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There are a few things ubiquitous about featherweight titleholder Leo Santa Cruz. Mark Clayton Jersey .There is the unmistakable boatload of punches he throws fight in and fight out, which has helped make him a fan favorite. There is the smile that never seems to leave his face. And there is his father and trainer, Jose Santa Cruz, always by his side and wearing a big, black cowboy hat.When Leo Santa Cruz steps into the ring to make his second title defense on Saturday (Showtime, 9 p.m. ET, with preliminary bouts on Showtime Extreme at 7 p.m. ET/PT), in a much-anticipated and expected action-packed fight against former unified junior featherweight titleholder Carl Frampton at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, Jose Santa Cruz will once again be at his side.It has been touch and go for the elder Santa Cruz because he is in the fight of his life against bone cancer. He is apparently doing well at the moment and was healthy enough to work with his son during the training camp and to make the trip from their home in Southern California to New York for the fight.I am so happy my father is here with us, Leo Santa Cruz said. We thought he might not be able to make it, but thank God he is here with us. Not having my dad here in New York with me would have been hard. It actually brought tears to my eyes, but I am very happy that he is here and will be in my corner for my fight.The Santa Cruz family is well-liked throughout the boxing community and Lou DiBella, promoter of the card, seemingly spoke for all recently when he told Leo Santa Cruz during a media teleconference to discuss the match, I just want you to know that all of us in the entire boxing world are praying for your dad and thank you for your dad.Leo Santa Cruz, probably wearing that big smile, responded, Thank you guys for your prayers and, yes, my dad right now, hes doing great. Thank God, and hopefully he continues to beat cancer.Jose Santa Cruz, a Mexican immigrant, got his son started in boxing along wth Leos brothers, Jose Armando, a former lightweight contender, and Antonio. As long as he was healthy enough, Jose says he was not about to miss what many view as the most dangerous fight of Leos career -- a career that has seen him win world titles in three weight classes -- bantamweight, junior featherweight and featherweight.Im so thrilled for Leo that he has this opportunity and to be here for him, Jose Santa Cruz said. I know Frampton is undefeated, but Leo comes very prepared. He has worked hard in camp, like he always does. Hopefully both fighters give the fans a good fight on fight night.Leo Santa Cruz claimed a vacant featherweight belt by majority decision last August in a fight of the year contender against Southern California rival and fellow three-division titlist Abner Mares.Then, on Feb. 27, Santa Cruz (32-0-1, 18 KOs), 27, dispatched former titlist Kiko Martinez (from whom Frampton won his first world title) in five rounds. The win came only hours after Northern Irelands Frampton (22-0, 14 KOs), 29, outpointed rival Scott Quigg to unify junior featherweight titles as they aimed to set up Saturdays big fight.But with his father struggling with his illness a few months ago, Leo Santa Cruz said he contemplated pulling out of the fight with Frampton.We didnt know how my dad was going to be, or if he would be in my corner or if he was going to be able to beat cancer, Santa Cruz said. We didnt know what was going to go on. So, yes, we thought about [canceling the fight]. But then when we went to talk to my dad and told him about it he told us that no, that this is a job that even if he cant be there then we still have to go out there and do what we do. I knew he was going to be happier if I went out there and fought.My dad would get strong and he said, Oh, no, no, no. This cancer is not going to beat me. Im going to fight it. Im going to fight it. Im going to beat it and youre going to go out there and do the same thing. So thats what his words were. It was a big help and then it made us come out here and work harder.By the late part of training camp Leo said his father was in the gym daily, even if he wasnt involved hands-on as he usually is.At the beginning, it was really difficult, he said. But the last couple of weeks, he was there in the camp. He was there each day doing what he had to do, so I think this chance, it has been great. Hed promised that hed come to the fight and not to give up.Antonio Santa Cruz, Leos younger brother, works alongside his father as a trainer for his brother, but he took on added responsibility during this training camp.My father is usually the one who tells us what to do. Im in the ring with Leo but hes still there, Antonio said. He is sick, but he is still going to the gym. He wants to be there for Leo.Said Jose Santa Cruz: I feel good. Right now Im going to the gym every day. Leo looks good in the ring and is training very well. Little by little, Antonio is learning and even Im still learning. Were both getting better as trainers and that is our goal -- to be great. I feel the love from my sons and I love them a lot too. Im proud of them and Im proud that they are my sons.When his father began to feel a bit better, the decision was made to go through with the fight, Leo Santa Cruz said.He has always been there with me since the beginning of my career, since I was very small, he said. When the doctors told me that he would be in my corner, I was even more ready for this fight. I know that this is going to be an interesting fight. Were both undefeated and were going to make it a war. Neither of us wants that first loss. Were going to leave it all in the ring. This wont be an easy fight. Its a 50-50 fight. The fighter who wants it the most will win the night.In the 10-round junior welterweight co-feature, former featherweight and junior lightweight titleholder Mikey Garcia (34-0, 28 KOs), of Riverside, California, who has been out idle for 2? years because of a legal battle over his promotional contract, will return and face former featherweight titlist Elio Rojas (24-2, 14 KOs), of the Dominican Republic, similarly coming off a 23-month layoff.In the opener of the tripleheader, junior middleweight contenders Tony Harrison (23-1, 19 KOs), of Detroit, and the Ricky Hatton-trained Sergey Rabchenko (27-1, 20 KOs), of Belarus, will meet in a world title elimination bout.There are also two other 10-round bouts on the Showtime Extreme portion of the card: former welterweight and junior welterweight world titleholder Paulie Malignaggi (35-7, 7 KOs) against Brooklyn neighborhood rival Gabriel Tito Bracero (24-2, 5 KOs) in a welterweight fight and Ukrainian lightweight Ivan Redkach (19-1-1, 15 KOs) against Philadelphias Tevin Farmer (21-4-1, 5 KOs).Santa Cruz and Frampton have shown the utmost respect for each other throughout the promotion and their high regard for each other carried over into the final news conference with Hall of Famer Barry McGuigan, Framptons manager, offering kind words to Jose Santa Cruz.I just wanted to say that were thrilled that Jose Santa Cruz is back on his feet, McGuigan said. Every one of our families is affected by cancer.Jose Santa Cruz is not looking for sympathy. He is just excited to be at his sons side for the fight, as he always has been.Im really happy to be here, he said. Ive been at all of Leos fights and its great to be at this one. This is just another reason to be happy. Chris McAlister Jersey . Now tied for second in the league in shootout goals, the 24-year-old likes to see what the opposing goaltender has in store before he ultimately lands on a move. Jay Graham Jersey . 31, the CFL club announced Monday. The team also has yet to decide on the future of Doug Berry, who began the season as a consultant to the head coach but took over the offensive co-ordinators duties in July. http:///...rsey-large-663d.html . -- Nathan Pancel scored twice as the Sudbury Wolves defeated the North Bay Battalion 4-2 on Saturday in Ontario Hockey League action. BOSTON -- Drew Pomeranz felt a lot more comfortable in his second start for the Red Sox. It just wasnt enough for him to earn his first victory in a Boston uniform.Jose Iglesias hit a two-run homer in the sixth inning, Justin Verlander pitched six solid innings and the Detroit Tigers beat the Red Sox 4-2 on Monday night to spoil Pomeranzs second start at Fenway.Pomeranz (8-8), recently acquired from the San Diego Padres, gave up four hits and struck out seven in six innings. Both of the runs he allowed came via Iglesias homer.I had a good curveball tonight. I was locating my fastball a lot better, Pomeranz said. I was in a lot better counts all night. I really made one bad pitch.Boston failed to homer Monday, ending a streak of 15 straight games with at least one. The Red Sox have lost three of their last four and fell to 11-12 this season against AL Central teams.Theyve also now gone 21-21 this season in games decided by two or fewer runs.Victor Martinez and James McCann also drove in runs for the Tigers. Detroit pulled within 5 1/2 games of idle AL Central-leading Cleveland.Verlander (10-6) allowed one run and five hits and struck out five to pick up the victory. He is 3-0 in his last five starts.Francisco Rodriguez earned his 28th save.Pomeranz entered Mondays start looking to bounce back from his dismal Boston debut last week against San Francisco, in which he gave up five runs in just three innings.He was cruising through five innings Monday, allowing just two hits. That changed in the sixth when Iglesias crushed Pomeranzs fastball high over the Green Monster in left for a two-run homer to put the Tigers up 2-1.Iglesias scored his second run of the game in the eighth, trotting across home plate on Martinezs single off reliever Clay Buchholz to make it 4-1.Boston loaded the bases on three straight singles off Justtin Wilson to begin its half of the eighth. Marcus Robinson Jersey. A single by Sandy Leon pulled the Red Sox within 4-2, but Wilson settled down to get an out and Rodriguez came on to help end the rally.We just didnt cash in on the opportunities we created tonight, manager John Farrell said.Bostons hitters had several long at-bats against Verlander, pushing his pitch count above 40 through just two innings. In the second, Travis Shaw lined a double into the right-field corner, scoring Jackie Bradley Jr.Despite the loss, Pomeranz said he feels good about how hes progressed over his first two starts since the trade.It was nice to get back in that five-day routine and get on a schedule somewhere and kind of fall back into what Ive been doing all year, he said. Just kind of learning how to approach it in a different league and the scouting reports and everything. I think we settled with them pretty good in between starts.TRAINERS ROOMRed Sox: CF Mookie Betts returned to the lineup Monday after missing a pair of games with right knee soreness. ... Manager John Farrell said RHP Craig Kimbrel (left knee surgery) is progressing well and looked good in a short bullpen session. He could make a rehab start as soon as this weekend.UP NEXTTigers: RHP Mike Pelfrey (3-9, 4.78 ERA) is coming off a victory at Chicago last week, in which he allowed the White Sox just one run in 5 1/3 innings. Pelfrey hasnt allowed a home run his last eight road starts, spanning 45 1/3 innings.Red Sox: RHP Steven Wright (12-5, 2.67) has won his last four starts. His lone appearance against Detroit was last July, when he allowed four runs over 4 1/3 innings in a loss.---Follow Kyle Hightower on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/khightower ' ' '
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