Regis Prograis Trains For Upcoming Welterweight Championship Fight

Regis Prograis trains for an upcoming title fight at the Main St. Boxing Gym on February 20, 2018 in Houston, Texas. (Bob Levey/For The Advocate)

Bob Levey

As New Orleans-raised boxer Regis Prograis gears up for a March 9 title bout, the undefeated prizefighter's management team has released a promotional video touting his ties to the Crescent City. 

The two-minute video depicts various local images, such as Prograis catching his breath from a workout in front of a fully-suited Mardi Gras Indian, running under the Interstate 10 overpass in the 7th Ward and stopping by Cafe Dumond. Another arresting visual: a Mardi Gras Indian-style werewolf mask.

The mask pays homage to his nickname of "Rougarou," Louisiana's mythical swamp-stalking werewolf; Mardi Gras Indian culture; and his grandfather, whose ancestors were Native American, Prograis said.

A voiceover in the video also serves as a sort of introductory letter from Prograis to the world, which may soon know him much better after winning each of his first 20 pro bouts, 17 by way of knockout.

"It's my time," says the voiceover, by celebrity trainer Corey Calliet, a fellow New Orleanian. "A world title is within reach. Let me be your champion."

Prograis grew up in New Orleans East, attending McDonogh 35 and Sarah T. Reed high schools, before Hurricane Katrina displaced him to Houston.

In Houston, after a two-round knockout win against Joel Diaz (expected to be his toughest opponent to date), Prograis unexpectedly rode out Hurricane Harvey at a relatives' home.

But that's past him, and he's eyeing a fight for a prestigious World Boxing Council junior welterweight belt against Julius Indongo, whose only defeat in 23 fights was against Terence Crawford, considered by many to be the best pound-for-pound boxer today.

If he takes care of business, Prograis will be the first male New Orleanian to win a world title from one of boxing's four major sanctioning bodies since Willie Pastrano won the light heavyweight crowns from the WBC and the World Boxing Association. 

Prograis would also face a mandatory fight against the winner of a bout for another WBC belt, between Jose Ramirez and Amir Imam.

The Prograis-Indongo fight will be televised on the cable channel Showtime. He'll be in town promoting the fight at a public event Saturday at the New Orleans Boxing Club at 2836 Conti St. in Mid-City.

The event will include an open workout, a sparring session and music from DJ Kristi Sugarcookie. 

Follow Ramon Antonio Vargas on Twitter, @RVargasAdvocate.

(504) 636-7433