|Adamek - Cunningham II; A Christmas in the "Little Town of Bethlehem"
By Ken Hissner, Doghouse Boxing (Oct 26, 2012) Doghouse Boxing (Photo © Mike Gladysz)
It was four years ago that Tomasz
“Goral” Adamek, 47-2 (29), from Zywiec, POL, and now out of
Jersey City, NJ, and Philadelphia’s Steve “USS” Cunningham,
25-4 (12) met at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ, where Adamek
took the IBF Cruiserweight title on a split decision. Now the site
is the Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, PA, over NBC on December
22nd in the “Little Town of Bethlehem” just days prior
to Christmas! This will be a 12 round IBF North American title
defense for Adamek.
Main Events and Ziggy Promotions held a
luncheon and press conference Tuesday at the Wisla Club in Garfield,
NJ. Adamek, promoter’s Kathy Duva and Ziggy Rozalski were at the
main table along with the combatants, Cunningham trainer Naazim
Richardson and Darryl Peoples of the IBF.
“This will be an afternoon show (4pm
EST) over NBC at the Sands Casino. We tried to get the Prudential
but it was booked. We have promoted at the Sands and it’s a
beautiful venue that we plan to fill,” said Duva. Asking Duva why
there wasn’t a rematch right away due to it being considered a
“fight of the year” she said “it was over Versus and we
couldn’t get HBO or Showtime to take it”.
Both fighters are very respectful to
each other and both now under contract to Main Events. “I want to
thank Kathy Duva to once again co-promote with me. She makes it easy
because she does all the work. This should be a tremendous fight.
May the better man win,” said Ziggy. Richardson said “one of the
toughest spirited boxers I ever worked for is Cunningham”.
Cunningham acknowledged his team including his wife Livvy, who serves
as manager, Richardson and cut-man/ass’t trainer Buddy Osborn.
“I’ve wanted this rematch since the
time we last fought. I thank the IBF, who sticks to their rules and
made my trips to Europe (7) much easier. May this bring glory to my
God,” said Cunningham, the former two-time IBF Cruiserweight champ.
put in a bad performance,” said Duva. Adamek added “I know Steve
wanted this rematch since I took his title in 2008”. This will be
an IBF eliminator for the vacant No. 2 spot with the winner meeting
the No. 1 contender Kubrat Pulev, 17-0 (9), of Bulgaria, who is
European and IBF International champion, in order to get a title
shot with champion Wladimir Klitschko. All but 3 of Pulev’s
fights have been in Germany.
Since their first meeting Adamek has
had 12 fights winning all but a WBC title fight with Vitali
Klitschko, brother of Wladimir. Cunningham has had 6 fights in
regaining his IBF title before losing it. Cunningham is 36 and
Adamek will be 36 December 1st. Cunningham made his
heavyweight debut in his last fight and plans to come in at about
210. Adamek has been 9-1 as a heavyweight and plans to come in at
Both fighters are very likeable and
especially Adamek whom Duva calls “a man of few words” is
extremely humble. Cunningham plans to “win this fight” though
not talking about how he plans on doing it. In their first fight
Cunningham fought Adamek’s fight by being very aggressive. He was
knocked down in 3 separate rounds. All of the other rounds were
mostly won by Cunningham with matchmaker J Russell Peltz having
Adamek a 1 point winner while this writer gave Cunningham the edge.
Now with a good 10 pound weight
advantage and twice as active since their first meeting only gives
Adamek that much more of an edge. He came off the canvas in his last
fight against Travis Walker to come back and stop his opponent. Both
Cunningham and Adamek were on the same card in September. About a
dozen members of the press were present. Publicist Ellen Haley of
Main Events saw to it as usual all members of the press were well
taken care of leading up to and including the press conference.
There are 3 other bouts currently scheduled with locals Will Miranda
and Jerome Rodriguez in a 6 and a 4 rounder. PA lightweight champion
Niam Nelson of Philadelphia will be in an 8 rounder.
E-mail questions, comments to Ken Hissner
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