Joey Abell was handed a box of Tampons at the press conference, delivers payback in the ring

photo by Mike “Teek” McGuigan

April 11, 2008 – Philadelphia, PA

There was a bit of an international flavor at The Legendary Blue Horizon on this evening as fighters from Ecuador, Peru, Sweden, Haiti and the USA laced them up to take part in a 9 bout fight card on North Broad Street.

The Main Event turned into a bad blood match earlier in the week when Maurice Wheeler gave his foe a box of tampons and called him derogatory female names at the press conference. Abell went on the record to say that was extra motivating and responding by scoring a  KO of the Year candidate.

Gee Culmer made it 9 wins in a row after narrowly escaping the upset specialist Mustapha Johnson, winning a close majority decision that many felt could have gone either way.

Mario Mina traveled all the way from his native Ecuador to fulfill a dream of boxing on American soil. He took on Pedro Calla of Peru who was making his professional debut. A fight that entered the night with no fan fare turned out to be the battle of the evening.

“Showtime” Steve Chambers battered his foe and showed he should be in again with much better opposition while young prospect Gerald Smith showed he might be a guy to keep an eye on.
Heavyweight Division

Joey Abell……..vs……..Maurice Wheeler
19-1, 18ko’s…………….10-11-1, 1ko
Coon Rapids, MN………….Philly, PA

A few days before the fight, there was a press conference held at The Legendary Blue Horizon to meet the fighters and talk about the upcoming event. Maurice Wheeler & Simon Carr thought it would be a good idea to try getting into Joey Abell’s head, gain a psychological advantage over the man who had been leaving behind lots of carnage in the ring.

So on they went with a stunt where Wheeler handed Abell a box of Tampax Tampons and went on to insult his opponent calling him just about every name in the book. Let’s cut to the chase – they were calling him a punk right to his face.

This turned out to be a very bad move.

Joey Abell vs Maurice Wheeler 2008 (1)

The 6″4′ former defensive end kept his cool but did admit that he took it personally, vowing to get some payback once they stepped into the ring.

Joey Abell vs Maurice Wheeler 2008 (2)

The beginning of this fight was pretty slow, then midway through the second round Abell kicked it into high gear, punishing Wheeler with thunderous left hands. The final left hand of the evening came at the end of the round and this one sent an unconscious Wheeler through the ropes, laying on the ring apron for a good 5 minutes. Abell raised his arms in victory and the crowd chanted “Joey, Joey, Joey”.

Joey Abell vs Maurice Wheeler 2008

After the fight, Gerald “The Jedi” Nobels grabbed the house microphone and said he wants next. Abell replied with “you can get it too if you really want”. Hook it up Elbaum!

Winner – Joey Abell who improves to 20 – 1, 19ko’s

Joey Abell vs Maurice Wheeler 2008 (3)

Middleweight Division

Gee Culmer….vs…..Mustapha Johnson
Philly, PA…………Indianapolis, IN
13-1, 4ko’s………..5-2-1, 2ko’s

This was an interesting fight between two middleweights that we have become familiar with in recent times. Gee Culmer has worked his way into co-feature status at The Legendary Blue Horizon by winning 8 in a row while Mustapha Johnson has done most of his work on the other side of town, going on a nice run of upsets over some of the middleweights who fight out of the New Alhambra.

Gee Cullmer vs Mustapha Johnson 2008

It looked good on paper but in the ring it wasn’t as exciting. Call it a clash of styles. To their credit, both fighters tried to work through it all and both threw a lot of punches.

Gee usually found a home for his right hand upstairs, Johnson was at his best when throwing combo’s inside.

Gee Cullmer vs Mustapha Johnson 2008 (1)

Most of the rounds were really close and in the end the scoring went

57 – 57 followed by 58 – 56 twice in favor of Gee Culmer giving him the majority decision win.

Winner – Gee Culmer who improves to 14 – 1, 3ko’s


Middleweight Division

Mario Mina………….vs…….Pedro Calla
Brooklyn, NY via Ecuador……..Peru
pro debut………..pro debut

The battle of highly decorated amateurs making their pro debut stole the show early in the night as these two went toe to toe and blow for blow until Mina rocked Calla with an overhand right leaving him flat on his back. Calla might have gotten KO’d but he gave it his all, fighting with cuts over his head and blood on his face.

Mario Mina vs Pedro Calla 2008 (1)

Mina looks like he could make some real noise in the future, for now watch all of the promoters hide their young middleweights from him.

Mario Mina vs Pedro Calla 2008 (2)

Winner – Mario Mina 1-0, 1ko

Mario Mina vs Pedro Calla 2008 (3) Mario Mina vs Pedro Calla 2008

Jr. Welterweight Division

Steve Chambers….vs….Jean Petit Homme
Phila, PA……………Haiti
15-1, 4ko’s………….2 – 14, 2ko’s

Steve Chambers is way too talented for a fight like this. STOP HOLDING SHOWTIME STEVE BACK!!!! How does his management put him in a fight like this AGAIN???? How Greg Sirb allows a 15 win fighter to take on a 2 win fighter is beyond me. The young man holds 2 wins over Lenny DeVictoria, he should be close to main event status at The Blue, not on mop up duty, wasting his time and career with guys like this. A big boo to whoever was responsible for finding this opponent.

With that all being said, Steve Chambers shook off a little rust then knocked this guy all over the ring. The remaining fans in the building approved and the ladies were screaming “Showtiiiiiime” In the end the final scorecards read 40 – 36 & 39- 37 twice all in favor of Showtime Steve.

Winner – “Showtime” Steve Chambers who improves to 16 – 1,  4ko’s

Lightweight Division

Gerald Smith……vs…..Jose Guerrido
Philly, PA……………Brooklyn, NY
1-0………………….0-1

Gerald Smith looked good for the second time in two fights at The Blue and could be a guy to keep an eye on as he climbs the ladder.

Gerald Smith vs Jose Guerrido 2008 (1)

He battered his opponent around the ring until Guerrido’s corner wisely threw in the towel at 2:16 of the 2nd round.

Gerald Smith vs Jose Guerrido 2008

Winner – Gerald Smith who improves to 2-0, 1ko


Gerald Smith vs Jose Guerrido 2008 (2)

Heavyweight Division

Anders Holmberg….vs….Archie Hopkins
Sweden……………….Fargo, ND
pro debut…………….0-2

It smelled like fish at The Blue when Archie Hopkins “did the job” and didn’t make it look very good either in “falling” to Anders Holmberg, a Swedish promoter with strong ties to matchmaker Don Elbaum.

Anders Holmberg vs Archie Hopkins 2008

Holmberg, who was making his pro debut at the 38 year old is described as not only a promoter but also a politician / cancer survivor / highly accomplished amateur boxer / and future ordained saint. The first round was a little rough, getting dropped with a short right hand but ended up winning by 2nd round KO.

Anders Holmberg vs Archie Hopkins 2008 (1)

Cheers to Holmberg for fulfilling what he said was a dream to have one pro fight but it is a damn shame when there is a row full of hungry young fighters sitting in the crowd, itching for some work. At times I swear they will do anything for a buck at The Blue.

Winner – Anders Holmberg who goes to 1-0, 1ko

Anders Holmberg vs Archie Hopkins 2008 (2)

In other action,

Simon “One Punch” Carr’s fight fell out and instead, participated in an exhibition with Tommie “Big Poppa” Speller in a prelude to what would be an excellent fight.

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Brooklyn’s Osvaldo Rivera earned his first win as a pro, taking a unanimous decision over Julias Edmonds of Philly by scores of 39 – 37 across the board.

Atlantic City’s Joel De La Paz won a unanimous decision over Philly’s Greg Hackett by scores of 40 – 36 in what was the pro debut for both fighters.

Greg Hackett vs Joel De La Paz 2008 (1) Greg Hackett vs Joel De La Paz 2008 (2) Greg Hackett vs Joel De La Paz 2008 (3) Greg Hackett vs Joel De La Paz 2008
In the opener, Calvin Goldwire of Philly won a split decision over Ishmir Ra of Detroit by scores of 39 – 37 x 2 for Goldwire and a third seeing it 39 – 37 for Ra.

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions you can email Philly Keith at keith@phillykeith.com

Go to www.phillykeith.com for up to the minute info on the Philly boxing scene

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39 thoughts on “Joey Abell was handed a box of Tampons at the press conference, delivers payback in the ring”

  1. The fight of the night!!! hands down, Calla showed more heart and determination then most winners that night.He probably would have beaten any other opponent.Cheers!

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