Consensus #1 Pound-for-Pound Fighter in the World and World Boxing Council (WBC) Super Flyweight Champion ROMAN “CHOCOLATITO” GONZALEZ, (46-0-0, 38 KO’s), fighting out of Managua, Nicaragua, will defend his title against Mandatory Challenger SRISAKET SOR RUNGVISAI (41-4-1, (38 KO’s) of Si Sa Ket, Thailand, on Saturday, March 18, 2017, at “The Mecca of Boxing”, Madison Square Garden.
Chocolatito vs. Rungvisai will be the co-feature to the World Middleweight Championship between Unified Middleweight World Champion GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN, (36-0-0, 33 KO’s) and WBA Middleweight World Champion and Mandatory Challenger DANIEL “THE MIRACLE MAN” JACOBS, (32-1, 29 KO’s). The event will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT
Presented by K2 Promotions in association with Teiken Promotions, tickets priced at $1000, $600, $400, $300, $200 and $100, are now on sale and can be purchased at the Madison Square Garden Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets, Ticketmaster charge by phone (866-858-0008) and online at www.ticketmaster.com or www.thegarden.com
“I’m very excited to fight again at Madison Square Garden. Thanks to Mr. Honda and the Teiken family along with K2 Promotions and the HBO Pay-Per-View Team for this tremendous opportunity, “said Gonzalez.
“Rungvisai is a very tough fight for me, I know that he has fought many other great fighters including Carlos Cuadras, but with my training and the blessing of God I plan to come out victorious.”
Said Rungvisai, “I respect Roman Gonzalez. He is a legend. He has done great things for boxing, especially by showing the world how talented and exciting smaller weight fighters can be. I am happy for Nicaragua to have such a great hero. However, super flyweight is my weight. And the WBC Super Flyweight World title belt is my belt. I will do whatever it takes to win my belt back, and I am confident I can do it. I was able to hurt Carlos Cuadras in the way that Gonzalez could not. Cuadras did not hurt me when we fought but he hurt Gonzalez throughout their fight last year. I am confident I can beat Roman Gonzalez. And the fight will not go twelve rounds.”
“I have to thank WBC, HBO, and K2 Promotions for this great opportunity. It is my dream to fight at Madison Square Garden. I am thrilled to be the first Thai to fight there on HBO Pay-Per-View against the #1 Pound-for-Pound Fighter in the World. This is history. I will fight for Thailand and my family. I will fight to bring back the WBC Superflyweight belt to Thailand where it belongs. Some fans in America might not know me well, but I have knockout power and I will go there to win. I cannot be more excited to show you and the world who Srisaket Sor Rungvisai is. It will be a great fight on March 18th. ”
“We’re very excited to bring “Chocolatito” back to the ‘Mecca of Boxing’, Madison Square Garden and to have his fight co-featured on this HBO Pay-Per-View,” said Tom Loeffler, Managing Director of K2 Promotions. “Rungvisai is an excellent fighter and this will be a very tough challenge for Roman in the first defense of his WBC Super Flyweight World Title won in his epic battle with Carlos Cuadras on September 10th which was telecast on HBO from The Fabulous Forum in Los Angeles.”
“This will be the fifth time Roman and Gennady have fought on the same telecast, they are truly the best combination in boxing to provide fans the maximum value which is always our aim in these promotions for fans in attendance and watching on HBO Pay-Per-View.”
“We are thrilled to have the consensus #1 pound for pound fighter, Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez, as the co-feature for this explosive event”, said Tony Walker, Vice President, HBO Sports. “Chocolatito will take on mandatory challenger Srisaket Sor Rungvisai in what we expect to be an all-action fight. Featuring two of the consensus top fighters in the world on the same card underscores the value of the March 18 HBO Pay-Per-View event.”
This past September 10, the 29-year-old Gonzalez faced the biggest challenge of his career, facing undefeated WBC Super Flyweight Champion Carlos Cuadras as he sought his fourth divisional world title. In a 2016 ‘Fight of the Year’ candidate in front of a very large and passionate crowd at the iconic venue, The Fabulous Forum in Los Angeles, Gonzalez won a 12-round unanimous decision.
The victory, dedicated to Gonzalez’s mentor, boxing legend Alexis Arguello, distinguished Gonzalez as the first fighter from Nicaragua to earn four divisional world titles and further validated his status as the sport’s Consensus #1 Pound-for-Pound Fighter.
On October 17, 2015, Gonzalez made his debut at “The World’s Most Famous Arena” knocking out four-division world champion Brian Viloria in the ninth round in front of a sold-out Madison Square Garden and live on HBO Pay-Per-View. The victory took place on the undercard to the World Middleweight Championship between Gennady “GGG” Golovkin and David Lemieux.
The 30-year-old heavy-handed Rungvisai will be fighting for the first time in the United States against Gonzalez. A four-time world title challenger, Rungvisai challenged then WBC Super Flyweight Champion Carlos Cuadras on May 31, 2014.
In an action-packed battle featuring excellent two-way action, Rungvisai was the unfortunate victim of a shortened bout as Cuadras was deemed unable to continue after the eighth round following an accidental clash of heads between the two warriors. Going to the scorecards, Rungvisai came up just short with Cuadras retaining his title.