Junior Welterweights Paris and Perez to Meet on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights

The May 10 edition of ESPN’s Friday Night Fights presented by Corona Extra will feature two top Junior Welterweights—Vernon “The Iceman” Paris (27-1, 16 KOs) and Manny “Manos” Perez (19-8-1, 4 KOs)—in the 10-round main event. Friday’s show from the Masonic Temple in Detroit will air live at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN2 HD and WatchESPN and will be joined in progress on ESPN Deportes following Friday’s NBA Playoff game between the Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls. Friday’s card is promoted by Millennium Promotions.

Joe Tessitore and Teddy Atlas will be ringside describing the action for ESPN2 HD, while studio host Todd Grisham (@GrishamESPN) will provide the latest boxing news and highlights. Pablo Viruega and Delvin Rodriguez will call this week’s fights for ESPN Deportes’ Viernes de Combates (Friday Night Fights) with Claudia Trejos and Leopoldo Gonzalez in the studio. Bilingual reporter Bernardo Osuna (@osunaespn) will present live interviews and reports for both shows.

Main Event:

Miami’s Paris enters Friday’s fight with big fight experience having fought three-time Junior Welterweight and Welterweight titlist Zab Judah. In his last fight Paris scored a third-round TKO win over Guy Pucker.

“I’ve started working with my new coach, Herman Caicedo, and have been preparing for this fight ever since my last fight,” Paris said. “My new coach is good. He’s teaching me to keep my hands up. The plan – what I’m going to do in the ring – that’s all coming together. I’m feeling real good about it.”

Denver’s Perez has won three of his last four fights including a 10-round split decision over Jose Miguel Cotto (Miguel Cotto’s brother) and a 10-round unanimous decision over Edgar Santana. Perez enters Friday’s fight following a seven-round unanimous decision win over Bernardo Guereca.

“I know Paris is very, very tough, and I anticipate a tough fight,” Perez said. “Those are the fights I like. I’ve said it before – you don’t become the best without fighting the best. You have to fight and beat the best. I’m working on my jab a lot now, and just want to show more variety in my shots this fight. I want to show better angles, and a better variety of right hands. I want to apply the right kind of pressure and just break him down. I’m looking forward to putting on a great performance.”

Friday’s 10-round co-feature will pit Featherweights Cornelius “Lighting” Lock (20-6-1, 13 KOs) against “El Negro Mexicano Lightning” Lonnie Smith (14-4-3, 10 KOs). Lock scored a second-round TKO win over Damon Antoine in his last fight, while Smith is coming off a seventh-round technical draw against Michael Perez.

Follow ESPN’s Friday Night Fights on Twitter @ESPNFNF or like it on Facebook. Follow ESPN Deportes’ Viernes de Combates on Twitter @ESPNBoxeo. Also score the fights round-by-round with the “Live Friday Night Fights Facebook Voting App,” an application on the ESPN FNF Facebook page that allows viewers to score the fight round-by-round.