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Glendale feel to tonight's Woodland Hills War

Boxing: Glendale promoter puts on another card featuring local Tolmajyan and Glendale Glory vet.

June 03, 2011|By Gabriel Rizk, gabriel.rizk@latimes.com

GLENDALE — Anatoliy Dudcehnko, who's had some of his best fights in Glendale, and Gapo Tolmajyan, who trains in the Jewel City, will add some local flavor to tonight's "War at Woodland Hills 4," which is co-promoted by Glendale's own resident fight promoter, Kahren Harutyunyan.

Between their twin trilogies of shows at the Warner Center Marriott in Woodland Hills, site of tonight's card, and the Glendale Civic Auditorium under the Glendale Glory banner, Harutyunyan and his partner Steve Bash have set a standard of staging accessible action-packed boxing events for area fight fans. They will look to continue the tradition when doors open at 7 p.m. tonight with first bell set for 7:30.

Dudchenko (11-2, 8 knockouts) has appeared on the undercards of all three Glendale Glory events, as well as the March 4 Warner Center War 3, where he defeated Joe Broken Rope via fourth-round technical knockout to run his current win streak to eight straight.

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Tonight, the Ukrainian cruiserweight will take a step up on several fronts — to his first main-event fight and first eight-rounder, all coming against his most experienced opponent yet in Michael Simms (21-13-2, 13 KOs).

"He has been on a lot of [local] cards, he has built up a following," Bash said of Dudchenko, who has never lost on an Art of Boxing Promotions/Bash Boxing card. "I think the main reason why he's headlining — not to discredit any of the guys he's fought before — but, certainly, Michael Simms is a step up in class for Dudchenko.

"It's something he wanted as his next step up. Hopefully, he wins the fight and fights an even more important fight after that."

Simms, a former amateur world titlist, has never been knocked out in his pro career. He has lost two of his last three fights, including most recently an eight-round unanimous decision loss to Alexander Frenkel in March 2010.

Bash said Dudchenko hopes to use a win over Simms as a springboard to bigger fights, as other Glendale Glory/Warner alums have, such as Ray Beltran, who recently moved onto a ShoBox gig and Javier Gallo, who last fought on the undercard of a Manny Pacquiao card.

"It's as close to a 50-50 fight as you can get," Bash said. "The records kind of get thrown out because both fighters have world class ability."

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