SAO PAULO, Brazil (July 12, 2011) – Unbeaten prospect Michael “The Brazilian Rocky” Oliveirahas returned home to fight once again in Brazil, headlining Saturday night’s “Sao Paulo Fight Night” pro-am boxing card, presented by MO Productions, July 16 at Credicard Hall in Sao Paulo.
The 21-year-old Oliveira (14-0, 11 KOs), now rated No. 18 by the World Boxing Council (“WBC”), faces tough Dominican veteran Jose “Minguito” Soto (24-7-2, 13 KOs) for the vacant WBC Latino middleweight title in the 10-round main event.
“Sao Paulo Fight Night” will air live on TV Globo Network, SporTV cable, GloboEsporte and TV Globo International, as well as TYC Sports in Argentina, and streaming for free outside of Brazil and Argentina for free on www.BoxingChannel.tv.
Oliveira, the two-time defending Brazilian International Press Award’s Athlete of the Year (2009 and 2010), was born in Sao Paulo but he moved two weeks after birth with his family to Miami. He will be fighting for the third time in Brazil as part of a six-fight, two-year deal with TV Global.
“I’m excited to fight in Brazil again and be close to my fans back home,” Oliveira said. “It is very important to have TV Globo and SporTV giving me support and exposure for my boxing career.
“My opponent is a step-up in class for me. I know he has fought some good fighters, but I’m well prepared for this fight, and I expect to put on a good show. I hope to move up in the WBC ratings with a good victory.”
This past March Michael won a 10-round decision against previously unbeaten Abel Nicolas Adriel in Sao Paulo for the Interim WBC Latino super middleweight crown. For his July 16 fight, however, Oliveira has dropped down to 160 poundsand is working with a new trainer, Orlando Cueller.
“I feel much faster and still strong fighting at 160 pounds,” Oliveira explained.“Working with Mr. Cueller has helped me improve my defensive techniques and the way I move around the ring. I’m already on weight and ready for this fight. To get to where I want to be, I need to continue working on improve in four areas: boxing, strength, conditioning and nutrition. “
Brazil’s last superstar boxer, four-time world champion Acelino “Popo” Freitas, made his third World Boxing Organization super featherweight title defense in Credicard Hall, one of the largest show arenas in South America, when he knocked out challenger Javier Jauregui in 2000. Freitas showed his support for Oliveira and MO Productions by being a special guest at Oliveira’s last fight.
“It’s an honor to be fighting where the great ‘Popo’ Freitas once for a world title,”Michael added. “Soccer will always be the No. 1 sport in Brazil, but my goal is to have Brazilians embrace me as their new boxing hero.”
Several amateur matches featuring some of Brazils top Olympic boxers will be part of the “Sao Paulo Fight Night” card, in addition to one other pro fight between Sao Paulo light middleweights – Jailton“Dragao Branco” De Jesus Souza(12-2, 10 KOs) and Douglas Ataibe(1-0, 1 KO) in a six-round bout.
All fights and fighters are subject to change.
GENERAL ADMISSION TICKETS ARE FREE.
Doorsopen at 6:30 PM/GMT (5:30 PM/ET), first bout at 7:30 PM/GMT (6:30 PM/ET). Go on line to www.MichaelOliveria.comfor additional information.