By: William Holmes
The Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada was the host of a WBO Welterweight title bout between Juan Manuel Marquez and Timothy Bradley. Before the main event four bouts were on the undercard including a featherweight title fight between Orlando Salido and Orlando Cruz.
Seanie Monaghan (18-0)and Anthony Caputo Smith (14-1) started off the night in the light heavyweight division before a sparse crowd. Monaghan clearly looked to be in better shape. Caputo Smith briefly trapped Monaghan in the corner early on in the first and landed a few decent body shots, but Monaghan was landing heavier short hooks and uppercuts in the first.
The second round featured some solid exchanges with both fighters landing clean punches. Monaghan’s punches were more controlled while Caputo Smith’s were wild.
Monaghan really turned up the heat in the third round. Caputo Smith started off aggressive, but Monaghan landed a brutal right cross that badly hurt Caputo Smith. Monaghan followed that shot up with a ridiculous amount of hard, clean punches to the head of Caputo Smith who was unable to throw anything back. Caputo Smith somehow did not go down but was offering nothing in return as Monaghan pounded on him by the ropes. The referee finally stopped the bout at 2:39 of round three.
The next bout of the night was between two time Olympic Gold Medalist Vasyl Lomachenko (0-0) and Jose Ramirez (24-2-2) in the featherweight division. Tonight was Lomachenko’s professional “debut” if you ignore his prior participation in the World Series of Boxing.
Regardless, Lomachenko leap frogged the usual tune up fights and went immediately after a solid veteran fighter.
Ramirez did not appear afraid of Lomachenko’s amateur success and went after Lomachenko right away. Lomachenko however connected with a hard right to the body and Ramirez went down to one knee. The referee counted to nine before Ramirez got back to his feet. Lomachenko’s punches were pin point accurate.
Ramirez was able to land some decent body shots in the second round but Lomachenko’s combinations were too quick. He landed a three punch combination that rocked the head of Ramirez in the middle of the round.
Ramirez continued to try to press the pace in the third and fourth round but Lomachenko’s foot work was too good and he easily out maneuvered Ramirez. Lomachenko landed a vicious left hook to the body of Ramirez in the fourth round that sent him down for the ten count.
Lomachenko won the fight by an impressive KO at 2:59 of the fourth round.
Orlando Cruz (20-2-1) and Orlando Salido (39-12-2) met next for the WBO Featherweight Title. Orlando Cruz is an openly gay professional fighter and his trunks showed his support for the LGBT community.
Orlando Cruz is a southpaw and he did not make eye contact with Salido during introductions. Salido is a notoriously slow starter but he did not start slow tonight. Salido was warned for the first of multiple times in the first round for low blows.
Cruz was sticking and moving early with his jab but Salido did well when we he went to the body. The second and third rounds were tight and tough but Salido was the man who was landing the much harder punches. The crowd could be heard chanting “Puta, Puta” in the third round.
Cruz was landing some decent shots but Salido was not visibly bothered by Cruz’s punches. Cruz had his best round of the night in the fifth. Salido was able to turn the fight back in his favor in the fifth round by going to the body again and was extremely aggressive.
The end came in the seventh round when Salido was landing some hard uppercuts. A right hook left uppercut combination sent Cruz to the mat for the full count of ten.
Salido wins the WBO Featherweight Title again with a vicious knockout victory.
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