John McDonagh, invoking on his trunks his grandfather "Big Jim" who taught him boxing, is pictured with team members, from left, Adam Glenn, Moises Ramon and Jose Guzman following his debut in November 2022.

Undefeated O'Rourke returns to L.I.

Dubliner Ryan “The Silent Assassin” O’Rourke arrives in New York on his 25th birthday on Thursday with plans of a quick hit on Polish opponent Michal Bulik in a scheduled six-rounder at the Paramount in Huntington, Long Island, this Saturday.

Also on Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing “Rockin Fights” card is super middleweight John McDonagh, the nephew of former professional Seamus McDonagh, in a four-rounder with Canadian Tevin Terrance. Visit for ticket information.

Sign up to The Irish Echo Newsletter

Sign up today to get daily, up-to-date news and views from Irish America.

 The undefeated O’Rourke [10-0, 3 KOs] returns to Long Island almost a year after his last fight – a seventh round stoppage of Dashaun Johns at The Paramount last May. He’s been plagued by injuries since.

Ryan O'Rourke. [Photo courtesy of O'Rourke Gym, Dublin]

 He was scheduled to fight on a Star Boxing show in Uncasville, Connecticut last month but that fell through when his opponent was injured.  

  Asked if he knew anything about his latest foe – the 6-6 [2 KO] Bulik out of Opole in southern Poland -- O’Rourke said: “Not too much, though I know he's durable. He’s just the kind of fighter to get me back because it's been 12 months since I last fought.”

 He shrugged off any fears of jet-lag being a factor when he enters the ring 48 hours after his arrival from Ireland. “I'll be good…I'm used to it,” he insisted.

 At any rate, O’Rourke, another one of Irish prizefighting’s big prospects, seems to hold all the advantages against Bulik in what’s likely to be a catchweight contest between welterweight and super welterweight. In addition to his superior ledger with a 100 percent winning record, he’ll be 10 years younger than the Pole on fight night, and at six-feet, a good six inches taller.

 Trained by his father Steven at the family’s O’Rourke Gym in Dublin, Ryan flies back home the day after the Bulik fight. “Short and sweet,” he predicted the outing. Dad Steven won’t make the trip this time.


John McDonagh will also be ending a long layoff when he faces Tevin Terrance [1-1-1] out of Quebec. McDonagh’s last and only pro fight was his debut in Nov. 2022, a first round TKO of John Bailey III in Newark, New Jersey. 

Work has kept the 29-year-old construction worker and Queens resident occupied since.  He’s eked out some time to whip himself into fighting shape under the tutelage of trainers Moises Ramon and Jose Guzman.

 Like O’Rourke who he’s trained with in Dublin, McDonagh will enter the ring with little knowledge of his opponent. “I don't know much about him, to be honest,”  McDonagh conceded. But he’ll be ready.

 McDonagh was the 2018 MSG Boxing Ring Masters 152-pound novice titlist, joining his uncles Seamus and John McDonagh as de facto golden gloves champions. Seamus won the New York Gloves in 1985 while John was victorious in the Chicago tournament earlier.