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  • Writer's pictureLawrence Williams

Canadian Grudge Match: Erik Bazinyan Will Face Shakeel Phinn on April 11th

Press Release:

Current NABF super-middleweight champion Erik Bazinyan (32-0, 23 KOs) will attempt to defend his title for the 7th time in a local fight with global implications against Shakeel Phinn (26-3-1, 17 KOs). Pitting the best of the North Crown against that of the South Crown of the Quebec metropolis, this duel, fought for the honor of the province, is scheduled for 10 rounds and will take place on April 11 at the Cabaret du Casino de Montréal. The full card will be broadcast live on Punching Grace and ESPN+ starting at 7:00 PM.


The 168 lb division is undoubtedly one of the most competitive and exciting divisions currently. Therefore, with the idea of offering boxing fans an exciting fight featuring two local athletes, Montreal promoter Eye of the Tiger confirms the bout between his boxer, current #2 WBA, #3 WBC, #3 WBO, and #5 IBF contender, Erik Bazinyan, and the man nicknamed "The Jamaican Juggernaut," Shakeel Phinn. As Camille Estephan, president of EOTTM, points out, the objective is to offer an exciting evening while also keeping his protégé active.

Currently in a very favorable position in the rankings of the four federations and holding the NABF title in the division, Erik Bazinyan must stay ready for any significant fight that may arise this year. It is therefore essential for him to maintain his current momentum. Since his fight against Ronald Ellis in October 2023, which ended with a resounding knockout in the 6th round, "Bzo" has sent a clear message to the division. He then dominated veteran Billie Facundo Godoy, stopping him even earlier than anyone before, ending the fight in the 3rd round. In short, the Armenian-Canadian has reached another level in the past year, demonstrating that his determination to win knows no bounds.

Shakeel Phinn, who also trains in Montreal, but with Ian McKillop, has not fought in the region since 2022. So, for him, it's a return in front of a crowd where he will undoubtedly benefit from the support of many fans. Currently on a streak of five consecutive victories, it is highly likely that Phinn will give everything he has in the ring to win the belt and Bazinyan's rankings. Accustomed to going rounds and holding his own, the Jamaican-Canadian can also cause an upset, as he did in his last fight by knocking out his opponent in the first round. His rebellious and opportunistic side in the ring can be dangerous.

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