Irish boxers ready for ‘Broadway’ show

[caption id="attachment_69171" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="L.I. light heavyweight Sean Monaghan, who is getting better with each fight, is in the ring again on Saturday."]


For Irish fans eagerly awaiting the mouthwatering St. Patrick’s Day bash at Madison Square Garden March 17, this Saturday’s “Broadway Boxing” show in midtown Manhattan featuring three Celtic prizefighters may be the perfect appetizer.

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Long Island light heavyweight Seanie Monaghan, Dublin-born heavyweight Thomas Hardwick and New Jersey junior welterweight Danny McDermott are all penciled in for the DiBella Entertainment [DBE] promoted St. Patrick’s Day fiesta. But before that they must emerge unscathed from this weekend’s fisticuffs at the Roseland Ballroom [239 West 52nd St., between 8th and Broadway], also promoted by DBE.

Monaghan, an undefeated [11-0, 8 KOs] prospect whose parents hail from County Meath, is scheduled to go eight rounds with Californian Billy Bailey [11-13, 4 KOs] while Hardwick [3-0, 2 KOs] hopes to keep Long Islander Richard Mason [0-3] winless in their four-rounder. McDermott, meanwhile, puts his [9-3, 4 KOs] record at stake against Colorado native Terry Lee Buterbaugh [6-6-2].

None of the Irish trio are looking past their opponents to the glamorous March 17 show.

“I’ll have my hands full,” Monaghan conceded. “Billy is the biggest fight of my career. He’s an old pro who’s fought some top class guys and this will be my first eight rounder.”

Indeed, in spite of his 11-13 ledger, Bailey is a durable fighter renowned for going rounds. He’s gone the distance with several outstanding fighters -- including Marcus Johnson [20-1] and the unbeaten Gayrat Ahmedov [16-0-1] – in his last two fights.

Monaghan, who seems to get better with every fight, said he was ready to go eight rounds with Bailey.

“This guy has a reputation for going the distance with guys,” remarked Monaghan, specifically noting the highly rated Marcus Johnson. “So I’ll be prepared.”

A highlight of his preparations has been sparring with Hardwick. The last time the wildly popular Monaghan worked with the big Dubliner, he went out and scored a second round knockout over Santos Martinez at the Garden last month.


Hardwick is the latest addition to the Irish-themed St. Patrick’s Day show, a move that has both thrilled him and raised the stakes for his clash with Mason.

“I’m really excited at being on the St. Patrick’s Day card [and] will have to win at all costs this Saturday,” the Yonkers resident said. “There’ll be no messing about.”

Not that he has done any messing about with two KOs in his previous three wins, but Hardwick is planning on unveiling a new style in the ring. He talked of boxing better, fighting behind a high guard with patience, balance and better footwork.

This is all the handiwork of new Hardwick trainer Matthew Sykes, who’s best known in boxing circles for leading his wife Eileen Miyoko, aka “The Hawaiian Mongoose” to two world flyweight titles. Sykes replaces Grant Selig.

On what he knew of Mason, who turned pro at age 35 two years ago, Hardwick said: “he used to be a street fighter so I expect him to be strong.”


McDermott’s scrap with Buterbaugh marks the North Bergen lad’s first New York appearance in seven years. It comes five weeks after his fourth round TKO win over Bryan Abraham.

“Little Mac” is eager to avoid the inactivity that has plagued his career.

“My goal is to fight every month or every other month and make up for lost time,” said McDermott. “I was able to shake off a lot of rust in the Abraham fight and regain a lot of my confidence. I'll be much sharper in this fight than I've been in a while.”

“I believe we have Danny on track to have a breakout year,” said Rich Komissar, who co-advises McDermott alongside Enda Keenan. “For whatever reason, Danny has never fought more than a few times per year and inactivity has been a problem for him. We have designs on fighting this kid as many as six times this year."

A big part of McDermott's resurgence has been new trainer Tommy Gallagher, whose many accomplishments include working as a trainer on “The Contender,” reality show.

“This kid has so many tools to work with,” said Gallagher. “You may call me crazy but I believe McDermott has the tools to go all the way.”

Tickets for the Broadway Boxing card are pegged at $125, $85, $65 and $45, and are available from or by calling (800) 745-3000.