Gary Shaw Productions ESPN Friday Night Fights card, Friday August 9th at the Morongo Casino Resort & Spa in Cabazon, Calif is heating up. While the main event of the evening will consist of a pair of rising lightweights, Rustam Nugaev and Jose Hernandez, the co-feature is just as exciting and it has all the potential to steal the show with junior lightweights Gabriel Tolmajyan (14-2-1, 3 KOs) and Jose Pedraza (13-0, 9 KOs) squaring off in a matchup that holds a ton of promise for the winner.
Tolmajyan is coming off of a minor upset win over previously undefeated Puerto Rican standout Jorge Maysonet Jr., and like Maysonet Jr., Pedraza is coming into the bout as an undefeated prospect with a lot to gain from a win. Tolmajyan knows that another win in front of a televised audience could mean big things for his future and he is focused on the task at hand.
“I can’t even describe how badly I want this, I feel like this is my opportunity to move up the rankings and solidify my status as one of the best in the division. This is my time and I know that in this sport you don’t get many, so my plan is to come out and leave it all in the ring,” said Tolmajyan.
Pedraza, who’s a member of Team Puerto and co-promoted by GSP, Universal Promotions and DiBella entertainment, is on a mission of his own, taking a 3 fight KO streak into his bout with Tolmajyan. The last being a sensational 7th round knockout on HBO against a durable opponent in Mexico’s Sergio Villanueva (26-3-2, 13 KOs). The fact that he has performed so well in his last few outings has given him the kind of confidence he will need to tackle the obstacle at hand. Typically, a young undefeated fighter like Pedraza is plagued by a lack of experience, but it is obvious that the 24 year old Puerto Rican is growing with every fight, both physically and mentally.
“I don’t get caught up on my record or my resume like other fighters. I’m focused on the things that matter and those things are proven every day in the gym. I stay geared towards winning and getting better in camp. My confidence doesn’t come from the things I’ve done, it comes from the things I know I’m capable of doing. My opponent shouldn’t concern himself with what I’ve accomplished on paper, he should worry about what I’ve learned from my past fights and camps and the fact that I scrutinize myself even in my victories,” Pedraza said.
While both competitors are excited about the potential perks associated with a big win on network TV, Gary Shaw is excited about the potential fireworks that exist with the style matchup in the co-feature.
“This is a fantastic card and the fans are in for a great night of fights. The winner of this fight will position themselves nicely but an action packed fight could further both guys status and fans will want to see more from both men if they can produce the kind of fight they are capable of producing,” Shaw said.
Tickets priced $35 & $55 are on sale now and can be purchased at the Morongo Casino Box office or by calling the Box office hotline at (951) 755-5391. Tickets are also available by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 745- 3000 or online at ticketmaster.com.
The Morongo Casino Resort and Spa is located at 49500 Seminole Dr, Cabazon, CA, 92230. Doors open at 5:00 p.m , first fight starts at 5:30 p.m. ESPN “Friday Night Fights” telecast begins at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.