Posts Tagged ‘Juan Francisco Estrada’

Estrada_Salas

Juan Francisco Estrada moved closer to a WBC title shot with a thorough deconstruction of Anuar Salas last night at the Arena Ciudad de Mexico.

After a slow first round that saw Estrada buzzed by a hook, the former unified flyweight titlist began picking apart Salas with 1-2s and digging body shots. Salas attempts to counter were futile as Estrada’s left hooks and right uppercuts continuously caught him out of position.

The fifth round saw Salas hit the canvas twice. The first was off an angled left hook to the liver. The second and final knockdown came courtesy of a right uppercut to the solar plexus.

The victory gives Estrada the WBC silver super flyweight title and puts him in line for a much-anticipated rematch with WBC champion Roman Gonzalez, who defeated Estrada via close unanimous decision in 2012. Estrada is currently #3 in the WBC’s super flyweight rankings.

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We got some exciting fights in 2015, but this was also a noticeable year for the fights that didn’t happen. Here are the bouts promoters and networks couldn’t get done and hopefully will in 2016.

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5. AMIR KHAN VS. KELL BROOK

For two elite welterweights, Amir Khan and Kell Brook didn’t do much in 2015. Khan fought once, beating Chris Algieri, and spent the rest of the year playing his usual role of bridesmaid in the Mayweather and Pacquiao sweepstakes. Brook had two outings against overmatched foes in Jo Jo Dan and Frankie Gavin.

What made this so infuriating is the two didn’t need to wait for Pacquiao or Mayweather. The realistic superfight to be made was between them. Over the last few days, reports have circulated the two rivals have started light negotiations to meet in the summer. Maybe they’ve finally smartened up.

 

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4. SERGEY KOVALEV VS. ADONIS STEVENSON

Another year has passed without the best fight at light-heavyweight being made. The two had a brief face to face meeting ringside during November’s James DeGale-Lucian Bute card. A few weeks ago, Kovalev’s Main Event’s promoter Kathy Duva disclosed she sent a contract to Stevenson’s promoter Yvon Michel for a June bout with a 50/50 split.

Don’t hold your breath on this one happening.

 

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3. VASYL LOMACHENKO VS. NICHOLAS WALTERS

How this fight fell apart soured me a bit on Lomachenko. Back in June, both fighters were featherweight titlists and under Top Rank, making a unification clash between two undefeated champions a no-brainer. But Walters, who hadn’t fought since October 2014, came in overweight for a his June defense against Miguel Marriaga.

Lomachenko’s team used that to declare they we no longer interested in facing Walters since he lost his title on the scales and wouldn’t entertain a catchweight. Oddly, they are still pursuing a catchweight bout against a smaller fighter in Guillermo Rigondeaux, who also has no belt in Lomachenko’s featherweight division.

Belt or no belt, Lomchenko and Walters are each other’s biggest threat. It’s a shame we’ll probably never see it.

 

Thurman_Porter_faceoff

2. KEITH THURMAN VS. SHAWN PORTER

This orchestrated staredown in a press room was the closest we got to Shawn Porter and Keith Thurman squaring off in 2015. Every week, it the proposed dates changed. First they were negotiating for a September clash. Then by the end of the year. Now February. No, scratch that, it’s possibly March. Madness!

Wake me up when the fight is signed.

 

Gonzalez_Estrada

1. ROMAN GONZALEZ VS. JUAN FRANCISCO ESTRADA II

Can we get a return bout between two of the top Pound 4 Pound fighters in the world? In 2012, the two fought a highly competitive bout which Gonzalez took by unanimous decision. There is a minority of observers who believe Estrada should have won. Even more intriguing is both men have improved tremendously since that fight (especially Estrada).

In October, Gonzalez went on record stating he wanted at least $1 million for the Estrada rematch. Skill-wise, it’s worth that and then some. But let’s keep our fingers crossed that both men are realistic in their actual market value and make this superfight happen in 2016.

 

 

 

The “Masterclass” Award List is recognition of the elite fighters who study their opponents with meticulous attention to detail and make good to great fighters look like utter novices. Usually, this award is reserved for technicians. But in 2015, we saw several sluggers and boxer-punchers deliver performances worthy of recognition. Here they are.

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10. DONNIE NIETES UD12 FRANCISCO RODRIGUEZ JR. (7/11/15)

WBO light flyweight champ Donnie Nietes had his hands full over the summer when he squared off against mandatory challenger Francisco Rodriguez Jr. At 33, Nietes was facing a fighter 11 years his junior. However, Nietes proved to be the fighter with more energy as he maintained a strong jab and movement throughout the contest.

After being hurt to the body in the third, Nietes was in full control by sixth when he stunned Rodriguez with uppercuts and left hooks. And despite hurting his right hand and suffering a cut from errant elbow in the 12th, Nietes remained in control and won via scores of 115-113, 118-110 and 119-109.

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Yaegashi_Mendoza

9. AKIRA YAEGASHI UD12 JAVIER MENDOZA (12/29/15)

Rumors of Akira Yaegashi’s demise have been greatly exaggerated. Following back to back brutal KO losses to Roman Gonzalez and Pedro Guevara in 2014, it appeared the book was closed on Yaegashi as a top fighter. His earlier 2015 fights against Said M. Said and Songseanglek Phosuwangym, fighters with a combined record of 3-13, did little to sway that opinion.

On Tuesday, the 32-year old Yaegashi showed how much he had left by dominating Javier Mendoza to win the IBF junior flyweight title and making him a three-division world champion.

Outside of a seventh round scare, Yaegashi’s pace and punch output was too much for Mendoza to keep up with. The 11th and 12th stanzas featured Yaegashi at his best with fast counters and in-and-out boxing.

Yaegashi goes in 2016 renewed and with a title around his waist.

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8. JUAN FRANCISCO ESTRADA KO10 HERNAN MARQUEZ (9/26/15)

While we cross our fingers for an Estrada rematch with Roman Gonzalez next year, El Gallo spent part of his 2015 dissecting former flyweight titlist Hernan Marquez.

The bout featured seven knockdowns until the carnage was finally stopped in the 10th. This fight was just another example that the only competition for this man is Chocolatito.

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Ruenroeng_Shiming

March 7, 2015, Macau, China — Amnat Ruenroeng(L) from Thailand wins a 12-round unanimous decision over two-time Chinese Olympic gold medalist Zou Shiming and retains his IBF flyweight world title to remain undefeated at The Venetian Macao in Macau, China on Saturday, March 7. — Photo Credit : Chris Farina – Top Rank (no other credit allowed) copyright 2015

7. AMNAT RUENROENG UD 12 ZOU SHIMING (3/7/15)

We should be thanking Ruenroeng everyday for stopping the Zou Shiming hype train. Despite suffering a knockdown in the second, Ruenroeng wholly dominated the contest and exploited Shiming’s technical shortcomings to full effect.

How comprehensive was this defeat? Shiming took the rest of the year off.

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Quigg_Martinez

6. SCOTT QUIGG TKO2 KIKO MARTINEZ (7/18/15)

Kiko Martinez is one of those hardened vets that no one has an easy night with. That was until this past July when Scott Quigg achieved what no one else had in stopping Martinez in just two rounds.

The emphatic nature of this win was enough to set up a super bantamweight unification between Quigg and Carl Frampton in February.

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RussellJr_Gonzalez

5. GARY RUSSELL JR. TKO4 JHONNY GONZALEZ (3/28/15)

Six years into his career, Gary Russell Jr. finally put it all together to win the WBC featherweight title. Russell is known for his otherworldly speed, but in this fight he surprised everyone with his power. He stayed in the pocket, prompted exchanges and beat Gonzalez to the punch every time.

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4. DANNY JACOBS TKO1 PETER QUILLIN (12/5/15)

Can’t get more masterful than a first round knockout, right? The “Battle for Brooklyn” only took 1 minute and 25 seconds. Jacobs began Quillin’s downfall with a  left hook feint followed by a crushing right hand on the temple. The fight was essentially over after that…

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3. GENNADY GOLOVKIN TKO8 DAVID LEMIEUX (10/17/15)

Golovkin is noted for his massive power, but the story of his bout against David Lemieux was the jab. GGG nullified Lemieux’s pressure and subsequent offense and opened up the Canadian slugger to hooks. Lemieux was game, but the beating he took was a “slow death.” He finally checked out from the pain in the 8th.

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2. TIM BRADLEY TKO9 BRANDON RIOS (11/7/15)

This L was so one-sided that it may have pushed Brandon Rios into retirement. Bradley, under new trainer Teddy Atlas (Mr. “We are fireman!” in the corner), was clicking on all cylinders. On the outside, he snapped Rios head back with hard jabs. When the fight went inside, Bradley was the one muscling Rios back and digging to the body.

The knockout in the ninth was just as much from mental as it was physical exhaustion. Yes, Rios struggled with his weight going in, but even Rios at his “best” would have been in deep trouble with the version of Tim Bradley we saw last month.

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1. FLOYD MAYWEATHER UD12 MANNY PACQUIAO (5/2/15)

A lot of people want to forget this fight ever happened because of its “disappointing” nature, but don’t blame Floyd. Pacquiao was supposed to be the perfect fighter to break Mayweather’s defense with southpaw pressure, speed, awkward angles and power. Instead, the smaller Pacquiao was forced into a chess match where his whirlwind offense was rendered inert. He was held to a record low of 19% of total punches landed (81/249).

Would it have been different five years ago? Probably. But based on what we did see, it’s hard to envision any version of Pacquiao beating Mayweather.

 

Estrada_Marquez

Photo Credit: Zanfer Promotions

SONORA, MEXICO — WBA and WBO flyweight titlist Juan Francisco Estrada made the sixth defense of his belts and possibly ended Hernan “Tyson” Marquez’s run as a contender with a 10th round stoppage at the Centro Convenciones.

Marquez fought on even terms for the first three rounds before the precision and variety of Estrada’s offense began to take a noticeable effect. The momentum swayed to Estrada for good in fifth as he repeatedly drove the challenger to the ropes with vicious body shots.

Then came the knockdowns, seven in total. Marquez tasted the canvas twice in the sixth via a digging right to the body and series of body blows along the ropes. Marquez fell twice more in the seventh, this time off left hook body shots. The fifth knockdown came in the ninth courtesy of a counter right hook. The final two ended Marquez’s night in the 10th — a thudding left hook and a straight right did the damage.

At 27 years old and a 10 year pro, Marquez is in clear decline. Over his last 10 fights, starting with a Fight of Year level war against Brian Viloria in 2012, Marquez is 5-4-1 with each defeat coming via knockout.

Should Estrada rival and WBC champion Roman Gonzalez defeat Brian Viloria on October 17, the path becomes clear for a unification rematch backed by HBO. Gonzalez holds a 2012 unanimous decision victory over Estrada in a highly competitive encounter.

Gonzalez_Fuentes

WBC flyweight champion Roman Gonzalez extended his KO streak to seven with an efficient and dominating sixth round stoppage over Rocky Fuentes earlier today in Tokyo.

Gonzalez was in cruise control and did whatever he pleased with the overmatched Fuentes. The champion’s deadly accuracy was featured anytime the two got in close quarters with Gonzalez punishing the Fuentes with sharp hooks and uppercuts. The constant bodily harm caught up to the challenger in the sixth when a right uppercut through the guard for a knockdown. Fuentes beat the count but was summarily beaten into a corner, prompting the ref to call the bout with seconds remaining in the round.

The win was Gonzalez’s first defense of the flyweight strap he won in September by defeating Akira Yaegashi (TKO9). Of Gonzalez’s last 11 fights dating back to 2012, only Juan Francisco Estrada has lasted the distance. Estrada now holds the WBA and WBO flyweight belts via 11th round TKO over Giovani Segura in September. Should he defeat Joebert Alvarez on December 6, Estrada is expected to seek revenge against Gonzalez in early 2015.

JuanFranciscoEstrada_SeguraWin

MEXICO CITY, DISTRITO FEDERAL, Mexico — Juan Francisco Estrada left no doubts in the ring Saturday night against Giovani Segura. Estrada, defending his WBA and WBO flyweight titles, executed one of the top masterclass performances of the year by picking apart Segura and dispatching him via an 11th round TKO at the Arena Ciudad de Mexico.

 

SEGURA BEAT DOWN AT HIS OWN GAME: Giovani Segura is a bull of a fighter that likes to get in close and punish opponents. Estrada obliged him, but made Segura pay dearly for his aggression with digging hooks to the body, and head snapping right crosses and left hooks upstairs. Despite his long arms, Estrada impressively still maintained full leverage on his shots during inside exchanges and constantly forced Segura to give ground.

The seventh round was a brutal three minutes where Estrada’s blistering offense nearly produced a knockdown. From then on, Segura opted to mostly try to fight off the backfoot to equally ineffective results. The strategy allowed for more space between fighters, which benefited Estrada’s longer reach and produced more torque on the champion’s punches, leaving Segura with grotesque swelling on the entire right side of his face.

The ending sequence in the 11th started from a snapping Estrada left hook at long-range. Segura stumbled backwards and was met with a right cross and several more power shots in the corner, forcing the referee to halt the bout.

 

AN EVEN BIGGER FLYWEIGHT SHOWDOWN: We had two big flyweight matchups this weekend with Roman Gonazalez beating Akira Yaegashi (TKO9) to win the lineal WBC flyweight title, and Estrada victory over Seguara. Gonzalez and Estrada previously met at light flyweight, with Gonzalez taking a close victory in 2012 (116-112 twice, 118-108).

The rematch would be a battle between two of the best fighters at the lower weights. These two technical wizards have shown the ability to adjust in the ring, hold solid power, and more often that not, they end their bouts decisively. The winner of this fight would unquestionably deserve a Top 5 spot on any competent Pound 4 Pound list.

The below link starts off shaky, but it clears up enough to enjoy watching the full fight below.

[youtube http://youtu.be/erEzFT4epXA]

ZouShiming

MACAO, China — Two-time Olmypic gold medalist Zou Shiming had no problems in his pro debut as he easily shut out Eleazar Valenzuela over four rounds. For the past month, Top Rank has placed a lot of marketing muscle behind Shiming, who they hope to position as the Yao Ming of boxing. But this isn’t a team sport, and the scrutiny and skepticism is much higher when you’re being paid $300,000 without having proven anything in the professional realm. Did Shiming deliver, or have we seen the beginning of a fighter destined to flop?

 

THE GOOD, THE BAD AND THE WIDE OPEN: Zou Shiming has fast hands, I’ll give him that. He realized quickly that Valenzuela was very slow and countered him very effectively for all four rounds. Other good points? Well… he has a lot of enthusiasm.

Now onto the glaring problems. Shiming throws very wide and telegraphed shots. And when I say wide, I mean VERY WIDE. He doesn’t seem to have much punching power (which ties into how he throws his punches), so the threat of a KO shot isn’t there to offset his recklessness once he faces a capable fighter.

You might be thinking I should give him a little more slack considering it’s his first professional fight. Unfortunately for Shiming, time isn’t really on his side. Already 31 years of age, Top Rank and HBO have already discussed the possibility on him getting a title shot in under 10 fights.

Even so, Top Rank and HBO would be wise to extend this out as long as possible. Maybe Freddie Roach can at least improve his punching technique in the meantime.

If the below comments on HBO’s boxing Twitter page are any indication, Shiming’s prospects of crossing over with American audiences isn’t high. But Top Rank’s plan all along was to gain a strong foothold with Chinese audiences; in that regard, this card was a success. The quality isn’t that high, but the last two rounds of the fight are below.

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[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wgwKUGCItic]

 

Unless some drastic improvements happen over the next 1-2 years, Shiming is in a rude awakening once he gets his first title shot. We can already bet he most definitely won’ ever fight the two flyweights named below…

 

ESTRADA UPSETS VILORIA: It was a cruel twist of irony for Brian Viloria, who’s greatest successes of the past few years have been confined to obscure pay-per-views and Youtube clips. After years of hard work, he finally got his big break on HBO tonight only to get beaten handily by Juan Francisco Estrada.

Viloria landed his best punches over the first half but couldn’t make a serious dent on his formidable challenger, who maintained a high workrate that started paying huge dividends by the championship rounds. Estrada punished Viloria badly with uppercuts inside in the 10th and was close to a stoppage in rounds 11 and 12. Vilora was so spent in these rounds from the battering that he could barely throw any punches to defend himself.

The scorecards of 117-111 and 116-111 for Estrada were correct. The one bizarre score from judge Levi Martinez, who scored it 115-113 for Viloria, shows he should be placed far away from any future major fights.

Watch the full fight in its entirety below via @SweetBoxing

 

ROCKY MARTINEZ ESCAPES AGAIN: I watched ringisde as Rocky Martinez escaped Madison Square Garden in January by earning a draw against Juan Carlos Burgos. He was much better tonight proving his case in taking a split decision over previously undefeated Diego Magdaleno.

Like in the Burgos fight, Martinez was having a hard time early on dealing with Magdaleno’s hooks to the body. The problem for Magdaleno was that he fought in spurts while letting Martinez come forward and keep him under pressure. That, coupled with a nice 1-2 that dropped Magdaleno in the fourth, gave Martinez the edge in the judges eyes via scores of 115-112, 114-113 and 111-116.

This fight is also online in its entirety courtesy of @SweetBoxing