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Martirosyan switches trainers for next fight

Glendale native is now training with Buddy McGirt to prepare for his next bout against Richard Gutierrez on Oct. 29.

October 01, 2011|By Gabriel Rizk, gabriel.rizk@latimes.com

With the negotiations for a proposed blockbuster fight between Glendale's own Vanes "Nightmare" Martirosyan and Alfredo Angulo having long since gone cold, it now appears the closest Martirosyan will get to the man known as "Perro" for the foreseeable future is taking on an opponent who once fought Angulo.

Martirosyan's next fight is set for Oct. 29, a 10-rounder with Richard Gutierrez at the WinStar Casino in Thackerville, Okla. And, while that news is likely to disappoint those who were hoping to see the unbeaten light middleweight step up to the elite level of competition in the 154-pound division, the hope in Martirosyan's camp is that this will be the final small step toward a big-time title shot and a huge payday.

"I hoped the last one was the last step [to the title]," Martirosyan (30-0, 19 KOs) said of his seventh-round TKO victory over Saul Roman on June 4, which won him the World Boxing Council Silver light middleweight belt, securing him No. 1 contender status to the WBC light middleweight title currently held by Saul Alvarez. "Hopefully, they'll let this be the last one because I'm getting tired of it."

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Instead of his win over Roman leading to a crack at Alvarez, who is signed to Golden Boy Promotions, Martirosyan was offered yet another eliminator bout with the rugged Angulo, another Golden Boy fighter, in Mexico on Nov. 5. The fight was scrapped in early September when negotiations reportedly broke down over Martirosyan's concern over sticking points ranging from money to venue.

And, in another intersecting career twist in a fall that has already seen him change managers, Martirosyan confirmed on Friday that his training camp for the Oct. 29 fight will be headed by Buddy McGirt.

Martirosyan's uncle, Serge Martirosyan, who replaced Steven Feder as his nephew's manager in early September, said Martirosyan's trainer for most of his career, Freddie Roach, gave his blessing for Martirosyan to find another trainer for the Gutierrez fight, while Roach is preoccupied training other clients. McGirt, winner of the Boxing Writers' Assn. of America Trainer of the Year Award for 2002, has cornered fighters such as Antonio Tarver, Arturo Gatti, Vernon Forrest and Lamon Brewster.

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