Boxing, casinos and the gambling world unfurl their latest marriage made in heaven. South Philadelphia native Sonny Conto becomes a headliner Nov. 18 at Live! Casino Philadelphia. Conto steps into the ring just a couple of miles from his home and breaks in the newly-minted 1,000 plus seat Live! Event Center.
Hailed as a modern-day Rocky, Conto brings together several elements fusing the boxing, casino and sports betting world together. It’s a proven success formula, woven across the nationwide spread of gaming for the last four decades.
“Yo Adrian,” look at this! Conto previously sparred with heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, who concluded an epic boxing trilogy with Deontay Wilder by scoring an 11th round knockout in their Oct. 9 championship bout. Fury used to walk Conto into the ring before Conto’s fights.
Live! Casino boxing information
Tickets are on sale now. The card will consist of a minimum of seven fights with the first one beginning at 7:00 p.m. Doors to open at 6:30 p.m. Must be 21 or older to attend.
Tickets are priced at $50, $75 and $125 and can be purchased at Live Casino Philadelphia’s website or by phone at 215-364-9000.
Live! Casino Philadelphia Nov. 18 fight card
Conto, 7-0 with six knockouts, faces Ed Fountain (12-8, 5KO’s) from St. Louis in a six-round fight.
Super lightweights Gerardo Martinez (5-1, 1 K0) of Coatesville, PA and Christopher Burgos (2-4-1) of Philadelphia, PA will battle six rounds reigniting their rivalry from 2017. Martinez previously won a split decision over Burgos in a tough fought four rounder.
Former World Super Middleweight Champion Charles “The Hatchet” Brewer Sr.’s son, light heavyweight Charles Brewer Jr (1-0, 1K0), of Pennsauken, NJ faces Tariq Green of Philadelphia, who makes his debut in this four-round bout.
Also highlighted on the card will be Philadelphia welterweight Daiyaan Butt (8-1, 4K0s) in a six-round bout against an opponent to be announced.
There will feature a five round light heavyweight fight between Kendall Cannida (3-1, 1K0) of Philadelphia, PA against Khainell Wheeler (5-1, 5 K0s) of Bethlehem, PA.
A note about the cards – Boxing events in general are subject to change. But the nature of these cards won’t. Philadelphia-based fighters will make up a bulk of the participants and the formula looks like it can’t miss.
Local fighters are budget friendly, especially regarding travel. They can form a nucleus of fan and gambling interest. Some may even sell tickets to their own fights. This enables promoters to keep staging cards.
What’s refreshing about this concept is that shorter fights appeal to the constant-action craze brought by the Internet and social media. This approach has also been utilized in UFC.
The pieces are all in place:
- Philly fighters
- High-profile promoters
- A new gambling link
- And and new $700 million casino in which to play it out.
“Yo Adrian,” you’re gonna like this.
Joe Hand Sr. and Russell Peltz pack promotional punch
Conto’s got other heavy-hitting connections. This fight is promoted by Joe Hand Sr, a legendary pioneer in the closed-circuit era of boxing that pre-dated pay-per-view and the live streaming age, in which he still participates.
Hand teams up with Hall of Fame promoter Russell Peltz, who recently published a book “Thirty Dollars and a Cut Eye” about his career. Peltz was an early force in the Atlantic City casino-boxing evolution of the 1980s. He brought star-studded Philadelphia fighters like Matthew Saad Muhammad, Dwight Muhammad Qawi, Frank “The Animal” Fletcher and Jeff Chandler to the Jersey Shore.
Peltz, Hand and others helped baptize Atlantic City’s as the world’s boxing capital. Some fights went into large venues. Others, like many of Fletcher’ s bouts in the Sands casino’s Copa Room, played to boisterous crowds of less than 1,000.
That’s the type of energy this event brings to Philly.
Boxing at event center at Live! Casino Philadelphia
Peltz and Hand always loved promoting here, whether that was in the fabled Blue Horizon or the New Alhambra. The promoters now link the concept of gambling, in which patrons play before and after a fight, to the talent-rich Philadelphia boxing pool gracing a new casino.
Neighborhood fights, local rivalries and a night out for gamblers converge Nov. 18 in a venue suited both for intimacy and noise.
Said Joe Hand Sr.:
“In my 50 years in the boxing business, I have had the opportunity to put together many shows in South Philly and have always enjoyed them the most. Having the opportunity to work with a high-quality partner like Live! Casino is a very exciting time for us here.
*There’s one more benefit to the modern boxing-gambling marriage. FanDuel has an on-site sportsbook at Live! offering an outlet for gamblers to bet on practically anything that evening.
Sports betting at Live! Casino Philadelphia
Besides the fight, patrons can check the progress of their bets for the New England Patriots vs. Atlanta Falcons NFL Thursday night football game. Adventurous gamblers will find a way to bet the gamut of teasers, parlays, first-touchdown scorers, quarters, halves and over-unders around the live event of boxers trading punches.
Live! Casino Philadelphia is home to a FanDuel Sportsbook. It offers offers plush seating, large screens, kiosks and tellers.
Joe Billhimer, Executive Vice President of Cordish Gaming Group and Live! Casinos commented:
“The only thing we wanted to avoid was going head-to-head with an Eagles game. Come out early, have dinner at one of our fabulous restaurants, hang out with you friends at the fight, enjoy an evening of gambling and why not even stay at the hotel?”
Why not indeed.