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Fernando Guerrero Cruises To UD On FNF

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FNFIt's bigtime stepup time for Fernando Guerrero, who coasted to a drama-free unanimous decision win over Derrick Findley in the main event at the Wicomico Civic Center in Salisbury, Maryland on Friday Night Fights.

The lefty Guerrero doesn't have glaring deficiencies, and I'd be eager to see him up the competition level, up a notch from a survivor type that is Findley, who has losses to Andre Ward and Andre Dirrell on his resume. After ten rounds, the judges congratulated the Salisbury resident, who has actually beaten better men than Findley, in Ishe Smith and Ossie Duran, by scores of 99-91, 99-91, 100-90.

The NABF middleweight champ Guerrero (from  the Dominican Republic; 20-0 entering with 16 KOs) was 157 1/2 pounds, while Findley (from Indiana; entering at 17-4) was 162 pounds on Thursday.

The show ran in 3D, to be enjoyed by those viewing a television equipped to render the technology.

In the first, the lefty Guerrero snapped the jab. He went with combos right away, not needing to get his joints lubed for too long. He likes to work from a distance, generally, get off and stay out of range, so as not to make himself an easy target to counter. In the second, the bulky Findley tried to land a straight right. He stays squared up, so he ate more than he served. In the third, Guerrero got even more comfortable. He tripled up the left a few times. In the fourth, Guerrero craftily continued to work the downstairs so he could get a good look at the noggin. Findley looked weary by the end of the round, a rough one for him.

In the fifth, Findley had better luck. He worked on moving forward, trying to get Guerrero backing up some. But all too often, he had his gloves glued to the front of his face, in a defensive posture. After a slower round, Guerrero worked harder to start the sixth. He couldn't however take too much starch out of the resolute Findley. The outsider to his credit marched forward in the seventh, and again had Guerrero in retreat at times. Guerrero was throwing 100 punches a round, and in the eighth, he still had a full tank of gas.

In the TV opener, Shawn Porter of Ohio stayed unbeaten, running his record to 18-0 with a UD8 over Anges Adjaho of Africa, who slipped to 25-5. This was the fourth straight loss for the loser, but don't be thinking he just showed up to lay down. His right hand counters, thrown not often enough, did touch Porter and tell him he wasn't going to waltz to an easy W. Porter was fighting as a light junior middleweight but has dropped down to welterweight. Adjaho sometimes fights at 135, but his body didn't look puffed up with flab.

Porter, said Joe Tess, has been working with his dad-trainer on staying calm, breathing, not getting ahead of himself. We saw that for the most part. He got angles smartly, mixes his hands and his placement, and got good work in. Adjaho simply doesn't throw often enough. If he did,  he would've gotten over the hump in some of those stepup fights he's lost.

Atlas saw it 99-91, while the real deal arbiters saw it 99-91, 99-91, 97-93, for Porter.

Marylander Dominic Wade raised his record to 11-0 with a UD4 over Tennessean Grover Young in a super middle tiff. Wade is trained by the Peterson Brothers guy, Barry Hunter. Wade exited with the win by scores of 40-36.

SPEEDBAG Atlas told viewers he likes Donaire in the marquee Saturday night bantamweight clash. He cited his youth, and said Montiel might be bigger, but won't have an easy time getting inside on Donaire.

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2015 Fight of the Year – Francisco Vargas vs Takashi Miura

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The WBC World Super Featherweight title bout between Francisco Vargas and Takashi Miura came on one of the biggest boxing stages of 2015, as the bout served as the HBO pay-per-view’s co-main event on November 21st, in support of Miguel Cotto vs Saul Alvarez.

Miura entered the fight with a (29-2-2) record and he was making the fifth defense of his world title, while Vargas entered the fight with an undefeated mark of (22-0-1) in what was his first world title fight. Both men had a reputation for all-out fighting, with Miura especially earning high praise for his title defense in Mexico where he defeated Sergio Thompson in a fiercely contested battle.

The fight started out hotly contested, and the intensity never let up. Vargas seemed to win the first two rounds, but by the fourth round, Miura seemed to pull ahead, scoring a knock-down and fighting with a lot of confidence. After brawling the first four rounds, Miura appeared to settle into a more technical approach. Rounds 5 and 6 saw the pendulum swing back towards Vargas, as he withstood Miura’s rush to open the fifth round and the sixth round saw both men exchanging hard punches.

The big swinging continued, and though Vargas likely edged Miura in rounds 5 and 6, Vargas’ face was cut in at least two spots and Miura started to assert himself again in rounds 7 and 8. Miura was beginning to grow in confidence while it appeared that Vargas was beginning to slow down, and Miura appeared to hurt Vargas at the end of the 8th round.

Vargas turned the tide again at the start of the ninth round, scoring a knock down with an uppercut and a straight right hand that took Miura’s legs and sent him to the canvas. Purely on instinct, Miura got back up and continued to fight, but Vargas was landing frequently and with force. Referee Tony Weeks stepped in to stop the fight at the halfway point of round 9 as Miura was sustaining a barrage of punches.

Miura still had a minute and a half to survive if he was going to get out of the round, and it was clear that he was not going to stop fighting.

A back and forth battle of wills between two world championship level fighters, Takashi Miura versus “El Bandido” Vargas wins the 2015 Fight of the Year.

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Jan 9 in Germany – Feigenbutz and De Carolis To Settle Score

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This coming Saturday, January 9th, the stage is set at the Baden Arena in Offenburg, Germany for a re-match between Vincent Feigenbutz and Giovanni De Carolis. The highly anticipated re-match is set to air on SAT.1 in Germany, and Feigenbutz will once again be defending his GBU and interim WBA World titles at Super Middleweight.

The first meeting between the two was less than three months ago, on October 17th and that meeting saw Feigenbutz controversially edge De Carolis on the judge’s cards by scores of (115-113, 114-113 and 115-113). De Carolis scored a flash knock down in the opening round, and he appeared to outbox Feigenbutz in the early going, but the 20 year old German champion came on in the later rounds.

The first bout is described as one of the most crowd-pleasing bouts of the year in Germany, and De Carolis and many observers felt that the Italian had done enough to win.

De Carolis told German language website RAN.DE that he was more prepared for the re-match, and that due to the arrogance Feigenbutz displayed in the aftermath of the first fight, he was confident that he had won over some of the audience. Though De Carolis fell short of predicting victory, he promised a re-vamped strategy tailored to what he has learned about Feigenbutz, whom he termed immature and inexperienced.

The stage is set for Feigenbutz vs De Carolis 2, this Saturday January 9th in Offenburg, Germany. If you can get to the live event do it, if not you have SAT.1 in Germany airing the fights, and The Boxing Channel right back here for full results.

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2015 Knock Out of the Year – Saul Alvarez KO’s James Kirkland

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On May 9th of 2015, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez delivered a resonant knock-out of James Kirkland on HBO that wins the 2015 KO of the Year.

The knock-out itself came in the third round, after slightly more than two minutes of action. The end came when Alvarez delivered a single, big right hand that caught Kirkland on the jaw and left him flat on his back after spinning to the canvas.Alvarez was clearly the big star heading into the fight. The fight was telecast by HBO for free just one week after the controversial and disappointing Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao fight, and Alvarez was under pressure to deliver the type of finish that people were going to talk about. Kirkland was happy to oblige Alvarez, taking it right to Alvarez from the start. Kirkland’s aggression saw him appear to land blows that troubled the young Mexican in the early going. Alvarez played good defense, and he floored Kirkland in the first round, displaying his power and his technique in knocking down an aggressive opponent.

However, Kirkland kept coming at Alvarez and the fight entered the third round with both men working hard and the feeling that the fight would not go the distance. Kirkland continued to move forward, keeping “Canelo” against the ropes and scoring points with a barrage of punches while looking for an opening.

At around the two minute mark, Alvarez landed an uppercut that sent Kirkland to the canvas again. Kirkland got up, but it was clear that he did not have his legs under him. Kirkland was going to try to survive the round, but Alvarez had an opportunity to close out the fight. The question was would he take it?

Alvarez closed in on Kirkland, putting his opponent’s back to the ropes. Kirkland was hurt, but he was still dangerous, pawing with punches and loading up for one big shot.

But it was the big shot “Canelo” threw that ended the night. Kirkland never saw it coming, as he was loading up with a huge right hand of his own. The right Alvarez threw cracked Kirkland in the jaw, and his eyes went blank. His big right hand whizzed harmlessly over the head of a ducking Alvarez, providing the momentum for the spin that left Kirkland prone on the canvas.

Saul “Canelo” Alvarez went on to defeat Miguel Cotto in his second fight of 2015 and he is clearly one of boxing’s biggest stars heading into 2016. On May 9th Alvarez added another reel to his highlight film when he knocked out James Kirkland with the 2015 “Knock Out of the Year”.

Photo by naoki fukuda

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