Category Archives: George Hanson "The Mouthpiece" Articles

Fight of the Year! – Mtagwa Tunes-up Lopez By: George Hanson Jr., Esq.

The Mouthpiece

Fight of the Year! – Mtagwa Tunes-up Lopez
By: George Hanson Jr., Esq.


Date: Saturday, October 10, 2009
Venue: Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
Promoters: Top Rank
Coverage: Pay-Per-View
It’s not difficult to reach me because most afternoons I am at the Marian Anderson Recreation Center in South Philadelphia working out in the boxing gym—training kids or in the dojo learning a new discipline—Wado Ryu karate. Therefore, when I heard promoter Bob Arum earlier in the week proclaiming that Rogers Mtagwa’s (25 wins – 12 losses – 2 draws – 18 kos) title shot would be a tune-up for WBO junior-featherweight champion Juan Manuel Lopez (26 wins – 0 losses – 0 draws – 24 kos) and his impending showdown with WBA featherweight champion Yuriorkis Gamboa, I wondered why Bob didn’t reach out to me and solicit my opinion before making such a statement.

I know Rogers “The Tiger” Mtagwa, having met him when he first arrived from Tanzania in 2000 and started training at the Marian Anderson boxing gym. Over the past nine years I have developed a good feel for what drives him and why nobody in their right mind would consider him a “tune-up,” much less a world-class promoter like Arum. Mtagwa is not only fighting for his two kids (little Sinia and baby Rogers), he is also fighting for his country driven by an indomitable will to succeed and a noble spirit. Therefore, there was no way I would not be at the Garden to witness him win the championship.

11 Fight Card Scheduled for The Blue Horizon September 11th!

Boxing returns to mothers house as Vernoca Michael & Don Elbaum present what is looking like an 11 fight card at The Legendary Blue Horizon on September 11th. The theme of the night is “Public Saftey” and to be totally honest, there are some really safe fights for the house prospects. There are also a couple that could turn out to be really good. Here is the breakdown

In the main event, Jr. Welterweight Steve Upshur Chambers is back and he takes on Aaron Drake of Ohio in a scheduled 8 rounder. Chambers is 19 – 1 and coming back after an 8 month layoff due to a foot injury. His last 3 times out have been very solid outings, especially a win over Kevin Carmody at The Blue. Many people now want to see him take that next step. Drake’s last two wins have come against opponents with a combined record of 39 – 130 – 2. Enough said. Come on Elbaum, we want Chambers vs. Shmouel!

The co-feature is Darren Fallen vs. Joshua Onyango. Fallen is a former golden gloves champ out of Shulers Gym. He has been inactive much of the past few years but does have 2 wins in a row. Onyango is best known for his upset win over Gabby Rosado a few years back. We are now in 2009 and are a car accident and a few knockouts later in Onyango’s career. Let’s see what he has left. Fallen is a boxer, Onyango is aggressive so it could produce some action. This one is scheduled for 8 rounds.

The best match of the night, at least on paper goes to Joselito Collado vs. Jules Blackwell in a super featherweight match. Collado of the Bronx fights hard has earned some fans in Philly, Blackwell lost almost all of his after getting KO’d. Give Jules his credit he was one to never duck a tough fight unlike most others who call themselves prospects in this division. Jules desperately needs a win here. Collado might stamp his card as the best 122 lb prospect fighting in the area with a win. Sit back and watch them rumble!

Undefeated super featherweight Isaac Suarez of Lancaster returns to fight Mondre Pope of Virginia. Suarez returned earlier this summer to take a split decision from Ikeem Orji in a fight that Suarez had to get off the canvas to win. There is a little rust left after 2 years away from the ring but team Suarez says after this they are looking for big fights after this. Taking the winner of the Collado – Blackwell fight would be a good start.

South Philly’s “Dangerous” Darrell Jones comes back to the ring after about a year off for what is looking like a fight against Achmad Tuba of Israel. Those in the know rave about Jones natural ability but say consistency is the key. Tuba was ballyhoo’d his last time at the Blue as he is apart of the Elad / Nakash / Taal crew that come in from Tel Aviv. Both fighters are 1-0 but if this fight goes down, I expect Jones to win handily.

This night also marks the return of “The Mongoose” Phillip McCants. He will take on an opponent to be named soon. McCants had a decorated amateur career with accomplishments that include, but are not limited to a KO win over Mike Jones and putting Henry Crawford down twice. He signed with CES when he turned pro but hung up the gloves after 9 pro fights. George Hanson writes a good piece detailing the accomplishments of McCants in his Mouthpiece column. The article is titled “The Mongoose is Loose”

More info on this card to come soon ’til then…