View Full Version : The contender:15 oktober“Tournament of Contenders?*spoil

12-10-2005, 07:05
The Contender" Beats the Count
By Allan Scotto (October 11, 2005)

If you are one of the people who were glued to their television sets every Sunday night during last year’s run of “The Contender,? there’s good news. And it has nothing to do with your car insurance.

Despite a debut season that saw between fifteen to eighteen million people watching “The Contender? on a weekly basis, and approximately thirty million people watching the finale, NBC, citing poor ratings, pulled the plug and cancelled the show.

It appeared that “The Contender? was KO’d.

But then, in an interesting twist of fate, Mark Burnett, the genius behind “Survivor,? and “The Apprentice,? and also one of the executive producers of “The Contender,? ran into Mark Shapiro, a top executive at ESPN, during a river rafting trip at the Grand Canyon, and the end result is that the second season of “The Contender? will now air on ESPN.

Moving from NBC to ESPN is actually a much better scenario for Burnett and the other “Contender? partners, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Sylvester Stallone, and “Sugar? Ray Leonard, who also own “Tournament of Contenders, LLC,? a company licensed as a promoter in both Nevada and California.

Since ESPN has a working knowledge of the sport, thanks to their “Friday Night Fights? program, the fledgling promotional company should benefit greatly from ESPN’s expertise.

“Tournament of Contenders? is kicking off their first major promotion on October 15th, at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, featuring some of the fighters from “The Contender? who they have under contract.

The card will feature Alfonso Gomez against Luciano Perez (a non-cast member who replaces injured Jeff Fraza) and Miguel Espino will test Jonathan Reid. The card will also feature two rematches when Jesse Brinkley squares off against Anthony Bonsante, and Sergio Mora, the “Contender? champion, once again faces Peter Manfredo Jr.

ESPN, who will be broadcasting the event live, is pulling out all the stops. The entire production crew from “Friday Night Fights? will be on board, including 12-time Emmy winning producer Rob Beiner. Teddy Atlas, Joe Tessitore, and Brian Kenny will host the event, and ESPN promises a first class production, from soup to nuts.

And it looks like the first promotional effort from “Tournament of Contenders? is going to be highly successful, due in no small part to the tremendous popularity these “Contender? fighters now enjoy.

“We sold three thousand tickets as soon as it was announced,? Burnett said. “And we haven’t even advertised yet.?

And some sanctioning bodies appear to be taking notice as well.

Joe Dwyer, who is on the Board of Governors for the WBC and who is also the Vice-President of the NABF points out, “Some of these guys are ranked fighters in our organization. I think it would be a very good thing for boxing to see these guys get a shot at a title. And I’d be willing to help make that happen.?

We caught up with Teddy Atlas at a sold out golf outing he was hosting for the Dr. Theodore Atlas Foundation, a non-profit charitable organization that Atlas runs in memory of his father. Atlas will also be hosting “The Teddy Dinner,? at the Staten Island Hilton on November 17th. (But be forewarned, if you plan on attending, get your tickets early. Last year the event drew so many people that checks had to be sent back to some people because there was simply no place to seat them. For further info contact: 718-980-7037). When asked what he thought of “The Contender,? Atlas replied, “I think it’s a good thing for boxing because it crosses over into areas that boxing doesn’t normally touch. It gives families a chance to watch together, and boxing will benefit from that crossover.?

“But,? Atlas continued, “like any new venture, you have to tweak things here and there. Hopefully they’ll listen to the voices of people who can help them.?

When asked what he felt could make the show better Atlas said, “If you’re going to do reality, then do reality. In real boxing, you won’t see kids in the dressing room. And you won’t see young kids crying as they watch their fathers getting hurt in the ring. For the most part, children are shielded from that. Many people watching that will find it upsetting.?

Atlas also feels there should be less emphasis on challenges, and more emphasis on gym footage. “People should see what kind of training fighters go through. If a fighter has a problem, how does he correct it? What does the trainer do to correct it? The show should be a portal so people can see what goes on in the hearts, minds and souls of these guys, to give people an idea of what it is to be a fighter. Because you’re still selling one man against another, making split second decisions in the ring that most people will never make in their life.?

The champion, Sergio Mora, is especially excited about fighting in front of Atlas. “He’s my trainer’s favorite actually,? Mora said. “I can’t wait for him to say what I’m doing wrong, because I know I’m not perfect, so I want him to point out my flaws. It’s gonna be great fighting in front of him. He’s very venerable, and I appreciate fighting in front of him.?


There is one “Contender? fighter that will not be fighting in front of Atlas, or anyone else on October 15th. That fighter is Ishe Smith, who has refused to appear on the card, and has been bad-mouthing the show and it’s producers to anyone that will listen.

But, in an earlier interview, Peter Manfredo Jr. indicated that it was actually Smith that started trouble on the show. “He just went around questioning everybody’s record,? Manfredo said. “He was telling people they shouldn’t be there because they never fought anybody good. That kind of stuff.?

When asked about that, and the ongoing feud between Smith and Ahmed Kaddour, Sergio Mora had this to say. “Ishe started it. Ishe started some other controversies that didn’t make the show, like the pay, or certain opponents fighting a weaker opponent, or who he considered to be a weaker opponent. Every argument usually rooted out of him. I felt, as a fighter, what the hell are you complaining about? We’re all here to win a million dollars.?

“I think,? Mora continued, “that Ishe was not mentally prepared for a tournament like ‘The Contender.’ He’s the type of fighter that has to have ideally 100% of everything he needs to be a complete fighter. On a show like ‘Contender,’ that wasn’t it. That was just fighting. You know, without your trainers.?

“And,? Mora points out, “We knew everything we were getting into before signing the contract. We knew we were gonna have to fight as close as twice in ten days. We knew we weren’t gonna have our trainers. We knew we were gonna fight for a thousand dollars. We knew all that bullshit! Why is he gonna, all of a sudden, make a big deal in the beginning or middle of the show? We knew what we were getting ourselves into.?

Mora also feels that Smith is looking for publicity.

“I don’t want to comment too much on him,? Mora said, “because I think that’s what he wants. But I just think he’s pretty sour about the position he’s in right now. He’s not the champion. He lost to the champion. And I’ll tell you right now, and you can put this on record. He admitted to me last week when we were at Everlast in Vegas that I won the fight. He just didn’t agree with the scoring. Now that, I agree with, but I did beat him convincingly.?

Miguel Espino, when asked about Smith, echoed the sentiments of Mora and Manfredo. “He’s out there bro’,? Espino responded. “He’s insecure about himself. He’s sometimes very cocky, but he folds under pressure. He’s out there!?

Asked about Smith’s apparent reluctance to face Ahmed Kaddour, Espino stated. “We were in the locker room, and I told Ishe, ‘Bro’ you gotta fight him. You gotta fight him bro’. If you recall, you know how you have to step up to the line and he called Brent Cooper. They added that voice, ‘O.K, come on Ahmed.’ Ishe never actually said that. Ahmed just went over like, ‘Come on boy, let’s do this!’?

“I don’t know man, he’s crazy,? Miguel said of Smith. “I feel bad for him because deep down inside I know he’s a good guy. He’s a Christian, you know, he’s a good guy. But he has some mental problems, and I hope he gets help.?

Then Espino laughed, remembering an incident when Smith got upset and started "acting like a little drama queen." "After that," Miguel said, “We started calling him the Omorosa of “The Contender.?

Mark Burnett, who does not usually grant interviews, was very forthcoming when asked to comment on Smith.

“He’s a young man who is impressionable, with probably a lot of people in his ear,? Burnett stated. “And when you hear a lot of things it’s hard to necessarily make sense of things. I don’t think he’s a mean spirited person. I also don’t believe for one minute that he believes the mean things he’s said. There’s no way he could. He’s been treated so well.?

“You know what,? Burnett said, “ask him, rhetorically through this article, take a look at your bank account and ask yourself, before you met us what were you fighting for, and what are you fighting for now? All that’s really happened is I’m sure, people in his ear are saying, ‘Oh if you get out of your contract with these guys, you can get paid much more money.’ I understand that, this is America and people are opportunistic. Meanwhile, the people in his ear are never going to get in the ring, are they? They are people who invested zero in money into what “Contender? promoted him to become, and invested no blood and sweat like he did. So two things happened, a lot of money and effort went on our part, and a lot of blood and sweat on his part. Now a lot of people who invested neither, would like to profit from it and are probably filling his head I guess.?

But Burnett harbors no animosity toward Smith.

“I really don’t believe for one minute that he really believes what he’s saying. If anything, I have compassion for him. He’s just a guy trying to make the best of a young career. I wish he simply would just fight at the Staples Center. He’d earn fifty thousand dollars! Was he ever used to fighting for fifty thousand dollars? He should honor our agreement. We’d even let him choose his own opponent. So why on earth would he voluntarily walk away from giving his family fifty thousand dollars??

“Quite frankly,? Burnett said, “I feel that on the 16th of October, he’s going to wake up with his beautiful wife and his beautiful kid, and he’s going to look in the mirror and say to himself, ‘Oh my gosh! Win, lose, or draw, I could’ve had fifty grand in the bank right now.?

Juggy Gayles was one of the best promoters the music business has ever seen. He finally retired, pointing out that when he was born there were only eight Commandments. Anyway, when asked to advise those who would follow, Juggy said, “Make the star, and the star will make the money.?

Appearing on “Contender? gave each fighter, including Ishe Smith, a certain notoriety, and a certain marketability. It shaved years of toiling in club fights off their careers. That’s years of punishment their bodies won’t have to take, and their earning potential has skyrocketed.

Before “Contender,? these were up and coming fighters who probably never saw a purse higher than a few thousand dollars. On October 15th, Sergio Mora, who won a million dollars, and Peter Manfredo Jr., will each earn one hundred thousand dollars, guaranteed. The other fighters on the card will also be earning sizable purses, and all of them will enjoy international exposure. “And,? Burnett points out, “they’ll also share in back end profits.?

To put that into perspective, Scott Pemberton, who will be challenging Jeff Lacy for the IBF super middleweight championship in November, has never earned a purse anywhere near that kind of money, and he’s been fighting professionally for seventeen years.

When asked if being involved with the “Contender? enterprise has been a positive experience, Alfonso Gomez, who won two hundred thousand dollars on the show, said this: “Before ‘Contender,’ I was struggling to pay rent on a two bedroom apartment. Now, I’ve been able to buy a four bedroom home for my family.?

And that’s not to mention, at the insistence of Jeffrey Katzenberg, each fighter, while waiting for the show to air, received a very handsome salary every week.


A promo shot of "Sugar" Ray Leonard doesn't have his name on it. There's no need to. Leonard is instantly recognizable wherever he goes. Like Muhammad Ali, Ray Leonard is a national treasure, and an international star.

He is a legend.

Of course, interviewing a legend can be somewhat unnerving, until Leonard tells you the story of when he first met Ali. "I had so many questions to ask him," Leonard said. "But when I met him, I was so in awe of him that I just sat there."

“That's kind of how I feel now,? you tell him, and he laughs.

Leonard is proud of his association with "The Contender," and like Teddy Atlas, feels it is good exposure for the sport of boxing. And learning the life stories of the fighters on the show reminded Leonard of his own early struggles in the sport, before the medals, and before the fame, and it's one of the many reasons he is so happy to see the fighters earning some serious money.

Asked what he thought of the other fighters calling Ishe Smith, "Omorosa," Leonard chuckled and said, "They didn't like him."

Before you realize it, you're both talking boxing, like a couple of guys sharing a beer at a sports bar. Asked about Bernard Hopkins’ performance against Jermain Taylor, Leonard replies, "He didn't win." How about the rematch? "I don't know," Leonard says, "that Taylor is a big, strong kid."

You both laugh when he tells you that Tommy Hearns, his friend and former nemesis, who always wanted to do it one more time, still calls once in a while and says, "Hey Ray, how much you weigh?" "It's not gonna happen," Ray tells him.

These days, in addition to his duties on "Contender," Ray Leonard is a motivational speaker, often sharing the stage with people like Condoleezza Rice and John Ashcroft. His fighting days are behind him.

Still, the conversation turns to one of the biggest fights of all time, Leonard vs. Hagler.

After Leonard had retired, most of the attention shifted to Marvin Hagler. That included some very lucrative endorsement deals. With Leonard out of the way, Hagler was becoming a star in his own right.

Marvin was furious when Leonard announced that he was coming out of retirement to challenge him because all the attention immediately was on Leonard, again.

Leonard stole Hagler's thunder every chance he could. He was inside of Hagler's head and taking full advantage of it. And it worked.

That's how Leonard knew he was going to win. "About a week before the fight," Leonard explained, "we were at a press conference and a reporter asked Hagler how he was going to beat me. Marvin answered and said, 'I'm gonna out box him.' And that's when I knew; that's when I knew. I thought to myself, ‘I got him.’?

Ray Leonard is so unassuming and down to earth that it takes a few minutes for one to realize that you're talking Leonard / Hagler with Leonard himself.

And that's when it hits you.

In addition to the money and the notoriety, the fighters on "The Contender" won something else. They got to spend time, face to face, with one of the greatest champions of this, or any other era; a champion who gives so freely of his time and advice.

Perhaps the champion, Sergio Mora, explains it best. "I was in awe of Sugar Ray Leonard,? Mora stated. “Wow, to be around this guy. I mean he's "Sugar."

And, Mora points out, "he's sweet inside the ring, and he's sweet outside the ring. He knows how to be himself. That guy was just great! And we befriended him. I can call Sugar Ray Leonard, and I can e-mail him."

"We have lunch," Mora continued, "and I pick his brain every minute. Believe you me, I ask him every single question I could possibly ask."

And there's no doubt that Leonard answers every one. And that, as they say, you can't buy in a jar.

"Tournament of Contenders" has big plans for their fighters, and they look forward to them fighting opponents outside of "The Contender" series after the October 15th card.

Whether or not they will be successful remains to be seen, but one thing is for sure.

The times, my friends, they are a changin'.

12-10-2005, 09:13
dat ze daar 18 miljoen kijkers weinig vinden.

klote trouwens dat ik nu weet wie de champ is.

12-10-2005, 09:40
vette shit, dit wil ik zien.
ishe smith is echt een bitch :lol:

12-10-2005, 10:58
dat ze daar 18 miljoen kijkers weinig vinden.

klote trouwens dat ik nu weet wie de champ is.

Kut, kut, kut, sorry niet aan gedacht :oops: (het was ook vroeg vanmorgen)

12-10-2005, 13:24
maakt nix

12-10-2005, 18:10
Als je jezelf nog aan wilt melden voor de 2e serie:

14-10-2005, 16:40
Full Staples Contender card!

The final fight card has been locked for The Contender boxing event at Staples Center in Los Angeles this Saturday. On the undercard of the Sergio Mora vs. Peter Manfredo "Rematch", Luciano Perez 12-2-1 (11) of Chicago, Illinois will replace the injured Jeff Fraza to fight Alfonso Gomez 13-3-1 (4) in the welterweight co-main event. Perez holds a win over recent Julio Cesar Chavez conqueror Grover Wiley. In addition to a very similar record, Luciano Perez also brings a similar fight style to that of Gomez in which both fighters press forward and throw a barrage of punches, which should provide for an action-packed bout.
Also added to the card is Dallas junior middleweight Jesse Orta 5-5-1 (4), who will face the youngest Contender, Juan De La Rosa 13-0-1 (11) in the opening bout of the night. The remainder of the undercard stays unchanged as Anthony Bonsante 26-6-3 (15) of Shakopee, MN will face Jesse Brinkley 25-3 (17) of Yerington, NV and Miguel Espino 9-2-1 (3) of North Hollywood, CA takes on Jonathan Reid 33-2 (19) of Nashville, TN. Tickets are available for Saturday night's "Rematch" at Staples Center and can be purchased by visiting www.ticketmaster.com. Doors open at 6PM and the first bout is scheduled for 6:45PM.
Jordis Unga, former contestant on Rock Star: INXS, the hit 2005 summer series on CBS about the search for the new lead singer of INXS, will sing the national anthem.
Friday, October 14 2005

15-10-2005, 09:33
Sergio Mora 160 vs. Peter Manfredo Jr 162
Alfonso Gomez 149 vs. Luciano Perez 146
Jesse Brinkley 164 vs. Anthony Bonsante 162 1/4
Jonathan Reid 156 vs. Miguel Angel Espino 160
Juan Pedro De la Rosa 156 vs. Jesse Orta 156

16-10-2005, 21:20
is dit ook op tv uitgezonden ?

16-10-2005, 21:32
Is uitgezonden, ben nu aan het downen, probeer z.s.m. te uppen.

18-10-2005, 12:35
meer info en fight verslag *spoiler* niet kijken dus als je nog aan het dwnen bent.

Oct 15, 2005, from the Staples Center In Los Angeles, ESPN hosted the Rematchs of last years Contender Series. 3 Real good Fights, Celebrities galore, and Some Human Interest Back Ground.


Luciano Perez (12-2-1)

Alfonso Gomez (13-3-1)


Jesse Brinkley(25-3-0)

Anthony Bonsante (26-6-3)


Peter Manfredo (24-2-0)

Sergio Mora (16-0-0

LOS ANGELES - East L.A.’s Sergio Mora used the hometown crowd to rally to victory Saturday night after suffering a two-inch gash on the side of his right eye in the opening round in a middleweight bout.

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Mora returned home to 10,333 fans at the Staples Center and used his inside fighting skills to out-score Peter Manfredo Jr. in a rematch that proved much closer than their first encounter last May in Las Vegas.

A collision of heads was missed by referee Raul Caiz that resulted in an ugly gash on the corner of Mora’s eye. He ruled it came from a punch. But those at ring side and one of the fighters saw otherwise.

“I swear it came from a butt,? said Mora, who required 20 stitches to close the bloody gash that left both combatants drenched in red.

With a marked advantage due to the cut on his opponent, Manfredo quickly pounced on Mora who seemed slower and unsteady on his legs. The Providence, Rhode Island boxer jumped ahead immediately with short, crisp punches that landed clearly.

For two clear rounds Manfredo fought a disciplined fight, forcing the East L.A. fighter to hunt for an antidote, finally in the third things began to change.

“I used my boxing skills to win this fight,? said Mora (17-0), who retains the Contender television crown. “I had to change my style.?

Manfredo (24-3, 10 KOs) proved much quicker in the rematch with the aid of famed trainer Freddie Roach. But he couldn’t figure out how to stop Mora’s inside game. The judges scored it a split-decision victory for Mora 77-75 (twice) and 77-75 for Manfredo.

“I won this fight,? said Manfredo. “I am the champion.?

Roach, who trained Manfredo for this fight, also felt his student won the fight.

“I thought he won six rounds to two,? Roach said after the fight.

But many in press row saw other wise, including the judges and a very vocal crowd that booed Manfredo when he jumped on the ropes following the end of the fight.

“What can I say, it’s a hometown crowd,? Manfredo said.

Mora shook his head at the debate.

“Look, I was at my worst and I still beat him. I was sick, I had the flu and couldn’t train the last week,? Mora said. “He improved, he was at his best and I still beat him. He can fight me a million times and I’ll still kick his ass.?

The East Coast fighter had his fans, including ESPN announcer Ted Atlas - who sides with any East Coast fighter against a West Coast fighter - but the judges and fans saw Mora as the winner.

“I’ll fight him in Providence I don’t care,? said Mora. “I’ll knock him out. Believe me.?


In a super middleweight bout, Jesse Brinkley won the fight, but lost the hearts and minds of the crowd who felt Anthony Bonsante’s steady jab pulled the fight away after five rounds. The judges scored it 49-46, 48-47 (twice) for Brinkley.

“It was the kind of fight that needed more rounds to decide,? said Brinkley (26-3, 17 KOs). “It takes time to figure out an opponent.?

Bonsante was pleased with the loud cheers rained on him following the fight, despite losing on the score cards.

“I came in the ring to boos and I left to cheers,? Bonsante (26-7-3, 15 KOs) said.

Going into the final round many had the fight dead even, but Bonsante failed to take charge and left the judges an opening when a solid left hook landed by Brinkley.

“We can do it again,? Brinkley said.

Hearth-throb Alfonso Gomez (14-3-1, 5 KOs) powered his way through granite-chinned Luciano Perez (12-3-1, 11 Kos) with four rounds of pounding right hands that could not drop the fighter from Mexico. After landing a
number of punches that could break rock, referee Pat Russell had seen enough and halted the fight at 2:20.
Perez, a hard-swinging and hard-landing welterweight as evident in his 11 knockout wins, could not land the money punch against the elusive Gomez.

Though the Orange County fighter advanced throughout the fight, his defensive skills allowed him to find his range and punish the Michoacan boxer mercilessly. Perez’s head wobbled so much it was painful to

Russell’s stoppage was a welcome sight.

“I’d love to fight Gomez again,? said Perez who canceled an engagement in Chicago to fight Gomez. “The money is good.?

Gomez was in good spirits following his dominating win.

“I just want to eat some tacos,? he said. “It’s been so long since I had any.?

Miguel Espino (10-2-1, 4 KOs) was dropped in the first round by Johnathan Reid (34-3, 20 KOs) but rallied back to win by technical knockout at 2:48 of the fifth and final round of the middleweight bout.

“That was the first time as an amateur or pro that I was ever knocked down,? said Espino. “I want to thank my corner. I was in great shape.?

Juan De La Rosa (14-0-1, 11 KOs) out-slugged fellow Texan Jesse Orta (5-6-1, 4 KOs) in a five-round middleweight bout. It was a contest where a fighter took more blows than needed to win by unanimous decision 48-47, 49-46, and 50-45.

“I was a little rusty, it’s been a while since I was in the ring,? said De La Rosa from Harlingen, Texas. “I had to do what I had to do to win.?

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