ESPN’s Friday Night Fights Kicks Off Seventeenth Season This Friday

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

Friday Night Fights presented by Corona, ESPN’s hit weekly boxing broadcast, returns tomorrow night, January 3rd.  Tomorrow night’s broadcast kicks off the show’s seventeenth season.  Season Seventeen kicks off with a championship bout between Junior Lightweight titlist Argenis Mendez (21 – 2 – 1, 11 KOs) and undefeated Rances Barthelemy (19 – 0, 12 KOs). The fight is set for twelve rounds.  Also planned for tomorrow night’s season premiere is a ten-round co-feature that will see up-and-coming Middleweight contender Caleb Truax (23 – 1, 4 KOs), and Ossie Duran (27 – 11 – 2, 10 KOs) facing off against one another.  The fight will air live on ESPN2 at 9pm ET.  ESPN Deportes has rebranded its broadcasts this year as Noche de Combates.  The Spanish-language network’s program was previously titled Viernes de Combates.  It will air the fights in tape delay at 10:30pmET.

Joe Tessitore will be back ringside for the season opener.  He will be joined by studio host Todd Grisham, who is filling in this week for Joe’s regular partner, Teddy Atlas.  Along with his ringside duties, Grisham will also have all of the latest boxing news and highlights.  Delvin Rodriguez will have the call for ESPN Deportes.  He will be joined ringside by Pablo Viruega.  The pair will have the call for the broadcast both on ESPN Deportes and ESPN Deportes+.  Leopoldo Gonzales and Claudia Trejos will be live in studio throughout the season.  Bernardo Osuna will contribute both for Friday Night Fights in English and Noche de Combates in Spanish.  The most current slate of fights for January is available below.  More information on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights presented by Corona is available online at http://www.facebook.com/espn.fnf, http://twitter.com/ESPNBoxing, and http://twitter.comESPNBoxeo.

Date Time (ET) Main Event Networks
Fri, Jan 3 9 p.m. Argenis Méndez (21-2-1, 11 KOs)  vs. Rances Barthelemy (19-0, 12 KOs)
12-rounds, IBF Junior Lightweight Title
ESPN2, ESPN Deportes+,WatchESPN
Fri, Jan 10 9 p.m. Arash Usmanee (20-1-1, 10 KOs) vs. Juan Antonio Rodríguez (25-4, 23 KOs)
10-rounds, Junior Lightweights
ESPN2, ESPN Deportes+, WatchESPN
Fri, Jan 24 9 p.m. Javier Molina (14-1, 6 KOs) vs. Kendall Holt (28-6, 16 KOs)
10-rounds, Junior Welterweights
ESPN2, ESPN Deportes+, WatchESPN
Fri, Jan 31 9 p.m. Zsolt Erdei (33-1, 18 KOs) vs. Elvir Muriqi (40-5, 24 KOs)
10-rounds, Light Heavyweights
ESPN2, ESPN Deportes+, WatchESPN

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ESPN’s Friday Night Fights Returning

Courtesy:  ESPN

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN’s Friday Night Fights is coming back.  The network’s highly acclaimed boxing showcase, presented by Corona Extra, will return this Friday, January 4th.  It will air at 10pm on ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, and online at http://www.WatchESPN.com.  And it will have a new host.  Todd Grisham will host the show from ESPN’s studios.  He will be joined by on-site reporter Bernardo Osuna.  Osuna served as host of Friday Night Fights’ studio host during 2012.  He will now be the show’s first ever on-site reporter, offering reports and commentary in both English and Spanish.  Fans with smart phones and tablets will be able to catch Friday Night Fights too, with the WatchESPN app. 

The season premiere of Friday Night Fights pits two undefeated Junior Lightweights against one another.  Viewers will get to see Rances “Kid Blast” Barthelemy (17 – 0, 11 KOs) against Arash Usmanee (12 – 0, 10 Kos) in the show’s 12-round main event.  It isn’t the only fight on Friday’s card though.  Also on Friday’s card will be a matchup of Junior Middleweight Jonathan “Mantequilla” Gonzalez (15 – 0 – 1, 13 Kos) and Derek Ennis (23 – 3 – 1 13 KOs) in a ten-round fight.  Gonzales—a member of Puerto Rico’s 2008 Olympic Team—is looking to make a strong comeback after a twelve-round draw against former Junior Middleweight titlist Sergiy Dzinziruk.

Also on Friday’s card, there will be a third fight featuring a four-round faceoff between a pair of undefeated featherweights in Hairon Socarras ( (5 – 0 – 1 4 KOs) and Josh Bowles (6 – 0 1 KO). 

More information on the return of Friday Night Fights, viewers can go online to http://espnmediazone.com/us/press-releases/2012/12/espns-friday-night-fights-returns-january-4-with-new-host-todd-grisham/.

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