Boxing is one of a small handful of sports in which participants need to be ready for anything at all times, specifically outside the ring, where last-minute cancelations, fall-outs, and other roadblocks can derail a fighter’s path to success.
In this unpredictable 2020 – highlighted by a worldwide pandemic that shut down most of the professional sports’ landscape for several months – heavyweight contender and CES Boxing prospect Juiseppe Cusumano has operated under the ideology that it’s not only wise to expect the unexpected, but perhaps it’s best to brace yourself for the unthinkable.
Less than two weeks from his scheduled WBC USNBC Heavyweight Title bout Saturday, November 28 in Los Angeles, the 6-foot-4 “Sicilian Nightmare” is now prepping for one of boxing’s most common curveballs – the sudden change in opponent.
With Mississippi’s Nick Jones unable to obtain a license in the state of California, Cusumano (18-3, 16 KOs) will now challenge the dangerous Greg Corbin (15-3, 9 KOs) of Dallas, TX, a former National Golden Gloves champion and fellow 6-4 giant ready to embrace the opportunity of a lifetime on the Mike Tyson-Roy Jones Jr. undercard at The Staples Center.
Cusumano-Corbin, scheduled for eight rounds for the USNBC title, is one of seven fights scheduled for November 28, including the highly-anticipated exhibition headliner between rings legends Tyson and Jones, who fight eight rounds for the newly-created WBC Frontline championship. With no fans in attendance, the card is available for purchase on pay per view via FITE TV, or on the newly-launched Triller app, available both on Apple or Android devices. Visit tysonontriller.com for more information. Showtime is 9 pm ET.
This is no walk in the park for Cusumano; Corbin rose to prominence over a six-year stretch as a pro with 15 consecutive victories, including a spectacular knockout win over the rugged Homero Fonseca in 2018. He is best remembered for recent showdowns with boxing’s top heavyweights, notably former world champion Charles Martin and rising prospects Filip Hrgovic and Stephan Shaw, who are now a combined 25-0.
Cusumano’s not-so-secret weapon may be the influence of his recent two-month training camp in Providence, where he trained under the guidance of Roland Estrada; his son, former Olympian and heavyweight contender Jason “Big Six” Estrada, and former cruiserweight title challenger Matt “Too Smooth” Godfrey. This is an ever-changing landscape for Cusumano, who typically trains in his hometown of Danville, VA, but decided to minimize distractions and add a new set of voices to his camp in anticipation of the biggest fight of his career.
With Jones out, this is now a crossroads fight between two heavyweight contenders looking for a big win to get them back on track and back into the conversation among top-ranked heavyweights. The USNBC belt provides the exposure and world ranking necessary to a shot at championship glory that, unfortunately, eludes most fighters in their quest for boxing immortality.
WBC World Youth Featherweight Champion Irvin Gonzalez Jr. (14-2, 11 KOs), also from Worcester, battles undefeated Forth Worth, TX, prospect Edward Vazquez (8-0, 1 KO) in an eight-round bout for the vacant WBC USNBC Featherweight Title. Also on the card, undefeated lightweight and reigning WBC Youth title-holder Jamaine Ortiz (13-0, 7 KOs) of Worcester, MA, faces African southpaw Sulaiman Segawa (13-2-1, 4 KOs) of Silver Springs, MD, in an eight-round bout for the vacant WBC USNBC Silver Lightweight Title.