SAO PAULO, Brazil – Unbeaten Michael “The Brazilian Rocky” Oliveira continues his mission to popularize boxing in his native Brazil, when he fight at home again March 25, headlining the “International Boxing Challenge” pro-am event at Mauro Pinheiro Gymnasium in Sao Paulo.
The 20-year-old Oliveira (13-0, 11 KOs), now rated No. 10 by the USBA, takes on undefeated Argentinean prospect Abel “El Principito” Nicolas Adriel (10-0-2, 2 KOs) for the Interim World Boxing Council Latino Super Middleweight Championship in the 10 round main event.
“International Boxing Challenge,” presented by MO Productions, will air live on TV Globo Network, SporTV cable, GloboEsporte and TV Globo International. A 4-round pro bout between a pair of Sao Paulo middleweights, pro-debuting Douglas Ataibe and Valdevan “Baiano” Pereira (5-4, 4 KOs), is on the card as well as a pair of amateur matches featuring members of the Brazilian National Olympic Boxing Team.
Oliveira, the repeat winner of the Brazilian International Press Award’s Athlete of the Year (2009 and 2010), was born in Sao Paulo but he moved two weeks after birth with his family to Miami. In his Brazilian debut last November in Sao Paulo, Oliveira stopped rugged Junior Ramos (10-5) in the third round.
“The excitement is the same here but I am more relaxed this time,” Oliveira reported from training camp at Eco Fitness Gym in Sao Paulo, where he’s being handled by trainer Paco Garcia. “I’ve been here training since February 25. My Brazilian fans will get a real show from ‘The Brazilian Rocky’”
Oliveira has the personal support of Hall of Famer and Brazilian boxing icon, Eder “Golden Bantam” Jofre, in terms of reestablishing boxing back to Jofre’s days, in addition to filling the void left when superstar Acelino “Popo” Freitas retired in 2007.
“It’s a very hard task but I’m working on in,” Oliveira commented on his challenge to convert Brazilian sports fans into his. “MO Productions signed a two-year contract with TV Globo and I should be fighting at least three times a year in Brazil. The plan is for me to fight this June in Rio de Janeiro and September in Brasilia. Being the Globo TV ‘house fighter’ brings more responsibilities for me, but it’s also good to know that they are behind me. I love Brazil and Brazilian people. After all, I was born here, and I’m very proud to be embraced by Brazilian boxing fans.”
Brazilians and Argentineans are traditional arch-rivals in sports and the 21-year-old Adriel, who fights out of Pigue, Buenos Aires, Argentina, is a natural foe for Oliveira. The consummate boxer fought 10 times last year and twice in 2011, the most recent a first-round knockout of Ceferino Juan Jose Coronel last Friday in Buenos Aires.
“I saw some of his fights on You Tube,” Oliveira added. “I will put a lot of pressure on him from round one to see what he’s made of.”
All fights and fighters are subject to change.
GENERAL ADMISSION TICKETS ARE FREE. Contact Maria Fulfaro (PR@MichaelOliveira.com) about purchasing VIP tables for $400.00 each.
Doors open at 6:30 PM/GMT (5:30 PM/ET), first bout at 7:30 PM/GMT (6:30 PM/ET). Go on line to www.MichaelOliveria.com for additional information.