By Mauricio Sulaiman
WBC President – Jose Sulaiman’s son
I landed in Mexico City at 5:00 in the morning this past Sunday after a trip to Riga, Latvia, and Sochi, Russia, which was a great success. After a short nap, I took my son, Mauricio, for breakfast and then back home to do the one thing I only do once a year – cook Super Bowl chili! It’s the only dish I can cook, and I only do it on Super Bowl day. It is really, really good.
What a game – incredible! That is why Super Bowl is known as one of the greatest events of the year. The Eagles came out and won the game – they were strong, smart, and took the risks that many other teams failed to do against the Patriots. They took the fight toe-to-toe and beat them. I was very worried to see Gronkowski on the field after being brutally knocked out only two weeks ago. A KO like that would have given any boxer a 45-day suspension without contact. Luckily, he was not hit in the head and played an incredible game in the second half.
I loved the bet that the majors of Philadelphia and Brockton put on for the Super Bowl – the statues of Rocky Balboa in Philly and the one of Rocky Marciano in Brockton are to wear the winner’s apparel after the game. They both agreed, and let’s see how it plays out. Now Marciano will have to honor the Philadelphia Eagles. This was a great moment to remember the passion which my father put into building the Rocky Marciano statue, which the WBC constructed, shipped, and delivered for the glorious day of the unveiling in Brockton, Massachusetts.
Boxing is a great sport – the best of them all – and the only sport which can celebrate several “Super Bowls” during each year. 2018 will certainly give boxing fans a few Boxing Super Bowls or “Super Box” fights.
I was present in Riga, Latvia to watch the cruiserweight unification fight between Mairis Breidis and Olexandr Usyk. It was one of the greatest cruiserweight fights of all time – 12 rounds in which the sold-out crowd was on its feet with a very loud atmosphere, and with a majority decision going to Usyk. A week later, Sochi, Russia, hosted the other cruiserweight unification in which a sold-out crowd saw the local hero Murat Gassiev knock out Yunier Dorticos. All four fighters were undefeated, and the two winners advanced to the final of the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) with the Muhammad Ali Trophy and the WBC Diamond belt at stake.
The fight which will certainly be billed as the Super Bowl of this year is the rematch between GGG and Canelo. All set for 5 de Mayo!
On February 24, Superfly II will feature WBC super flyweight champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai vs. Juan Francisco Estrada.
On March 3, WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder will battle Luis Ortiz, which will be undoubtedly a great fight with fireworks – another Super Box.
Other potential Super Box fights could be:
Mikey Garcia vs. Jorge Linares
Deontay Wilder vs. Anthony Joshua
Oleksandr Usyk vs. Murat Gassiev
Adonis Stevenson vs. Badou Jack
Keith Thurman vs. Danny Garcia rematch, or some other welterweights.
Anyway, boxing is a sport which gives fans great action throughout the year, and I am certain that promoters, managers, TV executives, sponsors, and boxing governing entities will work to give fans the fights they all deserve to see.
We just celebrated a sensational Armed Forces boxing tournament, the fourth “Jose Sulaiman” amateur battle of the badges in Mexico. Police, Army, Navy, Firemen, and Special Forces teams met in high-quality competition which was a tremendous success.