Gamboa pursues bigger bout


Olympic gold medalist Yuriorkis Gamboa is on a fast track as a professional and isn't wasting any time in his bid to land a big-money fight in 2009.

Gamboa (12-0, 10 knockouts) faces veteran Roger Gonzalez in a 10-round bout today in the main event of a card at the Star of the Desert Arena in Primm. Gamboa's NABF and WBC International titles will be on the line, and ESPN2 will televise the fight.

"I'm definitely on a very fast pace," Gamboa, a featherweight who won gold for Cuba in 2004, said through an interpreter. "I'm working very hard. This is the toughest fight of my career. Roger Gonzalez is a very good opponent. But I have been training well for this fight, and I will be ready."

Gamboa is working with a new trainer, Ismeal Salas, and has been trying to improve his defense.

"I'm much more relaxed" as a result of the changes that Salas has made, Gamboa said. "I'm not trying to force the knockout like before. Now I just let it come naturally."

Gamboa's manager, Luis De Cubas, said his fighter won't duck anyone in his quest to be a world champion.

"(Gamboa) has fought guys with 60 fights under their belts," De Cubas said. "This kid is a special fighter. He's what boxing needs right now -- a knockout artist."

Gonzalez (27-2, 18 KOs) said he won't be an easy mark.

"I understand what they're doing," he said of being paired with a hot commodity such as Gamboa. "But I don't give in. If he beats me, I'm going to make him work for it. I don't think they're going to run me over."

The card, which includes the U.S. debuts of Cuban heavyweight Odlanier Solis and Cuban middleweight Erislandy Lara, will begin at 5:15 p.m.

Contact reporter Steve Carp at scarp@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2913.

 

Comment section guidelines

The below comment section contains thoughts and opinions from users that in no way represent the views of the Las Vegas Review-Journal or GateHouse Media. This public platform is intended to provide a forum for users of reviewjournal.com to share ideas, express thoughtful opinions and carry the conversation beyond the article. Users must follow the guidelines under our Commenting Policy and are encouraged to use the moderation tools to help maintain civility and keep discussions on topic.