Carlos Adames: This is A Golden Era For Dominican Boxing

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The rising middleweight contender aims to enhance his country's legacy when he faces Juan Macias Montiel for the interim WBC 160-pound Title Saturday night on PBC on SHOWTIME.

“We are not the Dominican boxers of the past,” said Carlos Adames.

Dominican boxing is currently in a golden era, Adames exclaimed. He’ll have the opportunity to hammer that point this Saturday when Adames (21-1, 16 KOs) battles Juan Macias Montiel for the interim WBC Middleweight title at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California, live on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT).

“I want all the Dominicans to tune in to my fight and I promise that we will continue to make history,” Adames said. 

Attempting to build on a historic night this past August, when Dominicans Alberto Puello and Hector Luis Garcia won titles on the same night, Adames wants to be the fourth fighter from the Dominican Republic to currently hold a championship. 

Boxing is not new to his home country. Nearly a hundred years ago, a squat middleweight with a wicked hook named Carlos Perez was ranked amongst the best. For his biggest fights, Perez had to travel to Cuba or Europe. The same with Carlos Teofilo Cruz, the country’s first champion. Cruz won his title in the 1960s after relocating to Puerto Rico, where he found better training and a wife. His younger brother Leo, who followed his sibling’s footsteps by moving to Puerto Rico, were exceptions. 

For too many years, the plight of Dominican boxers was that of a fighter not quite good enough to “win the big one.” 

“Back then,” Adames explained, “they only trained when they had a fight lined up. In between fights, they had jobs.” 

Like Vilomar Fernandez, who moved to New York from suburban Santiago. A lightweight contender who averaged three fights per year and about 30 hours per week picking up fares around Madison Square Garden, Vilomar the taxi driver was good enough to outpoint Alexis Arguello and go thirteen close rounds with Roberto Duran. 

If Vilomar had access to the type of training that Adames has had recently, he may have become a champion. Adames gets his chance October 8. 

Adames was born and raised in Elias Piña, which is about as far west as you can go in the Dominican Republic before entering Haiti. Though it has the usual issues that plague most border towns – illegal immigration, smuggling of contraband – it’s known for its blue-water rivers and cold fruit. One travel channel on YouTube says its home to the best coffee in the country. If Adames’ trainer, Bob Santos, is correct, they may soon be saying it is home to one of boxing’s best boxers. 

“He’s going to be champion,” Santos said in an interview with 210BoxingTv. “That said, for his God-given talent, if he doesn’t ascend to the pound-for-pound list, he’s doing his talent a disservice.” 

I want all the Dominicans to tune in to my fight and I promise that we will continue to make history. Middleweight Contender - Carlos Adames

Santos, who has been in boxing for thirty years, says Adames has as much talent as any fighter he has ever seen. “Almost second to none,” he added. 

About sixteen years ago, one of Adames’ older brothers felt the same way. 

Adames comes from a family of 35 brothers and sisters. “Different mothers of course, but we all get along.” When he was twelve, one of his older brothers saw him using his fists and immediately brought him over to the local gym.

“I liked boxing right away,” Adames said. 

He soon started competing and, whenever there was a big fight on, he’d go to a neighbor’s home who had channels that carried Floyd Mayweather fights. 

“Floyd was my favorite and later on, as I started watching more boxing, Muhammad Ali and Sugar Ray Leonard became my other favorites,” said Adames. 

He kept on boxing and soon found himself in amateur tournaments in South America, Mexico, Europe, and Puerto Rico. It was at a tournament in Caguas, Puerto Rico where he began thinking of turning pro. 

Adames’ early fights saw him going back-and-forth between New York and the Dominican Republic, most of his 35 siblings present for his bouts. October 8 sees him return to California, where he scored one of his biggest wins last year against the battle tested Sergiy Derevyanchenko. Montiel is also battle tested. He recently went the distance with Jermall Charlo. Adames is ready for him and anyone else according to both Adames and his trainer, Santos. 

This past weekend was a slow news day in Elias Piña. A truck carrying unmarked cigarettes was stopped at the border and a truck driver from Haiti attempted to bypass the border guards by driving in against traffic. Renovations on one of the town markets was close to completion. The rest of the news was national or international. After October 8th, the local reporters might have a new world champion to write about. 

For a closer look at Carlos Adames, check out his fighter page. 

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