WKA U.S. champ will defend his title June 8 at the Kenan Arena
Staff Reports Lockport Union-Sun & Journal
Just weeks away from the “Road To Glory” professional kickboxing fight card at the Lockport Kenan Arena, hometown warriors — including WKA United States Light Heavyweight Kickboxing Champion Amer Abdallah — are finalizing their preparation.
On Saturday night, June 8, Abdallah (13-0) will defend his WKA title for the fourth time on Lockport turf, this time against Robert Zaftkey of Baltimore. Zaftkey boasts a 10-2 pro kickboxing record and is currently 3-3 in Mixed Martial Arts competition. The WKA-sanctioned fight is a scheduled 10-rounder.
Last month, the World Kickboxing Association ranked Abdallah among the Top 10 in the world, placing him in line for a world title fight.
“We have to keep winning and winning big,” Abdallah said.
Having spent half of his present training camp in the Mayweather Boxing club in Las Vegas, Abdallah, who’s now back home training in Lockport, said he’s taken his boxing skills to a new level.
“The Mayweather-style is perfect for Amer who, likes to counter off of his opponents,” said Abdallah’s manager Ahmed Imamovic. “I’m always amazed at how quickly Amer picks up on new techniques and strategies.”
World-renowned trainer Jeff Mayweather will be the new face in Abdallah’s’ corner, along with long-time trainers Lockport’s Corey Webster and Jim Andrello. Jeff Mayweather is the uncle of one of the world’s most recognizable pro fighters today, Floyd Mayweather Jr., an undefeated five-division world champion.
Meanwhile, making his kickboxing debut on the card is “Son of a Legend” Lockport’s Joe Taylor, who will take on Jay Boyd of Syracuse in a three-round bout in the heavyweight division.
Known for his superior athletic ability and heavy-handed power, Taylor’s debut is anticipated to be one of the most action-packed of the evening. Taylor currently stars as the starting tailback on the Lockport Rampage semi-pro football team and he’s the son of Lock City boxing great Johnny Taylor, who passed away recently.
And after a hiatus of more than three decades, popular Lockport city worker Dominic Esposito will climb back into the ring one last time.
“I was shocked when he told me he wanted to fight, but he came in and put in hard work,” Abdallah said. “He wants to make his family and community proud of him. Because of that, I couldn’t say no.”
Esposito will fight in the heavyweight division against Steven Wilson of Syracuse in a 3-round bout.
Among the many proud sponsors of the June 8 pro fight card are Local Edge (Jeff Folckemer), Mulvey Construction (Tim Mulvey), All Metal Works (Dominic Ciliberto), JS Motorsports (Kyle Brent), Executive Landscaping (Tony Butera), Niagara Gutter (Brad Cline) and Cain, Witlin & Dry Accountants (Scott Cain).
Record company Grand Hustle Entertainment will provide entertainment at the event.
Tickets are available at Ticketmaster.com or at the Lockport Athletic & Fitness Club on South Transit Road, Town of Lockport.