Unbeaten Worcester native Gray one of several New England fighters highlighting Friday's ShoBox
Photo courtesy of Will Paul
UNDEFEATED WORCESTER, MASSACHUSETTS junior middleweight Khiary Gray (left), seen here in his February win over Eduardo Flores, makes his network television debut Friday, July 22nd, 2016 in the first of four televised bouts presented by ShoBox: The New Generation at Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Conn. The televised quadruple-header, presented by GH3 Promotions, CES Boxing and Sampson Boxing, features up-and-coming prospects in their toughest fights as ShoBox celebrates its 15th anniversary. Gray enters his Friday bout against New Jersey's Ian Green with a perfect 13-0 record following a knockout win over Quentin Willis in May.
StartFragmentMASHANTUCKET, Conn. (July 20th, 2016) -- ShoBox: The New Generation returns to Foxwoods Resort Casino's Premier Ballroom on Friday, July 22nd, 2016 to celebrate the 15 anniversary of its critically-acclaimed series featuring a fight card loaded with New England's premiere talent.
Friday night's quadruple-header, presented by GH3 Promotions, CES Boxing and Sampson Boxing, features the television debut of unbeaten Worcester, Mass., junior middleweight Khiary Gray (13-0, 10 KOs), who battles Paterson, N.J., vet Ian Green (9-1, 7 KOs) in an eight-round bout, the first of four on the televised main card.
"I don't take anyone lightly," Gray said, "but come that day you're going to see more than you've ever seen from me before. You're going to see different angles, punching power, combinations. I'm going to keep my '0' and put Worcester on the map. It's going to be a great show."
"I'm very proud to give this young man the opportunity to fight on national television," added CES president Jimmy Burchfield Sr. "Listen, he's got the opening bout, but we're going to steal the show. I'm sure of it. I'm sure the phones are going to ring a couple of days after July 22nd. For now, we're going to concentrate."
Geared toward developing and showcasing young boxing prospects, ShoBox: The New Generation debuted July 21, 2001. Since then, 67 fighters who've appeared on ShoBox have gone on to win world titles while an addition 75 have fought for a major championship.
Tickets for Friday's event are priced at $45.00, $75.00 and $150.00 (VIP) and can be purchased online at www.cesboxing.com, www.ticketmaster.com or www.foxwoods.com or by phone at 401-724-2253/2254 or 800-200-2882. All bouts are subject to change. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. ET. The preliminary card begins at 7 and the televised main card begins at 10.
On the preliminary card, New Haven, Conn., welterweight Jimmy Williams (11-0-1, 5 KOs) puts his unbeaten record on the line against 36-fight vet Antonio Fernandes of Brockton, Mass., in a six-round bout while fellow Worcester native Kendrick Ball Jr. (2-0, 2 KOs) steps up to face undefeated Meriden, Conn., southpaw David Wilson (5-0, 1 KO) in a four-round middleweight bout.
Friday's stacked lineup also features the New England debut of CES' newest protégé, undefeated lightweight Divante Jones (8-0, 6 KOs) of Augusta, Ga., who battles Philadelphia's Anthony Burgin (9-1, 2 KOs) in a four-round preliminary bout.
San Antonio, Tex., super bantamweight Adam Lopez (15-0, 7 KOs), a six-time national champion now ranked No. 5 in the World Boxing Association (WBA), battles Argentinian Roman Ruben Reynoso (18-1-1, 8 KOs) in the 10-round main event.
Also on the main card, super middleweight Jerry Odom (13-2-1, 12 KOs) of Bowie, Md., the 2012 Amateur Boxer of the Year, faces 2008 Virgin Islands Olympian Julius Jackson (19-1, 15 KOs), and super lightweight O'Shaquie Foster (10-1, 7 KOs) of Houston, a finalist in the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials, faces Rolando Chinea (12-1, 7 KOs) of Lancaster, Pa., who competed alongside Foster in Mobile, Ala., in 2012.
Gray, who stars in the opening TV bout, faces his toughest test to date against the savvy Green, a two-time New Jersey Golden Gloves Champion. Since making his professional debut in June of 2014, Gray has fought 13 times in less than two years, including a stretch of six consecutive first-round knockout wins in 2015. The hard-hitting Gray stopped Texas' Kenton Sippio-Cook in just 2 minutes, 2 seconds in their September of 2015 and recently defeated Florida's Quentin Willis via second-round knockout in May.
"This is a big fight coming up. This is Showtime," said Gray's trainer Kendrick Ball Sr. "This is something I've been waiting for. I know what I've got. My fighter can fight. My fighter can punch. He can box. I don't really talk shit when it comes down to him fighting, but I'll tell you right now, I know what I've got. My fighter can fucking fight and we're bringing the heat and you will fucking see it July 22nd.
"I'm overwhelmed over this whole situation. To be on TV, it's a dream come true. I set short-term goals and this was a goal I set, but I didn't think it was going to happen this fast. I want to thank CES and the whole team for giving us the opportunity to showcase Khiary's ability and everyone else around the world will be able to see it. I'm excited for the night. Trust and believe, we will be ready."
Friday's undercard also features two 2016 U.S. Olympic alternates. Brent Venegas III, an Elk Grove, Calif., native, makes his professional debut against bantamweight Christian Foster, also making his debut, while New Brunswick, N.J., super flyweight Leroy Davila (1-0, 1 KO), battles Vineland, N.J., native Edgar Cortes (2-2). Both are four-round bouts.
Visit www.cesboxing.com, www.twitter.com/cesboxing, www.twitter.com/showtimboxing or www.facebook.com/cesboxing and www.facebook.com/shoboxing for more information, follow CES Boxing on Instagram at @CESBOXING and use the hashtag #ShoBox to join the conversation.