28
Nov
2020

Malik Hawkins to fight Keith Hunter on Feb 28 ShoBox event

RINGSIDE 01/02/2020

Undefeated super lightweight prospect Malik Hawkins returns to the ring to make his ShoBox: The New Generation series debut as part of a three-fight telecast when he faces fellow undefeated Vegas native Keith Hunter in the main event that is scheduled for 10 rounds on Friday, February 28 live on SHOWTIME (10:45 p.m. ET/PT) from Sam’s Town Live in Las Vegas.

Two other Mayweather Promotions’ top prospects will face tough challenges, as 2016 Olympian Richardson Hitchins (10-0, 5 KOs) and once-beaten Las Vegas native Kevin Newman II (11-1-1, 6 KOs) both return for their second ShoBox appearances fighting in separate bouts.

Hitchins, the undefeated super lightweight prospect, will take on Rhode Island’s Nick DeLomba (16-2, 5KOs) in a 10-round bout, while Newman will seek his fifth consecutive victory when he steps in the ring with undefeated Kalvin Henderson (12-0-1, 8 KOs) in a 10-round super middleweight bout.

Tickets for the Mayweather Promotions’ Sin City Showdown go on sale Friday, January 31 at 12 p.m. PT, start at $25 and can be purchased by visiting: https://mayweatherpromotions.com/events/.

“As we kickstart another year, I’m confident that we will continue to exceed expectations and bring top tier events to the sports and entertainment world,” says Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions. “Our first stop of the year is at our home venue for club shows and a stacked Friday night ShoBox card. These prospects are looking to put on impressive performances to start their year off. They’re putting in the work to take their fight game to the next level, and on February 28 we will see them challenge themselves against tough opponents at Sam’s Town Live and live on SHOWTIME.”

Hawkins, (18-0, 11 KOs) known as “Ice Man” in the ring, fights out of Baltimore, Md., and is coming off the heels of two back-to-back knockout victories. His most recent came via fifth-round stoppage against Darwin Price on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING COUNTDOWN on the Davis vs. Gamboa undercard on December 28. The 24-year-old Hawkins is trained by the highly touted Upton Gym coaches’ trio of Calvin Ford, Kenny Price, and Russ Blakey.

Hawkins turned professional in 2014 with a knockout victory, which foreshadowed what was to come from the young fighter. As an amateur, Hawkins amassed an impressive 160-15 record while competing in the 2012 and 2013 National Championships and won a bronze medal in the 2012 Jr. Olympics. Best known for his gritty and powerful fighting style, Hawkins joined the Mayweather Promotions team in late 2019 with a knockout decision win over Al Rivera at Cannery Casino & Hotel.

“It feels great to headline my first ShoBox event,” says Hawkins. “This is something I wanted to do since I was a kid. A win in this fight and the exposure fighting on a platform like SHOWTIME only brings more recognition to my talent and skills and bigger and better opportunities. I have more than myself to fight for. I have the kids who look up to me at Upton Gym. I fight for them they’re my real motivation.

“I can’t say much about my opponent. I know he’s also undefeated. He is a durable opponent and he’s coming to fight, but if you watched my last fight you know I come in to take my opponents 0.”

Twenty-seven-year-old Keith Hunter (11-0, 7KO’s) comes from a fighting background. He’s the younger brother of heavyweight contender Michael Hunter, and his father was a well-respected boxer who sparred with Mike Tyson for many years before his tragic death. Hunter didn’t have a long amateur career, electing to turn professional after just 28 fights

“I feel confident coming into this fight,” said Hunter. “My last two bouts, I defeated Mayweather fighters and I’m confident with the insight I have. We’re both 6-feet tall, but he’s missing components as a fighter. He has trouble fighting on the outside. He is more comfortable on the inside. I feel I’m the better more skilled fighter going into the fight.

“Anytime I get to fight on a big stage like SHOWTIME, I invest a piece of my heart and soul, so hopefully my fans and anyone who watches my fight will see a genuine kid fighting for legacy and not money. This opportunity will help me connect with more people and I’m forever thankful for it.”

Hitchins (9-0, 5 KOs), from Brooklyn, is a former two-time Golden Gloves champion who represented his parents’ home country of Haiti in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games. One of boxing’s top young prospects, Hitchins has sparred and trained with several world champions including Terence Crawford and stablemate Gervonta Davis. Just 21-years-old, Hitchins boasts incredible hand and foot speed and the boxing IQ of a veteran contender. Having fought eight out of his 10 professional fights in his hometown, Hitchins will travel to Las Vegas for a second time looking for a statement win in his follow-up ShoBox appearance.

“I’m hungrier than ever,” said Hitchins. “I see my brother Tank winning and prospering and I feel that same energy around me when I’m training for hours in the gym and perfecting my craft. I’m made to be great and I have the right people around me who keep my focus, keep me training at the highest level, and push me outside my comfort zone to be victorious. That’s what will show on fight night when I’m inside the ring.”

“Nice” Nick DeLomba (16-2, 5KO’s), fighting out of Cranston, RI, is coming off a five-fight win streak with three out of five wins by knockout. He’s best known for his slickness and elusiveness in the ring and looks to make a powerful statement in foreign territory as he makes his Las Vegas and ShoBox debuts next month.

“What a great opportunity this is to fight on SHOWTIME,” said DeLomba. “I’ve been fighting my way up to this point and now it’s about showing the world who I am and growing my brand. That’s what I plan on doing come fight night. I take every fight and lesson with me to the gym and train harder than the day before and push myself to really be the best fighter. I know I’m coming in as the underdog, but it’s only going to make me want the win more and to be that guy who gives Hitchins his first defeat.”.

Las Vegas’ own Kevin Newman (11-1, 6KO’s) started boxing when he was nine-years old and built up an amateur record of 25-5 before turning pro in 2014. Impressed by Newman’s skills and technique in the ring as an amateur, Floyd Mayweather signed the rising super middleweight to his stable of fighters in the summer of 2014.

Newman made his professional debut on the Mayweather vs. Maidana II undercard, where he fought to a draw against Azamat Umarzoda. Newman returns to ShoBox having avenged the only loss of his career against Mark Anthony Hernandez. Newman defeated Hernandez on November 1 at Sam’s Town Live, redeeming himself from their first matchup in 2017 on the Mayweather vs. McGregor undercard. Newman remains humble and hungry as he climbs the ranks in the super middleweight division.

“It’s always good to get that weight off your shoulders,” said Newman of his recent victory over Hernandez. “I work hard day in and day out to be the best me and I follow God’s plan. I understand that there’s more for me on my journey now and I’m past that and I’m looking to the future on February 28.

“I’ve seen Kalvin fight. There isn’t anything particular that stands out about him. I’ve been in the ring with top tier guys as an amateur and a professional and I have fought tougher opponents. I’m always the smarter opponent.


 

“Fighting on SHOWTIME does a lot for me. It’s not about the win, it’s about how I win. I’m going to put on another dominant performance, something that will set me apart from the rest, and I’m going to take advantage of every opportunity that continues to come my way.

Originally from Fayetteville, Ark., but fighting out of Fort Worth, Tx., Henderson (12-0-1, 8 KO’s) doesn’t have a typical background for a professional fighter. He’s a University of Arkansas alumni who pursued a career in music when he was awarded a scholarship as a percussionist. He never lost sight of boxing since he was first introduced at 15 years old and quickly after graduating in 2012, he shifted his focus back to boxing. Henderson has quickly established himself as one of the faster rising super middleweights in the division and welcomes the challenge to continue his pursuit in becoming a world class boxer.

“Fighting in other people’s backyard is not a big deal,” says Henderson. “There’s no pressure on me to do anything. I take care of business and I go home. I will say that it brings a different motivating factor. It forces me to train harder and it affects my game plan because we can’t leave the rounds too close.

“I’m excited to get in the ring and execute my game plan in front of wide audience. I want to show the world what me and my team already know. I make it hot in the ring. That’s why they call me, ‘Hot Sauce’.”