LAS VEGAS – It’s official. The Giant Pacific Octopus at the Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay entered the sports predictions arena earlier this morning when he aggressively selected Juan Manuel “Dinamita” Marquez as the winner over Juan “Baby Bull” Diaz in Saturday night’s contest between the two pugilists who are fighting for Marquez’s Ring Magazine, WBA and WBO Lightweight World titles at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas and live on HBO Pay-Per-View.
The unnamed, 1-year-old male octopus weighs an estimated 40 pounds, has a six-foot reach, tentacles roughly three feet long, is the second octopus to predict the outcomes of sporting events this summer, the first being the mollusk Paul in Germany, who went undefeated in correctly picking all of Germany’s World Cup games as well as Spain’s championship win. The intelligent animal chose between two 8″ x 8″ acrylic boxes placed inside his tank. Each box was labeled with one of the fighter’s names.
“Let’s see if the octopus that picked Marquez to win Saturday night will be as accurate as Paul was during the World Cup,” said Richard Schaefer, CEO Golden Boy Promotions. “Either way, we are going to have a great night of boxing from top to bottom as this is one of the strongest events we have ever had for the fans watching in the arena and on pay-per-view. All of these match-ups have the potential of being fight of the year for 2010.”
Marquez vs. Diaz II “Fight of the Year: The Rematch” is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Marquez Boxing Promotions, and sponsored by Cerveza Tecate and AT&T. The 12-round rematch of the 2009 “Fight of the Year” is scheduled for Saturday, July 31 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, and will be for Marquez’s Ring Magazine, WBA and WBO Lightweight World titles. The fight will be produced and distributed live on HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9 p.m. ET/ 6 p.m. PT.
The stacked pay-per-view undercard will feature Daniel “The Golden Child” Jacobsvs. Dmitry Pirogin a 12-round bout for the vacant WBO Middleweight title, Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero vs. Joel “El Cepillo” Casamayor in a 10-round junior welterweight bout and Jorge “El Niño De Oro” Linares vs. Rocky Juarez in a 10-round lightweight bout.
Tickets for Marquez vs. Diaz II are priced at $350, $250, $150, $100 and $50 and are on sale now. Tickets are available for purchase at all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations (select Smith’s Food and Drug Centers and Ritmo Latino). To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also will be available for purchase at www.mandalaybay.com or www.ticketmaster.com.
The Marquez vs. Diaz II pay-per-view telecast, which begins at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT, has a suggested retail price of $49.95 and will be produced and distributed by HBO Pay-Per-View® and will be available to more than 71 million pay-per-view homes. The telecast will be available in HD-TV for those viewers who can receive HD. HBO Pay-Per-View®, a division of Home Box Office, Inc., is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry. For Marquez vs. Diaz II fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.
NCM Fathom will broadcast Marquez vs. Diaz II in high definition LIVE to more than 270 movie theaters nationwide at 9 p.m. ET/ 6 p.m. PT. Tickets to see the fight on the big screen are available at theater box offices and online at www.FathomEvents.com.
SHARK REEF AQUARIUM AT MANDALAY BAY
Dangerous predators and unusual aquatic creatures are the focus of Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay, a 90,560-square-foot aquarium with nearly 1.6 million gallons of fresh and seawater in 14 major exhibits. Shark Reef Aquarium features more than 2,000 divinely dangerous animals including a Komodo Dragon, Golden Crocodiles and its newest resident, a rare and fascinating Shark Ray, along with several species of magnificent sharks all under one roof. Open daily from 10 a.m., ticket prices are $16.95 for adults and $10.95 for children ages five through 12; children four and under are free. Nevada residents with a valid ID receive a discount on admission – $13.95 for adults and $8.95 for children. For more information, visit www.mandalaybay.com, www.sharkreef.com or call (702) 632-4555.