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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

MMA Heavyweight Gladiators Nelson & Monson In Classic Match-Up Of World-Class Grapplers

--Full Court Press

Jones-Sheika headlines pro boxing/MMA PPV March 21 in Pensacola

PENSACOLA, Fla. (February 25, 2009) – Former IFL heavyweight champion Roy “Big Country” Nelson believes his March 21st fight against former UFC title challenger Jeff “The Snowman” Monson has all the makings of a classic match-up between a pair of world-class grapplers that all fight fans -- mixed martial arts and boxing -- will truly appreciate.

Nelson-Monson is part of a boxing/MMA show, headlined by 8-time world boxing champion Roy Jones, Jr. against 4-time world title challenger Omar Sheika, being broadcast live on pay-per-view from Jones’ hometown of Pensacola, Florida.

The pro boxing/MMA show, presented by Square Ring Promotions in association with Hirsch Borao Boxing and the Pensacola Civic Center, is being distributed by Square Ring Promotions, Inc. at 9:00PM ET/6:00PM PT in North America on cable and satellite via iNDemand, TVN, DirecTV and Dish Network in the United States, as well as Viewer's Choice, Shaw Cable, Star Choice and Bell TV in Canada, for a suggested retail price of only $29.95.

Tickets, priced at $128.00, $103.00, $78.00, $53.00 & $28.00 are on sale and available at all Ticketmaster locations, the Pensacola Civic Center Box Office and ticketmaster.com.

Nelson (13-6, 6 KOs, 4 Submissions), fighting out of Las Vegas, was once known strictly as a submission specialist and ground technician, but he has developed his overall game and he’s now as dangerous on his feet striking as he is grappling on the mat.

Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt Monson (27-8, 2 KOs, 15 Submissions) was a Pac-10 wrestling champion at Oregon State, earning a Master’s Degree in psychology, who is generally recognized as one of the world’s all-time greatest submissions grapplers.

“Monson has been to the top, fighting for the UFC belt and taking on some of the top MMA fighters in the world,” Nelson said. “But I belong at the top of that food chain, too. He’s an outstanding grappler but, he lacks reach, compared to other heavyweights. We’re both world-class grapplers, but my advantage is I hit harder and I’m a better fighter on my feet than him. Our ground game will be a stand-off. We’re gladiators; they can put in the tiger but I’m still coming out the winner. Just like in boxing, it’s all about match-ups, and I’m the guy who brings the show. You have two outstanding grapplers who both know how to get out of holds. We’ll nullify each other on the ground, forcing us to fight standing-up, and that’s where it’s going to be a war. The difference is I’m a finisher…..and entertainer.”

Jones Jr. (52-5, 38 KOs), who has won titles in four different weight classes (middleweight, super middleweight, light heavyweight and heavyweight), returns to fight in his hometown for the first time in a decade. Still ranked among the top 10 light heavyweights in the world by three major boxing organizations as well as The Ring magazine, Jones has defeated 18 world champions – Bernard Hopkins, James Toney, Virgil Hill, Felix Trinidad, Mike McCallum and John Ruiz among the more notables – and all five of his career losses have been to world champions.

However, Sheika (27-8, 18 KOs), fighting out of Paterson, N.J., holds a victory against a fighter who beat Jones, Glen Johnson, by 10-round decision in 2000. A hand injury hampered Sheika the past few years but he’s fully recovered and shooting for an upset.

“I think it’s great for MMA fighters to be fighting in front of a new audience – boxing fans,” Nelson added. “They’re in for a real surprise, another level of fighting, and I believe they will really appreciate it. Roy Jones is a legend in boxing. He’s one of the biggest names in boxing, but MMA is a different beast. If Roy, the promoter, takes what’s right in boxing and changes what’s wrong in MMA, I think this (boxing/MMA show) is going to be a major success.”

Additional boxing and MMA bouts are in the process of being added to the March 21st pro boxing/MMA show. All fights and fighters are subject to change.


Ed Keenan, EMC (609) 399-1330

Summer Jimmerson, Pensacola Civic Center: (850) 432-0800 x231 sjimmerson@pensacolaciviccenter.com

Bob Trieger, Full Court Press, (978) 664-4482, bobtfcp@hotmail.com

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