Phoenix’s favorite son is coming home — to defend his world title. Undefeated World Boxing Association (WBA) interim super lightweight world champion JOSE BENAVIDEZ, JR. will be making his first title defense, against Mexican buzz saw JORGE “Maromerito” PAEZ, JR., Saturday, May 15 at US Airways Center.
The world championship battle will be televised live on “The MetroPCS Friday Night Knockout on truTV” at 10:00 p.m. ET. The live telecast will open with undefeated Top-10 contender ANTONIO “Relentless” OROZCO in a 10-round super lightweight rumble with power-punching EMMANUEL “The Tranzforma” TAYLOR.
The four warriors boast a combined record of 98-8-2 (65 KOs) — a winning ratio of 91% with two-thirds of those victories coming by way of knockout.
Promoted by Top Rank®, in association with Golden Boy Promotions, tickets to the Benavidez vs. Paez / Orozco vs. Taylor world championship event, priced at $100, $75, $60, $40 and $20, may be purchased online at www.Ticketmaster.com or www.USAirwaysCenter.com. To charge by phone call 1-800-745-3000.
“The Valley of the Sun will play host to one of its favorite sons as Jose Benavidez returns as World Champion to his hometown to face the son of a legend, and world-ranked contender, Jorge Paez, Jr., where his father made a great name for himself on so many occasions,” said Carl Moretti, vice president of Top Rank. “All fans at US Airways Center or watching on truTV will be in for an exciting evening of boxing.”
Benavidez (22-0, 15 KOs), from Phoenix, will be making his 2015 debut as a world champion. He won the title in his last fight, which took place on December 13 in Las Vegas, winning a unanimous decision over defending champion Mauricio Herrera. A sensational amateur prospect, winning a Gold Medal at the 2009 National Golden Gloves Championships at the age of 16, the youngest fighter to ever win the National Golden Gloves Championships. He turned professional one year later, at age 17, where he became the youngest professional boxer to be licensed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. He was granted an exception (the minimum age requirement was 18) because of his exceptional talent. After spending most of 2013 sidelined with a broken hand he came back to win all four of his 2014 fights decisively, including a first-round TKO of Henry Auraad on July 26 and his world title victory over Herrera in December.
Paez (38-5-2, 23 KOs), from Mexicali, Mexico, is the son and namesake of “The Clown Prince of Boxing” Jorge “Maromero” Paez, one of the most popular Mexican world champions. He is 11-1-1 in his last 13 fights, which includes impressive victories against Charlie Navarro and two against Omar Chávez, son of International Boxing Hall of Fame inductee Julio César Chávez. He returns to the ring fresh from a February 21 fourth round knockout victory of once-beaten Ronald Montes and world-rated No. 10 by the WBA.
Orozco (21-0, 15 KOs), a native of Tecate, Baja California, Mexico who fights out of San Diego, has won seven of his last nine bouts by knockout. Impressive victories over former world champion Stevie Forbes and seasoned veterans Martin Honorio, Ivan Hernandez and Miguel Huerta have propelled Orozco to No. 9 in the International Boxing Federation’s (IBF) junior welterweight world ratings.
Taylor (18-3, 12 KOs), of Edgewood Arsenal, MD, returns to the ring with two of his last three victories coming by way of knockout, including No. 4-wold-rated contender Victor Cayo, once-defeated Raymond Serrano and highly-touted Karim Mayfield. Carrying dangerous power in both fists, Taylor has also recently gone the distance against former world champions Adrien Broner and Chris Algieri in nationally-televised bouts.