opinion pieces and interviews during that time will have a focus on the fights coming up that weekend. This plan can only work with cooperation of each promotion in granting interviews and passing along pertinent news. If you feel our coverage is leaning towards one card or another, I promise that is due to information flow. If we are granted interviews and given news, you can be sure it will be passed along to you. All this said, we are committed to trying to give new content on daily basis and if that means we have to veer from the above path, so be it. Below is a rundown of these three exciting fight cards.

 

November 13/ Hinckley Grand Casino/ Televised on Fox Sports North – Matt “The Predator” Vanda vs Phil “The Drill” Williams/ Wilton Hilario vs Leon Bobo/ The highly anticipated professional debut of Javontae Starks. Click on below poster for more on fight card and ticket information.

 

vandawilliamsnov13

 

November 20/ St Paul Armory - ”Golden” Caleb Truax vs Carl Daniels for the IBA Americas Middleweight Title/ Mohammed Kayongo vs James Todd for the WBF United States Welterweight Title. Click on below poster for more on fight card and ticket information.

 

november-20-fight-poster2

 

December 4/ The Target Center – Joey “Minnesota Ice” Abell vs Raphael “The Silencer” Butler for Minnesota Heavyweight supremacy and Title/ Zach “Jungle Boy” Walters vs Larry “Razor” Sharpe. Click on below poster for more on card and ticket information.

 

targetpostersmallproof

“Stone Cold” Gary Eyer (6,0,1) to face the very tough Levi Cortes (3,0) Dec. 4

Levi Cortes, courtesy SnapLocally.com

Levi Cortes, courtesy SnapLocally.com

 

Below is Gary “Stone Cold” Eyer’s portion of the October 27 press conference  at the Target Center.  I must say this is our favorite of the three clips .

 

Having all of our videos on page was causing considerable slow down for some, please click here for MNBoxingLeague videos

Zach “Jungle Boy” Walters at Tuesdays press conference for his date at the Target Center December 4.

As I stated before my recording of the press conference was a complete failure. Fortunately Laura Zink was taking video for her records and she was willing to share with us. We will be posting Joey Abell and Raphael Butler tomorrow.

 

Having all of our videos on page was causing considerable slow down for some, please click here for MNBoxingLeague videos

“It wont go ten” Dan O’Connor, Talking about Abell vs Butler Dec. 4 at the Target Center

Tony Lee (center), Raphael Butler (right), Courtesy SnapLocally.com

Tony Lee (center), Raphael Butler (right), Courtesy SnapLocally.com

 

Yesterday’s press conference didn’t have some of the theatre that many do. This was a group of fighters with genuine respect for each other. From all I have read and heard, both Abell and Butler think very highly of the other. I taped the whole press conference as well as conversations with the promoters, some fighters, and Duane Bobick. Lets just say I need to go digital. My 1970′s technology has allowed me to only have a few exact quotes. The rest I will try and relay as accurately as possible.

 

I asked both Abell and Butler what they thought this fight would do for its winner. Butler responded by saying he hoped both guys would have big things lined up after this fight. Joey Abell looked very serious as he stated “I haven’t thought beyond this fight. One fight at a time”.

 

Raphael Bulter, Courtesy SnapLocaly.com

Raphael Bulter, Courtesy SnapLocaly.com

 

When asked if he thought if his fight would end with a KO, Butler responded, “Look at the knock out ratio for both fighters”

 

Joey Abell, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

Joey Abell, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

 

Joey’s response to the question of whether or not the fight will go ten, “I will be in shape for 20 rounds, but I don’t think it goes ten.”

 

Zach Walters, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

Zach Walters, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

 

Zach Walters in his usual way showed his excitement and enthusiasm at his chance to fight at the Target Center. Unfortunately my tape did not catch any of it.

 

Tony Lee was asked about his pro debut at Target Center, “Long time coming”. Lee’s presence there seemed to drum up some extra excitement.

 

Gary Eyer, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

Gary Eyer, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

 

Gary Eyer was asked if the martial arts played any role in his fighting style and he said he watched it when ever it was on.

 

Duane Bobick, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

Duane Bobick, Courtesy SnapLocally.com

 

The great Duane Bobick was on hand as well. He talked a little about his fights with Scott LeDoux and that he thought the fight between Joey Abell and Raphael Butler could surprise people and go all ten rounds. He also stated during the press conference as well as in an interview with me that he thought heart would play a huge role in who comes out on top. He also pointed out that who ever can make adjustments should win.

 

I plan on getting more up from the conversations had yesterday. Look for more from Bobick as well as what Ronnie Peterson had to say about his fight later in the week.

 

For more information or to buy tickets click here.