NEW YORK, NY, November 20 – For several years, fight fans have longed for the day when the heavyweight championship of the world would be unified and one man would reign atop the sport’s glamour division. On Saturday, February 23rd, at ‘The Mecca of Boxing’, New York City’s Madison Square Garden, that day will be one step closer when IBF & IBO Heavyweight Champion Wladimir Klitschko and WBO Heavyweight Champion Sultan Ibragimov meet to unify their titles in a bout destined to bring cl! arity to the heavyweights once again.
Klitschko and Ibragimov, a 12 round heavyweight title unification bout, headlines a historic night of boxing presented by K2 Promotions and Seminole Warriors Boxing and will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing.
“I´m very happy that after intensive negotiations we have finally reached a deal”. said Klitschko. “I’m really looking forward to this unification bout. This is what boxing fans around the world want to see. Ibragimov showed his class with his convincing victories over Shannon Briggs and Evander Holyfield. I’m sure this will be an exciting fight and Madison Square Garden is the perfect place for it.”
“Before I became champion, my goal was to win the title and unify it,” said Ibragimov. “But when I won the belt, I found no champion willing to fight me. I thank Klitschko for being a true champion and for fighting me. I know we will put on a great show for the fans in New York and around the world.”
“We are excited to bring this historical fight to New York and Madison Square Garden,” stated Tom Loeffler of K2 Promotions. “This will be the first heavyweight unification since Holyfield/Lewis in 1999 and it is fitting that it is in the arena with so much boxing history.”
“In a division where champions have been known to shy away from dangerous challenges, credit must be given to Wladimir Klitschko and Sultan Ibragimov for stepping up and putting their belts on the line, not only for their own legacies, but for the good of boxing,” said Leon Margules, Executive Director of Seminole Warriors Boxing. “Both men are fine descendants from a championship line that includes Dempsey, Louis, Marciano, and Ali, and they will prove it on February 23rd.”
The 1996 Olympic Gold medalist Wladimir Klitschko (49-3, 44 KOs) is one of the most talented heavyweights of this era, and his dominance has led him to 2 heavyweight world titles. After holding the WBO title from 2000 to 2003, the 31-year old Klitschko also won the IBF title from Chris Byrd in 2006 and has made 3 title defenses with KO victories over Calvin Brock, Ray Austin, and Lamon Brewster.
Unbeaten in his five years as a professional, 2000 Olympic Silver medalist Sultan Ibragimov (22-0-1, 17 KOs) has impressed boxing aficionados with his fast hands, combination punching, and willingness to take on all comers. The 32-year old Ibragimov, a native of Dagestan, Russia, won the WBO Heavyweight Championship in June of 2007 with a dominant 12 round win over Shannon Briggs, and he has since defended his title with another clear cut victory in October over heavyweight legend Evander Holyfield.
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