One final run for Hawaiian Punch
By Joaquin Henson
Sun, 26 Feb 2017
Ending a 1 1/2 year layoff, former WBA/WBO flyweight and IBF lightflyweight champion Brian Viloria returns to the ring against Mexico?s Ruben (Hurricane) Montoya at the Ryogoku Sumo Arena in Tokyo on Thursday, vowing to give it his all in one final run for another world title.
?I took over a year off to think about things, to reset, to spend a little more time with my family,? said Viloria who arrived in Tokyo with his wife Erica and their two-year-old son Tyler from Los Angeles last Thursday. ?It gave me time to think about the next step in my boxing career. I?m 36 now, I know I don?t have much time left. I came to a conclusion for me to make one more run, one more campaign towards another world title fight.?
Viloria recently signed a promotional contract with Akikiho Honda?s Teiken group of Japan. He said his comeback fight will be an all out war. ?I?m giving it my all,? he said. ?When I finally hang up my gloves, I don?t want to leave anything behind, knowing I put all my energy, all my effort in the ring.?
Viloria resumed training at the Wild Card Gym in Los Angeles under Freddie Roach?s chief assistant Marvin Somodio last November. Somodio, however, will not be in Viloria?s corner in Tokyo. Long-time cutman and father-figure Ruben Gomez will take charge of the cornerwork. Viloria?s Los Angeles manager Gary Gittelsohn will be at ringside.
The road back to the top starts with an eight-round bout against Montoya whose record is 14-4-1, with 9 KOs. Viloria hasn?t fought since losing to Roman (Chocolatito) Gonzalez by a ninth round stoppage in a bid for the WBC flyweight crown at Madison Square Garden in New York City in October 2015. Viloria?s record is 36-5, with 22 KOs.
In the undercard, Japan?s Ryosuke Iwasa takes on Zamboanga Sibugay featherweight Glenn (Little Navarrete) Medura in an eight-round bout. Medura, 21, is unbeaten in his last nine outings. Iwasa,, 27, has a 22-2 record with 14 KOs, and is the IBF?s No. 3 superbantamweight.
Photo: Brian Viloria (L) trains with Marvin Somodio for his Japan fight at the Wildcard Gym in Los Angeles.
Click here to view a list of other articles written by Joaquin Henson.
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