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"Outside the Ring” Update: New Mexico
Reported by Sue TL Fox
December 8, 2011
[Video streaming of highlights of press conference and weigh-in. Video with over 100 photos on the WBAN Member's site, Video/photo gallery, #533.]

     
   
   
   
   

(DEC 8) On Friday, December 2, 2011, "World Dominance", promoted by Fresquez Productions, took place at the Route 66 Casino Hotel, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The boxing card featured Holly Holm vs. Anne Sophie Mathis in the10-round mainliner.  Holm-Mathis were fighting for the WBAN and IBA welterweight world titles.

I attended the press conference, weigh-in, the fight card, presenting the WBAN World Welterweight title to the winner, and the post-fight conference.

[Video streaming of highlights of press conference and weigh-in. Video with over 100 photos on the WBAN Member's site, Video/photo gallery, #533.]

The Press Conference

On November 30, the press conference was held in the Legends Theatre, at the Route 66. There was little to “no” trash talk this day by either Holm or Mathis. At the conference, the only one who even came close to “talking” was Holm’s trainer/manager who joked about the reputation that France had of “Surrendering”.   Winkeljohn followed that comment up with, “Look for Holly to stop her if she doesn’t surrender.” Mathis spoke through an interpreter and simply stated that she had “no game plan” going into the fight. Even though Mathis was not giving out any clue as to how she would approach fighting Holm. Holm was her usual gracious self, being respectful and humble in regards to her fight with Mathis.

Chris Cozzone of New Mexico Boxing reported that several gym rats who had seen Mathis training at the West Side’s Sigala’s Gym, had some mixed reviews of how Mathis would fare against Holm.

One told Cozzone after observing Mathis train, “Forget it, she’ll never catch Holly in the ring.” But two others were convinced that if anyone had a chance to upset Holm, it was definitely “Mathis.”

At the time, I saw one common and telling denominator in regards to Holm and Mathis, and that was opponent, Myriam Lamare who fought both Holm and Mathis.

When Mathis faced Lamare twice in the ring, she first stopped Lamare by TKO. In the second fight, Mathis won by a 10-round majority decision.  When Holm fought Lamare, she won by a close 10-round unanimous decision.

I felt that if Mathis came into the fight with Holm,  with the same tenacity that she displayed with Lamare----Holm could be in trouble. Although the majority of people that I spoke to in New Mexico before the fight, seemed to be of the belief, that the fight between Mathis and Holm would be "typical", and that the "outcome" would more than likely be "predictable."

Weigh-In - Legends Theatre....face to face- December 1, 2011


Richardson (left), Ramos (Center) Fresquez (right)

In what WBAN considered one of the top women's title fights in the sport---WBAN decided to celebrate this history making fight by giving back to the long and forgotten retired boxers of the sport. We ran a Fundraiser, to raise money for the Retired Boxers Foundation, a non-profit organization. At the weigh-in,  a check for $1,500 was presented to Alex Ramos, President of the Retired Boxers Foundation, and Jacquie Richardson, Executive Director of the Retired Boxers Foundation. [Full Story on weigh-in]


Fight Night at the Route 66 Casino Hotel
[Full Story on all fights on card by Chris Cozzone]

On this night, Holly Holm and Anne Sophie Mathis fought for the WBAN World Welterweight title. To the surprise of many, these two were in a war from the first round until the fight was stopped 1:38 in the seventh round.

After the fourth round had ended and seeing the continuous barrage of combinations and heavy leather thrown at each other, I remember commenting to Chris Cozzone of New Mexico Boxing, that this fight would never last 10 rounds.

I had no idea WHO was going down, but just seeing the high-pace of these two----I  knew that one would not make it till the end.

Then in a shocker that is still fresh in my mind----Anne Sophie  Mathis stunned Holm in the six round.  Holm went down to the canvas, dazed, wobbly and at that time it appeared the fight was over.

But what was even more shocking was that Holm did not receive an eight count, and that the Ref apparently called the knockdown a "slip". 

By then, not only myself, but people at ringside, and the crowd that I could hear by ear shot appeared to be bewildered by the chain of events.

Holm managed to weather the storm through the end of the sixth round, and to the dismay of others, besides myself,  the fight continued and she came out for the seventh round.

It did not take long for Mathis to get the upper hand on the now-injured Holm, and 1:38 seconds of this round---the fight was over, and Holm was on the canvas, losing by KO.


Sue TL Fox presents WBAN Welterweight Belt
to Mathis.  Dean Chance gave the IBA belt to Mathis.
Photo by SteveSnowden.com

One thing I had never done in covering boxing was yell at something happening in the ring.  But this night, just prior to Holm going down to the canvas, without realizing what I had done, I stood up--- looking at Holm hanging onto the rope, and yelled, "Can't you see she is hurt?"


Photo by SteveSnowden.com


POST FIGHT CONFERENCE

In the Post Fight Conference that took place nearly 40 minutes after the fight, Holm said that she was glad that the fight was not stopped and said, "These are big fights. I was glad the referee gave me the chance to come back."

Mike Winkeljohn, manager and trainer of Holm said that he felt Holm would be angry at him, if he did not let her continue the fight, and that it was a hard call for him. Winkeljohn also said that it was a tough fight to watch, and that he thought about throwing in the towel earlier than Ref Burke had stopped it. "But this is what she does, you have to give her [Holm] the opportunity", added Winkeljohn.

 

 
     
     
   
 
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