Category Archives: Clarence "Sonny Bono" Taylor

Minnesota Ice hammers out Willis in 3, Gee Cullmer pulls out a split decision win!

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The big lumberjack from Minnesota, Joey Abell (24-4, 23 KO’s) did it again, pleasing the crowd with 3 rounds of target practice which led to a stoppage over Houston’s Billy “The Kid” Willis (12-14-1, 9ko’s). Abell looks to have added a jab to his arsenal, a punch he threw a lot of in the 1st which would set up that wrecking ball of a left hand. Give Willis credit, he ate some SCUD missiles and still had the audacity to connect with a strong right hook as round 1 ended, a punch that surely caught Abell’s attention. The fight continued and it was more of Abell hammering the concrete head of Willis. The first knockdown came early in the 3rd which from my vantage point actually looked like a slip. Willis jumped right up but was attacked on the ropes and referee Blair Talmedge jumped right in to stop what could have been a severe beating. Video with Abell below.

In the co-feature, the State Athletic Commissions # 1 ranked super middleweight Gee Cullmer once again wins a close decision at The Blue, this time by way of split decision over Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor in their 6 round rematch from a fight that took place in 2004. Call this one “The Battle of the Free Hand” as the amount of work done in clinches were the most telling source of scoring in rounds 2 – 5. From my vantage point there were only two clear cut rounds to award, Bono getting the 1st as he set the pace and landed some solid right hands to open the contest. Cullmer came on very strong in round 6, walking forward and connecting with a steady diet of combos, sensing that he needed a big round to secure the victory. It went to the cards which read 59 – 55 for Cullmer, 59 – 55 for Bono and the third judge seeing it 58 – 55 for Cullmer. Video with Gee is below.

Jose Tiburcio, now training at The Oven Gym under the eye of Billy Briscoe, scored two knockdowns en route to a unanimous decision win over Frankford’s Julius “Marvel” Edmunds in their 4 round lightweight match. Tiburcio started strong with the knockdowns but faded late as Edmunds came on down the stretch but it wasn’t as Tiburco won on all 3 scorecards in his first fight in 2 years.

Queen’s lightweight Joselito Collado is quickly becoming a house favorite and once again he impresses with a win over Darrell Martin who preferred to showboat, clown and dance rather than fight hard. 60 – 54 across the board for Collado.

Taneal Goyco (3-0, 1 KO) again gets the win over Davit Davitshvili (0-3) this time by unanimous decision in their cruiser weight fight.

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Mike Jones destroys Dario Esalas in 2, Teon Kennedy gets off the deck to win at The Blue!

On March 6, 2009 Peltz Boxing Promotions returned to the Legendary Blue Horizon with a bang, putting on a card that didn’t have one stiff on the line up which resulted in good fights from A- Z. After an 8 year absence, the Philly fight fans were excited about the return and came out in high volumes to see an evenly matched 7 fight card highlighted by the towns hottest prospect Mike Jones who is rated in all major sanctioning body rankings. Jones was originally set to take on former amateur standout Larry Mosley of LA but at the last minute Mosley called out with a back injury so in comes Dario Eslas, a well traveled veteran with knockout power and a light bulb chin. The over under on this one was 3 rounds.

The co-feature was an interesting one as another highly touted, undefeated Peltz boxing prospect Teon Kennedy took on the world rated Andre Wilson on Missouri in an 8 round Super Bantamweight showdown. This one got interesting as Wilson showed he is no fluffed up mid westerner but Kennedy showed the heart of a fighter as he had to deal with a lot of elements he hasn’t come across before inthe ring. There was a lot on the line for both as Wilson was hungry for better pay days and respect as he wanted to shed the “opponent” label. Kennedy was one win shy of qualifying for his teams goal of getting a crack at the USBA title.

The card was rounded out with the usual Peltz Boxing fighters, all of which went in tough. Kensington Super Middleweight Dennis Hasson looked to stay unbeaten against Philly’s Garrett Wilson, a fighter who was said to be training like a beast, evident by his weight loss which allowed him to drop down two divisions.

The boxing barber Victor Vasquez always gives the crowd their money worth and on this night his assignment was an unknown, undefeated fighter from upstate PA in Rod Salka. This Jr. Welterweight fight stole the show.

Jr. Middleweight Jamaal “Da Truth” Davis was making his Peltz boxing debut and he was set to take on Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor who always gives a game effort.

A Philly showdown between Luis “Smurf” Esquillin and Derek Bivens put on a nice 4 round show and Kassim Wilson looked to make it two wins in a row against the well travelled Martinus Clay in an 8 round Jr. Middleweight fight.

The Main Event
NABA Welterweight Title Fight
Mike Jones vs. Dario Eslas

In the main event Mike Jones (17-0, 15ko’s) continued on his path of rage when he demolished late sub Dario Esalas in the 2nd round of their NABA Welterweight title fight, scoring three monster knockdowns in that round, the last of which leaving his opponent in a catatonic state long after referee Gary Rosato waved off the contest. With the win, Jones is sure to improve on his #11 ranking in the WBA. Somewhere, Larry Mosley is thanking his lucky stars he bailed out of this fight at the last minute, somewhere else Dario Esalas is thinking the money just wasn’t worth it….A special note to the shiny suits “decision makers” at HBO – SHOWTIME & ESPN… STOP FLUFFING UP SCRUBS!!! PUT MJ ON YOUR SHOW INSTEAD!!!! THESE KNOCKOUTS ARE MUST SEE TV!!!!!!

Photos by Chris Sembrot / jones-esalas2 Mike Jones vs Dario Eslas 2009 Mike_Jones (1)  jones-esalas4



Super Bantamweight Division
Teon Kennedy vs. Andre Wilson

The co-feature was much much much more competitive as rising super bantamweight Teon “The Technician” Kennedy had to overcome quite a bit to grind out a split decision win over the gutsy Andre Wilson of Missouri in their 8 round fight.

In the pre fight interview, Wilson told us that the crowd was in for a surprise, and surprise us he did when he dropped Kennedy with a straight left in the 3rd and opened a bad cut over the Technicians right eye, a wound that would leak through out the fight. With that being said, Kennedy sucked it up and landed some heavy leather of his own stunning his opponent on many occasions.

Kennedy was like a cat trapping a mouse as he would cut the ring off and back Wilson into the corner which would initiate a lot of the action. Neither fighter refused to buckle and fought to win all the way to the final bell.

The scores were split at 76 – 75 for each fighter but the final tally of a shocking 79 – 73 gave Kennedy the edge he needed in a fight he did deserve to win. The fans gave a nice applaud in appreciation of both men’s efforts.

Photos by Chris Sembrot /

Andre Wilson

Teon Kennedy vs Andre Wilson 2009 (1) Teon Kennedy vs Andre Wilson 2009 (6) Teon Kennedy vs Andre Wilson 2009

Jr. Welterweight Division

Victor Vasquez vs. Rod Salka

Buloma PA’s Rod Salka and Victor Vasquez put on one hell of a 6 round Jr. Welterweight contest in a deceiving match that saw a bloody Salka sweep the scorecards at 60 – 54.

Throw those scores out the window because this is an early candidate for fight of the year and other fighters will be hard pressed to top the 6th and final round of this one as both men stood toe to toe and let it fly to the delight of every fan in the building.

Vasquez came to rumble as always but Salka was pretty damn sharp on this night and in my opinion is a threat to any 140 lber in this area. More on this to come soon.

Photos by Chris Sembrot /


Victor Vasquez vs Rod Salka 2009 (1) Victor Vasquez vs Rod Salka 2009 (2) Victor Vasquez vs Rod Salka 2009 Victor Vasquez

Lightweight Division

Derek Bivens vs. Luis Esquillin

Derek Bivins and Luis “Smurf” Esquillin had themselves an entertaining 4 round super featherweight match which gave fans reason to cheer and April 11 fight organizers reasons to sweat.

When two young Philly guys go at it, it is usually good and this one has its share of two way exchanges in the middle of the ring. Smurf’s straight lefts busted Bivins nose early but Bivins left his mark with plenty of hard right hands that found the target. Rightfully this fight ended in a draw. A rematch isn’t out of the question, this time make it a 6 rounder!

After the fight, Paul Fernandez team was over heard saying both fighters would be easy pickins for their guy….. Let’s see about that!

Photos by Chris Sembrot /

Derrick Bivens vs Luis Esquillen 2009 (5) Derrick Bivens vs Luis Esquillen 2009 (6) Derrick Bivens vs Luis Esquillen 2009 Derrick Bivens vs Luis Esquillen 2009 (3)

Super Middleweight Division

Dennis Hasson vs. Garrett Wilson

Dennis Hasson earned a hard fought 6 round unanimous decision over the tough, wild style of Garrett Wilson. Hasson boxed cool and calm as Wilson would randomly attack with lunging hooks. Down the stretch Hasson landed some clean, heavy bombs though Wilson seemed to take them well. Overall it was a good pace and a solid amount of action with both fighters not budging an inch.

Photos by Chris Sembrot /

Dennis Hasson vs Garrett Wilson 2009 (4) Dennis Hasson vs Garrett Wilson 2009 (5) Dennis Hasson vs Garrett Wilson 2009 (1)

Jr. Middleweight

Jamaal Davis vs. Clarence Taylor

Jamaal “Da Truth” Davis was successful in his Peltz Boxing debut as he wore down Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor over 6 rounds to take a unanimous decision win. Davis hard body work was able to wear down the awkward style of Bono and Davis’ jawing after rounds seemed to have a bit of an effect on Bono as well.

Photos by Chris Sembrot /


Jamaal Davis vs Clarenece Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (20) Jamaal Davis vs Clarenece Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 Jamaal Davis vs. Sonny Bono 1

Jamaal Davis vs Clarenece Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (8) Jamaal Davis vs Clarenece Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (14)

Jr. Middleweight Division

Kaseem Wilson vs. Martinus Clay

Kasseem Wilson earned an 8 round unanimous decision over Martinus Clay in a fight that far exceeded expectations as both men decided to be aggressive and make a fight of it.

Wilson almost had Clay out early but the game veteran dug into his back of tricks and was able to turn the tide a bit mid way through the fight. Wilsons activity was the key as he out hustled Clay down the stretch to seal the win on all judges scorecards. Wilson looks to be back in stride so keep an eye on future fights.

Kassem Wilson vs Martinus Clay 2009 (17)

Kassem Wilson vs Martinus Clay 2009 (12)

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Peltz Boxing returns to The Blue Horizon 3-6-09

They said it would never happen in a million years…but to the surprise of many it was recently announced that J. Russell Peltz struck a 6 fight deal which will bring his promotional outfit back to the building he made famous, The Legendary Blue Horizon. The talk of the boxing town starts with a potential lights out card on March 6th which will see the world rated and current NABA Welterweight champion Mike Jones make his first title defense against LA’s Larry Mosley (15-3-2, 6ko’s) in the 10 round main event. Jones is a hot name right now and was even pegged by the well respected Steven Kim of as the sports prospect of the year in 2008. Continue reading Peltz Boxing returns to The Blue Horizon 3-6-09

Peltz Boxing returns to The Blue Horizon

They said it would never happen in a million years…but to the surprise of many it was recently announced that J. Russell Peltz struck a 6 fight deal which will bring his promotional outfit back to the building he made famous, The Legendary Blue Horizon. The talk of the boxing town starts with a potential lights out card on March 6th which will see the world rated and current NABA Welterweight champion Mike Jones make his first title defense against LA’s Larry Mosley (15-3-2, 6ko’s) in the 10 round main event.

Jones is a hot name right now and was even pegged by Steve Kim of as the prospect of the year in 2008. In Jones last fight, he posterized Luciano Perez with one of the best left hooks in recent memory, a punch which cleaned up a wild, sloppy slugfest in Reading, PA. Mosley was once a highly decorated amateur who has been a pro since 2000 and is the cousin of Sugar Shane. He is best remembered in this town for boxing to a 12 round draw against Miguel Figueroa back in 2005. He also held the previously world rated Golden Johnson to a draw in his very next fight. He has dropped his last two fights since then and is dangerously close to falling permanently into “opponent” status. It will be interesting to see how Jones fares against the experience of Mosley, as the Cali native is best known for his outstanding hand speed which is the type of fighter Jones has yet to see.

photo by Chris Sembrot for Philly Keith Sports
photo by Chris Sembrot for Philly Keith Sports

In the co-feature we will see rising super bantamweight Teon “The Technician” Kennedy (11-0, 5ko’s) face Andre Wilson (11-1-1, 9ko’s) of Mississippi in a scheduled 8 rounder. The fight will be at 120 lbs give or take a pound. It was originally expected that Teon would get a warm up fight of sorts but Wilson, a southpaw, should pose a good test for the North Philly Technician. Wilson’s only loss came while fighting in an undefeated opponents backyard and his most recent wins include early knockouts over Francisco Rodriguez (now 14 – 2) & a 10 round decision win over the well traveled Alex Baba, a fighter who has fought quite a few names in the business. Teon is a fighter that some feel is the best prospect in the city. He and his team have eyes on a shot at the divisions USBA title very soon, and this is the type of fight should prepare him for stiffer challenges down the line. Just don’t look past Wilson, who is already has a top 30 ranking in the WBC after only 13 fights.

photo by Chris Sembrot for Philly Keith Sports
photo by Chris Sembrot for Philly Keith Sports

The under card is looking very good as well with Philly middleweight Jamaal “Da Truth” Davis (8-4, 6ko’s) set to face Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor (13-20-3, 6ko’s) in a fight that will mark Davis’ first match as a member of the Peltz boxing stable. In Davis last outing, he convincingly beat Chris Hall at the National Guard Armory. In Bono’s last fight, he showed his is not done yet despite his record as he hung in there with the well regarded Derek Ennis over 8 rounds at The Arena last month. This one could turn out to be a very good action fight since both men prefer to come forward and bang it out.

Some are saying that Kensington’s Dennis Hasson (6-0, 2ko’s) is in for the stiffest test of his young career when he faces Philly’s Garrett Wilson (3-1, 1ko) in a scheduled 6 round Super Middleweight contest. Hasson has been on a steady rise since turning pro last year and in that time gaining a solid fan base but Wilson is no slouch and seems dedicated for this one as he is dropping down 2 weight classes which can only mean he is in top physical condition.

Kaseem Wilson (10-1-1, 3ko’s) continues his comeback when he takes on Martinus Clay (13-19-4, 5ko’s) in a scheduled 8 round Jr. Middleweight contest. Wilson recently returned from a 15 month layoff to win his last fight by unanimous decision. Clay most recently was knocked out by Kassem Ouma back in August. While that was a bad night, he has proved in the past he can hang with any fighter who thinks he is an up and comer. Styles might clash in this one though as neither fighter seems comfortable being the aggressor, more relying on movement and counter punching.

Victor Vasquez (8-2, 5ko’s) looks to have his hands full (at least on paper) as he is set to take on the undefeated Rod Salka (6-0, 2ko’s) of Bunola, PA. Vasquez recently returned from a 6 month medical suspension to stop Mario Galan inside of 2 rounds at The New Alhambra. Not much is known about Salka and his record doesn’t indicate that he has walked murderers row. Anyone who knows Victor Vasquez knows he will make his opponent fight so we will learn a lot about Salka here.

photo by Chris Sembrot for Philly Keith Sports

Alex Sanchez (1-0, 1ko) is set to take on the pro debuting Tyrone Miles in a 4 round Jr. Middleweight contest.

Bozy’s Gym hopeful Derek Bivins (1-0) is also scheduled for action against North Philly’s Luis “Smurf” Esquillan in a 4 round Super Featherweight battle.

Get your tickets at or by calling 215-765-0922

Derek Ennis decisions Bono, Belasco KO’s DeVictoria @ The New Alhambra

most photos by: Tony Gargano /

For the first time in 2009, it was fight night in Philly. After almost 6 weeks of inactivity in this town, it was finally time to watch the pros throw down. The venue was the fabled fight hall on the corner of Swanson & Ritner, the one and only New Alhambra. But this particular event had a mysterious air about it for weeks. On a typical fight night here, fans would come to see a card by the Fairmount Hall of Fame boxing promoter, J. Russell Peltz. This time around, I knew that I wouldn’t be greeted by a smiley lady with the cool hat or a witty comment contradicting a statement made on this site. That was a given.

On this night, it was Greg Robinson and his newly formed Xtreme Productions running the show. That’s cool, he is a known promoter in these parts, but people were asking, why him? why here? why now? Those were the burning questions asked by those who cough up their hard earned cash to pay the steep ticket fees. Something was up but nobody was talking. Omerta…Philly boxing style… Gotta love it.

After a long wait in the frigid wind, I finally made it to the box office window. I made my acquaintance with two new pleasant ladies handing out the media bracelets. So far, so good and was sent inside. After a being on the wrong end of an extensive security search that would have snagged a jailhouse balloon runner red-handed, I was eventually granted full access and free to roam my longtime favorite venue.

Immediately I noticed the naked walls. The life sized banners displaying images of yester-years Philly boxing fight icons were nowhere to be seen. Instead of Bennie Briscoe and Joey Giardello, all that remained were a few flags carrying on the legacies of former ECW Arena icons like Terry Funk and “Flyboy” Rocco Rock. Once I found my seat in press row, word around the ring was that the gym is the back was just about empty. Then it all came together in one fell swoop. It was announced that Xtreme Production (formerly known as Power Productions) is moving in for good.

No more Oaks, no more Armory, this is home and they plan on being here to stay…exclusively. The plot thickens and the saga continues so stay tuned. It is bound to get deeper.

Overall it was a solid kick off to a new year as promoter Greg Robinson and matchmaker Ty McNeil collaborated for a 5 fight card in their new home.

Main Event
Jr. Middleweight Division
(non-title bout)

Derek “Pooh” Ennis…vs…Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor
Philadelphia, PA…………..Wilmington, DE
16-2, 12ko’s……………………12-19, 6ko’s
Derel Ennis vs Clarence Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (5)The housewarming party was highlighted by PA State & USBA regional Jr. middleweight title holder Derek Ennis (17-2, 12ko’s) who continued his resurrection towards national Jr. Middleweight status with a clear cut 8 round unanimous decision over late replacement journeyman Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor (12-20, 6ko’s) in the main event.

Derel Ennis vs Clarence Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (6)Before the fight some were saying that if Bono didn’t give a good showing, it was a strong possibility that State Athletic Director Greg Sirb might pull his boxing card. Ennis won every round from the 3rd on but Bono lives to fight another day as he kept it competitive through out as he kept his promise to fight for the memory of his trainer who was tragically murdered just last week .

Derel Ennis vs Clarence Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (7)The determination was there and he was an aggressive initiator, it wasn’t enough to handle the speed and slickness of Ennis who consistently used Bono’s awkwardness against him, setting up traps along the ropes, counter punching effectively and using the ring to his advantage. Bono did have his moments and occasionally landed some good punches, in particular the 6th when he got Ennis attention with a hard right hook.

Overall, Ennis skill set was too tall a task to overcome. The fight eventually went the distance and the scorecards read 79 – 73 & 78 – 74 x 2. Look for Ennis to step it up significantly soon.

Derel Ennis vs Clarence Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (15)
Derel Ennis vs Clarence Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (14) Derel Ennis vs Clarence Sonny Bono Taylor 2009 (1)





Jr. Welterweight Division

Lenny DeVictoria…vs…Ryan Belasco
Philadelphia, PA…………Wilmington, DE
11-12-1, 3KO’s……………8-2-3, 3KO’s

Ryan Belasco vs Lenny DiVictoria 2009 (3)The co-feature was thought it be a nice piece of competitive match making. Instead it turned out to be the last hurrah of a proven Philly ring warrior as Delaware’s Ryan Belasco (9-2-3, 3ko’s) saw little resistance in his fight against Lenny DeVictoria (11-13-1, 3ko’s), ending things midway through the second round with a few body shots followed by a single right hand which surprisingly kept his opponent on a knee for the full 10 count.

Some say it was a very good right hand, some say it was a long list of ring wars catching up. Soon after the bout, it was announced that this was to be the last time Lenny will lace up the gloves as his team noticed a steady decline in performance over the past few fights.

One chapter of Lenny’s life closes and another opens as he plans on getting his CDL license for a new career in the trucking industry. Congrats and thanks for Lenny for making the right move and giving us so many good fights.

Also, Congrats to Belasco on a very good win. Speculation of an 8 – 10 round Belasco – Tyric Robinson fight were swarming soon after. That could arguably be a state title fight…..

Ryan Belasco vs Lenny DiVictoria 2009 (2)Ryan Belasco vs Lenny DiVictoria 2009 (4)Ryan Belasco vs Lenny DiVictoria 2009 (1)





Welterweight Division

Lou Rodriguez…vs…Ray Ellis
Philadelphia, PA……Philadelphia, PA

Lou Rodriguez vs Ramon Ellis 2009 (1)Philly Rumbler Lou Rodriguez (1-0) grinded out a majority decision win in his pro debut against a fellow ring rookie Ray Ellis (0-1) in a very entertaining 4 round welterweight contest. Rodriguez sported an ankle bracelet, a fast set of hands a pretty good chin. Ellis, an aspiring chef and student at the Art Institute of Philadelphia, showed a big heart and applied a lot of pressure as these two went at it for all four rounds.

Lou Rodriguez vs Ramon Ellis 2009 (17)Rodriguez was in control early, winning the first two rounds with a nice blend of combinations to the head and ability to avoid trouble as Ellis pressed forward. The tide changed in the 3rd as Ellis consistent pressure allowed him to storm back in the fight, having a big round as he found a way to break through Rodriguez defense and land some good punches of his own upstairs.

It was anyone’s fight down the stretch and both fought for the win in a 4th round that saw good moments for both fighters as Ellis fought through a leaking mouth and Rodriguez overcoming early fight jitters.

It went to the cards which read 39 – 37 x 2 for Rodriguez with the final judge saying it was even at 38-38. Let’s see both of these guys again against different foes!

Lou Rodriguez vs Ramon Ellis 2009 (62)

Lou Rodriguez vs Ramon Ellis 2009 (80)

Lou Rodriguez vs Ramon Ellis 2009 (108)






Welterweight Division

Ronald Cruz……….vs………Joel Rios
Phoenixville,PA…………….Philly via Puerto Rico
pro debut……………………..1-4

Ronald Cruz vs Joel Rios 2009 (11)Jimmy DeOria’s latest charge Ronald Cruz (1-0) showed some spark in his 4 rounder against a tough Joel Rios (1-5) in a 4 round welterweight battle. Cruz looked very sharp when he fought on the outside, putting strings of combos together. Rios did leave some marks too, especially when they fought in the inside. Activity was the difference here as Cruz was the one who threw most and overall was the sharper of the two.

Ronald Cruz vs Joel Rios 2009 (12)If any young fighter is looking for a test early in their career, give Rios a call, he showed he can last under heavy fire and keep on coming. But, at 32 years old, his team feels it may be in his best interest to leave this sport to the young guys.

On the other hand, Cruz, if he calms down a bit a lets the fight start coming to him, he could be a guy to watch out for in the future.


Ronald Cruz vs Joel Rios 2009 (10)

Ronald Cruz vs Joel Rios 2009 (9)

Ronald Cruz vs Joel Rios 2009 (8)






Cruiserweight Division

Kamarah Pasley….vs…Cullen Rogers
Philadelphia, PA………..Akron, Ohio
0-3……………………………9-22-2, 5ko’s

In Cruiserweight action, Kamarah Pasley (1-3, 1ko) got that elusive first win with a second round knockout over Cullen Rogers (9-23-2, 5ko’s) . Pasley was able to land good leather and dig deep hooks into the awkward Rogers all night. Pasley dropped Rogers with a left early in round 2, then continued the assault when his opponent got up. Rogers didn’t go back down but offered nothing in return leaving referee Shawn Clark no option but to stop it.

Congrats to Pasley, a guy who never gave up on his dream of getting that W! Keep your eyes open because word is that Pasley is signed up to fight again on January 31st against Pedro Martinez at South Philly high school! Can he make it 2 in a row? We will see!

Kamarah Pasley vs Cullen Rogers 2009 (3)

Kamarah Pasley vs Cullen Rogers 2009 (4)

Kamarah Pasley vs Cullen Rogers 2009 (5)






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Xtreme Productions New Alhambra preview with videos

Power Productions kicks off the 2009 Philly fight year on January 16th at The New Alhambra in South Philly. The undercard is still unsettled but the main event and co-feature are etched in stone. I have all four contestants giving their side of the story. In the main event, PA State Jr. Middleweight champ Derek “Pooh” Ennis (16-2, 12ko’s) is scheduled to take on local veteran tough guy Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor (12-19, 6ko’s) of Delaware for a scheduled 8 rounder. Things looked shaky at the start of the week as Bono’s longtime trainer, Derrick Hoey, was tragically shot and killed over the weekend which could understandably call for Bono to reconsider taking this fight. But Bono told me personally that he plans to fight on despite the personal tragedy. It is official so the breakdown goes like this. In 2008 Ennis rebounded from a bad end in ’07, where he was unexpectedly KO’d, to the tune of a 4-0 record and putting himself back in striking distance of a significant televised fight on the national level. Ennis last outing was icing on the cake as it was his most complete performance as a pro, boxing a 10 round masterpiece over the 20 win vet Troy Browning to claim the state title and a portion of the USBA title. It was a big step forward. While few will doubt his offensive skills, some still wonder if he has the beard to make it to the big time. His last loss came in this very building in the summer of ’07 in a fight he was highly favored to win. If he can avoid the big punch, he has the skills to make a nice run in this sport. His opponent Bono on the other hand has lost 8 of his last 10 fights since winning a portion of the WBC title early in 2007. With that being said, Bono’s bar room tough guy record only tells a part of the story. He will give you an honest effort and usually makes his opponent fight hard for the duration. Let’s not get it twisted, Ennis is a HUGE favorite here, but this is Philly boxing and strange things always seem to happen. But hey, I only speak from the ring apron, click below to hear it from the guys who will be in there getting it on!

Derek Ennis

Sonny Bono

In a nice piece of matchmaking, the co-feature is said to have Delaware’s Ryan Belasco (8-2-3, 2ko’s) taking on Philly’s Lenny DeVictoria (11-12-1, 3ko’s) in a 6 rounder. Both fighters, at times, have been outstanding in the ring. There have also been a few occasions where both fighters have come in unprepared and laid a couple of duds. DeVictoria’s record is a misleading as he has taken on some of the best young, undefeated prospects this sport has to offer. Most memorably, he knocked off the then highly regardless Elad Shmouel in Philly’s 2007 fight of the year. Most recently, he fought to a draw against the rather ordinary Ricardo Media. Belasco on the other hand is cut from the cloth of his fellow Delaware fighters. Tough, has good fundamentals, and is willing to fight but no special skill that jumps out at you. Early in his career, problems of running out of gas attributed to draws and losses in fights he very well could have won. It looks like he has found a cure as he has gone deep into fights lately and looked fresh near the end, particularly against the boxing barber Victor Vasquez in one of the best of 2008. Both men had ample time to prepare for this fight so there should be no excuses. This is definitely an interesting contest, as these are two of the top guys locally fighting at 140 lbs. Expect some sparks to fly in this one as both men are usually happy to trade leather with an opponent.

Listen to both fighters tell it themselves

Lenny DeVictoria


Ryan Belasco


In Other Action…

Junior Welterweight Tyric “Too Sweet” Robinson (9-3, 3ko’s) returns to the ring looking to erase memories of his latest outing against Jason Cintron which ended in a one sided loss. No opponent has been announced. Once Too Sweet ranked in the top 5 of the Philly Keith pound for pound list. Lets hope the real Too Sweet shows up for this one instead of the guy we saw last time.

Philly lightweight Ronald Cruz will make his pro debut against Joel Rios (1-4, 1ko) of Puerto Rico.

Heavyweights Kamarah Pasley (0-3)and John Carlisle (0-1) , both of Philly, will battle it out as both seek their first wins as a pro.

Lou Rodriguez of The Philly Rumblers Boxing Club is scheduled to make his awaited pro debut after a false start back in October when his opponent fell out last minute. He will take on Ray Ellis who is also making his pro debut.

A light welterweight scrap between two fighters with their only win coming by way of the dirt nap face off as Allentown’s Eluid Torres (1-0-1, 1ko) takes on the challenge of Pleasantville, NJ’s Omar Brito (1-0, 1ko) over 4 rounds of promising action.

Cleveland lightweight Miguel Gonzalez (1-0, 1ko) is not on the card due to being unable to find an opponent.

For tickets call 267-687-7560 or 267-809-0057

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Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor interview

In boxing, most of the hype goes to the champions and highly touted prospects that have the blueprint to success laid out for them. In each division, there are a handful of young hopefuls who are carefully moved through the ranks in hopes of one day reaching the top. There always comes the point in a prospects career where his team needs to see what he is made of . During this time management usually finds a battle tested journeyman or fading ex-champions who knows how to “go-rounds”. Most of the time, the youngster will get the win but occasionally, these “stepping stones” or “grinders” as I like to call them pull off the upset and get everybody up in arms.

Without all of the glamour and glitz, Clarence “Sonny Bono” Taylor has carved a niche as a guy who will travel the country, taking the tough fight as the underdog against up and coming prospects, the local tough guys and established veterans who are looking to jump to the next level. His resume includes some of the better names in the business . While his 12 – 11 record may not impress, he always gives a crowd pleasing performance and is more than capable of pulling off the upset on any given night.

It hasn’t been an easy road for the Wilmington Delaware native but things are starting to look up. In August of 2006 he got his first bit of national exposure when he beat Philly tough guy Jose Medina live on ESPN in El Macho’s home turf, The New Alhambra. Before that fight he lost a highly disputed decision against his former stablemate Larry Marks live on CN8. Most recently, after a hard days work on the construction site, Bono hopped on a plane to Kansas City to take on David Medina for the minor league version of the WBC Super Welterweight Title. Bono dominated the young upstart, blowing away the champ scoring 4 knockdowns over three lopsided rounds.

Bono took the time to speak with us to talk about his role in boxing, winning his first title and how he almost didn’t make it here in the first place.

Philly Keith: Congrats on the win, tell me about the fight.

Sonny Bono: Thanks, man it was a long time coming, I went down to Kansas City and did what I always do. I came to fight and now I am the WBC USNBC Super Welterweight champion. I give Medina all the credit in the world because he opened the door for me and gave me the opportunity.

PK: You have a rep as the road warrior who is always taking on the tough fighters & undefeated prospects. Do you think the win changes things or make the road a little easier for you?

SB: Me and my manager talked about it and we decided we gotta take what anyone gives us, if it’s the tough fights so be it, if it’s a walk in the park then I got a bonus for that night. I am going to keep taking everyone on, no question. If you look at my record you see a lot of losses. Those early losses and even the wins were really my amateur career. I didn’t fight as an amateur, I jumped right in as a pro and there were some things I had to learn. When I am in John Doe’s backyard guess what the result is gonna be. I hope John Doe got his game up, I’m taking it over.

PK: Anyone in particular you want to fight?

SB: Right now I’m looking at Verno Phillips, a rematch with Giovanni Lorenzo or someone like that. I feel that is where my level is right now. I know kids like Ishe,. Sechew Powell, I will even go as far as to say Mosley gonna come with the blah blah blah, but guess what, I been waitin for ya’ll already. I have been waiting on you Sechew Powel, that will be another W on my list. I ain’t talking cocky but they are my meal ticket. The guys like Judah, Winky and them; they are still looking past me. When they see me, they better run.

PK: So when someone calls to fight Sonny Bono, what are they getting themselves into in your words?

SB: Ha, I don’t even know what they are in for, you can expect the unexpected. I surprise myself when it is time to my fight, it will be very exciting like back in the day with Tyson, don’t get out of your seat cause you might miss something. It might go 1 or might go 10. Like when I fought Bronco McKart, I dropped him in the 1st, real quick. I give him all the credit in the world too, the fight lasted all 8 rounds. That was an opportunity fight for me and I did some impressive things against him. Its real man, it about the conditioning and I showed I can last in there.

PK: From looking at your record, it looks like your career got off to a late start, how did you get into boxing in the first place?

SB: Boxing was a family thing; we went to the gym a couple of times. I would watch the fights with my mom and I was into it. But then when I was 9, my mom got shot in the face. I stopped going to the gym because I had to cater to my mom, I was like ain’t never letting something like that happen to my mom again so I focused on my mom. You have your ups and down in life, I went to the streets and didn’t come back to boxing. Soon after I went to the pen. I got back into boxing when I was about 29 and it’s a great hobby for me now. I am a full time carpenter but I can beat people up, and get paid for it, and not get locked up! I take this serious, it’s real. I call boxing my get out of jail free pass.

PK: Where did the nickname Sonny Bono come from?

SB: My athleticism got me that name; I played in a flag football league before the boxing. Kansas City has a quarterback name Steve Bono back in the day and he was aiight, I didn’t play quarterback though, I played D end and I was aiight. We were in the championship game and we needed an interception and in the huddle I was like “yo, I got the interception”. I got it too, when I picked it off someone in the stands screamed “Yeah Bono that’s what’s up”. Then they started calling me sonny bono and it just stuck. I thought it was cool and I decided my ring name is sonny bono and now they announce me as Clarence “Sonnnnnnny Boonnnnnooooo” Taylor! One day I’m gonna go meet Cher

PK: Are you from Wilmington originally?

SB: Oh yeah, born and raised in Wilmington, right down there on broom street. I was born in Wilmington Hospital, now they have condominiums where I was born at. They know Sonny Bono all over Delaware.

PK: What gym are you from?

SB: I been working out of two gyms, William Hicks Anderson Center which has a youth program that I socialize with, and also Elsmere gym which is Dave & Nick Tiberi’s gym. Dave fought James Toney back in the day and should have won. I get good work there and represented it when I went to KC.

PK: What do you think of some of the up and comers fighting at junior middleweight?

SB: I’ll put it to you like this. Look at my resume then look at dudes like Ant Thompson, Ishe Smith to name a few. Now they have been in with some aiight guy but no blood guts wars or been through the struggle. When they were in the Olympics, I was in the pen. They turned pro with $20 – $30 thou bonuses and I came out with stone cold nothing. When you get hit with some shit, it’s all about how you react. They ain’t ever felt that yet and they know what I bring. John Duddy turned us down; Duva turned me down 3 days after I won the belt. Shit, I think that’s when you want to fight the champ, when he is still coo-coo for coco puffs after his big win. David Medina, I give him all the respect in the world. He gave me my opportunity; put my foot in the door. I ain’t saying I turned the corner just yet. When I do they are gonna be like “who’s that” and I’ll be like “Yo it’s Sonny”.

PK: Now that you have a belt, what do you want to come out of all this?

SB: What I would really like is to have an outdoor fight. When I watched the fights with my mom and them back in the day they had outside fights in Vegas or NY or whatever but they don’t really do that anymore. Since I got the belt, I’d like to have a nice outside fight at the Blue Rock’s stadium, sometime in like August or September when it’s hot! I been on the road for like 3 years and never had the chance to fight in my hometown. I know I can sell it out because everyone in Delaware wants to see the boy fight.

I want to be able to sit at the table with my entire family for dinner all at once, not have to go run around to see them all scattered. We haven’t all ate together yet, I want my family to bless a meal at the table all together.

PK: You have done a lot of traveling and seen a lot as your time as a pro. What was the best or most memorable fight for you so far in your career?

SB: It’s 4/14/07 when I won the belt. It is the same day that Bernard Hopkins snatched the belts from Keith Holmes in New York back in like ‘01. I remember him telling me if I can make it to NY to watch the fight then I am on his team. Bernard motivates me, sometimes I run into him sometimes when we are getting our cars washed or something. He always tells me I’m always hearing about you and you are making me proud. This is my first belt of many; I’m looking for another opportunity.

PK: Are you working with any promoters rght now?

SB: We would like some promoters to call us just like you gave us the call. I guess they don’t understand, if a promoter gives me the opportunity, I guarantee they won’t move me until something goes wrong. Everyone in DE wants to see the boy do his thing!

PK: Anything you would like to add as we close here?

SB: Just want to let everyone know that I am always ready. I hear a lot of guys say I am going to the mountains or woods to train or something but its all about the mindset. You going there to train or going to do something else? Not many people would have been able to rebound from the shit I have been through. I am here to stay and looking to get paid. Thanks for the call, this is gonna be the first interview of many cause I am getting more titles!

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions you can email Philly Keith at

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August 2006 Boxing report

ESPN Friday Night Fights

Live from Memphis, the world saw Atlantic City native Shamone Alvarez scored one of the best knockouts of the year as he dropped Marteze Logan with a crisp left that landed square on the jaw.

Logan, who was in his 50th pro fight despite being only 22 years old, was a game challenger for the undefeated Alvarez. It was a pretty close and entertaining fight throughout. Alvarez relied primarily on the right jab followed by a straight left and also showed the ability to rattle off combinations. Logan was pretty slippery defensively and picked his spots to go on the offensive.

I thought it was even down the stretch, then Alvarez crumpled Logan in the 7th leaving the young journeyman KTFO. Alvarez improves to 15 – 0.

Female banger Anne Wolfe was on the card and she handed out a 6 round beating to a tough Lisa Ested. The Big Bad Wolf inched her way closer to a showdown with Layla Ali but she says the promoters are trying to jerk her on the pay. Hopefully this fight will happen soon.

In the Main Event, Anthony Peterson, one half of the (over hyped) Peterson brothers made quick work of yet another last minute replacement. While Anthony is clearly the much easier brother to watch, I am not sold on him either. Continue reading August 2006 Boxing report

Philly boxing circuit top 10 pound for pound list for the month of August 2006

Before you go nuts – let’s make one thing clear. This list consists only of fighters who compete in Philadelphia on a regular basis. If you were born in Philly but boxing in Las Vegas or New York or somewhere out of our area, you do not qualify (sorry B-Hop). This list gives some recognition to those on their way through the ranks and other others trying to reestablish their name in the game. This is not the best talent overall but those who have put in the best work in recent months.

Philly is the world’s number one fight town and our local fight circuit is the best in the world. Our fans are beyond a shadow of a doubt the toughest, most loyal and knowledgeable crowd this business has ever seen. They pay $35 for a ticket just to sweat their ass off at the Blue Horizon in the dead of summer.

They will give a journeyman a standing ovation and will boo a stinker right out of the building. They love a good fight and love to argue.
So I will give you something to argue about, who is the best of the best in our fighting town? I think it is the 10 fighters listed below.

My criterion is simple, if they fight on the Philly circuit on a regular basis they were considered for the list. I pay no attention to who their promoter, manager, trainer or baby’s momma is. Some are young, some are old, and some will go on to fight for world titles while others will struggle to end their career with a record close to .500.

I give to you the first ever Philly top 10 pound for pound rankings. Email me to discuss, debate, praise, curse or quietly state your opinion.

Continue reading Philly boxing circuit top 10 pound for pound list for the month of August 2006

Joey Eye Boxing results from the Diablo Fight Club in the heart of Kensington

My first two boxing assignments couldn’t have gone better. I broke in at Lagoon Night Club on the waterfront of the Philadelphia suburbs. Next trip was Atlantic City to see a world title fight.

Now it was time to roll up the sleeves and see if I’m really cut out for this racket. was sending me inside of city limits – and the assignment took me across the street from “Needle”Park in the notorious Kensington section of Philadelphia. They could film a horror movie in place officially known as McPherson Park.

Despite the obvious potential hazards that could happen in this part of town, I watched a very good night of  professional boxing put together by Joey Eye Boxing & N.I.T. Management. The venue was called “The Diablo Fight Club” yet there were no signs outside and information on the internet was non-existent. It looked like a closed down roller skating shop.

Just the type of setting to host a bunch of fights! On this night I was introduced to some local talent who probably made just enough money from these fights to buy a sandwich and a pack of smokes.

Regardless of pay scale, I want to see Jose Medina, Clarence Taylor, Joe Christy, & Carlos Vinas fight again. These guys wasted no time winning over the tough crowd in attendance. Later, Joey Eye would say this was the greatest night of fights that nobody ever saw. There were about 200 people in the crown.

The fights go as follows:

Doel Carrasquillo (3-2) vs. Ivan Korotkovich (0-0-1)
Lancaster, PA …………………..Russia

The night kicked off with international welterweight action putting PA native Doel Carrasquillo against Russian attacker Ivan Korotkovich.


Continue reading Joey Eye Boxing results from the Diablo Fight Club in the heart of Kensington