Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing will provide fight fans in New England a holiday treat for the ages.

In seperate bouts, Connecticut’s own “Action” Anthony Laureano and Richie “Popeye the Sailor Man” Rivera will headline the “New England Explosion,” sponsored by MGM Springfield, on Friday at MassMutual Center in Springfield, Mass. The undefeated fighters will be among five New England natives who’ll compete in the five bouts that comprise Star Boxing’s end-of-year extravaganza. NESN will broadcast the “New England Explosion” live and stream it online to television and online viewers.

Laureano, a super-lightweight prospect, is 12-0 with four KOs. The East Hartford, Conn., native will take on Angel “Aztec Warrior” Hernandez, who is 17-14-2 with 11 KOs, in an eight-round bout in one of the co-main events.

“I love fighting at home,” Laureano said in a Star Boxing press release. “Springfield is less than a 30-minute drive from my home and I have history there. I’ve built up a good fan base at the Catskills, N.Y., and a lot of fans are coming to Springfield to support me with my New England fans. I’ll never forget all the people from there who helped me along the way. There’s no place like home!”

Laureano is particularly excited to show off his talents on NESN.

“Right now, people are noticing me more and more,” He said. “I’m there but not there yet. I want to be a household name and I’m grateful to be fighting on NESN. I’ve had some fights shown on NESN, but those were taped, but this fight is live. The more people who see me, the more they will be drawn to me. I work hard and have a good, pure heart. I’ll never forget where I come from.”

Rivera is known as New England’s most powerful puncher and is one of the region’s most popular fighters. The Hartford, Conn., native is 15-0 with 12 KOs and he’ll put his undefeated record on the line against cruiserweight “Mighty” Joe Jones (11-1 with eight KOs) in an eight-round, co-main-event bout.

“I’m thrilled to be fighting in my backyard again,” Rivera said in a Star Boxing press release. “To get the job done I take each fight like it’s my hardest. I feel like this will be an exciting victory for me.”

Danbury, Conn., native Omar “The Beat” Bordoy (9-1 with 3 KOs) will face Dieumerci Nzau (11-10 with eight KOs) in his first scheduled eight-round bout.

Springfield natives Derrick “Bad Boy” Whitley II (6-1-1) and Angel Vasquez (0-1) also will feature on the undercard.

“New England Explosion” Tickets are on sale now at MassMutualCenter.com, the MassMutual Center Box Office and through Hartford Boxing Promotions, which you can call at either 860-840-6244 or 860-519-1505.

Doors will open at 6 p.m. ET, and the first bout is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. NESN’s broadcast will begin at 9 p.m.

Here’s how to watch the “New England Explosion” on television or online.

“New England Explosion”
Friday, Dec. 13, at 9 p.m. ET
MassMutual Center, Springfield, Mass.
TV: NESN
Online: NESNgo.com; NESNgo app

Thumbnail photo via Tony Palmieri/Star Boxing