Photo Credit: Tom Hogan/360 Boxing Promotions
LOS ANGELES — Local media descended on downtown L.A. yesterday to attend the opening press conference for the HBO’s Superfly 2 card, set for February 24 at The Forum.
The card is the first promotion being solely handled by Tom Loeffler’s 360 Boxing Promotions. Loeffler, who also manages middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin, anticipates adding a fourth high-level bout to the event.
“Since we announced this event, the excitement from the fans and media has been tremendous,” said Loeffler. “This is a great media turnout and we’re very thankful to be able to for the press’ involvement in helping us promote this event.
From top to bottom this will be one of the best shows this year, we’ve already announced three outstanding matchups and we’ll be announcing another terrific fight shortly.”
Superfly 2 is headlined by a title fight with Pound 4 Pound implications with Juan Francisco Estrada facing WBC title-holder Sor Rungvisai, who’s coming off two victories over former Pound 4 Pound #1 Roman Gonzalez. The fight is Estrada’s first title shot since moving up to super flyweight in 2016.
“I’m very happy for the opportunity and can’t wait for February 24 to become a world champion again” said Estrada. “I know this is a tough fight, Sor Rungvisai is the best super flyweight in the world. I know I have the style to beat him. On February 24 you will see a lot of great fights and hopefully the Superfly series will continue with many great fights to come.”
The co-main event features a crossroads bout between Carlos Cuadras and McWilliams Arroyo. Cuadras dropped a close decision in his last fight against Estrada, and also dropped an entertaining decision to Gonzalez in a 2016 Fight of the Year contender. With two losses in his last three bouts, Cuadras has enlisted a new trainer in Abel Sanchez (Golovkin, Sullivan Barrera) to refine his game.
“I’m very happy to be up in Big Bear with such a great trainer like Abel Sanchez, learning about the training methods he uses for Gennady Golovkin,” he stated. “I’m training very hard and thrilled to be up in Big Bear for the first time.
I know Arroyo very well, he’s a great fighter. It’s Mexico vs. Puerto Rico which is always a great fight. I have to beat Arroyo and then I want to fight Estrada again. I have the medicine in my fist to beat them both. I’m fast and strong and very, very handsome.”
Sanchez’s first order of business was improving Cuadras’s stamina. He believes his new fighter is not far from returning to the title picture should Cuadras post an impressive victory next month.
“This is my first-time training Carlos. I’ve asked a lot of thing of him, discipline, dedication and he’s training very hard,” Sanchez revealed. “Maybe he’s been a little undisciplined in the past with his conditioning. With the extra’s I can add I believe he will be better. McWilliams Arroyo is a very good fighter, the winner of this fight deserves a world title opportunity.
“I thank Carlos Cuadras for taking the fight, it’s a great opportunity for both of us,” added Arroyo. “It’s my first fight at 115 and I’m going to take advantage of it. I’m training very hard and I’ll be ready to beat Carlos Cuadras on February 24. Not only my fight but all of these fights will make for an excellent night of boxing. “
Brian Viloria is going for his fifth title when he faces off against Artem Dalakian for the vacant WBA world flyweight title. The match is Viloria’s first title shot since losing by TKO to Roman Gonzalez in November 2015. Viloria posted two comeback wins before earning a shot at the belt vacated by a retiring Kazuto Ioka.
‘It seems like yesterday that I won my first world title, and now I’m fighting for my fifth world title,” Viloria reflected. “It’s an honor for me to fight for this title and I’m honored to have been able to stay in the game this long. Superfly 1 was an amazing show but Superfly 2 will even surpass that. Superfly 1 was the best card I’ve ever fought on and this card will be even better. It’s a great thing for the little guys to have such a big stage to fight on.”
Superfly 2 will air on HBO’s Boxing After Dark.