The World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) tournament returns to America this Saturday night for the fourth and final cruiserweight division quarterfinals bout, when undefeated International Boxing Federation (IBF) champion Murat “Iron” Gassiev makes his first title defense against former two-time world champion Krzysztof “Diablo” Wlodarczyk to air live in Canada exclusively on Super Channel from Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.
The “Gassiev vs. Wlodarczyk” card, starting at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT,continues live coverage of the highly entertaining WBSS tournament for Canadian boxing fans, exclusively on Canada’s boxing destination network, Super Channel, which acquired the rights in Canada to broadcast the World Boxing Super Series from MP & Silva, a leading international media company that provides media rights, digital, technology and sponsorship services.
The 24-year-old Gassiev (24-0, 17 KOs) is a Russian who now lives and trains in the famed Big Bear, California. Last December, he won a 12-round split decision from Denis Lebedev (29-1) in Moscow to capture the IBF crown.
“I promise that I’m going to come into the ring to win and do everything possible to get this victory,” Gassiev said. “I want to take advantage of this opportunity to fight the best boxers in my weight class. It is a great honor for me to fight in the World Boxing Super Series for the Muhammad Ali Trophy.
“I have a very serious opponent in Krzysztof Wlodarcyzk who is a two-time world champion and his resume speaks for itself. He has fought the best and I’m looking forward to a very hard fight.”
Wlodarczyk will have decisive advantages over Gassiev in several categories including invaluable experience in world title fights (8-2-1, 4 KOs) and five victories against present or past world champions – Steve Cunningham, Giacobbe Fragomeni (twice), Danny Green and Imamu Mayfield – and he’ll also have the strong support of his fellow Poles who live on the East Coast.
A former IBF (2006-2007) and World Boxing Council (2009-2014) title holder, Wlodarczyk has fought his way back into title contention, winning his last four against opponents with a combined record of 115-12.
“I am very happy to have the opportunity to fight a champion like Murat Gassiev,” Wlodarczyk commented. “He is a young, strong champion like I was a few years ago, but I am ready to show that I am still the best in the division.”
The Gassiev-Wlodarczyk winner will advance to the WBSS semifinals early next year for a world title unification showdown with unbeaten World Boxing Association (WBA) champion Yunier Dorticos (21-0, 20 KOs), who last month knocked out previously undefeated Dmitry Kudryashov (21-0, 21 KOs), of Russia, in their WBSS quarterfinals match.
Five thrilling matches on the “Gassiev vs. Wlodarczyk” card, promoted by RingStar Sports, will air in Canada exclusively on Super Channel. The Gassiev vs. Wlodarczyk 12-round main event is scheduled to start at 11 p.m. ET / 8 p.m. PT.
The 10-round co-feature is a WBSS Substitute Fight between Polish cruiserweight Mateusz “Master” Masternak (39-4, 26 KOs), the former European titlist and Interim world title challenger, and Albania-born Stivens “Superman” Bujaj (16-1-1, 11 KOs), who lives in the United States.
Other undercard bouts scheduled to air on Super Channel include former Interim WBA world champion and 2008 Olympian “Golden” Jack Culcay (22-2, 11 KOs) vs. undefeated Polish junior middleweight Maciej Sulecki (25-0, 10 KOs) in a 10-round bout, plus a pair of six-round bouts showcasing undefeated New Jersey welterweight and U.S. Olympic alternate Julian “Hammer Hands” Rodriguez (16-0, 10 KOs) vs. fellow American Daniel “The Hudson Valley Kid” Sostre (12-14-1 (5 KOs), and a 2012 Nigerian Olympian, heavyweight Efe Ajaba (1-0, 1 KO) vs. TBA.
All fights and fighters are subject to change.