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  Cloutier’s Canada Corner
Howard Grant: "If Lafrenière Wins By
KO I Will Be Extremely Proud & Happy"

By Daniel Cloutier

MONTRÉAL — For the third Saturday in a row, the Québec territory will be the theatre of a pro boxing show in few hours. This time, this boxing show will be presented by the GYM Group at the Montréal Casino, at noon.

The Montrealer middleweight Francis Lafrenière will be involved in the main event of this boxing show organized by promoter Yvon Michel. Former NABO North American champion, Lafrenière (16-6-2), a fighter from Cöteau-du-Lac (West island of Montréal), will face the veteran Brazilian Samir Los Santos Barboza (37-14-3) in a eight rounder.

“I am really prepared for this challenge,” said Lafrenière right after the weigh in held at the Montréal Casino. “I know I am facing a fighter with a lot of experience. Barboza has disputed 54 pro bouts, me 24. But I want to use my skills to dominate the action in each round.”

We asked him what is his objective for 2019. “I don’t have plans for 2019,” said Lafrenière. “I got to fight Saturday night, I will fight again at the Montréal Casino November 24th, then, I want to win these two bouts before think about projects for 2019. I don’t know if I will get another shot for a North American fight in 2019, but it’s really not the time to talk about it.”

The Lafrenière’s trainer, Howard Grant, is more than satisfy of the preparation of his fighter. “Francis trained very seriously for this fight, like usual,” said Grant. “It’s true, Barboza has a lot of experience, and he has the reputation to be a very tough fighter. If Francis scored a KO or TKO, I will be extremely happy and proud, but the most important thing for us it’s to win it. I really believe that Francis has the technique and the strategy to dominate the action round after round. I am very impatient to see what will happen Saturday. I really believe in my fighter’s determination.”

The scout of the GYM Group, Bernard Barré, is expecting a good fight. :Lafrenière and Barboza are both aggressive, intense, then, I am expecting a spectacular fight”, said Barré.

At the weigh in supervised by the Québec Athletic Commission (Régie provincial des sports de combat), Lafrenière posted an official weight of 160.6 pounds, versus 161.6 for Barboza.

Just before the main event, the Canadian super middleweight champion, the Montrealer Jamaican Shakeel Phinn (18-2-0) will face the Argentinian Crispulo Javier Andino (20-11-1).

The welterweight Sébastien Bouchard (16-1-0), from Baie Saint-Paul, Québec, the welterweight Kane Heron (11-0-1), from Toronto, the cruiserweight Yan Pellerin (2-1-0), from Ganby, Québec, the super middleweight Tommy Houle (3-0-0), from Sainte-Beatrix, Québec, the Montrealer super middleweight Jean-Michel Bolivar (4-1-0) and the lightweight Alex Dimalghani (17-1-0), from Calgary, Alberta, will be involved in the preliminaries bouts of this boxing show.

All these fighters will face Mexican boxers.

Bouchard will fight Carlos Gorham (16-4-1), Heron will face Carlos Lopez Marmolejo (9-5-1), Pellerin will challenge Fidel Toscano (0-3-0), Houle will be opposed to Rafael Ortiz (3-1-1), Bolivar will fight Adriel Zuzaino (26-17-3) and Dimalghani will meet Cristian Arazola (24-15-3).

At the weigh in, Bouchard posted an official weight of 147.6 pounds, Gorham 145.6, Heron 144.8, Marmolejo 142.8, Pellerin 186,8, Toscano 184.4, Houle 161.8, Ortiz 161.4, Bolivar 165, Zuzaino 166.2, Dimalghani 133.2 and Arazola 133.4 pounds.


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