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Forum Boxing Signs Contract With Pond : Agreement: Deal calls for Anaheim arena to play host to at least 18 fight cards.

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Forum Boxing Inc. and Ogden Entertainment officially announced a three-year deal Wednesday that would bring at least 18 boxing cards to The Pond beginning Feb. 5, 1996.

“We’re not just here to stick and move, we’ll be here for the long haul,” said Tim Ryan, The Pond’s assistant general manager.

Ryan said The Pond would stage at least one fight every two months for the next three years on Monday nights, Forum Boxing’s regular fight night. Ryan said he intends to reach out to the Hispanic market, much like the Forum has done over the years.

“Seventy percent of all our promotional money will be spent on the Hispanic community,” Ryan said. “I am banking on support from the Latino community because I think the majority of the fighters will be Latino.”

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John Jackson, vice president of Forum Boxing, said he became convinced Orange County would support boxing when 12,000 people attended Forum Boxing’s March card that included three world title fights. Jackson said the Forum will stage 14 shows next year and The Pond will put on at least six.

He said he will offer his season ticket-holders the option of buying tickets to only Forum shows, only The Pond shows or to all 20 shows.

“My season ticket-holders were very positive as long as we weren’t forcing them to come to The Pond,” Jackson said.

One Forum regular who won’t mind driving to The Pond is former world champion Genaro Hernandez, who lives in Mission Viejo. Hernandez, who is coming off his first professional loss to Oscar De La Hoya, could begin his comeback from a broken nose by headlining the Feb. 5 card.

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The ticket prices for The Pond shows will be similar to Forum prices--$100 for ringside and $65, $35, $25 and $12 for other seats. The 9,000 seats on the top level will not be used for boxing events--meaning the seating capacity will be about 5,800. Jackson said he is hoping for a crowd of at least 2,000 for The Pond’s first show.

Jackson said The Pond and Forum shows will continue to be carried live on Prime Sports. The tentative dates for the 1996 shows are April 29, June 3, Aug. 19, Oct. 21 and Dec. 2 or 9. Ryan said The Pond also has the option of staging additional shows for title fights or other “big-purse fights.”


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