Courtesy of a press release from SHINE Fights.
New York, N.Y. - He's long been considered boxing ring royalty, so colorful brawler Ricardo Mayorga is more than pleased about the name of the venue where he will make his MMA debut against former UFC stalwart Din Thomas on May 15.
"I like it," Mayorga said, "the Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville, NC. I like the crown because I have been a king in boxing and I will similarly rule in MMA. My critics are legion, I know, but I am hated by many, loved by some but respected by all. And no paying fan, at the arena or watching on TV, has ever requested a refund after one of my fights.
"I am a blue collar brawler and I know who pays the rent and how I buy my Nicaraguan cigars, my beers and everything else, it's the fans and I love them all even the ones who jeer me," Mayorga said. "Anyone who thinks this is some joke will be shocked at how easily I handle this Thomas character with my hand speed and dynamite power."
"To me, Thomas is just another tough guy in my way. I eat ordinary tough guys like him for breakfast and then I spit them out. I will spit him out in North Carolina, you watch!"
Thomas, who has fought on nine UFC cards, is a highly respected MMA veteran who possesses a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu from the world-renowned American Top Team.
Thomas (25-8) doesn't take Mayorga's 29-7 record in boxing lightly by any means.
"This guy blows a lot of smoke and I don't mean from his ever present cigarettes and cigars," Thomas said. "But, with his humungous ego, he isn't coming into my house to be humiliated. I will be ready for a real rumble and I hope to make him submit. The great Oscar de la Hoya could not pound some humility into this character but I know I can do this."
Upstart Shine Fight Promotions will put tickets on sale today (Wednesday, March 31) for this historic event which many observers thought was merely being talked about. The tickets are reasonably priced at $25, $40, $50, $75, $150.
Given the Fayetteville area's strong military and ex-military population, of course there is a military discount of $5 per ticket with the exception of the $150 tickets.
WORLD'S COLLIDE: MAYORGA VS THOMAS tops an action- packed card loaded with MMA stars. Also featured on the card will be former PRIDE and EliteXC star Murilo "Ninja" Rua, the 2009 Abu Dhabi Combat Club 88-kilogram and Absolute division champion, Braulio Estima, undefeated MMA fighter and former Olympian Rick Hawn, and UFC/StrikeForce/Bodog/EliteXC/Sengoku veteran Nick "The Goat" Thompson. The show is taking place at the Crown Coliseum in Fayetteville, NC, and will be beamed on PPV on cable and satellite in the United States and Canada.
Information can be obtained by calling the Crown Coliseum Box Office at 910-438-4100.
Tickets cannot be purchased at the Crown Box Office - Only at Ticketmaster Charge 1-800-745-3000 or Ticketmaster.com.
The event will be distributed in High Definition and will be available in both English and Spanish (where available). The MMA showdown will be distributed live on Pay Per View beginning at 9 p.m. ET/PT by MultiVision Media, Inc. on Saturday, May 15 at 9:00 PM ET/6:00 PM PT.
There will be a 30 minute countdown show prior to the live event at 8:30 PM ET/5:30 PM PT. The suggested retail price for the MMA showdown is $29.95.
Shine Fights CEO Devin Price said he envisions the match as a crossover moment for fans of both boxing and MMA. And, he predicts, the live venue tickets will go flying out of the box office.
"I think this is the right market for this great event. Folks in the Fayetteville area like good fights and the name of the sport is not as important. They will be turning out to see genuine combat with a masterful MMA veteran going up against one of the great boxers, in top form and still committed to the sport of fisticuffs, for the first time in this sport. This is history in the making and the fans who watch these fights will be the real victors here. There will be excitement galore and the prices for the tickets are very reasonable.
"In my opinion, boxing and MMA are not in some knockdown, dragout war," Price said.
"It's not all one and none of the other. The sports have so much in common, especially when it comes to the courage and fighting heart of the athletes. There is room in the marketplace for both boxing and MMA, and seeing a big boxing name like Mayorga cross over without abandoning boxing is proof of this.
"It's all about an open mind because fans of one sport can learn to love the other. I really feel this. All that boxing vs. MMA nonsense is ancient history."
To learn more about Shine Fight Promotions, follow the organization on Twitter @ShineFights, Myspace (www.myspace.com/ShineFights) or become a fan on Facebook.