UPDATE: Al Sands has suffered an Achilles injury while training and announced on Thursday morning (April 13) that his NABA title bout on April 21 versus Brian Howard is now off. Sands says that he noticed swelling around his ankle following a weight lifting routine. A follow up visit to the doctor which included an MRI among other tests revealed that Sands has tendinitis in his achilles tendon. No word yet on what bout will take over the nights main event slot.
(Original story) “The Haitian Temptation” Al Sands (19-2, 7 KO’s) of Duluth, MN will battle Atlanta, Georgia’s Brian Howard (12-1, 9 KO’s) on Friday, April 21, 2017 at the Grand Casino in Hinckley, MN in the night’s main even for the vacant WBA-NABA cruiserweight title.
Robert “Bravo” Brant was set to headline the show in the early stages of the card being put together. Brant explained that he wanted to take a tough fight to keep himself sharp and busy prior to a title fight he has locked in for later this fall. However, Brant’s team felt it was best not to risk injury on April 21st so he was pulled from the show weeks ago.
Sands had an IBO Cruiserweight title fight that fell through last month against Roman Golovashchenko in Germany until Golovashchenko pulled out due to an unspecified injury. The German’s team rescheduled the fight for May 11th but elected this time not to pursue Sands. After all communications with that fight ceased, Sands and his team locked in the fight with Howard. Howard is best known in Minnesota for his unanimous decision victory over Phil Williams last October in Hinckley.
Also on the show, Minneapolis welterweight DeLorien Caraway (8-1) is coming off the best win of his career last time out at Hinckley and will box Pennsylvania’s Jerome Rodriguez (7-6-3).
Circle of Discipline’s Ve Shawn Owens (5-0) of Minneapolis takes on Romon Barber (7-13) of Kansas in a middleweight bout.
Joe Amouta (7-1) of the Fighting Chance Boxing Gym in Minneapolis, MN faces Travis Perzynski (2-2) of Spartan Martial Arts in Oakdale, MN in a super middleweight bout.
Duluth’s RJ “T-Rex” Laase (12-3) makes his boxing return against North Dakota’s Jacob Fox (2-4) in a welterweight fight.
Undefeated Minneapolis super welterweight Celso Ramirez (5-0) of the Circle of Discipline will square off with South Dakota’s Ryan Soft (3-6-1).
BJ Lacy (1-1) of Minneapolis and Duluth’s Anthony Palmisano (debut) meet in a cruiserweight fight to start the nights action off.