On Friday, July 6, promoters Sampson Boxing and Greg Cohen Boxing will proudly present “Hard Rock Boxing”, live from the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, and televised live on ESPN Friday Night Fights.
In the 10-round featherweight main event, former WBO Super Flyweight Champion “Marvelous” Marvin Sonsona (16-1-1, 13 KOs) will take on the formidable Orlando “El Fenómeno” Cruz (18-2-1, 9 KOs) in a showdown between proven southpaw warriors.
And in the televised co-feature, Russian heavyweight power puncher Magomed “Mago” Abdusalamov (14-0, 14 KOs) will defend his WBC United States (USNBC) Silver Heavyweight Championship in a 10-round battle against fellow up-and-coming heavyweight Maurice “Freight Train” Byarm (13-1-1, 9 KOs).
21-year-old Marvin Sonsona is a native of General Santos City, Cotabato del Sur, Philippines. His only career loss was to Wilfredo Vazquez Jr. for the vacant WBO super bantamweight Championship in February 2010.
Sonsona started boxing as an amateur at the age of seven and had 150 amateur fights before turning professional in 2007, just weeks before his 17th birthday.
30-year-old Orlando Cruz hails from San Juan, Puerto Rico, and represented his homeland at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Australia, as a bantamweight.
Cruz was undefeated at 16-0-1 until losing back-to-back title fights by stoppage to Cornelius Lock and former world champion Daniel Ponce De Leon in 2009/2010. He has rebounded since then to score quality wins over Alejandro Delgado and Michael Franco.
31-year-old Magomed Abdusalamov was born in Makhachkala, Russia, but now lives and trains in Oxnard, California.
Abdusalamov was the 2005 and 2006 Russian Amateur Champion at super heavyweight before turning professional in 2008. He is the current WBC United States (USNBC) Silver Heavyweight Champion, having won the title by TKO 4 over formerly undefeated Jason Pettaway in March.
29-year-old southpaw heavyweight Maurice Byarm lives in Washington, DC, and was born in Philadelphia.
Byarm is the son of Lionel Byarm, a professional fighter who most notably fought the legendary Evander Holyfield on the 1984 US Olympian card. He was undefeated as a professional until his last fight, a decision loss to fellow Philadelphian Bryant Jennings in January of this year.
Headlining the undercard, popular heavyweight and current interim PABA Heavyweight Champion “Bronco” Billy Wright (37-4, 28 KOs) will continue his successful comeback in a six-round bout.
Also scheduled to fight six-round bouts are Las Vegas, via Puerto Rico, super middleweight Carlos De Leon Jr (21-3-2, 14 KOs); Las Vegas via Accra, Ghana, middleweight KO artist Bastie Samir (10-0-1, 10 KOs); and undefeated Las Vegas featherweight Rocco Santomauro (8-0).
Scheduled for a four-rounder is Jackson, Michigan, cruiserweight William “Lil’ Tyson” Williams (5-2-1, 4 KOs).
Orlando Cruz appears courtesy of Tuto Zavala’s All Star Boxing. Marvin Sonsona is co-promoted by Sammy Gello-ani of SGG Sports Promotions of the Philippines.
All undercard opponents are TBA.
Tickets for “Hard Rock Boxing” are priced at $29 general admission, $60 reserved, $100 ringside and $200 VIP and are available at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino box office daily from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and through Ticketmaster, either by calling 702-474-4000 or 800-745-3000, or by going online at ticketmaster.com.