Posts Tagged ‘recap’

GGGJacobs

*UPDATE* 3:13AM – That’s all from fight night. More news from this night of boxing will be published on Sunday.

NEW YORK CITY — Tonight, BeatsBoxingMayhem will be live from Madison Square Garden providing live updates for every fight. Check back often here and on Twitter for commentary on the entire night of boxing.

GOLOVKIN GETS CONTROVERSIAL DECISION OVER JACOBS: This one lived up to the billing of “Big Drama Show.” There was high tension throughout the 12 rounds. Was Jacobs gaining momentum? Was Golovkin one shot away from ending it? I had Jacobs surging in the championship rounds to even it up at 104 headed into the 12th round.

The 12th was a clear GGG round; I felt Golovkin’s shots had more impact. That and the earlier knockdown (also controversial), was enough to give Golovkin a narrow 114-113 win on my card.

Neither guy’s stock should drop. GGG pressed the fight and attempted to walk down a much larger man with a dangerous punch. And Jacobs utilized a sound strategy of movement and switch-hitting to confuse Golovkin. If those boos directed at Golovkin during his post-fight interview are any indication, Jacobs will finally get some respect in his  hometown.

ChocolatitoRungvisai

RUNGVISAI STUNS CHOCOLATITO: What a war. Chocolatito was dropped by a balance shot to the body in the first, cut by a butt in the third, and facing the brute strength of a natural super flyweight. Gonzalez looked to be in trouble banging with the bigger man, but his accuracy and combinations got him back in it by the middle rounds.

From in the arena, I thought the critical mistake Chocolatito made came in the late rounds. I had him getting outworked in rounds 9-11, but sealing the deal with a strong 12th to take it 114-112. Instead, the judges had it 114-112 twice for Rungvisai and 113-113.

I couldn’t cosign the booing for Rungvisai. Yes, the favorite lost, but we got a great fight from both men. One thing that can’t be questioned is that Chocolatito is completely maxed out at this weight. This is around the age smaller fighters start to decline, so K2 needs to maximize the elite-level fights he has left, namely the Inoue and Estrada fights should Gonzalez get by Rungvisai in the rematch.

CuadrasCarmona

CARLOS CUADRAS UD10 DAVID CARMONA: Carlos Cuadras’s decision win over David Carmona may have given Roman Gonzalez a blueprint for an easier rematch. The normally fleet-footed Cuadras opted for a more stationary approach that allowed him to counter with power. Unfortunately for Cuadras, he’s not used to leading, making for awkward exchanges and him lunging to initiate offense.

Cuadras never got out of first gear and it nearly cost him. In terms of excitement, the most interesting moments in the late rounds came from Carmona getting rough. He stunned Cuadras with a hard overhand right in the seventh and hurt him to the body in the eighth. Carmona also was the more active over the last two rounds. The judges saw it differently, giving Cuadras the unanimous decision with scores of97-93 twice and 96-94.

This Cuadras was a far-cry from the one we saw lump up Gonzalez last year. Maybe he underestimated Carmona. Whatever the reason, Cuadras better get it together before the inevitable Gonzalez rematch.

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RYAN MARTIN TKO8 BRYANT CRUZ: Ryan Martin improved his undefeated record with a dominant stoppage over Bryant Cruz. Martin used his size and reach advantage to keep the bout at mid-range where his size and reach allowed for repeated left hook counters and body work. Although Cruz remained scrappy, the punishment began visibly taking a toll in the fifth when he was hurt by a straight right.

The remaining action was one-way traffic with Cruz getting strafed any time he went to the ropes. It was this scenario in the eighth that put an end to the fight. Martin’s record improves to 18-0, 11 KOs.

 

UNTELEVISED UNDERCARD

ANDY LEE UD8 DE’ANDRE LEATHERWOOD: 14 months of inactivity resulted in a disappointing return for veteran Andy Lee, who won a lackluster unanimous decision over unheralded De’Andre Leatherwood. Lee spent most of the fight waiting for big counter punching opportunities that never came. While Leatherwood’s output was equally low, the career journeyman did manage to land at least one or two clean right-hand counters per round that kept Lee cautious.

The crowd began letting both men have it just two minutes into the fight. Yells of “Wake up, Andy!” and ‘C’mon, Andy!” were heard periodically throughout the night from diehard supporters.

Sensing the fight slipping away, Lee took m0re chances in rounds 6-8. Lee got the better of their sporadic exchanges via his formidable left hand, but Leatherwood was never in serious danger. Nonetheless, Lee aggression was viewed favorably by the judges, and he won the decision via scores of 80-72, 78-74, and 79-73.

 

 

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CINCINNATI, OH — Lamont Peterson claimed the WBA World welterweight title with a hard-fought unanimous decision over David Avanesyan.

The rangier Peterson held the advantage at long range with an educated jab and lateral movement. However, the majority of the first-half was fought up-close with each fighter having success with short hooks and guard-splitting uppercuts. Avanesyan maintained the higher, more consistent work-rate while Peterson landed the harder single shots.

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Peterson displayed his class in the second half with lateral movement to score creative body shots around Avanesyan’s guard. Starting late in the seventh, Avanesyan was forced to give ground due to Peterson’s bullying and prolonged body assault.

Final scorecards read 115-113 and 116-112 twice for Peterson, putting him in play for the winner of Keith Thurman vs. Danny Garcia on March 4.

 

Tonight, HBO’s latest edition of its Boxing After Dark series reminded us that boxing is a blood sport. The stars of the card, Takashi Miura and Francisco Vargas, shared the ring in 2015 and delivered a consensus Fight of the Year. This time, they were engaged in battle with younger, less accomplished foes. But instead of delivering showcase performances, both veterans gave the sport a pound of their flesh in savage, bloody affairs.

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MIURA KO12 ROMAN: This was 12 rounds of PAIN. Miura did great work to the body but was still hurt badly several times in the early rounds. Defense wasn’t a priority for either fighter and the fight started to favor Roman in the middle rounds. Miura looked exhausted and close to being stopped as Roman increased his combinations. But showing his heart, Miura hung tough and kept pounding away at the body.

The body assault’s effectiveness manifested in the late rounds. Roman was visibly slowed by the shots in the ninth and put on his knees in the 10th by a slashing left hook. He beat the count, but for the remaining roounds Roman was simply outgunned by the surging former champion. A barrage of punches on the ropes put Roman down again in the 11th, and two southpaw lefts floored Roman for good in the 12th.

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BERCHELT UPSETS VARGAS: There’s a good chance tonight was the end of Francisco Vargas as a top fighter. On the surface, that might sound strange when talking about a fighter who just suffered his first defeat. But the brutality of the 32-year-old Vargas’ last three fights against Miura, Salido and now Berchelt is more punishment than most fighters endure of their entire careers.

Against Berchelt, a fighter who was unproven at the elite level, Vargas looked slow. He couldn’t keep his head away from Berchelt’s straight right nor his left hook, which produced constant images of Vargas’ head getting snapped back.

To Vargas’ credit, he bravely battled and even hurt Berchelt with an overhand right in the second, and in the middle rounds with a sneaky body shot. But by the seventh, the contest ceased being competitive and turned into a bloodbath. Cuts were opened above both of Vargas’ eyes with the left being a ghastly injury leaving a flap of skin affecting the champion’s vision.

Based on Vargas’ pedigree as a comeback fighter, referee Raul Caiz gave him every opportunity to turn things around being finally calling it off in the 11th.

WHAT’S NEXT: Last night’s developments have shaken up the 130-pound division. Vargas will spend the rest of the year convalescing, eliminating the possibility of a quick rematch with Berchelt. Miura remains the #1 contender and will likely face Berchelt next in what promises to be another brutal shootout. Despite Roy Jones saying he favored Miura because of his punching power, I view Berchelt-Miura as 50/50 due to Berchelt’s speed, Miura’s lack of head movement and the tough fights he’s endured (including tonight).

This leaves Orlando Salido out in the cold. He was in attendance and no doubt hoping to get a rematch with Vargas, the man he battled to a draw in 2016’s Fight of Year. It’s still possible he can entice Berchelt to fight him since it would be a more lucrative contest than the Miura defense.

Also looming in the distance is WBO champion Vasyl Lomachenko, an HBO staple and the division’s most talented fighter. Then there’s Jason Sosa, who has a version of the WBA strap and has fought on HBO before. Don’t forget Jezreel Corrales, who holds the other version and scored another victory over former lineal champ Takashi Uchiyama last month. And finally young gun Gervonta Davis, who picked up the IBF strap earlier this month. Mix and match any of these fighters together and you have a compelling matchup.

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LAS VEGAS — Leo Santa Cruz knew he couldn’t beat Carl Frampton by brawling, so he did what all great fighters do by adjusting his game plan. The pressure fighter morphed to a boxer-puncher to take a majority decision and regain the WBA featherweight title.

From round one, the feel of the fight had a pronounced difference from their first encounter last July. The taller Santa Cruz worked behind his jab and forced Frampton to become the aggressor and takes risks to get inside. When Frampton succeeded, the challenger took a step back and scored with short flurries inside, forcing Frampton back outside to reset.

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This pattern continued until the sixth round when Frampton began to wear down Santa Cruz with hard body shots and mauling. The punishment and pace slowed Santa Cruz’s jab, giving Frampton more opportunities to close the scoring gap in the seventh and eighth stanzas.

In the ninth, Santa Cruz’s jab and high activity returned. Frampton couldn’t equal the challenger’s punch output, and found himself being out-landed 3-1 in exchanges.

Despite the masterful game plan, Frampton’s success in the mid rounds and desperation push in the 12th made for close scorecards. Judge Burt Clements had it a draw, 114-114. He was overruled by Dave Moretti and Glenn Feldman, who both had it 115-113 for Santa Cruz.

The most impressive moment came afterward from Santa Cruz, who stated in his post-fight interview that he wants another fight to make a trilogy. You heard that right. No mention of needing to talk with his manager or promoter. Santa Cruz lauded Frampton for giving him a rematch, and feel he’s obligated to return the favor.

I’m sure not a single boxing fan will have an objection.

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LAS VEGAS — It was dubbed a fight to crown the Pound 4 Pound best and it delivered. Andre Ward was hurt in the first round and dropped in the second, but mounted a gradual comeback behind a strong body attack to take a narrow 114-113 win on all scorecards.

Ward was stunned by a jab in the opening round and forced to hold. In the second, Kovalev floored the challenger with a perfect right hand. Kovalev continued his aggression behind the stiff jab and right hand, but Ward responded strong in the third by countering to the body and working the left hook.

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The remaining rounds were a seesaw of momentum on both sides. Ward got more moments for inside mauling where he slowed Kovalev with hard body shots. Although Kovalev was not able to replicate the clean shots landed in the opening rounds, he still manged to back Ward up with counter jabs and right hands.

The fight would come down to the 12th, where Kovalev landed the harder head shots, but Ward continued his solid work downstairs. Ultimately, the judges preferred Ward’s offense, and he won the round on all the judge’s scorecards.

The win gives Ward the WBA, WBO and IBF light-heavyweight titles and sets the stage for a lucrative rematch.


What a fight! On my scorecard, I had 115-112 for Kovalev, believing the knockdown pushed him ahead in a close bout. I had Kovalev taking rounds 1, 2 (w/ knockdown), 4, 6, 9, 10, and 12. Ward took rounds 3, 5, 7, 8, and 11. However, there were at least two close rounds on my card where I had some doubt before I tallied the final score. In Vegas, judges prefer aggression and for whatever it’s worth, Ward was the one who looked fresher and landed the most consistent punches on the second half — the body shots. And while the crowd should not influence judges, we know it does and there were wild cheers for Ward’s comeback likely played a part in the favorable scoring.

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Manny Pacquiao has reached the point where the years of hard fights are supposed to have taken their toll. He should be susceptible to younger fighters that are faster, stronger and hungrier. Saturday night that fighter was supposed to be Jesse Vargas — 10 years younger, 5 inches taller and possessing a 4 inch reach advantage. Instead, Pacquiao showed that he remains an all-time great way ahead of most competition by scoring a second round knockdown and winning a unanimous decision to recapture the WBO welterweight title.

It wasn’t a flawless performance by any means. Pacquiao isn’t the whirlwind of motion he was six years ago. Vargas had his moments were he caught Manny flush with right hands and appeared to have him stunned on a few occasions. But this fight made it clear that outside of Floyd Mayweather, there are few fighters from 140-147 pounds that can get the job done against Pacquiao.

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FIRST HALF CHESS MATCH: Vargas’s game plan was to play the role of counter-puncher and catch Pacquiao when he rushed in behind the straight left. When they got close, he’d fire off short body shots (some went low) that forced Pacquiao back outside to reset. Occasionally, he’d lull Manny to sleep on the outside and catch him clean with a right cross.

The strategy resulted in enough clean, effective punching for me to give Vargas rounds 1, 4, and 6 over the first half. However, Pacquiao held a 57-56 advantage on the scorecards due to nailing Vargas with a counter left for a flash knockdown.

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SECOND HALF WIPEOUT: Once Pacquiao figured out Vargas’ rhythm, it ceased being competitive from a scoring standpoint. Vargas would land the occasional solid right hand, but they couldn’t negate the volume of straights lefts and right hooks that caused swelling over his right eye and split open his face. On my scorecard, Pacquiao swept rounds 7-12 for a 117-110 score. Official scorecards had Pacquiao winning 114-113 and 118-109 twice.

NEXT ORDER OF BUSINESS: Hardcore fans have been clamoring for a “passing the torch” match with Pacquiao taking on young star Terence Crawford. After some pressure from Stephen A. Smith, Manny eventually said he wouldn’t mind facing Crawford at 140 pounds. Considering Pacquiao hasn’t competed at 140 in seven years, and his management team previously dismissing Crawford due to his “style,” I doubt the fight ever happens. A fight against the winner of Danny Garcia vs. Keith Thurman at the end of 2017 is a little more feasible, but I’d wager Pacquiao takes a safer contest like Amir Khan. Or, considering he was at ringside, we could get a rematch no one wants to see in the sparring contest that was Mayweather-Pacquiao.

 

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LONDON — Size matters. Kell Brook’s sharp counter-punching and movement befuddled Gennady Golovkin at times, but the power of the bruising middleweight champion proved decisive as he forced Brook’s corner to stop the contest in the fifth.

Brook was badly staggered in the round one by a left hook which he later speculated might have broken his eye socket. The injury would be a recurring theme throughout the fight as Brook occasionally pawed at the area starting in the second. Brook found his greatest success in round two by countering the charging Golovkin with left hooks and right uppercuts. The speed and timing of these shots seemed to surprise Golovkin and drew blood from his nose.

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At ring center, Brook’s speed and counters allowed him to remain competitive. However, Golovkin’s size and the power continually forced Brook to the ropes. The challenger couldn’t avoid digging body shots which lowered his hands and opened up Golovkin’s thudding jabs and right hands.

The fifth round saw Brook hurt several times with power shots and attempt to buy time by taunting. With no punches coming back his way, Golovkin kept throwing and forced Brook’s corner to throw in the towel.

“A few rounds before I told them my eye was gone,” Brook admitted afterward. “It was hard to see him. I was very frustrated. I had so much more to give. I feel I would have taken over in the middle and later rounds.

Absolutely (I could have fought on). A fight of this magnitude, you have to carry on… Knock me out.”

Golovkin admitted that Brook’s use of “distance” caused him trouble, but was adamant the smaller man never hurt him and compared the bout to a “street fight” and “sparring.”

With a Canelo bout seemingly a year away at the earliest, Golovkin expressed his desire to unify next against WBO titlist Billy Joe Saunders. Brook confirmed he will move up to 154 pounds and vacate his IBF welterweight title.