One month after dazzling the Twin River Casino crowd with the Fight of the Year between Khiary Gray and Chris Chatman, CES Boxing is back for one more round, ending the 2016 season with another star-studded, year-end holiday bash.
Two of New England’s most celebrated fighters, super featherweight Toka Kahn Clary (19-1, 13 KOs) of Providence, R.I., and New London, Conn., bantamweight Shelly Vincent (18-1, 1 KO) return to their roots Friday, Dec. 2nd, 2016 in the finale of CES Boxing’s 2016 Twin River Casino Fight Series.
The card features eight action-packed bouts, headlined by an eight-round battle between Kahn and Mexico City veteran Mario Macias (28-20, 14 KOs) and an eight-round female featherweight showdown between Vincent and Marquita Lee (3-2) of Novato, Calif.
Dec. 2nd marks Kahn’s first fight in his hometown since February of 2014 while Vincent, who lives and trains in Providence, returns to Twin River for the eighth time in her career and the first time since she defeated Christina Ruiz in April of 2015.
Vincent comes off a highly anticipated bout against longtime foe Heather Hardy at the Ford Amphitheater in Coney Island in August, the first women’s bout televised on NBC Sports Network as part of that night’s Premier Boxing Champions telecast, a landmark bout for the sport. Kahn, who boasted an impressive 131-11 record as an amateur, hopes to rebound from his first loss as a pro after knocking out 13 of his first 18 opponents, including Chris Lopez, Orlando Rizo and 44-fight vet Jonathan Perez.
The show-stopper of the night could come in the middleweight division when unbeaten Worcester, Mass., native Kendrick Ball (4-0-1, 3 KOs) steps up to face undefeated Canadian Nathan Millier (9-0-1, 7 KOs) in a six-round special attraction.
Ball recently defeated Oregon’s Rafael Valencia in October and now battles the unbeaten Millier, a 25-year-old New Brunswick native who’s won his last three fights by knockout since suffering the lone blemish record in a draw against Shane Upshaw in July of 2015.
Also fighting his first career six-round bout, unbeaten New Bedford, Mass., junior middleweight Ray Oliveira Jr. (5-0, 1 KO) challenges Matt Probin (2-1) of Lewiston, Maine. Oliveira returns for the first time since handing Andy Gonzalez his first career loss in July while Probin enters fresh off a big win on the road against Stephon Burgette in Pennsylvania.
Fresh off a knockout win in his Twin River debut in October, fan-favorite Anthony Marsella Jr. (2-0, 1 KO) of Providence returns to face Martinsville, Va., native Devante Seay (0-1-1) in a four-round junior welterweight bout while New London, Conn., junior welterweight Cristobal Marrero (2-0, 2 KOs) steps in his toughest test to date in a four-round bout against Durham, N.C., vet Isaiah Robinson (3-4, 2 KOs).
Marrero dazzled in knockout wins in July and October and now faces the dangerous Robinson, who fought four hard rounds against Jonathan Figueroa in October on less than 24 hours’ notice. After debuting with a unanimous decision win Connecticut in April, the 21-year-old Marsella blasted Philadelphia’s Bardraiel Smith in just 45 seconds in his Rhode Island debut four and a half weeks ago.
Two more fighters make their Twin River debuts Friday; 25-year-old Lynn, Mass., junior welterweight Khiry Todd, a former New England Golden Gloves champion, fights for the first time as a pro in a four-round bout against Woburn, Mass., vet Bruno Dias (0-2) and East Hartford, Conn., junior welterweight Anthony Laureano (1-0) stars in a four-round bout against Washington, D.C., native Lamont White (0-5). Laureano, 21, captured a Western New England Golden Gloves title in 2016 and competed in the National Golden Gloves Tournament of Champions in Salt Lake City before debuting as a pro in September with a win over Nahir Albright.