Los Angeles, CA (March 31, 2010) – As Dorothy Gale, the lead character in “The Wizard of Oz,” proclaimed, “There’s No Place Like Home.” Perhaps with that in mind, boxing promoter Dan Goossen revealed in a recent media conference call that Goossen Tutor Promotions will be aggressively promoting Central Valley fighters for its 2010 shows at the Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino in Lemoore, CA.
“This year, our focus for the Tachi fans will be homegrown talent, fighting for worldwide recognition and eventually world championships,” Goossen pointed out. “With the growth of certain local fighters, we will look to promote their next level fights right here at Tachi’s outdoor arena to accommodate the added attendance and attention.”
Goossen Tutor will present the first of its four scheduled shows in 2010 on Thursday, April 8 featuring three of its top young prospects from Central California in Wasco heavyweight Manny “El Toro” Quezada, undefeated Bakersfield junior welterweight Michael “Silent Assassin” Dallas, Jr.and the pro debut of Fresno super bantamweight Michael Ruiz. A fourth locally raised product – Hanford’s Shawn Estrada – was scheduled to be featured on the show but unfortunately, the snake-bitten 2008 U.S. Olympian reinjured his hand preparing for his bout and was forced to withdraw but promised to be ringside to watch his stablemates.
The Tachi home cooking has been awfully good to Quezada (29-4, 18 KOs). The WBC CABOFE Champion and #8-ranked WBC world contender has won 16 of 17 bouts fought there – including a one-sided decision against Nicolai Firtha in a title defense in his last ring action back in October — and has become a true fan favorite.
Quezada will kick off his 2010 competition against veteran Jason “the Sensation” Gavern (18-7-3, 8 KOs). A Virginia native now living in Kissimmee, his two best performances were against Travis Walker – with an eight-round draw who was 10-0 at the time and a six-round, unanimous decision win over 17-2 Raphael Butler. In his last two outings, Gavern has lost to undefeated Russian world contender Denis Boytsov (27-0, 22 KOs and ranked #5 IBF/WBAWBO and #6 WBC) and, most recently, Neven Pajkic (10-0, 5 KOs) of Bosnia by decision.
“We’re excited about this year. It’s gonna be a big one for all of us including Tachi,” Quezada offered. “I’ve had most of my fights there, so I’m excited to get back and get it on again starting with Jason Gavern. I’ve seen Gavern fight and he does exactly that, comes to fight. It’s exactly the type of challenge I need.”
It is Dan Goossen’s plan to continue Quezada’s development at Tachi and get him a world heavyweight title shot – possibly there – later this year.
Also no stranger to the fans in Lemoore is Dallas, Jr. (12-0-1, 3 KOs). The Jackie Kallen-managed rising star pitched a near shutout in decisioning Sergio Joel De La Torre back in October to make it six for six in front of his home area fans. He looked most impressive in a first-round TKO win over veteran Fabian Luque in Temecula, CA in his last bout earlier this month seen on ESPN2 “Friday Night Fights.” Dallas, Jr., who has gained valuable experience sparring with the great champion Manny Pacquiao, will look to take another step in his progression up the junior welterweight ranks on April 8 at Tachi.
“I have a lot of fans and family in the local area who come to Tachi to see me perform,” Dallas said. “I’m going to go out there and put on a good show.”
The appearance of Ruiz on the card is an unexpected bonus for fans at Tachi, as the 20-year old boxer out of Aleman Boxing in Fresno – a semi-finalist in the 2008 U.S. Future Stars national Championship and National Golden Gloves – was expected to be a member of the U.S. Boxing Team in the 2012 Olympics. Instead, Ruiz decided now was the time to turn professional and he will make his debut in a 4-round bout.
“I am very excited to having my first pro fight at Tachi,” Ruiz said. “I will have lots of friends and family coming from Fresno to watch me take the first step in my career toward an eventual world championship.”
Two other undefeated boxers are slated to see action in scheduled four-round bouts on the April 8 show at Tachi, including Ephraim Martinez (3-0, 1 KO, Buttonwillow, CA) versus Juan Topoz (3-2-1, Santa Rosa, CA) in a junior featherweight contest; and Tyrell Hendrix (4-0-1, 2 KOs, Hollywood, CA) against an opponent to be announced in a clash of super welterweights.
Dan Goossen concluded: “You’re normally lucky if you have the ability to showcase one local fighter and try to build them up to stardom. So in this case, to have three locals fighting in front of hometown fans hopefully on their way to world championships, it’s a great feeling for everybody. Mark my words, the Central Valley and Tachi are going to become synonymous with big time local fighters!”
Tickets for the April 8 event – priced at $225, $60, $40, $35 and $20 – may be ordered online at www.tickets.com; by phone at 1-800-277-2255 or at the Tachi Palace Gift Shop, 17225 Jersey Avenue, Lemoore, CA 93245.