On Friday, April 20, DiBella Entertainment, in association with Golden Boy Promotions, will present a special edition of ShoBox: The New Generation when former undisputed middleweight champion Jermain “Bad Intentions” Taylor (29-4-1, 18 KO’s) takes on the undefeated Caleb “Golden” Truax (18-0-1, 10 KO’s) in a 10-round middleweight matchup. In the co-featured bout, former Cuban amateur star Erislandy Lara (15-1-1, 10 KO’s) takes on Ronald Hearns (26-2, 20 KO’s) in a fight originally scheduled for February 11 as the co-feature to Victor Ortiz vs. Andre Berto II, but that was postponed after a Berto injury caused a postponement of the event. SHOWTIME® will begin live coverage starting at 11 p.m. ET/PT.
Taylor made his successful return to the ring in December on ShoBox after a nearly two-year layoff, scoring an eighth-round TKO over the tough-as-nails Jesse Nicklow. There was obviously some rust coming off such a long hiatus, but there were also some very promising moments shown by the man who twice defeated ring legend, and future Hall-of-Famer Bernard Hopkins, ending Hopkins’ record-setting 20 straight title defenses. Taylor, who is currently ranked as the No. 9 middleweight in the WBC world rankings, is looking to make another run at a middleweight championship, but must first get past the unbeaten Truax.
“I am excited to be getting back in the ring again on April 20th and taking another step towards becoming middleweight champion. I expect a tough fight out of Truax but I am refocused now and have rededicated myself to the sport and nothing is going to stop me from becoming champion again,” said Taylor.
“A fight with Jermain Taylor is the opportunity I have been looking for to take my career to the next level. On April 20th, I will capitalize and defeat the former world champion,” said Truax.
The Lara-Hearns matchup was originally scheduled to take place earlier this year on the undercard of the Victor Ortiz vs. Andre Berto rematch but the entire card was postponed after Berto suffered a torn biceps. Lara-Hearns is scheduled for 10 rounds in the junior middleweight division.
One of Cuba’s greatest boxers and the owner of three consecutive national championships and one world championship as an amateur, Erislandy Lara defected from his homeland in order to chase glory as a professional and he is well on the way to achieving that goal. Unbeaten in his first 16 professional fights, Lara was the victim of one of the most controversial decisions in recent history last July when judges awarded former World Champion Paul “The Punisher” Williams a 12-round decision win in a fight most observers believed the Guantanamo-native won. Undeterred, the 28-year-old will be back in the ring on April 20 and is determined to be the lone judge on fight night.
The name “Hearns” is royalty in boxing circles thanks to the exploits of soon-to-be inducted Hall of Famer Thomas “The Hitman” Hearns. The Hitman’s son, 33-year-old Ronald “The Chosen One” Hearns, is doing his best to continue the family business into the next generation. A professional since 2004, the lanky boxer-puncher has won five of his last six fights, with the only loss coming in a middleweight title bout against Felix Sturm in 2011. Now back at 154 pounds, Hearns feels stronger, faster and ready to issue Lara his second straight defeat.
“MGM Resort’s Beau Rivage is proud to serve as the venue for this DiBella Entertainment and SHOWTIME boxing event,” said George P. Corchis, Jr., President and Chief Operating Officer of MGM Resorts Regional Operations. “We look forward to bringing championship boxing back to Biloxi on April 20 and putting on another world-class event.”
A complete list of undercard bouts will be announced shortly. Tickets, priced at $150, $100, and $50 plus tax and service charge, are available online at www.beaurivage.com, by phone at 888.566.7469 or in person at the Beau Rivage Theatre box office. Beau Rivage room reservations can be made by calling 888.567.6667 or visiting www.beaurivage.com.