Big Time Boxing Back in Sacramento; Otis Griffin’s Road Back to the Title
SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA – Upstart promotional company O.P.P. Presents, headed by Mark Nanney, brings world class professional boxing back to the fight town of Sacramento on Friday, August 24 th with their initial event, “Hot August Fights,” at the beautiful DoubleTree Hotel. Perennial light heavyweight contender and hometown favorite Otis “Triple OG” Griffin will headline in the eight-round main event as he begins another trek towards his goal of becoming world champion at 175-pounds, along with a supporting bursting with promising local talent.
“It is almost like reinventing myself,” says Griffin of returning to Sacramento with the help of O.P.P. Presents. “I have been through a lot of ups and downs throughout my career with tough decisions and outright robberies. I still have always fought my way back to the top. If you look at it, I have fought eight title fights and about five title eliminators and I’m poised to go right back up to the top. We are going to do five shows here in my hometown of Sacramento, and bring boxing back to the capital city, which has been a hotbed for boxing over the years and I am excited about it.”
New promoter Mark Nanney is determined to give Griffin the best opportunity possible at achieving his career goals, while developing the next wave of potential contenders and champions out of the area. “It started out with my partner Mr. Pratt, who managed Otis Griffin the past four years,” says Nanney, explaining how this event came together. “His involvement pretty much set us in the direction of putting on cards here in Sacramento. We knew Sacramento as a fight town in the ‘80s, and we want to give the fans what they have been looking for the past 20 or 30 years. Mike Ortega, who has been known in the
area for his great amateur career, and Juan “Chico” Martinez, are two of the names that are looking to jump out and get as much exposure as possible. It’s a card full of local Sacramento talent, and we expect to draw out the Sacramento fan base.”
In addition to a new promoter, local fight fans should be excited that a new venue has decided to play host to the sweet science. “The DoubleTree was a venue that opened their doors to us,” says Nanney. “There is another local promoter in town in Nasser Niavaroni, and with all due respect, he’s been doing it for many years, but we did not want to step on any toes and get involved in any of his sites. We wanted to start out fresh, and the DoubleTree gave us that opportunity. We look forward to establishing a new arena in Sacramento and that is why we chose the DoubleTree.”
Not only have O.P.P Presents and the DoubleTree committed to the August 24 th event, but a five-fight series has been planned, with the second event penciled in for the month of October. “We are looking to do three or four fights at the DoubleTree, and then with either the fourth or fifth fight, step into the Sacramento Memorial Auditorium, with Otis Griffin in the main event fighting for either a regional title
or a world title elimination bout,” outlines Nanney.
For Griffin, this new partnership with O.P.P Presents gives the career-long road warrior the ability to fight on a level playing field, something “Triple OG” has rarely seen in recent years. “I have been right there so many times,” says Griffin. “To quote the Rosie Perez saying, ‘Sometimes when you lose, you actually win and sometimes when you win you actually tie.’ I can say that because I have been robbed. You have to realize, I’m a fighter out here on my own without a promoter right now. I’ve been doing this independently. So when people left me for dead, it is not like I had a promoter like a Golden Boy anymore or a Don Chargin or anybody like that. It was just Otis Griffin and my manager Mr. Pratt. We
put together these wins the hard way on the road against credible opponents and former champions and we got back into the limelight that way. So that’s what we are going to do with Mark Nanney and O.P.P. Presents. We are going to roll right back into the driver’s seat again.”
“We want to let the people of Sacramento that we are here to stay, and we are here to bring the fight game back to the people of Sacramento,” states Nanney. “We want to bring the sport back to the level it was here twenty or thirty years ago, when big time boxing was thriving in the city. We are building the stars of tomorrow, like Mike Ortega, Juan Martinez and a great blue collar fighter in Larry Ward, who will turn around his career with O.P.P. The main thing is, follow these shows and you will see a little bit of everything. You are going to see former world champions come through as well as the stars of tomorrow that are going to keep this chain going.”
Tickets for the event, promoted by O.P.P. Presents, are available at the DoubleTree gift shop, all Dimple Record locations as well as online at OPPBoxing.com.