Texas middleweight John “The Phenom” Vera returns to the ring March 4th to headline the first 2021 show presented by Roy Jones Jr. (RJJ) Boxing Promotions, streaming on UFC FIGHT PASS® from Biloxi Civic Center in Biloxi, Mississippi.
The first 2021 installment of RJJ Boxing on UFC FIGHT PASS® will be streamed live and exclusively on UFC FIGHT PASS®, the world’s leading digital subscription service for combat sports, starting at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT. To sign-up for UFC FIGHT PASS, please visit www.ufcfightpass.com.
The 32-year-old Vera (19-1, 11 KOs), fighting out Forth Worth (TX), will take on California veteran Cleotis “Mookie” Pandarvis (21-7-2, 9 KOs) in the 8-round main event.
“We’re excited to kick-off our third year streaming our fights on UFC FIGHT PASS,” RJJ Boxing CEO/Co-founder Keith Veltre said. “We’re also happy to be going back to Biloxi. Promoting during this pandemic has been a major challenge, but we’re committed to providing a platform for boxing fans a watch competitive, entertaining action RJJ Boxing is known for in the industry.
“Our March 4th show will be headlined by middleweight John Vera against veteran Cleotis Pendarvis. John’s battle back to the top of the division has been slowed because of COVID-19 restrictions, but we believe this is the start of his special journey back to where he belongs. Top middleweights will be put on notice after this fight. We also have some of the best young talent in North America scheduled to fight on our March 4th card.”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Vera hasn’t fought since last August in Las Vegas, when he won a 6-round unanimous decision over Ravshan Hudaynazarov (17-1). Vera is a former NABA USA (U.S.) super welterweight champion, while Pendarvis was a former USBA lightweight titlist.
“I’m happy to be headlining my first show back in more than a year,” Vera commented between training sessions. “It’s unfortunate I’ve had such a long layoff, but I’m ready to get back at it. 2020 was rough for everyone, but I’ve stayed active, healthy and in shape. Only thing I could do is roll with the punches, Fortunately, I live in Texas, so we didn’t go through much of a lockdown like other states. Physically and mentally I’m in the best place.”
In 2018, Vera travelled to France to fight Michel Soro (31-2-1) for the WBA Interim junior middleweight title, in which Vera lost a 12-round unanimous decision.
In the 8-round co-feature, Georgia light heavyweight Michael Seals (24-3, 8 KOs), who lost his last fight a year ago to Eleider Alvarez, faces Detroit’s upset-minded Demetrious Banks (10-9-1, 5 KOs), a former WBC Youth cruiserweight title challenger.
In a battle of undefeated super featherweights, Dominican prospect Eridson Garcia (10-0, 7 KOs) meets Jose Miguel Diaz Valenzuela (6-0, 1 KO), of Phoenix, in a 6-round match.
Roy Jones, Jr. protégé Michael ‘’Boy Wonder’’ Williams, Jr. (14-0, 10 KOs) puts his perfect record on the line in a 6-round bout against Michigan super lightweight Julius Dyis (10-3, 5 KOs). The 21-year-old Williams is trained by living legend Jones.
Scheduled to be in action on the undercard are three undefeated boxers in 6-round bouts: New Orleans super lightweight Jonathan Montrel (8-0, 6 KOs) vs. Ariel “La Guerro” Vazquez (14-28-3, 9 KOs), Texas welterweight Christian Edwards (11-2, 6 KOs) vs. Jonathan Steele (9-6-1, 6 KOs), and Tennessee super lightweight Tyler “Short Fuse” Tomlin (9-0, 5 KOs) vs. TBA. Slated to make his pro debut vs. TBA is Mississippi super welterweight Randy Blythe in a 4-rounder
All fights are subject to change.