Posts Tagged ‘Yuriorkis Gamboa’


Photo Credit: Hogan Photos

It’s safe to say the window is closed for Yuriorkis Gamboa. The former featherweight titlist, who just signed with Golden Boy Promotions this year in hopes of rebuilding his career, was floored twice by underdog Robinson Castellanos in route to a seventh round corner stoppage.

Although sporting a 23-12 record, Castellanos was the more fundamentally sound fighter. Gamboa looked heavy, exhibited sloppy punch technique, and little of the speed that once made him a P4P talent. His flashy potshots couldn’t hurt the larger Castellanos, who began looking to the time the right hand by the end of the second.

The straight right hand would floor Gamboa late in the third. The counter came off a wide Gamboa left hook. The Cuban tasted the canvas again in the fourth, this time off a lead overhand right just 30 seconds into the round. Gamboa survived, but couldn’t find a rhythm to turn the fight around.

Castellanos would land three solid left hooks throughout the seventh, and a flurry of body shots when Gamboa attempted to hold at round’s end. It was not a bad beating, but the pace, coupled with Gamboa’s poor conditioning, made him decide to not come out for the eighth.

Hindsight is 20/20, but we now know Gamoba leaving Top Rank was the worst decision of his career. Since then, his activity has been wildly inconsistent. The 50 Cent signing made matters even worse. Now he’s 35 and his greatest asset, superb reflexes and speed, are completely gone. Golden Boy can’t even feed him to one of their prospects if he can’t even get past a journeyman-level talent like Castellanos.

I guess the timing is finally right to make Gamboa-JuanMa.





Photo Credit: Tom Hogan/Golden Boy Promotions

VERONA, NY — Knockout artists David Lemieux and Curtis Stevens both made the middleweight limit comfortably today for Saturday’s Boxing After Dark main event from the Turning Stone Resort Casino.

Since losing the IBF middleweight title to Gennady Golovkin in November 2015, Lemieux has reeled off two straight victories. He knocked off Glen Tapia in four rounds last May, and scored a unanimous decision over Cristian Fabian Rios in October. Lemieux weighed in at 159 pounds.

Curtis Stevens has gone 4-1 since being stopped in eight rounds in 2013. The other loss was a wide decision to Hassan N’Dam in October 2014. Since then, Curtis has scored a second round TKO over Patrick Teixeira, and hard-fought 10-round decision over James De La Rosa last November. Stevens weighed in at 158 pounds.

PREDICTION: If any fight could be dubbed bombs away, it’s this one. Both guys have massive power and can hurt each other. When looking at intangibles, Lemieux is the bigger man and a bit more versatile with his offense. Expect both guys to get hurt and possibly dropped with the more aggressive Lemieux taking a late stoppage.

GAMBOA VS. ALVARADO: Yuriorkis Gamboa will make his first ring appearance since December 2015 tomorrow night. Gamboa tipped the scales at 131 pounds for this lightweight contest. He has only fought twice since losing by TKO to Terence Crawford in June 2014, defeating Joel Montes de Oca (TKO6) and Hylon Williams Jr. (UD10).

Rene Alvarado comes into tomorrow night 2-2 over his last 4 fights. Alvarado bounced back from consecutive losses to Andrew Cancio (KO8) and Manuel Avila (UD10) to win a split decision over Jayson Velez (SD10) last July.

The HBO Boxing After Dark card airs tomorrow night at 11 p.m. ET.



After a year of inactivity and promoter issues, Yuriorkis Gamboa has found a home. The former featherweight title-holder has signed a multi-fight deal with Golden Boy Promotions which begins on March 11 with a fight against Rene Alvarado.

The Alvarado fight will be on the undercard David Lemieux vs. Curtis Stevens, airing live on HBO from Verona’s Turning Stone Resort Casino.

“I am looking forward to winning yet another world title, and I know Golden Boy Promotions is the perfect place to help guide me,” Gamboa said in a statement. “Though I have recently had some long stretches of inactivity, that stops today, and I will take on anyone, anytime, to achieve my goal of recapturing a championship belt.”

Since suffering a ninth round stoppage to Terence Crawford in June 2014, Gamboa’s career has stalled under bizarre circumstances. He spent the last two years in court trying to void a contract with 50 Cent’s SMS Promotions. Last month, a comeback fight in France was canceled after his opponent, Malcolm Klassen, was arrested in a drug raid. Gamboa’s trainer, Ismael Salas, also bailed on his fighter when he learned Gamboa had been training with Pedro Diaz. On New Year’s Day, a video surfaced of Gamboa knocking out an unidentified man during a gym brawl.

Despite this baggage, Golden Boy CEO Oscar De La Hoya believes Gamboa can easily return to the elite level.

“When he is on his game, there are few better than Gamboa in the 126, 130, or 135 weight classes,” said De La Hoya. “We are going to get him in the ring in a quality match as soon as possible, and then work with him to start his path back to championship glory.”

The March 11 contest will be Gamboa’s first bout since scoring a 10-round unanimous decision over Hylon Williams Jr. in December 2015.



Former champion Yuriorkis Gamboa brought in 2017 with a knockout during a gym brawl in Miami, Florida.

The footage shows Gamboa being attacked by an unidentified man as spectators move in to separate them. During the pull-apart, Gamboa doubles up his left hook and drops the man.

The ruckus continous a bizarre career stretch for Gamboa. A December 17 bout against Malcolm Klassen was cancelled the day of when a police hotel raid found Klassen in possession of performance-enhancing drugs. Gamboa’s trainer, Ismael Salas, also ditched his fighter the week of the fight after discovering Gamboa was also training with Pedro Diaz.

Gamboa’s last fight was a unanimous decision win over Hylon Williams in December 2015.

If you’re stuck in your ways, you’re stuck in your ways. He might do it for a little bit [Floyd Sr.’s defensive techniques] in the beginning. But once the fight heats up, he’ll go back to his old ways. – TERENCE CRAWFORD



OMAHA, NEBRASKA — With over 10,000 of his hometown fans cheering him on, Terence Crawford solidified himself as an in-ring and box office force within the lightweight division by knocking out previously undefeated Yuriorkis Gamboa. The highly competitive fight had momentum switches, high-level boxing, dangerous exchanges and a definitive ending, making it one a the few times we see a fight where the loser is also elevated.


THE SMALLER MAN STARTS STRONG: Although I had the fight even (2-2) after four rounds, Gamboa had already succeeded in nullifying Crawford’s long reach and height with quick, potshot right hooks upstairs, and straight lefts and rights to the body. The rounds that Crawford won was when he was able to match Gamboa’s output and keep the speedy Cuban on the end of his long left jab. Nonetheless, the more telling shots were coming from the Cuban.

THE MOMENT THAT CHANGED EVERYTHING: Crawford started switch-hitting in the third to offset Gamboa’s speed and tendency to keep his left hand low. Initially, the tactic was a mixed bag. While Crawford was able to clip Gamboa with solid right jabs, but also allowed himself to get clocked easier by Gamboa’s right hooks.

In retrospect, Crawford was simply biding his time for the perfect opportunity. That came when Gamboa leaped in and was stung by a perfect counter right hook. Gamboa stumbled and was punched flat on his stomach in short order. Gamboa’s machismo took over and he tried to brawl to even up the round. That strategy  left him out of on his feet as Crawford hurt him with a left hand to close out a dominant fifth.


DEFENSIVE WINS AND LOSES CHAMPIONSHIPS: As Crawford predicted, Gamboa would go back to his old ways once the fight began heating up. Gone was the patient but explosive boxing that Gamboa had shown over the first four rounds. Now he was coming in unbalanced with telegraphed haymakers.

Outside of surprising Crawford with a few hooks in the opening minute of the sixth, the defending champion coolly outboxed Gamboa from the southpaw stance. The repeated right jabs and straight lefts began to swell Gamboa’s face. By the eighth, he was on the canvas again, this time after pinning Crawford on the ropes and forcing an exchange of power shots.

GAMBOA’S LAST STAND AND A ROUND OF THE YEAR HOPEFUL: Gamboa dug deep for one last hurrah in the ninth. A hook during an inside exchange hurt Crawford badly and had him stumbling backwards. Wisely, Crawford was easily able to tie up Gamboa repeatedly, utilizing his long arms to grab and smother all of Gamboa’s attempts to follow up. When he eventually recovered, he turned Gamboa’s desperation against him for a third knockdown, this time off two smashing left hooks.

Bravely, Gamboa reached his feet and went right back into the lion’s den. That aggression ended his night via a counter right uppercut for the fourth and final knockdown.

CRAWFORD’S SKILL SET: There can be no doubt now that Terence Crawford is the real deal. This fight was a beautiful display of all the assets he holds. He not only punches with power, but with pinpoint accuracy. During wild exchanges, this proved invaluable as he landed cleaner and more often. He doesn’t panic when hurt and knows how to hold effectively. He can also adjust tactics round to round to keep opponents guessing. And most importantly, he has the frame that will allow him to move to the higher and more lucrative weights (he was 152 in the ring last night).

GAMBOA STILL A FORCE: Gamboa was overwhelmed, but his heart has several people already calling this a Fight of the Year contender. The shots he landed normally puts guys out at the lower weight, but the lightweight division appears a jump too steep for a man of Gamboa’s physical stature. Going back down five pounds to super featherweight gives him a list of good opponents. The Mikey Garcia fight might be easier to make now. The Juan Manuel Lopez fight, although years too late, would still generate interest and be action-packed. Javier Fortuna, or the winner of next month’s Argenis Mendez-Rances Barthelemy rematch, would be good options as well.

OMAHA IS ON THE MAP:  Boxing promoters, take notice. The great crowd you saw in Omaha is what happens when you put cards where the fighter’s fans are over random casinos. Crawford is now a proven attraction at the gate, meaning potential foes will likely have to make that Nebraska trip. This gives Crawford a lot of negotiating leverage which will serve him well when he campaigns at 140 and 147.





PREDICTION: I’m not usually one to change my pick at the last-minute, but here I am flip-flopping just a few hours after today’s weigh-in. In my interview yesterday with Crawford, the lightweight titlist was adamant in saying his body was telling him his lightweight days are numbered. That was evident at the weigh-in, as he appeared drawn at 134 pounds. Although shorter in stature, it was Gamboa who looked freakishly strong and filled out in only his second lightweight bout. According to his promoter 50 Cent, we could expect to see Gamboa close to 150 pounds in the ring on Saturday.

This past week, I predicted Crawford’s range and counter-punching ability we be enough to keep Gamboa tame. Now, I feel that Gamboa’s vast amateur experience, excellent shape, and the the sheer anger he’s bringing into the ring after years of inactivity/politics, will be what fuels his victory. From the weigh-in, Gamboa had an easier time making the weight, so I expect him to be stronger and too fast for Crawford to tag consistently. GAMBOA UD

Crawford vs. Gamboa airs on HBO June 28 at 10 p.m. ET.



Watch the full weigh-in for Saturday’s WBO championship match between titlist Terence Crawford and Yuriorkis Gamboa. The stream opens at 4 p.m. ET and will also feature the weights of co-main event fighters Matt Korobov and Jose Uzcategui. Click the below link for coverage.