Conlan vs Hernandez

Michael Conlan Ruben Garcia Hernandez

Conlan Hernandez

Madison Square Garden Theater, New York

On Air @ 8.45pm

17

Mar

Featherweight contest

Michael Conlan's St Patrick’s Day party at Madison Square Garden Theater on Sunday 17th March will be live on BoxNation, when he faces Ruben Garcia Hernandez in a Featherweight 10 rounder.

It is the third successive year he has celebrated the Irish celebration weekend at the globally famous New York venue.

Belfast’s Conlan (10-0, 6 KOs) stopped Tim Ibarra on his pro debut on the date two years ago when Conor McGregor led his ringwalk and 12 months later beat David Berna inside two rounds.

This time Conlan goes downstairs once again below the MSG big room to face Mexican Hernandez (24-3-2, 10 KOs) and it is out to paint it green again.

“I’m excited and honoured to fight at my home away from home, The Mecca of Boxing, Madison Square Garden, on St. Patrick’s Day for the third consecutive year,” Conlan said.

“The fans in New York City have been incredibly supportive of my professional career, and I look forward to putting on a show for them, in addition to my great fans from Ireland who will be coming over for the party in Manhattan.”

Conlan, 27, is one of Ireland’s greatest ever amateur boxers winning the 2015 Doha World Championships and a bronze medal at the London 2012 Olympics.

Who will forget the 2016 Rio Olympics when he was the gold medal favourite, and made his famous middle finger salute towards officials when shocking scoring robbed him of victory against Vladimir Nikitin?

Professionally he has displayed the qualities that have the stamp of a future World Champion and later this year he’s expected to face Nikitin once again.

Hernandez, 25, turned professional in November 2010 and last August picked up the WBC Latino Featherweight Title outscoring Jose Estrella.

His defeats have come at the highest level losing on points against Rafael Rivera and retiring after seven rounds against World Champion Randy Caballero when both men were unbeaten.

Hernandez’s only other setback came on points against multiple World Champion Nonito Donaire and is clearly a step up for Conlan.

 

Luis Collazo Samuel Vargas

Collazo Vargas

On Air @ 8.45pm

Welterweight contest

In a 10 round Welterweight crossroads fight on the bill, former World Champion Luis Collazo (38-7, 20 KOs) will take on Samuel Vargas (30-4-2, 14 KOs) - a clash between former Amir Khan opponents.

Collazo is a 37-year-pro who has faced the likes of “Sugar” Shane Mosley, Ricky Hatton, Khan, Andre Berto, Keith Thurman and Victor Ortiz.

The New Yorker is coming off a well-earned decision victory over Bryant Perrella and a sixth-round knockout against former top prospect Sammy Vasquez.

Vargas has faced many of the Welterweight division’s leading lights during his nine-year career. Last September, he knocked down Khan in the second round, but was unable to finish him off and lost a unanimous decision.

Paddy Barnes Oscar Mojica

Barnes Mojica

On Air @ 8.45pm

Bantamweight contest

Also on the bill is Conlan’s great friend Paddy Barnes (5-1, 1 KO) who returns to the ring after being knocked out in four rounds by Cristofer Rosales in a WBC Flyweight Title challenge last summer.

He steps up two divisions to make his Bantamweight bow against Texan Oscar Mojica (11-5-1, 1 KO) in a scheduled six rounder.