Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Arreola Making a Play for the Klitschko Brothers

Dan Goossen is going to begin making a pitch for Chris Arreola (pictured far left) to face one of the heavyweight champion Klitschko brothers.

Promoter Dan Goossen, his fighter Chris Arreola and trainer Henry Ramirez are set to meet the press Thursday morning during a luncheon at Sisley Italian Kitchen in Sherman Oaks, California.

It is no secret that Goossen and Arreola are now beginning their campaign to land a fight with either of the heavyweight champion Klitschko brothers; Vitali (WBC) or Wladimir (IBF/WBO).

Goossen has been around the boxing game for most of his life and he is, as they say, “striking while the iron is hot” in an effort to get his man a heavyweight championship fight. That effort begins in earnest this week as Goossen is making a play to get his man front and center for a title bout.

With news that Vitali Klitschko does not have to face Oleg Maskaev in his next fight, and as a result can fight whoever he likes next, the opportunity is there for Arreola who is currently ranked as the #1 contender by the World Boxing Council. While Goossen has made it known they would be willing to fight either brother, the most likely scenario for Arreola is a match against Vitali.

One date that that has been mentioned for the fight with Arreola is September 12th at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. With Arreola hailing from just 60 miles down California 91 in Riverside, he would be expected to draw fairly well in L.A.

At age 28, Arreola is undefeated at 27-0, 24KOs and has fought the majority of his fights in “The Golden State.” However, in facing Vitali he would be taking a huge step up in competition considering his opponents thus far have mostly consisted of the unproven, untested and unranked.

Arreola has stormed to a #1 ranking and is now on the verge of a title shot.

Klitschko, who will turn 38 next month, is no stranger to the Staples Center or Los Angeles. He has resided in the city in the past and he fought Lennox Lewis there in 2003 and Corrie Sanders in 2004.

Vitali made a lot of fans in the city when he resurrected himself against Lewis in Los Angeles. Some in the press had labeled him “Quits-chko” for what they perceived as a non-effort in a stoppage loss due to a shoulder injury he suffered against Chris Byrd in 2000. But after the Lewis fight in L.A. that sentiment changed. Klitschko fought gamely with a serious cut that ultimately caused the fight to be stopped, but he gave Lewis all he could handle.

The word from Goossen and Arreola that will be expressed on Thursday is that they are ready, willing and able to take a fight against Vitali if a satisfactorily monetary deal can be put together. The fight, were it to take place, is likely headed for HBO.

However, Klitschko has a couple of other opponents in the running with England's David Haye, who had to pull out of a fight scheduled for last weekend against Wladimir because of a back injury. Another name being mentioned as a possibility is WBA regular champion Nikolai Valuev of Russia.

Goossen is obviously aware that other opponents are in the mix – it's now his job to make a public case that Chris Arreola should be the obvious choice.

June 2009

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