All eight fighters hit their marks and are set to go for their fights tonight, Friday, Feb. 19 on ShoBox: The New Generation live on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast). A quadrupleheader, presented by GH3 Promotions, will emanate from the Adrian Phillips Ballroom in the Historic Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic, City, N.J.
In the main event two undefeated prospects with exceedingly high expectations face their most dangerous opponent to date when Adam “Mantequilla” Lopez (14-0, 7 KOs), of San Antonio, Texas, by way Phoenix, Ariz., meets Mario “Yayo” Muñoz (16-0-1, 10 KOs), of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico in a 10-round super bantamweight matchup.
In other televised bouts, all scheduled for eight rounds, Ronald “Flatline” Ellis (12-0, 10 KOs), of Dorchester, Mass., takes on Washington D.C.’s Jerry “The King’s Son” Odom (13-2, 12 KOs) in a clash of hard-hitting super middleweights, southpaw Lavisas “Red” Williams (8-0-1, 3 KOs), of Rochester, N.Y. risks his undefeated record against O’Shaquie “Ice Water” Foster (9-1, 6 KOs), of Orange, Texas, in a lightweight match and, opening the telecast, John “Madman” Magda (11-0, 7 KOs), of Rutherford, N.J., faces Philadelphia’s Christopher “Ice Cold” Brooker (7-1, 5 KOs) in a super middleweight matchup.
The Weights: Lopez and Muñoz each weighed 121½ pounds; Ellis tipped scale at 166½ pounds, Odom 167½, Williams weighed 132 pounds, Foster 134; and Magda weighed 167½ pounds and Brooker 168½.
Here’s what the fighters said Thursday:
“This is my third time on ShoBox and my third fight against an undefeated fighter. They like to match me tough but I must confess, I’m really looking forward to it.
“I know I only had 14 fights, but I truly feel I feel I’m ready for a major fight or a title shot at the end of year. I have a strong amateur background, so I have experience. There are a lot of good fights right now at 122 pounds. The division is hot.
“I fought at 118 last time so I can make that weight if the right opportunity comes, but I am strong at 122. I thought I clearly won my last fight. I don’t think it was as close as the judges said it was.
“I’m fighting a guy, Munoz, who is sort of a mystery to me. I’ve seen one tape of him, but it was from 2012. So I don’t really know how he’s fought recently.
“He seems to want to box and slug. He’s had some good performances in the past and fought some good ones so I won’t take nothing away from him and I do respect him.
“But I’m prepared to make the fight and be aggressor if necessary, and to win it any way that I have to. My trainer [former two-time world champion Carlos “Famous” Hernandez] continues to work on all the little things, and trains me for anything that might come my way.
“I feel that I’ve moved from prospect to contender, but a victory tomorrow night should prove that to everybody.”
“This is my first fight in nine months and first in America, which is very exciting. You have to fight in the United States eventually; this is where you become known.
“I know that I’m in top shape. I’ve fought some good guys in my division, and I’m at the level I need to be. I had a really hard training camp; I know what I’m supposed to do.
“I’m grateful for this opportunity. I know a lot of people haven’t heard of me, but I promise you a good fight.
“I’m more of a boxer than a puncher, but I love to exchange and switch stance to southpaw, although my trainer doesn’t like it.
“Lopez is very fast, smart and has a great left hand. But I’m ready for all that. I’ll look at what he has to offer and counter with my best.
“I’m a little nervous. Things are moving fast now. But I couldn’t be more ready.’’
“I’ve been working for this sort of opportunity since I was 13, so, yes, I am very excited. I want to win and look good doing it so promoters and television will want to see me again.
“I’ve had problems in the past getting opponents, so I’ve taken a few ‘stay busy’ fights. But this fight is a totally different story.
“Everyone says I’m a boxer-puncher, and I do feel I am versatile. I’ll decide how I want to go the night of the fight. We know how Jerry’s gonna fight so I need to fight him smart. We’ll see how Odom’s chin is because it’s going get testedtomorrow night.
“I only had 24 amateur fights, but I am dedicated and continuing to improve with each fight. It will be a great night for me. I’m looking forward to putting on a good show.’’
“Everybody has to make changes so I have a new trainer, Kennie Johnson, for this fight. He has been trying to stress finesse, movement and utilizing my overall skills more, with less emphasis on just trying to load up and knock the guy out.
“We’re working on me picking shots, breaking down opponents and setting up the power shots rather than just show it. Defensively, he’s had me working on my overall movement, head movement in particular.
“I’m looking to shine on Friday, especially after my last ShoBox fight that I lost. I should have never taken the fight once he came in so overweight. It was a bad business decision on my part, but I learned – no more thinking with my heart.
“I got over my last fight right away and I’m anxious to do my job and show how much I gained and learned from it. I certainly feel ready. My only focus is to win.
“Ellis should be a good opponent for me. Obviously he has power, a good jab and punches. There are some good things about him, but I’m better. I’ll go out and execute, he won’t be able to stop me.’’
LAVISAS WILLIAMS“I’m naturally lefty … I’ve sparred against ambidextrous boxers, so I like to say I’m ready for anything that comes my way.
“I’m excited to be debuting on national television. That’s a pretty big deal for me so I need to put a great show. Especially for my fan base back home, they are all going to be watching.
“I take boxing seriously. I like to say I’m very dedicated. I take advantage of any opportunity I see. I trained at Mayweather Boxing Gym in Las Vegas for a bit last year. It was a good experience.
“My job is to frustrate him and trust me, I will. He will fight my fight. If he freezes again, I’m sure taking advantage of that, but I’m not counting on it.
“I’m going in knowing I’m the better boxer, but not overconfident. You can’t overlook anybody, but I know I’m the one that’s coming out victorious.”
“I don’t know what happened in my last fight. I thought everything was OK but I just couldn’t find my fight rhythm. I couldn’t get off for some reason. But I am done thinking about that night.
“I’m definitely more focused this time around and in better shape. I need a win – and I’m fighting a guy who beat the guy that beat me, Samuel Teah. So, I have to be smart. He’s a southpaw but I can deal with that.
“I’ve never worked so hard in camp. I left Texas to go to Washington D.C. to train for this. I’m 100 percent set to go.
“I need a challenge and this is it. I’m ready to step up and I’m ready for him.”
“I’m excited and ready to go. Right now I’m looking at this as just another fight, but it’s definitely a big, big deal. I’m hoping to win and put on an exciting show.
“I’ve been in the gym training since November but a series of unfortunate events took place and I didn’t fight that month, or in December, or in January. So, I’ve been training for a while. I’m ready to fight.
‘I’m in with a rough, tough guy. I can’t let him bully or push me around; I just can’t let him stand and throw.
“I need to box, move, do a lot of things I know I can do. I have to see how it plays. It’s all just a matter of me doing what I am supposed to do, whether it is to box or slug. I’m ready for it.’’
“I love being the underdog; I’m accustomed to it. That’s why I work so hard, remain dedicated and will not ever quit.
“Magda throws a lot of punches, so you can’t expect him to stay on the outside. But I run 15 miles a day, three days a week after sparring, to get into the kind of shape I need to be in and am for this fight.
“This is my first fight against a southpaw, but I’ve had southpaw sparring, including some recently with [former world champion] Andre Dirrell. I learned so much from him.
“I’m a Philly fighter through and through: I may not be a favorite to win, but I come to war and will never give up. That’s a lot like the way I grew up when living in foster homes — and later, homeless, for some time. I just not give up, I keep on fighting.
“There’s a lot on the line for me this Friday and I am ready to show what I can do.’’