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Barrett bout KO’d by conflict; Del Valle drops decision

In what has become an all-too-common occurrence for Monte Barrett, the South Jamaica native saw yet another fight — and yet another chance to make a serious move in the heavyweight division — go down the drain Saturday when a “conflict” with opponent Vaughn Bean put the kibosh on their 10-round bout, the scheduled main event of a card at Aladdin Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nev.

Instead, another Queens native jumped into the main event as the “Flushing Flash” Kevin Kelley defeated Humberto Soto by majority decision in a 12-round junior lightweight bout.

The fight between Barrett (26-2), ranked No. 7 by the International Boxing Federation, and Bean (42-3), the former World Boxing Organization Intercontinental champion, was slated to be the main event and appeared to be on until Friday’s weigh-in, when neither Barrett nor Bean showed.

A press release by the Aladdin Hotel and Casino said it was a “conflict” between Barrett and Bean but said neither side would further go into specifics. Barrett and his manager, Nick Garone of Excel Sports, could not be reached for comment as of press time.

The Bean bout was another in a long line of bouts involving the Queens boxer that were KO’d in the last two years. Barrett was scheduled to take on undefeated Robert Wiggins as the headliner of a nationally televised card from Savannah, Ga. in June. But Barrett, a former all-city football player at John Adams, pulled out of the bout and was replaced by Derek Bryant, who scored a fourth-round knockout.

Barrett, whose only two losses have come to Mount Whitaker and Wladimir Klitschko, hasn’t fought since September 2001, when he defeated Robert Davis by unanimous decision.

Barrett’s name was also linked with Fres Oquendo and David Tua, but neither fight materialized.

Barrett also had a pair of fights cancelled with John Sargeant, one because of a low blood platelet count and the other because of a venue conflict.

Before edging Davis, Barrett’s last bout was June 2001 when he won a split decision over former heavyweight champion “Terrible” Tim Witherspoon.

Del Valle drops decision

Another Queens fighter, former Long Island City resident Lou Del Valle, was in action Saturday night, but his second trip to France in less than a year was a disappointment as the No. 1 contender dropped a 12-round split decision to World Boxing Association champion Bruno Girard in Palavas-les-Flots, France.

Girard (42-3-2) retained his belt in front of a partisan home crowd, defeating Del Valle on his 34th birthday by scores of 116-113, 116-111, while another judge scored the bout in favor of Del Valle, 115-113.

Del Valle, who now lives in Miami, Fla., dropped to 31-3-1.

The two fought to a 12-round draw last August in a bout for the then-vacant title also in France, that time in Marseille. Del Valle, who is the only man to send Roy Jones, Jr. to the canvas — although Jones defeated Del Valle by unanimous decision — was supposed to get an immediate rematch.

But because of an injury to Del Valle, who won the title in 1997, and contractual problems, the WBA allowed Girard to fight Robert Koon for the belt last December.

Early on it appeared Del Valle, who like Barrett is promoted by Joe DeGuardia of Star Boxing, would fly home with the title as Girard was penalized for a second-round head butt.

But Girard, according to reports, hurt Del Valle in the fifth round, opening up a cut on his left eyebrow and was the more productive fighter throughout.

Del Valle, however, thought he was again victim of biased judging.

“He won two or three rounds maximum,” Del Valle told reporters after the bout. “He lost.”

Reach Associate Sports Editor Dylan Butler by email at TimesLedger@aol.com or call 229-0300, Ext. 143.

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