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Three Punch Combo: Results and Previews of Under the Radar Fights and More

Matt Andrzejewski

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fights: Algieri vs Hernandez

THREE PUNCH COMBO – With the attention of the boxing world riveted on the big heavyweight title fight in Los Angeles, several fights last week went under the radar. At Huntington, Long Island, former 140-pound champion Chris Algieri (22-3, 8 KO’s) made a successful return to the ring after more than a two year layoff and won a lopsided ten round decision over Angel Hernandez (14-12-2, 9 KO’s). The win helps put Algieri (pictured on the left) back on the map in the junior welterweight division. He made it clear afterwards that he’d like to receive a title shot sometime in 2019 and he may get that opportunity. Maurice Hooker currently holds the WBO title that Algieri once held and may find Algieri – a name fighter who lacks punching power — an enticing opponent if Algieri finds himself cracking the rankings with another comeback victory.

In a battle of undefeated junior welterweights, Kendo Castaneda (15-0, 7 KO’s) scored an impressive ten round unanimous decision over Gilbert Venegas Jr. (10-1, 6 KO’s). The bout took place this past Saturday in San Antonio, TX, and was streamed live on Facebook via FIGHTNIGHT LIVE.

The first three rounds were nip and tuck. Castaneda was the busier fighter working combinations behind his left jab but Venegas had his moments on the inside landing some hard shots of his own.

In round four, Castaneda seized control. He stunned Venegas with a right and picked up the pace while the output of Venegas slowed considerably. The next six rounds played out pretty much the same with Castaneda dominating the action with his fluid movement and combination punching. He consistently beat Venegas to the punch during these rounds and countered effectively, displaying good hand speed if Venegas attempted to throw anything of his own.

This was an impressive performance by Castaneda who took a nice step forward in what is becoming a pretty deep 140-pound weight division.

Looking Ahead

This week’s boxing schedule is headlined by an ESPN card featuring the return of Vasyl Lomachenko as well as the final boxing card on HBO. With those cards grabbing most of the headlines, some other important and intriguing bouts are falling deep under the radar. Here is a look at a pair of contests that won’t receive as much coverage.

Golden Boy Promotions will be live streaming a card on Saturday night from the Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, CA, on Facebook Watch. The event is headlined by an important fight in the 130- pound division between Rene Alvarado (29-8, 20 KO’s) and Carlos Morales (17-3-3, 6 KO’s). This contest is being billed as a WBA world title eliminator.

Simply put, Alvarado-Morales is a well matched fight. Alvarado is an action fighter who is not afraid to take a few punches just to create opportunities to land his own. He relies on constant pressure and a consistent body attack to wear down his opposition. He has won five straight since losing to Yuriorkis Gamboa in March of 2017. This includes wins against then undefeated Roger Gutierrez as well as former world title challenger Denis Shafikov in a bloody war. Alvarado seems to be getting better and better as his career moves forward.

 

Morales is a grinder who will press forward from the opening bell. He throws a high volume of punches and mixes up his attack by constantly changing angles. Given his consistent high motor and shifty style, he has sprung some upsets in recent years as well as given some top level talent harder than expected tests. In his last fight, Morales pushed highly rated prospect Ryan Garcia to the limit in dropping a ten round majority decision. Similar to Alvarado, Morales is getting better and better as his career progresses.

Given their respective styles, we should be in for treat. Expect the action to be crisp throughout the course of this bout. I think this will be the most entertaining fight of the upcoming week.

Also on Saturday, DAZN will broadcast a card headlined by the return of Kell Brook. On that card, top welterweight prospect Josh Kelly (8-0, 6 KO’s) faces his toughest test as a pro when he faces David Avanesyan (23-3-1, 11 KO’s).

Many are high on Kelly, a former amateur standout who competed in the 2016 Olympic Games. Kelly is well schooled given the deep amateur background and very fluid inside the ring. He possesses above average hand speed for the division and is an extremely effective combination puncher. And though he may not be a one punch knockout puncher, he has shown the ability to break down his opponent with his heavy hands.

Avanesyan, a boxer-puncher with solid skills and some slickness to his game, represents a step up in class. It took highly touted welterweight Egidijus Kavaliauskas some time to figure out the Avanesyan puzzle when they fought this past February. This is a good test for Kelly and an impressive showing could propel him into the mix in what is already a loaded welterweight division.

Remembering The Very First “Boxing After Dark” Fight

The final live televised HBO boxing event will be this Saturday night with women in two of the three featured bouts. This iconic series has produced many classics and memorable moments for boxing fans, but it didn’t get off to a rousing start on its maiden telecast from the Great Western Forum on February 3rd, 1996.

While many remember the main event between future Hall of Famer Marco Antonio Barrera and Kennedy McKinney, many have forgotten the opening bout, a WBO 115-pound title fight between champion Johnny Tapia who entered with a record of 33-0-2 and challenger Giovanni Andrade of Brazil who was 17-2.

Tapia, of course, was known as an all-action fighter and seemed to be a great fit for this newly launched series. He was rarely in bad fights regardless of the opponent. Andrade was totally unknown and had no recognizable names on his resume. Frankly, this was meant to be a showcase for Tapia and his all-action style.

Tapia came out as the aggressor in round one and landed some solid combinations. Sensing little resistance from his opponent, Tapia let his hands go even more in round two, looking for an early knockout. About halfway through the round, Tapia landed a low left with not much behind it as the two were tangled up on the inside. Andrade went down in a heap and appeared to be in a lot of pain, but he quickly jumped back to his feet and the round commenced.

Moments later, a sharp right by Tapia to Andrade’s forehead put Andrade on the canvas. Andrade would beat the count and Tapia would be right back on top of him when the action resumed. Going for the finish, Tapia landed a borderline left to Andrade’s belt line. Andrade went down claiming a low blow and flailed his arms to signify he was in tremendous pain. However, referee Raul Caiz Sr. ruled it a knockdown and quickly waived the fight off with Andrade displaying so much apparent discomfort.

This was an awkward start for the new series. Not only was the fight a mismatch from the opening bell but it ended in a bizarre manner with many believing that Andrade gave it his best acting in an attempt to steal a win.

While it didn’t start out on the right foot, HBO’s Boxing After Dark would soon provide us with many memorable fights and hopefully we get a proper send-off on Saturday.

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Bohachuk KOs Unlucky Number 13 in Hollywood

David A. Avila

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Bohachuk

HOLLYWOOD, Calif.-Super welterweight prospect Serhii “El Flaco” Bohachuk (13-0, 13 KOs) disposed of local urban legend Cleotis “Mookie” Pendarvis with nary a sweat in less than four rounds on Sunday evening at the Avalon Theater before a sold out crowd.

Bohachuk remained undefeated and continued his knockout streak with Pendarvis (21-5-2, 9 KOs) the victim. Aside from the main event, the 360 Promotions card was stacked with competitive action.

Bohachuk, 23, trained expecting an easy fight especially knowing that Pendarvis lacked firepower. But sometimes firepower is not all that important.

“He only had nine knockouts,” said Bohachuk, who trains with Abel Sanchez and Max Golovkin (Gennady’s twin) in Big Bear, Calif. “It was easy fight.”

The young Ukrainian felt it was easy but Pendarvis still unleashed several Cracker Jack combinations that caught Bohachuk flush. If only Pendarvis had power there might have been a different result.

Bohachuk floored Pendarvis in the first round with a left hook dug into the liver of Pendarvis and down he went. He resumed the fight but was visibly worried.

In the second round Mookie unleashed some of his magic with a sizzling left uppercut left cross combination that stung Bohachuk for a split second. Then he followed that with a sneaky overhand left and a right hook combination that seemed to come out of the dark. But without power behind those blows, Bohachuk remained in control.

Bohachuk regained total control in the third round and floored Pendarvis with a left hook bomb that immediately dropped him to the ground. The round ended seconds later and seemingly allowed Pendarvis to escape, but at seven seconds into the fourth round Pendarvis told the referee he could not continue and the fight was stopped.

“I wanted the fight to go longer,” Bohachuk said.

A super middleweight match saw Ali Akhmedov (13-0, 10 KOs) defeat Sacramento’s Mike Guy (9-4-1) by decision after eight rounds. All three judges scored it for Akhmedov who struggled with Guy’s stop and go style.

Kazakhstan’s Meiirim Nursultanov (11-0, 8 KOs) out-worked Luis Hernandez after eight rounds in a middleweight clash to win by unanimous decision.

Other Bouts

A lightweight clash between Mario Ramos (8-0) and Arnulfo Becerra (7-2) started slowly for two rounds then erupted into a bloody war for the remaining four rounds. Becerra caught Ramos repeatedly with three and four-punch combinations but Ramos always retaliated back. The crowd roared at the action that saw both suffer cuts and bruises to each other’s face that did not discourage more blows. Ramos was deemed the winner by decision.

“He pushed me into a war,” said Ramos of Becerra. “That’s what fans want.”

Other winners on the fight card were Devon Lee (7-0), Adrian Corona (4-0), Christian Robles (3-0), George Navarro (5-0-1) and Timothy Ortiz by knockout in his pro debut.

In attendance were actor Mario Lopez, WBC minimum weight titlist Louisa Hawton, European champion Scott Quigg and others.

“They’ll be appearing on our future shows this year,” said Tom Loeffler of 360 Promotions.

Photo credit: Al Applerose

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Fast Results from Oxon Hill: The Peterson Brothers Fail to Deliver

Arne K. Lang

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Peterson

The story of boxing’s Peterson brothers, Lamont and Anthony, has been well documented. Growing up in Washington, DC, they were often homeless. Then Barry Hunter came into their life. A carpenter by trade, Hunter coached amateur boxing at a local rec center. He took the brothers in when Lamont, the older by 13 months, was only 10 years old and he’s been with them ever since, a rarity in a sport where some boxers seemingly change trainers more frequently than they change their underwear.

Today the brothers, who turned pro on the same card in 2004, appeared in the featured bouts of a Premier Boxing Champions show at the MGM National Harbor casino resort in Oxon Hill, Maryland, a stone’s throw across the Potomac from their old stomping grounds. And they were well-matched. Both of their fights were near “pick-‘em” affairs with the invaders the slightest of favorites.

Welterweight Lamont Peterson, a former two-division champion coming off a bad loss to Errol Spence Jr, was pitted against Sergey Lipinets, briefly a 140-pound title-holder coming off a loss on points to Mikey Garcia. Peterson was seemingly ahead on the cards through several frames, but one big punch, a straight right hand by Lipinets in round eight, turned the momentum in his favor.

The end came two rounds later when Lipinets hurt Peterson with on overhand right and followed up with an assault that sent the DC man down hard. Peterson arose on spaghetti legs but it was a moot point as his corner tossed in the white flag almost as soon as he hit the canvas. The official time was 2:59 of round 10.

After the fight, in an emotional moment in the ring, Peterson announced his retirement. If he holds tight to this decision, he will leave the sport with a 35-5-1 record. Sergey Lipinets, a kickboxing champion before he took up conventional boxing, improved to 15-1 with his 11th win by stoppage. Overall it was a good action fight with a high volume of punches thrown.

The co-feature, a 10-round junior welterweight contest between Anthony Peterson (37-1-1, 1 ND) and former IBF 130-pound champion Argenis Mendez (25-5-2) ended in a draw. The decision was unpopular with the pro-Peterson crowd but met the approval of the TV commentators and likely most everyone tuning in at home.

Both fought a technical fight. Peterson did most of the leading and seemingly had the fight in hand going into the late rounds where Mendez did his best work. There were no knockdowns or cuts, but Peterson suffered severe swelling over his left eye. The last round was the best with Mendez fighting with more urgency, perhaps out of fear that he would be victimized by a hometown decision.

Anthony Peterson was making his first start since January of last year when he coasted to an easy decision over Eduardo Florez, a decision later changed to a no-contest when Peterson tested positive for a banned substance.

In the swing bout, an entertaining 10-round contest in the 154-pound weight class, Cincinnati’s Jamontay Clark (14-1) overcame a rough patch in the third round to score a unanimous decision over Chicago’s Vernon Brown (10-1-1). The scores were 95-94 and 96-93 twice. At six-foot-two, the rangy Clark had a 7-inch height advantage.

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Pulev Wins Heavyweight Clash and Magdaleno Bests Rico Ramos in Costa Mesa

David A. Avila

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Pulev

COSTA MESA, Calif.-Eastern European heavyweights slugged it out in Orange County with Kubrat Pulev scoring a knockout win over Bogdan Dinu on Saturday evening. The win keeps him in line for a possible showdown with Top Rank’s newly signed Tyson Fury.

After a slow start the Bulgarian heavyweight Pulev (27-1, 14 KOs) scored the knockout win over Romania’s Dinu (18-2, 14 KOs) before a large supportive audience who arrived with Bulgarian flags and hats at the OC Hangar in Costa Mesa.

Until the fifth round the action lacked with both heavyweights not eager to fire. But an angry exchange of blows by Dinu saw Pulev emerge with a cut over his left eye. It also opened up the action between the European heavyweights.

Pulev increased the pressure and caught Dinu in the neutral corner where he unloaded right after right on the ducking Romanian fighter who dropped to a knee and was hit behind the head with a blow. The knockdown was ruled down by an illegal punch and a point was deducted from Pulev.

It didn’t matter. The Bulgarian heavyweight proceeded to unleash some more heavy rights and down went Dinu again. The Romanian fighter beat the count and was met with more right hand bombs and down he went for good this time at 2:40 of the eighth round. Referee Raul Caiz ruled it a knockout win for Pulev.

“Sometimes its good and sometimes it’s bad,” said Pulev about his actions in a heavyweight fight. “Sometimes blood makes me very angry.”

Dinu felt that illegal blows led to his downfall. But the winner Pulev was satisfied.

“It doesn’t matter, I was prepared and really good in this moment. I think I was very good boxing today and showed good punching today,” Pulev said.

Former champions

An expected battle between flashy ex-super bantamweight world champions didn’t deliver the goods as Jessie Magdaleno (26-1, 18 KOs) defeated Rico Ramos (30-6, 14 KOs) by unanimous decision after 10 rounds in a featherweight contest for a vacant WBC regional title.

A tentative Magdaleno was cautious and deliberate against Ramos who seemed to be stuck in slow motion for the first half of the fight. Behind some lefts to the body and snappy combinations Magdaleno mounted up points for six rounds.

Ramos stepped up the action in the seventh round and began stepping into the danger zone while delivering some threatening combos inside. Magdaleno resorted to holding and moving as the action shifted in Ramos’s direction.

But it was never enough as Ramos seemed to lack pep. The last two rounds saw Ramos engage with Magdaleno but neither landed the killing blows. After 10 rounds all three judges saw the fight in favor of Magdaleno 97-93, 98-92, 99-91 who now holds the WBC USNBC featherweight title.

“It was a long layoff and I took a fight against a tough, tough veteran and former world champion,” said Magdaleno, whose last fight was the loss of the WBO super bantamweight title to Isaac Dogboe last May. “Got to go back to the drawing board. I boxed as good as I could, he’s just a tough fighter.”

Other Bouts

Max Dadashev (13-0, 11 KOs) was dropped in the second round by muscular Filipino southpaw Ricky Sismundo (35-13-3, 17 KOs) and had a look of surprise. He turned it up in the third round and caught Sismundo rushing in with a slick counter left-right combination on the button. Sismundo was counted out by referee Tom Taylor at 2:30 of the third round of the super lightweight clash.

Former Olympian Javier Molina (19-2, 8 KOs) had a rough customer in Mexico’s Abdiel Ramirez (24-4-1, 22 KOs) who never allowed him space to maneuver in their super lightweight match. After eight close turbulent rounds Molina was given the decision by scores 78-74 twice and 79-73.

South Africa’s Chris Van Heerden (27-2-1, 12 KOs) thoroughly out-boxed Mexico’s Mahonry Montes (35-9-1, 24 KOs) until a clash of heads erupted a cut over his right eye. The fight was stopped in the sixth round and Van Heerden was given a technical decision by scores 60-54 on all three cards.

Welterweights Bobirzhan Mominov (10-0, 8 KOs) and Jonathan Steele (9-3-1, 6 KOs) slugged it out for six back and forth rounds at high intensity. There were no knockdowns but plenty of high level stuff going on. The bigger Mominov had the advantage and tried to take out Mitchell, but the smaller welter from Texas was just too tough and skilled to be overrun. Judges scored it 59-54 three times. Good stuff.

Detroit’s Erick De Leon (19-0-1, 11 KOs) survived a knockdown in the fifth and rallied to win by technical knockout over Mexico’s Jose Luis Gallegos (16-6, 12 KOs) in the seventh round of a lightweight clash. A barrage of unanswered blows by De Leon forced referee Ray Corona to halt the fight at 1:55 of the seventh round.

L.A.’s David Kaminsky (4-0, 2 KOs) out-pointed rugged Arizona’s Estevan Payan (1-7-1) to win by unanimous decision after four round in a middleweight contest.

Tyler McCreary (15-0-1, 7 KOs) fought to a draw with Mexico’s Roberto Castaneda (23-11-2) after six rounds. He got all he could handle from the Mexicali featherweight as both traded blow for blow throughout the contest. It was good experience for the young McCreary who looked good but tried too hard to take out the hard headed Castaneda.

Eric Puente (2-0) beat Alejandro Lopez (1-4) by decision after four rounds in a lightweight match by 39-37 scores all three cards. It was a very close match with little separation between the two.

Photo credit: Al Applerose

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