Monthly Archives: August 2018

Fun Time Caleb and Jolly Good Jamal

Who did you come out to the fights tonight (or tune in on your TV) to see, Caleb Truax or Jamal James?  These two men, the highest-profile pugilists to come out of Minnesota in at least a decade, are making 2018 a fun time to be a boxing fan in the Upper Midwest.  They’re different personalities and they come from different places, but they have both captured the imagination of local combat sports fans, and are worming their way into the consciousness of the casual sports fan.  A few more events like tonight’s, with a packed house at the Minneapolis Armory (3,547 announced attendance), a national TV audience, and some entertainingly one-sided wins, and a guy in a Twins shirt or a Vikings jersey might find himself becoming a knowledgeable boxing fan.

Rochester New York’s Willie Monroe, despite his abundant talent, is unlikely to ever be a fan favorite.  He boxes cautiously, without power or panache.  It might be different if Monroe had a big personality like feather fisted former world champ Paulie Malignaggi, or if he was a cold fish of a personality but he could really crack, like some other example who probably exists but whom I can’t call to mind at this moment.  Monroe’s win over Argentinian Javier Francisco Maciel will keep us from forgetting his name, but we can still try.

Have you never seen a boxer quit a fight one second after it began?  No?  If you were watching tonight, you can’t say that anymore.  Curtis Harper acted like everything was perfectly normal until the opening bell sounded, then he casually stepped out of the ring and strolled off into the night.  You might not know whether or not to feel sorry for his opponent, heavyweight prospect Efe Ajagba.  Let me tell you, a professional boxer is a competitor who hates to be cheated out of the opportunity to compete.  But don’t cry for Ajagba yet.  He’s young, he’s huge, he’s in shape, and he’s ready to fight.  Maybe he can sneak on a card somewhere in the next few weeks.  As for Harper, he might have panicked at the sight of his intimidating opponent like Nick Capes did a few years ago against Ray Edwards (remember?!).  But the closest comparison I can find is Quincy Miner, who years ago showed up at a show but refused to even enter the ring when he had a financial dispute with his cornerman.  So what was Curtis Harper was thinking when he torpedoed his entire boxing career tonight?  Harper knows.  Maybe.

Jeison Rosario certainly outbombed his opponent in a junior middleweight (154#) bout tonight, and though he statistically dominated Jamontay Clark, I never really had the sense that it as a total wash.  Clark is a tough cookie and he can punch with authority, if only at times.  Hopefully Clark isn’t too discouraged by tonight’s result.  A dangerous man, we say, is always dangerous.  Clark is a dangerous man, and one who keeps his own counsel.  When you get knocked out of the ring, Jamontay, what do you do?  You walk halfway around the outside of the ring to your chosen point of re-entry?  Splendid.

Occasionally in an international sport like boxing, one will run across a name that’s difficult to pronounce.  For a writer, even worse is a name that’s difficult to type in a hurry.  Our next match was between Eimantas Stanionis and (even worse) Levan Ghvamichava, who mercifully has adopted the moniker “Wolf,” probably owing to his incredibly hairy torso.  I hope that neither competitor is offended that I opted to refer to them as ES and LG in my typed report.  I could have used a stenographer tonight.

We had two consecutive bouts tonight with unusually long, tall prospects handing it to shorter foes.  First 19-year old Leon Lawson III, a 6-foot 5-inch junior middleweight (154# limit) from Flint MI, and then 20 year old Sebastian Fundora, a 6-foot 6-inch prospect in the same weight class, from Coachella CA.  Lawson dominated his opponent, 5-foot 8-inch Brandon Adams, on his way to a UD win.  Fundora, facing a somewhat more advanced opponent in 5-foot 10-inch Antonio Urista, showed he is not one to be outdone, notching a 4th round TKO win.  Fundora, we all noticed tonight, is available to be hit.  Your move, Lawson.

The Efetobor Apochi and Aaron Chavers match was an awful mismatch.  Chavers has a respectable looking record, but Apochi was the one who commanded respect tonight.  Chavers only commanded a clear lane to a neutral corner, and for him that was a one-way street.

It’s difficult to draw any meaningful conclusions from a bout as uncompetitive as Gary Antonio Russell‘s win over Nick Otieno.  How uncompetitive was it?  Let’s just say there wasn’t time for any competition to take place.  Welcome to Minnesota, Mr. Russell.  We hope you enjoyed your visit.

There is sure to be consternation and maybe tears when a young prospect loses his “0.”  Some knowledgeable Minnesota boxing fans have had big expectations for Celso Ramirez.  They should hang on to their optimism but temper their expectations. Ramirez can still accomplish great things despite his loss today.  Hopefully his management can get him back on a winning path and position him as something more than sharkbait.  What good things can happen for a one-loss prospect?  Ask Ramirez’s opponent Willie Jones, who started his career 5-0, suffered a loss, and then grabbed some gusto when he notched his good looking win against Ramirez.

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Professional Boxing: August 24th 2018 at the Minneapolis Armory

Doors open at 4:30pm, fights begin at 5:30.  Lots of familiar faces from the Minnesota boxing scene on hand, but lots of unfamiliar or out-of-town faces, too.  This is my first time in the Minneapolis Armory, though I’ve passed it dozens of, if not a hundred times.  If you haven’t been inside, the exterior gives no hint of the extravagance inside.

Caleb Truax (now 30-4-2 with 18 kayos) defeats Fabriano Pena (now 15-11-1 with 11 kayos) by TKO at 2:50 in round 3 (scheduled for 10).

Round 1

Truax throws the first jab and the first earnest punch of the bout, but the first thirty seconds is reserved for measuring.  Pena comes forward, walking and punching but landing nothing, and having gotten inside on Truax he backs off.  A little circling, and Truax jabs the body of Pena.  Truax throws a one-two with the emphasis on two, connecting with Pena’s body.  Pena is dead serious in there, not shying away from punches and not showing any awe.  Pena rushes in on Truax, who tags him.  A little later Truax lands a right to the head that moves Pena, and Truax is coming forward, trying to put this fight to bed quickly.  With seconds to go in the first Pena throws a hard but slow three punch combination, connecting squarely on one or two of his punches.

Round 2

Both fighters are woring hte jab at the start of the second, but Truax with more precision and effect.  Truax bends his knees and throws a hard overhand right, drawing “oohs” from the spectators.  Truax throws soft jabs upstairs and then a hard straight right to the body.  The crowd begins to chant “Caleb.”  Truax is still going soft and then hard with his punches, so Pena never knows what’s coming.  Pena throws a four-punch combination.  Truax lands a right uppercut, then a series of power punches, then a hard right hook to the head.  Truax lands a big right to the head of Pena, Pena responds with a furious but short-lived volley, and the round ends.

Round 3

Truax is likely carrying his opponent in the third round, as the fight isn’t competitive at all.  This is a mismatch of both caliber and firepower.  Truax is popping his opponent here and there, and now opens up with a hard combination that has Pena reeling.  Pena looks wary and alert.  Truax rips a right uppercut to the face of Pena, who responds seconds later with a fusillade of power punches.  Truax corners Pena and throws power shots from a variety of angles, connecting on most of them.  Truax won’t let Pena escape, pummeling him with hooks and uppercuts until one drops him.  Pena jumps up and rushes across the ring at Truax, but referee Celestino Ruiz calls the fight, and it’s over at 2:50 in round 3.

Main Event: Jamal James (now 24-1 with 11 kayos) defeats Mahonry Montes (now 35-8-1 with 24 kayos) by TKO at 2:58 in round 2 of 10 scheduled.

Round 1

James comes out pumping the jab, Montes is mostly watching and moving.  James throws a measuring one-two and goes back to jabbing  Montes is slipping and bouncing.  James is circling to his left, continuing to jab.  About a minute in he experiments with a three punch combo, but they’re still checking each other out.  James finally connects with a punch, but the crowd, though enthusiastic during introductions, isn’t really watching the fight, instead yelling “down in front!”  James has a good height advantage over Montes, as he has over most of his opponents, and he’s circling continuously.  The bell rings on the first round without either man connecting on anything to speak of.

Round 2

James comes out pumping that fast jab again in round 2, but Montes is determined to come forward.  This gives James an opportunity to catch him coming in, if he can get the right measure and timing.  Montes is coming forward but not throwing, and James hasn’t found his timing yet.  Montes finally throws, landing a right to the body of James but getting no reaction.  James is beginning to slow down the frenetic pace he started off at, and finds a home for a body shot.  Montes keeps coming forward, and James brings home a series of sincerely-meant head shots, dropping Montes in the center of the ring like a sack of potatoes.  Referee Mark Nelson begins to count, but ten waves the fight off.  James wins!

Co-Main Event: Willie Monroe Jr (now 23-3 with 6 kayos) defeats Javier Francisco Maciel (now 33-7 with 23 kayos) by Unanimous Decision (100-90, 100-90, 99-91 ) after 10 rounds

Round 1

Hunched over, Monroe is using speed and movement, while the cautious Maciel is bouncing forward and back, pawing the air and looking uncomfortable.   Midway through the round Monroe throws a right from the lefthanded stance (I think) and Maciel stumbles sideways, nearly hitting the mat.  Monroe lands what looks like a jab to the head of Maciel, but he’s behind a ringpost when it happens, and I can’t see.  Ten seconds to go in the round, Monroe tries to win the round by throwing four or five punches.  I would not like to score this round.

Round 2

Maciel looks more willing to engage this round, ducking his head down and pushing forward at one point, but you have to see your opponent to hit him.  Maciel lands a punch and Monroe counters…Monroe is so intent on being elusive, it isn’t conducive to scoring.  Maciel goes on the offensive and the two men trade shots, but neither man gains from the exchange.  Monroe is backing up, Maciel creeping forward.  Maciel finds Monroe a tough target to hit, and Monroe seems happy enough to land a single jab and wait till next time.  Maciel slips a fast jab, throws a jab of his own, and misses.  Maciel rushes forward and Monroe lands a couple of slapping right hooks.  Monroe shoots that jab out a few more times, and the bell rings.

Round 3

Monroe is moving fast, with a herky-jerky motion.  Maciel is coming forward, but he can’t catch Monroe.  Monroe lands a left hook then a right to the body.  A voice in the crowd shouts “Do something!”  Maciel corners Monroe and launches a barrage of punches, some land and some don’t , but he’s seizing the initiative.  Monroe backs away, puts his butt on the ropes, and lands two counter shots when Maciel tries to move in.  Maciel is undeterred, and continues to follow.  Monroe can tag him, but Maciel shakes his head dismissively.  Monroe hits Maciel in the head hard enough to move his back foot, which is progress.  Bell.

Round 4

Monroe throws two disconnected jabs, then a left to the body, ducks around Maciel, and is gone.  Maciel is shuffilng forward but not soring.  Maciel gets a little too close, Monroe pops him and scuttles away.  Maciel nearly corners Monroe, and Monroe throws an all-arm right hook, then dances away.  Maciel folows again, and Monroe throws a more meaningful hook.  Maciel follows again, and Monroe again catches him and scoots away.  Maciel heaves a deep sigh and comes forward again, this time he traps Monroe in a corner and throws his best shots, scoring with some, until Monroe shuffles to his right and escapes.

Round 5

Maciel comes forward, and – stop me if you’ve heard this before.  Monroe is setting ambush after ambush.  Good strategy, but this popgun punching won’t end this fight early.  Maciel is bouncing and ducking, trying to get inside again.  Monroe’s footwork is good and he’s quick, and he can pull the trigger on a punch while moving backwards.  Maciel finally gets close enough to throw a combination, then one more punch, but Monroe tags him back and there’s little question who’s winning this round.  As the round comes to a close Monroe shows off some impressive hand speed, catching Maciel with a combination every punch of which lands.

Round 6

Maciel is game, but he can only rarely catch up with Monroe, who is generally cautious and unwilling to risk most engagements.  Maciel gets too close and Monroe peppers him with some good shots and leaves him behind.  Maciel gets Monroe against the ropes and throws some power shots – Monroe goes to his knees, but I think referee Gary Miezwa ruled that Maciel pushed him down.  Maciel is following Monroe again, and ten seconds to go and Maciel landed a right to the abdomen of Monroe, who was clearly hurt, than chases him and catches him with a good head shot, but the round is over.

Round 7

Maciel is pursuing Monroe again, Monroe is moving backwards.  He moves too far backwards and hits the ropes, where Maciel connects with a body and then a head shot, but to less effect than in the last round.  Maciel gets close in the center of the ring, and the combatants exchange – that exchange favored Monroe.  Maciel takes a couple of steps back, which is unusual for him. Perhaps Monroe has decided that Maciel can’t take him out, because he’s beginning to trade punches more.  His style is not fan-friendly.  Monroe lands to body shots on Maciel, who returns fire, but then Monroe traps Maciel against the ropes and throws some well-placed power shots as the bell rings.

Round 8

Monroe is finally on the attack in this round, and Maciel nods at him every time he connects.  Monroe has the upper hand, but every once in a while Maciel will sneak in a hard counter to let us know he’s still in the fight.  Maciel backs into a corner then punches his way out.  The combatants trade again in the center of the ring, but every exchange seems to favor Monroe every-so-slightly, and the difference is accumulating.  Maciel puts his head down and comes forward with looping punches, hoping to catch Monroe.  Monroe fires back with half a dozen rapid-fire punches from either hand.  Maciel is unfazed and continues to attack with his overhanded punches to the head.

Round 9

Monroe lands a hard rising jab to the face of Maciel, smiles, and backs away.  Maciel follows him to the center of the ring, but Monroe sets his feet and opens fire, scoring effectively.  Maciel stands his ground and Monroe lands a big power shot, but Maciel nods at him as if encourage him to do it again.  The boxers clinch up, and Miezwa breaks them apart.  Maciel wants to brawl, and he does score more when they fight chest-to-chest.  After a break Maciel gets low and throws a maximum-effort hookercut, landing it effectively but receiving a Monroe flurry in reply.  Monroe has worn Maciel down, and he’s scoring freely now.  Maciel is a gamer, but he is slipping further behind.

Round 10

Monroe is pursuing Maciel, maybe hoping to score a KO in the final round.  Monroe comes forward and lands some glamorous power shots, but Maciel isn’t out yet, and he scores with a couple of his own.  Maciel comes forward jabbing, then throws a hard left hook to the side of Monroe’s body.  Monroe continues to score with volume punching, while Maciel is loading up for the desperately-needed knockout punch.  Maciel backs nearly into a corner then gets up on his toes and bounces, but Monroe, unimpressed, lands more power punches.  Maciel throws a corkscrew jab hoping to get past Monroe’s defenses.  The proud Monroe wants to impress, so he stands his ground and throws a volume of very fast punches, and the bell rings.

3rd TV Fight: Efe Ajagba (5-0 with 5 kayos) -vs- Curtis Harper (13-5 with 9 kayos), heavyweights, scheduled for 6 rounds

DISQUALIFICATION – NO BOUT TOOK PLACE

Jamontay Clark (now 13-1 with 7 kayos) is defeated by Jeison Rosario (now 16-1-1 with 11 kayos) by Unanimous Decision (99-90, 98-91, 97-92) after ten rounds.

Round 1

This fight opens a little slowly, with lots of bobbing and feinting.  Rosario in the blue shorts, ducks so deeply that his knees nearly touch the mat.  The first substantial action in the fight sees Clark back into the ropes were Rosario attacks but does not score, as Clark spins away.  Clark retreats into the ropes again, then follows the rope into a corner where Rosario fails to attack and Clark circles away.  In fact Clark has spent the latte half of this round moving to his left with his back to the ropes.  Rosario reluctant to attack.

Round 2

Clark, in southpaw stance, stands his ground in the center of the ring, awing with a cautious jab.  Rosario comes forward, coring with an aggressive combination.  Clark is waving right hand around in an approximation of a jab.  There’s a hard clinch in a corner, and referee Mark Nelson, one of the best in the business, calls or a break.  Now Rosario is beginning to pursue Clark, who throws a left-handed one-two that misses altogether.  Rosario covers up, Clark throws a straight, and it glances away.  Rosario comes forward again, Clark paws at him and Rosario bends his knees deeply again.  Rosario pursues a little too eagerly and Clark lands a clean right hook, the best punch of the fight so far.  Rosario comes forward again ad Clark lands a single punch and bounces away.

Round 3

Rosario is inching forward with a little more caution this round, Clark laying back and waiting to counter.  Clark throws a five-punch combination and lands a couple of them.  Clark throws again, but Rosario catches this combo on his arms.  Rosario comes forward and misses badly with two power shots.  Clark really likes to fight on his back foot.  Rosario cracks Clark with a HUGE right hook, Clark goes down, and rolls clear out of the ring, crawls in at the red corner, and ref Nelson gives him a standing count.  Rosario attacks furiously, mauling and windmilling.  Rosario catches Clark against the ropes and lands a left, but mostly misfires, and Clark has survived the third.

Round 4

Clark is backing up again, his balance looks little compromised, but he is throwing punches at Rosario.  Rosario is following again, and connects a dramatic left hook to Clark’s head.  Clark skitters away though, and he is back to his old trick of retreating strategically and throwing punches in two-punch combinations.  Rosario explodes into Clark, tries to size the moment, but Clark nullifies his attack.  Rosario’s confidence should be high, but it doesn’t show.  Rosario lunges forward to two straight rights and a left hook, all of which miss.  The round ends with neither man looking stronger.

Round 5

Rosario lands a hard jab right off the bat, and he’s coming for Clark this round.  Clark stops his retreat to throw a hard combination, but Rosario blocks it all.  Clark is moving left, right, backing up…nothing new there.  Rosario throws three power shots, right-left-right, and lands them all.  The fighters tangle up and fall to the mat, no knockdown.  Rosario pursues, traps Clark in a neutral corner and tries to attack, but ref Nelson steps in and warns him – I didn’t see for what.  Rosario is back to chasing and jabbing, Clark is on the run.  Rosario lands a right-left-right again, Clark turns him and then throws two or three shots to the back of Rosario’s head, for which Nelson emphatically warns him.  No further scoring to the end of the round.

Round 6

Clark is very active the start of this round, but the activity is all bounching and feinting.  Rosario is chasing, chasing.  Rosario corners Clark, throws a wild overhand right, and misses.  Clark is testing his legs for sure.  Now Rosario ducks under a rare Clark lead.  Clark isn’t really trying to score much, mostly just trying to nullify Rosario’s attack.  I’d love to tell you what’s happened this round, but it isn’t much.  Five seconds to go in the round and Rosario throws a wide hook that makes an audible pop, but it didn’t appear to do any damage, though the crowd is thrilled.

Round 7

Clark trows and lands a straight left from the southpaw stance.  Rosario rushes in and Clark lands a counter.  How about that!  Rosario chases again and this time lands a lunging jab that snaps Clark’s head back.  Rosario is coming forward again, less recklessly this time.  The fighters’ feet get tangled and Rosario falls, but there’s no knockdown.  Rosario, chasing Clark again, lands a big left that sends him reeling into the ropes.  Chasing again, Rosario catches Clark with two or three wild hooks, and he’s taking command of this round.  In a corner, Clark appears to slap the back of Rosario’s head, but Nelson doesn’t act.  Rosario chases his opponent into the red corner and connects with a big left hook, and the round comes to and end.

Round 8

Rosario is selling out on his attacks.  He must think that Clark can’t hurt him, because he appears to be far ahead.  Rosario lands a flurry of big hooks to Clark’s head.  He chases Clark into a corner where Clark ducks a punch and Rosario falls to the mat.  Back on his feet, Rosario continues to attack with abandon, and Clark has taken significant punishment this round.  Rosario is scoring with both hands, and now Rosario clobbers Clark with a straight right and follow up with two more power shots.  Clark is tough, but he is losing this round badly.  Clark briefly fires back, but Rosario scores with a double left hook, and continues to attack and score for the remainder of the round.

Round 9

The doctor is examining Clark in the ring, and allows the fight to continue.  Rosario is following Clark around, and Clark, his feet far apart, is becoming less mobile.  There’s an exchange, and Clark loses his mouthpiece, brief pause while his corner cleans it and returns it to its orifice.  Rosario is coming forward, jabbing, Clark is backing up, looking for an opening for a home run punch that doesn’t appear to be in his arsenal.  Rosario scores with a single right hand.  Rosario pursues and scores again, bu Clark counters and scores.  Rosario is following lark, and catches him in a corner, where he scores with a couple of all-in power shots.  Clark escapes an actually pins Rosario to the ropes, but he can’t do any work and he can’t keep Rosario there.  Ten seconds left in the round and Rosario score again.  Fives seconds left and Rosario throws a bomb that Clark successfully counters.  As the bell rings Clark looks a little disgruntled, if not confused.

Round 10

Clark starts the round boxing, and Rosario is following as usual.  Rosario catches Clark on the ropes again, and lands two more hard shots.  Against another set of ropes, Rosario hammers Clark with a volley of power shots, and Clark trades with him, to some positive effect.  Clark must know he’s way behind, but he’s been unwilling or unable to make any significant changes to his strategy.  Rosario and Clark stand toe to toe and Rosario gets the better of the exchange, then chases Clark and again gets the better of it.  Bell, round, fight.

TV Opener: Eimantas Stanionis (now 7-0 with 5 kayos) defeats Levan Ghvamichava (now 18-4-1 with 13 kayos) by Unanimous Decision (80-72 79-73 79-73) after 8 rounds.

Round 1

This bout begins with both men jabbing, hard, effective jabs.  LG scores a short combination ending with  left hook to ES’s head, ES responds by coming forward and snapping LG’s head back with a variety of punches.  The early pattern is for ES to come forward and LG to retreat while circling to his left.  ES connects with a big right hook that turns LG’s head, but LG throws back with intent.  ES continues to come forward, and a one-two staggers LG momentarily.  ES tries again to step in and LG gives him a meaningful one-two for his trouble.  This one looks like a competitive fight for a change.

Round 2

LG throws an uppercut, ES responds with a jolting left.  LG is asserting himself more this round, but ES is the more powerful puncher and that will likely be evident later.  The bridge of LG’s nose looks red, but I can’t tell whether he’s bleeding.  The two men are more rapidly circling, mostly to their left,with ES throwing hard, precise punches and LG throwing slashing straights ad hooks o the body.  ES likes to cover up and then pop open for a hard jab.  ES connects with a double jab, lots of steam on those punches.  Both men throw and miss before the bell.

Round 3

ES scores another hard double jab to open the third.  LG is standing in there, but he seems a little less sure of himself.  He feints a left hook and ES punishes him with stop-and-start combinations.  ES comes forward, LG backs up to the ropes, and there’s an exchange in which both score credibly.  ES lands a sneaky shot right hook that snaps LG’s head sideways.  ES is getting in close now, and you on’t know whether he’ll lead with a jab or an uppercut – bot work.  LG is backing up and countering ES’s salvos but he can’t escape the intensifying attack from ES, who is willing to eat one punch in order to land two.

Round 4

LG lands one hard jab for starters, ES returns a hard one-two  LG is circling left and backing up.  ES is begining to sit dow on his punches more, but LG is a tough dude.  LG comes forward, three steps, three punches.  LG goes double left hoo to the head and body, nice move.  These guys are trading power shots and it’s a crow pleaser.  LG is on the back foot again, ad ES is looking stronger and stronger.  Left hook connects with LG’s body.  ES is coming forward, potshotting LG, but still LG persists, returning such shots as he can.

Round 5

Big right from ES, followed shortly by a big left – both landed to the head of LG.  LG is coming forward now with a pawing jab, tries to go to the body, but ES counters effectively.  ES goes one-two, LG responds with a three-four.  LG backs into a corner, but he sees his error and works back out.  An exchange on even terms ends with a hard jab from ES.  This is a very nearly even match, and it has the crowd’s rapt attention.  Our fighters are momentarily shoulder-to-shoulder, but ES lands cleanly and they separate.  LG is continuing to press forward, and it appears to pay off for about a minute, as he has ES off balance and may eve have outscored him the second half of this round.

Round 6

ES is landing his jab again the start of this round.  LG is jabbing too, but he misses more frequently.  They’re in close now, and the jabs are giving way to straights and hooks.  After lots of circling and mauling LG scores a one-one-two and then a one-two.  The middle part of this round goes to LG but ES is coming forward and pinpointing his shots as the round comes to an end.

Round 7

The writer next to me opines that these guys don’t look like welterwights, and he’s right, they don’t.  There’s a lot of beef in that ring.  But neither man is taller than referee Miezwa.  LG is an imprecise puncher but he puts a lot of effort into every punch.  ES is using his feet more in this round, moving in and our and circling, as always, to his left.  LG backs up to the ropes and lands a good one-two to the head of ES.  ES is looking more intent as the round goes on, he doubles his jab and there’s a clinch.  Miezwa breaks them.  ES comes forward again, leads with a left hook that connects, then a one-two that connects.  LG is trying to stand with him and exchange, but that tactic favors ES.

Round 8

ES must know he’s ahead on the cards – he seems satisfied to continue his successful strategy, though his output is somewhat higher.  ES throws a combination at the body of LG and the last punch looks suspiciously low.  ES is putting pressure on now, he scores frequently and staggers LG, but LG regains his composure and lands a left hook while backing up.  Now ES uses his whole body to throw a left hook that jolts LG’s entire body.  LG doubles up the jab, but ES scores with a big head shot, then another.  LG is working at maximum effort, and connecting with probably two thirds the punches that ES does.

Sebastian Fundora (now 10-0 with 6 kayos) defeats Antonio Urista (now 10-3 with 2 kayos) by TKO at 2:23 in round 2 (scheduled for 8)

Round 1

Fundora, the “Towering Inferno,” is certainly towering over his opponent.  Urista lands a sweeping left that turns Fundoras head.  Fundora is inching forward, bending forward, throwing jabs from too close in.  Urista blocks a jab and absorbs a left hook to the head.  Fundora moves with confidence, even if he resembles Shawn Bradley with his long, spindly limbs.  Urista circles around Fundora.  Fundora, boxing from southpaw, scores with a couple of jabs and begins to grin.  Urista is trying to make a fight of it, bless him.  The boxers get tied up and there they are as the bell rings.

Round 2

Early on there’s a clinch, the referee calls for a break.  Fifteen seconds later it happens again.  Urista jabs Fundora in the navel, no kidding.  Fundora circles to his left, misses with the jab.  Urista inches backwards into a corner, then comes out to his right.  Fundora doubles the jab.  Urista bulls forward, throws a combo, lands a right to the head.  They break, and Fundora comes forward lands a decent combination, backs Urista into the ropes and connects solidly with some power shots.  The crowd thinks it’s almost over, but Urista slugs his way out.  Fundora corners him again and flurries continuously almost to the point of exhaustion – you can see him slowing down as he rains punches down on the hapless-appearing Urista, and suddenly Urista lashes out, cracking Fundora with a big hook to the head.  Fundora blinks and the bell rings.

Round 3

Fundora comes out and leans on Urista right away, draping himself over Urista.  Urista want none of it, and lands two hard rights to Fundora’s head.  Fundora backs Urista into the ropes again, but this time Urista turns him around and puts his forehead in Fundora’s chest.  Break.  Fundora uppercuts and hooks Urista.  Urista clinches and lands a shot to the head.  This is becoming competitive!  Urista steps forward and lands a straight right and a left hook.  Fundora snaps Urista’s head back with a uppercut, but Urista is game.  Fundora traps Urista on the ropes but doesn’t look like he knows what to do with him and Urista slips away.  Fundora traps him again, this time he score with a flurry of power shots.  Urista is backing up.  Fundora jolts Urista with a jab and then paws at him until the bell.

Round 4

At the start of the round the ref brings Urista to see the doctor.  Doc allows the fight to continue.  Urista’s mouth is hanging open.  Fundora circles his prey.  Urista left hooks Fundora and sprays sweat into the crowd, but Fundora smiles.  Fundora is coming forward, but Urista attacks back and connects with two more solid shots.   Urista flurries but and Fundora comes forward, punching all the while, corners Urista, who punches forward and then escapes to his left.  Fundora sees no danger now and he’s measuring his shots, trying to land effectively.  Urista, a warrior, is getting the worst of it.  Fundora pursues Urista into a neutral corner and pop-pop-pop scores until the referee steps in and stops the fight.

Leon Lawson now (8-0 with 4 kayos) defeats Brandon Adams (now 4-7-1 with 2 kayos), by Unanimous Decision (60-54, 60-54, 60-54) after 6 rounds.

Round 1

This is a size mismatch, with the long Lawson towering over the diminutive Adams.  Adams is trying to out-quick Lawson though, ad in the early going there’s no competitive advantage to either man.  Lawson connects with a pushed power shot, but it’s a single score.  Lawson is beginning to show more aggression, and though most of the movement is tactical, Lawson does score with a hard straight right that knocks Adams off balance.  Again though, it’s the only scoring punch in a short combination.  The fighters tangle and Adams shoves Lawson, who touches that mat with his glove.  It’s no knockdown though.  The round ends with Adams whiffing on a haymaker.

Round 2

Lawson is tying to sharpshoot Adams from the heights, and it appears to be working.  He connects with a right to the body of Adams, and a smattering of jabs that annoy Adams.  Adams is bobbing and coming forward, grabbing and grappling, trying to find an opening to get inside against Lawson.  Adams scores with a left (?) that moves Lawson, but again it’s only one punch.  Adams is determined, and that counts for something.  Adams lands a short shot to the cheek of Lawson and Lawson counters.  Lawson uppercuts Adams’ face, there’s a brief exchange, and Lawson lands one more right before the bell.

Round 3

Adams is ducking and coming forward.  He ducks under a right hook from Lawson but doesn’t counter.  Lawson continues to jab and sometimes throws a right.  Lawson scores with a one-two.  Adams ducks into an uppercut.  Adams is still coming forward, but ineffectually.  Lawson likes the one-two.  There’s a clinch and a clean break.  The two exchange jabs then Lawson scores with a couple of rising hooks.  Lawson tries again and Adams ducks under his attack.  Lawson is scoring mostly in ones and twos, Adams hardly at all.  Now Lawson is carrying his forward (jab) hand at his waist.  Adams tries to attack but the bell cuts him off.

Round 4

This is not an action fight, but a tactical one.  Lot of jabbing, feinting, and ducking.  Adams lands a hook – just one.  The boxers circle for a while, Lawson nearly backs into a corner, but then escapes to his left.  Lawson lands a soft jab, then another.  Adams is shuffling cautiously forward, the two tangle, and the referee calls for a break.  Lawson jabs, misses, hesitates, then lands a glancing right to the body.  Lawson is trying to be more busy and lands a left hook to Adams body.  Ten seconds to go and Lawson misses with a one-two, Adams lunges forward and misses, and the bell sounds.

Round 5

Adams starts the round coming forward but lands nothing.   Lawson goes back to the jab and a lull ensues.  Adams chases Lawson into a corner but doesn’t score.  Adams comes forward again and Lawson connects with a right to the body.  Adams can find no openings, because Lawson – not an action fighter – is adept at using his height to his advantage.  Adams gets inside and scores one left to the body, but Lawson comes around him and score his own body shot.  Lawson smiles.  Adams is getting more aggressive, there’s a clinch, and Lawson falls to his knees – no knockdown.  Adams chases Lawson into a corner and Lawson makes him miss, turns him around, and lands a single punch.  Bell.

Round 6

Adams knows his situation and attacks with some urgency in the final round, but not with effect.  Lawson score with a soft jab, then a right hook to the body.  Adams is willing to follow wherever Lawson leads.  Adams gets inside but Lawson grabs on and smothers him.  Someone behind me is shouting “Doe da Jab! Doe da Jab! There we go!”  Nothing is happening.  Adams tries to attack, Lawson lands a single right.  Adams circles, makes punching motions, skitters away.  Back inside Adams finally throws a combination and connects with a couple of punches.  Lawson hides behind his shoulder.  More posturing and the fight is mercifully over.

Efetobor Apochi (now 5-0 with 5 kayos) defeats Aaron Chavers (now 8-6-1 with 3 kayos) by TKO at 2:18 in round 1 (scheduled for 6).

Round 1

Apochi is all business as he backs Chavers into a neutral corner and pounds him with body shots for thirty solid seconds, punctuating the attack with a head shot that leaves Chavers wobbling toward the red corner.  Chavers finds his way back into the same neutral corner and takes some more punishment before finally leading Apochi on a meandering trip to the neutral corner on the other side of the ring.  Along the way Chavers manages to throw two combinations.  But Apochi is sharp and aggressive, and he continues to hound Chavers back into the first neutral corner, where he unloads some more, finally landing a smacking right that sends Chavers reeling to his right.  Referee Mark Nelson wisely calls the fight off.

Gary Antonio Russell (now 12-0 with 10 kayos) defeats Nick Otieno (now 31-15 with 13 kayos) by KO at 1:18 in round 1 (scheduled for 8)

Round 1

Russell comes out southpaw, the grizzled veteran Otieno orthodox.  Russell is using speed and a pawing jab to establish the pace, then scores with a hot hook to the head and drops Otieno without shedding any perspiration, as referee Mark Nelson counts 10.

Willie Jones (now 6-1 with 3 kayos) defeats Celso Ramirez (now 7-1 with 7 kayos) by TKO at 2:32 of round 2 (scheduled for 6).

Round 1

Ramirez and Jones are busy from the start, and power shots begin to fly not fifteen seconds into the bout.  Both boxers are hurrying and getting just a little wild.  Ramirez throws a combination that’s all blocked by Jones, but follows with another shorter combination that connects and excites the sparse crowd.  Jones is coming forward now, and walks into a counter left from Ramirez.  There’s a clinch and a clean break.  Jones lands a sweeping let hook and Ramirez grabs.  Referee Gary Miezwa breaks them apart again.  The combatants trade in the center of the ring, and Ramirez begins to retreat.  Ramirez stops his retreat, goes on the attack, but gets turned into a neutral corner where Jones snaps his head back with a left hook-uppercut hybrid.  Ten seconds to go and the fighters trade then fade until the bell.

Round 2

The second round begins at a more sensible pace, Ramirez lands a body shot and Jones counters with effect.  Jones continues to come forward, but Ramirez momentarily freezes him with a short hook.  Jones is concentrating more on the jab, Ramirez inching backwards and dodging it.  Jones lands a big straight right, Ramirez clinches and then shakes his head on the break.  Jones is scoring now with regularity and it looks like a matter of time before Ramirez goes down.  Ramirez is down!   He rises to his knee and then to his feet before the count of 9, but he doesn’t look good.  Jones attacks with power shots, Ramirez helpless to avoid his attack.  Referee Miezwa jumps in and waves off the bout, Jones wins by TKO!