Press Conference Notes & Quotes: Lomachenko and Commey Ready to Headline Star-Studded MSG Fight Night

NEW YORK (Dec. 9, 2021)—The former pound-for-pound king, Vasiliy “Loma” Lomachenko, has saved some of his best performances for the New York City spotlight. He hopes to do it again Saturday evening at Madison Square Garden in the 12-round lightweight main event against former world champion Richard “RC” Commey (ESPN, ESPN Deportes & ESPN+, 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT).

Lomachenko vs. Commey headlines a stacked quadruple-header airing after the Heisman Trophy Ceremony. Heavyweight knockout artist Jared “The Real Big Baby” Anderson (10-0, 10 KOs) returns in an eight-rounder against Ukraine’s Oleksandr Teslenko (17-1, 13 KOs), recent U.S. Olympic silver medalist Keyshawn Davis (3-0, 2 KOs) takes on Mexican veteran Jose Zaragoza (8-3-1, 2 KOs) in a six-round lightweight tilt, and middleweight Nico Ali Walsh (2-0, 2 KOs), grandson of “The Greatest,” opens the telecast in a four-rounder versus Reyes Sanchez (6-0, 2 KOs).

The ESPN+-streamed undercard (5:30 p.m. ET/2:30 p.m. PT) features Puerto Rican junior middleweight phenom Xander Zayas (11-0, 8 KOs) in a six-rounder, and Kelvin Davis (2-0, 1 KO) in a four-rounder at welterweight.

At Thursday’s press conference, this is what the fighters had to say.

Vasiliy Lomachenko

“Madison Square Garden is a special place for me because during my professional career I had a lot of memorable fights here. It is the Mecca of Boxing. Thank you, Commey, you are a strong fighter. I think we are giving a very interesting fight to the fans. As I said before, he has big power and reach and has experience and a big heart.”

“I’m very excited because this is the next step of my boxing career, and it will be very interesting for the fans.”

Richard Commey

“I’m feeling good. I’m very excited. This is my second time coming here. The last time didn’t work out well for me {against Teofimo Lopez}, so I have the opportunity to right the wrong.”

“I’ve got all of my country {Ghana} behind me. I’ve got all of the little children back home who want to be where I am, and I know it’s not an easy fight, but I’m coming. Losing is part of boxing, so regardless of how you lose, it’s all about coming back. So whatever happened with the Teofimo Lopez fight, it is what it is and I took it as a man. I knew I needed to come back and I came back very strong, and that is the reason why Loma chose me, and Saturday we are going to see what happens.”

Jared Anderson

“I’ll be honest, he let a cruiserweight stop him, so that says it all. I had a pretty tough camp emotionally, but we came physically. We’re now mentally prepared, thanks to my team. They mean a lot to me. They’re behind me.” 

Oleksandr Teslenko

“I know I’m the underdog, but I don’t care what people say.”

Nico Ali Walsh

“This is such a humbling experience and it’s been an honor. It’s been a whirlwind these last couple of months, and to be among these great fighters… all these fighters I’ve watched before in the past. Being on the undercard of Lomachenko is amazing.”

Xander Zayas

“I have to close out the year strong and put on a show here at Madison Square Garden.”

“I’ve been having a lot of fun here in New York. It means a lot to me. it means a lot to the Puerto Rican fans. My team came off a great victory two weeks ago {with George Kambosos Jr.} here at Madison Square Garden, so I want to keep that momentum going, I’m ready to put on a show Saturday night, and now it’s laser focus.”

Keyshawn Davis

“I’m signed with Top Rank, the {Olympics} are over, and I feel like there is really no more pressure. It’s all business at this point. I believe in myself. I know I can fight. I’m going to go in there like I’ve been doing this entire year. We’re just going to keep this train going.”

Kelvin Davis

“This means a lot to me. It’s like a dream come true with me and my brother on the same card.”

SATURDAY, December 11, 2021

ESPN, ESPN Deportes & ESPN+, 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT

Vasiliy Lomachenko vs. Richard Commey, 12 rounds, vacant WBO Intercontinental Lightweight Title

Jared Anderson vs. Oleksandr Teslenko, 8 rounds, Anderson’s Jr. NABF Heavyweight Title

Keyshawn Davis vs. Jose Zaragoza, 6 rounds, lightweight

Nico Ali Walsh vs. Reyes Sanchez, 4 rounds, middleweight


ESPN+, 5:30 p.m. ET/2:30 p.m. PT

Xander Zayas vs. Alessio Mastronunzio, 6 rounds, junior middleweight

Pablo Valdez vs. Julio Cesar Sanchez, 6 rounds, welterweight

James Wilkins vs. Juan Tapia, 8 rounds, featherweight

Joe Ward vs. Britton Norwood, 6 rounds, light heavyweight

Kelvin Davis vs. Ryan Schwartzberg, 4 rounds, welterweight

John Bauza vs. Michael Williams Jr., 8 rounds, junior welterweight


If you’re interested in accessing additional Top Rank imagery available for licensing beyond the photo link above, please go to the following event home pages to license our images:
 
Event Name: Vasiliy Lomachenko vs. Richard Commey — Press Conference
Date: Thursday, December 9, 2021
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Promoted by Top Rank, in association with DiBella Entertainment, tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by visiting Ticketmaster.com or MSG.com.
 
In order to attend the event, all guests age 12 and older are required to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination (this means having at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine prior to attending). MSG’s comprehensive COVID-19 guidelines, including those regarding children under 12, can be found at https://www.msg.com/madison-square-garden/faqs.
 
About Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp.
Madison Square Garden Entertainment Corp. (MSG Entertainment) is a leader in live entertainment. The Company presents or hosts a broad array of events in its diverse collection of venues: New York’s Madison Square Garden, Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, Radio City Music Hall and Beacon Theatre; and The Chicago Theatre. MSG Entertainment is also building a new state-of-the-art venue in Las Vegas, MSG Sphere at The Venetian. In addition, the Company features the original production – the Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes – and through Boston Calling Events, produces the Boston Calling Music Festival. The Company’s two regional sports and entertainment networks, MSG Network and MSG+, deliver a wide range of live sports content and other programming. Also under the MSG Entertainment umbrella is Tao Group Hospitality, with entertainment dining and nightlife brands including: Tao, Marquee, Lavo, Beauty & Essex, Cathédrale, Hakkasan and Omnia. More information is available at www.msgentertainment.com.  

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