Holyfield and WBC Teaming Up For Welter Tourney



Holyfield and WBC Teaming Up For Welter Tourney

NEW YORK CITY (December 22, 2017) Evander Holyfield’s The Real Deal Boxing has announced a World Boxing Council Welterweight Tournament over three spectacular events in 2018 at a site to be determined.

The inaugural three-round, eight-man, single-elimination international tournament, the ‘Jose Sulaiman World Invitational” is open to all world-class boxers who may qualify for a ranking in the top 40 by the WBC in the welterweight division.

The application for fighters may be downloaded at, or can be requested by sending an email to [email protected]. The deadline to apply will be January 12, 2018 and only completed applications will be accepted.

The tournament will be a bracket-style tournament with the seeding for first-round matchups determined by the WBC ratings committee and an interactive polling of the fans.

Each fighter in round 1 will receive a purse of $15,000.00 (US), with the winner of each bout receiving a victory bonus of $7,500.00 (US).

Each fighter in round 2 will receive a purse of $30,000.00 (US), with the winner of each bout receiving a victory bonus of $15,000.00 (US).

Each fighter in round 3 (finals) will receive a purse of $75,000.00 (US), with the winner receiving a $25,000.00 (US) victory bonus.
**all bouts in the first two rounds of the tournament will be 10-rounds; in case of a draw, the contestants should be ready to go to an immediate 11th round.

“The welterweight division is among the hottest divisions in boxing and the WBC is the very best organization in boxing to work with on this unique and fan-friendly event,” said boxing legend Holyfield.

Said COO of The Real Deal Boxing, Eric Bentley, “We’ve said from the start that we want to stand out and provide a unique experience for our fighters and our fans. This tournament will offer a select group of fighters an opportunity to fight on a global platform for the WBC with the potential to earn a high ranking. It’s a big undertaking for our company but we’re up to the challenge and believe this can be something we do on a regular basis. Our intention is to create an innovative experience that will transcend the sport of boxing from a medical, regulatory, and production standpoint.”

“There are still many problems in the sport of boxing that have not been rectified, and our team has worked hard with the WBC to create a concept that can hopefully lead to improvements in these areas, such as developing a standardized scoring criteria and increasing the number of judges to minimize the margin of error, just to name a few. We’ve spoken with several commissions and regulatory authorities around the world who would be interested in employing these methods and we expect to have dates, locations, and broadcast information ready to be released in the coming weeks.”

“We’re looking forward to working with Mauricio Sulaiman and his great team at the World Boxing Council on this extraordinary event, and are greatly appreciative of the opportunity to carry out the legacy of Jose Sulaiman with this recurring tournament.”

Stated Mauricio Sulaiman of the World Boxing Council, “Evander Holyfield and The Real Deal Boxing is making my father’s dream a reality. The Jose Sulaiman World Invitational tournament will lead our sport into a new era as these concepts truly capture the essence of boxing and its global interest. Fighters from around the world will meet to have a sole winner, who will eventually be finding a world title opportunity in the world’s most important boxing entity, the WBC.

“This tournament will launch several innovative rules and procedures and our gratitude goes to Evander, our great legendary champion and his staff for making this a reality.”

Included among the unique aspects set forth for the tournament;

–Boxing fans will be given the opportunity to help determine the seeding of each fighter. The WBC will provide their rankings of the top eight, which will account for 50% of the consideration; boxing fans will be able to vote for seeding and first round matchups through The Real Deal Boxing social media and that will account for the other 50%.

–Depending on the number of qualified applicants, the same process will apply for the selection of the two back-up boxers.

–Development and implementation of a standardized scoring process that clearly defines how the judges should score each bout.

–Additional judges to minimize margin of error. A fourth judge will be placed at ringside and a fifth judge will be placed in front of a TV monitor with no audio commentary. All five judges’ scorecards will be used if the fight goes the distance.

–Employment of an Open Scoring concept to allow fighters the knowledge if they are winning or losing a fight.

–Assignment of Neutral and Experienced Judges throughout the tournament.

Further details on tickets and the telecast network will be announced shortly.

José Sulaimán devoted his life to the sport of boxing, and because of his efforts to innovate and push the envelope, the sport is a safer place. His commitment to the boxers, their health and safety, and their right to a fair opportunity set him apart from all others and immortalized him as the most influential leader in the sports history. Now under the leadership of his son Mauricio, the WBC continues to revolutionize and improve boxing through various initiatives, such as the Clean Boxing Program, WBC Cares, and new opportunities for more fighters to experience the value of aligning with the WBC.

Evander Holyfield and his company Real Deal Sports & Entertainment, are committed to revolutionizing boxing. From employing a full-time medical staff and partnering with various hospitals and imaging centers, to establishing community outreach initiatives, to providing opportunities for the boxers beyond the sport of boxing, Real Deal Sports & Entertainment is proud to share Don Jose’s vision to transcend the sport.

Real Deal Sports & Entertainment is proud to partner with Medical Arts Radiology ( and Venum (

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.