Chris Algieri Tries for Barclays Upset Again vs. Errol Spence, Jr. on Saturday
New York, April 15-Star Boxing president and founder Joe DeGuardia has shown a unique ability of identifying young, skilled fighters and then guiding them to championship contention…and beyond.
Chris Algieri (21-2, 8 KOs), who returns to the scene of his greatest triumph when he headlines Saturday’s nationally-televised Premier Boxing Champions card at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center against undefeated Olympian Errol Spence, Jr. (19-0, 16 KOs), is a case in point. The Pride of Huntington vaulted from crowd-pleaser on his home turf at The Paramount to champion of the world with an upset victory of Ruslan Provodnikov for the super lightweight world title on June 14, 2014. The monumental triumph earned him a mega-fight against the legendary Manny Pacquiao later that year.
“Joe has a magical formula at The Paramount,” says former heavyweight contender Gerry Cooney. “DeGuardia is a former boxer (1988 NY Golden Gloves champion), and I believe that really helps him. He understands the fighters, and watches out for them. He makes these guys fight durable guys. He and matchmaker Ron Katz are a great combination. They put them in tough fights.”
“He has done a great job with Chris Algieri, and now Joe Smith, Jr. is an up-and-coming light heavyweight. Hats off to Joe. It’s sold out every time at the Paramount, so the fighters have also been able to build the fan base.”
Former NYSAC Randy Gordon, now a boxing commentator and radio host, and a NYS Boxing Hall of Famer, echoes Cooney’s sentiment. “As a former boxer himself on a high level, Joe understands the boxer’s mentality. Building a fighter’s career is not about one fight, it’s a process. With Algieri, he saw the skill, and was able to grow him. Coupled with a great matchmaker in Ron Katz, they walk the fighters through the process. I actually picked him to beat Provodnikov because I watched the process take place at the Paramount. As for Joe Smith, Jr., he may have Kovalev power.”
Algieri, the former WBO World super lightweight titlist, is coming off a unanimous decision victory over Erik Bone on December 5 at Barclays. Airtime for the PBC broadcast is at 8:30 p.m. on NBC.