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Mosley, Jones Fight on Same Card

November 14, 1998

MASHANTUCKET, Conn. (AP) _ Sugar Shane Mosley is too small to fight Roy Jones Jr., but he is fighting him nonetheless _ for the title of the world’s best pound-for-pound boxer.

Tonight, Mosley gets a chance to showcase his talents alongside Jones’ when he defends the IBF lightweight championship against James Leija in the first half of an HBO-televised doubleheader that begins at 10 p.m. EST at Foxwoods Casino Resort.

Jones will defend the WBC light heavyweight title against Otis Grant of Canada.

The 27-year-old Mosley said he feels no added pressure because he’s on the same show as Jones.

``I like Roy, and it’s good to be fighting on the same card with him,″ the unbeaten Mosley said Friday. ``But I’m not competing with Roy, I’m competing with myself.″

So far, Mosley has to be pleased with his progress (29-0, 27 knockouts). He certainly has impressed a lot of observers.

The 32-year-old Leija (36-3-2, 14 knockouts), of San Antonio, Texas, is a former WBC super featherweight champion. His losses were a title defeat on points to Gabriel Ruelas in 1994 and on technical knockouts to Oscar De La Hoya and Azumah Nelson. He also beat Nelson twice, including a decision on July 11 for the fringe IBA lightweight title.

In the 26-year-old Grant, Jones will be defending the 175-pound title against a high school recreational counselor in Montreal, who took a leave of absence to prepare for the fight.

Grant, the WBO middleweight champion, has a 31-1-1 record, with 17 knockouts. In his last fight, he retained that title by stopping Ernesto Sena in the ninth round May 13.

The 29-year-old Jones (37-1, 31 knockouts) is a former IBF middleweight and super middleweight (168 pounds) champion.

Jones’ only loss came when he disqualified for hitting Montell Griffin twice while Griffin was down in the ninth round March 21, 1997. He regained the light heavyweight title Aug. 7 of that year when he knocked out Griffin in the first round.

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