DiBella Entertainment’s acclaimed Broadway Boxingseries makes its debut in the Motor City on Friday, April 15, at Garden Theater in Detroit. The event, promoted by DiBella Entertainment and Lee Baxter Promotions, presented by Nissan of Queens, will be streamed live and exclusively on UFC FIGHT PASS®, the world’s leading streaming service for combat sports, starting at 8:30pm ET / 5:30pm PT.
“I am excited to work with Lee Baxter to help bring Broadway Boxing to Detroit, a great city with a passionate fan base, famous for its deep boxing history and home to the legendary Kronk Gym,” said International Boxing Hall-of-Famer and President of DiBella Entertainment, Lou DiBella. “On April 15, boxing fans in attendance, and those watching on UFC Fight Pass®, will get to see undefeated heavyweight contender Mike Balogun, Manny Robles-trained Michael Pirotton-Bamogo, as well as rising super featherweight Joshafat Ortiz and popular, local prospects.”
Tickets, which start at $65.00, are on sale now through Eventbrite HERE. The Garden Theater is located at 3929 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48201. Doors will open on the night of the event at 6:30pm ET, with the first bell at 7:00pm ET.
Heavyweight knockout artist Mike Balogun (18-0, 14 KOs), of Upper Marlboro, MD, headlines the event facing Ahmed Hefny (13-2, 5 KOs), of Queens, NY, in an eight-round contest. On December 2, 2021, Balogun scored an impressive first-round knockout against previously undefeated Trey Lippe Morrison, the son of former heavyweight champion Tommy Morrison. The athletic Balogun is a former college football standout who started for the legendary Oklahoma Sooners before playing in the NFL for three years. In his last bout, Hefny lost a close, split decision to unbeaten Dacarree Scott in January.
In the co-feature, popular Detroit bantamweight Ja’Rico O’Quinn (14-1-1, 8 KOs) takes on Filipino Jobert Alvarez (20-2-2, 7 KOs), of Renton, WA, in an eight-round encounter. He will be looking to rebound from his first defeat last September that aired on Showtime’s ShoBox series. O’Quinn previously held the WBO International super flyweight title and was a USA National champion as an amateur. Making his second appearance in the United States, Alvarez is a former WBC Continental Americas and WBO NABO titlist.
Unbeaten Joshafat Ortiz (9-0, 5 KOs), of Reading, PA, battles Derrick Murray (15-4, 5 KOs), of Saint Louis, MO, in an eight-round super featherweight clash. Ortiz was born in Juana Diaz, Puerto Rico, but moved to the US at age four. He was first introduced to boxing as a child, as his father, uncle and brother were all amateur fighters. Ortiz compiled an amateur record of 42-7, and was a three-time Pennsylvania Golden Gloves champion. He recently traveled to Dominican Republic to knock out Erickson Vargas in two rounds on March 12. Murray is coming off of a win against previously unbeaten Angel Flores in January.
Heavyweight prospect Michael Pirotton-Bamogo (5-0, 2 KOs), of Liege, Belgium, will make his US debut against fellow undefeated Jonathan Gruber (3-0, 2 KOs), of Fall River, MA, in a six-round bout. Pirotton-Bamogo, whose mother was born in the West African nation of Burkina Faso and father born in Belgium, now trains out of Southern California under the renowned Manny Robles. He took to boxing at the age of 18 and had a short amateur career with 15 fights, which included a 2018 tournament victory in France as part of the Belgian National Team.
Featherweight Sean Brewer (2-0, 1 KO), of Henderson, NV, will participate in a four-round bout on the untelevised undercard. Further information on this event will be announced shortly.
Twitter: @LouDiBella, @DiBellaEnt