New York

Junior Welter Alex Vargas Invites Cletus Seldin To Rumble, In An All-New York Clash



Junior Welter Alex Vargas Invites Cletus Seldin To Rumble, In An All-New York Clash

Normalcy is returning to New York, bit by bit. We still haven't gotten word that a marquee card will be booked into Madison Square Garden or Barclays Center, but we will soon. And, accordingly, some of the athletes who've been staying ready for when the sport exits hibernation are sniffing around, hunting for a dance party and a date.

Alex Vargas, a 10-0 Long Island resident, is trained by Andre Rozier and is a promotional free agent. He's looking to make the search for contender Cletus Seldin seamless.

“I definitely want to get the fight made, me against Cletus Seldin,” said the 26 year old fighter nicknamed ‘El Toro.'

The junior welterweight fighter, who is single, lives in Bellport, Long Island. Seldin (25-1, with 21 KOs), is promoted by Joe DeGuardia and Star Boxing, so the bout would have to pass muster with DeGuardia.

Alex Vargas debuted as a pro on Sept. 21, 2018. On paper, it looks to us like Cletus Seldin would be a considerable step-up, on paper, for the pugilist.

I asked Vargas for his reasoning, why he thinks this fight makes sense.

“I sparred Seldin two times previously,” he said. “Sparring is supposed to stay in the gym. We had no one film…then I kept hearing from people he was going around saying he beat me up and whenever he saw me after that he was just cold with me. We sparred six rounds the first time, it was around the time he was getting ready to fight b (6-7-2019), then he wanted 10 the next time and he quit after four rounds. So I’d like to have a real fight get made.”

A little background–Vargas started boxing when he was about eight years old, after he started watching boxing on tv with his father. “We started sparring in the basement, fighting for fake world titles, until he eventually took me to the gym. I’ve been with my father (Michael Vargas) as my trainer ever since, until we met Andre Rozier, and now they both train me.” Vargas excelled in high school at wrestling and on the football field, and he won the 2013 Golden Gloves at 165 pounds, and was named best fighter in the tourney. He received a Bachelors from University of Cortland, in 2017, and specialized in teaching English as a second language.

Check out some footage of Vargas, from a 2020 bout, below:

The young man has some skills in the sales department, too; he did a good job when asked to share more about why we should see Vargas vs Seldin.

Alex Vargas lands the left clean. He's 10-0 and wants to test himself against Cletus Seldin, who has been in with Roberto Ortiz, Yves Ulysse and Zab Judah.

“It makes a ton of sense,” Vargas said. “We’re two Long Island guys and it would sell a ton of tickets in NY if it opens up soon. I’d love to have it on the Joe Smith undercard for his next fight.”

And what sort of response has he received when he's floated the concept? “Everywhere I’ve gone, whether shows, the gym, people are saying they want to see it being a boxer vs brawler matchup. Guys like Chris Colbert and Jamel Herring messaged me also, trying to help make it happen so I think it’s appealing from the feedback I’ve gotten as well.”

OK, and Seldin will need to be on board. Has the 34 year old junior welter, who last gloved up in February 2020, weighed in, given any indication that he's up to take on a young gun who is less seasoned than him?

“Not yet. He hasn’t said no though,” Vargas said, chuckling. “I think he will take it considering he can’t get a fight and that all of New York wants to see it.”

Founder/editor Michael Woods got addicted to boxing in 1990, when Buster Douglas shocked the world with his demolition of the then-impregnable Mike Tyson. The Brooklyn-based journalist has covered the sport since for ESPN The Magazine,, Bad Left Hook and RING. His journalism career started with NY Newsday in 1999. Michael Woods is also an accomplished blow by blow and color man, having done work for Top Rank, DiBella Entertainment, EPIX, and for Facebook Fightnight Live, since 2017.