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ESPN Friday Night Fights Results: Garcia and De La Rosa Score Decision Victories


By: William Holmes

This week’s ESPN Friday Night Fights broadcast emanated from Texas. The opening bout featured Philadelphia native Tyrone Brunson and James De La Rosa, both sporting impressive records. Brunson started off his career with 19 straight KOs, but hadn’t fought in approximately 27 months. The ring rust on Brunson was evident from the beginning: he was unable to find an answer for the volume punching attack of De La Rosa, and despite landing a hard left hook in the second round that knocked De La Rosa down, wasn’t able to repeat that performance for the rest of the fight, as De La Rosa won the decision victory

The main event featured a matchup between junior middleweights Antwone Smith and Roberto Garcia, making his debut on FNF. Smith was the slicker fighter with the quicker hands, but did not throw many combinations, instead throwing one punch at a time while grunting…..loudly. Garcia’s aggression and consistent body attack proved to be too much for Garcia, and he was able to get the decision victory in a fight that was very difficult to score. Neither Smith or Garcia will likely fight for a major title in the future, but will be tough gatekeepers for young prospects trying to progress their careers.

Round by round results are as follows.

Tyrone Brunson (21-1-1) vs. James De La Rosa (20-1); Junior Middleweight

Round 1:

Brunson and De La Rosa come out to the center of the ring and both look to be in excellent shape. De La Rosa and Brunson are both fighting in an aorthodox stance, and De La Rosa lands an early over the top right hand. Brunson slips two jabs from De La Rosa. Brunson fires off a double jab and lands one at the body. De La Rosa misses with a left hook upstairs. Brunson connects with a cross to the body, and follows it with another double jab to the body. Brunson leans on top of De La Rosa and De La Rosa picks him up but drops him nicely. Brunson fires off a triple jab and lands the last one, but De La Rosa fires back with a two punch combination that connects. De La Rosa connects with a left hook upstairs, and Brunson fires off a few body shots near the corner. De La Rosa gets hit with a jab uppercut from Brunson. De La Rosa lands a decent right hand to the body. De La Rosa misses with a wild right hand. De La Rosa connects with a jab and a lead left hook. De La Rosa connects with another left hook, and Brunson slips a straight right hand. Close round, 10-9 for De La Rosa.

Round 2:

They come back to the center of the ring, and Brunson fires off a double jab to the body of De La Rosa. De La Rosa backs Brunson up with a combination but doesn’t land anything clean. Brunson lands a hard left hook that stuns De La Rosa, and the referee rules it a knockdown, even though it appears on television that De La Rosa didn’t fall to the ground. Brunson seems to have gained some confidence, and fires off some shots to the body and connects with a straight right hand to the chin of De La Rosa. Brunson fires off a few more jabs and connects with a short left hook upstairs. De La Rosa lands a right cross to the body of Brunson, and fires off some body shots but eats a hard left hook near the ropes. Brunson misses with a wild right hand. De La Rosa connects with a right hand to the body. De La Rosa backs Brunson up to the corner and connects with a few combinations. Brunson lands another jab, but immediately eats one afterwards. De La Rosa lands a right hand to the body, and throws more hard shots on Brunson as Brunson is trapped near the corner. De La Rosa finished the round strong enough to make it 10-9 for Brunson.

Replay shows De La Rosa’s glove did touch the ground.

Round 3:

Brunson comes forward and connects with a straight right hand and left hook upstairs. Brunson slips more jabs from De La Rosa. De La Rosa lands a stiff jab and a short left hook. Both fighters connect with left hooks upstairs, but De La Rosa throws more punches and stays more aggressive punching Brunson into a corner. De La Rosa continues to pound the body and mix his shots with body shots and head shots. De La Rosa connects with another short left hook. Brunson comes forward with a double jab. De La Rosa sticks another jab in the face of Brunson. De La Rosa ducks under another jab from Brunson, and Brunson lands a short left uppercut to the body of De La Rosa. De La Rosa splits the guard of Brunson with some uppercuts, and some more hrad left hooks to the body of Brunson. Brunson is eating several shots from De La Rosa by the corner and looks exhausted. De La Rosa comes forward and partially lands another lead left hook. 10-9 round for De La Rosa.

Round 4:

De La Rosa comes out to start round four aggressive again, and has Brunson backing up with his jabs and straight right hands. Brunson fires off a cross and connects. De La Rosa lands some short left uppercuts and a hard left hook. They both connect with jabs at the same time. Brunson sticks a straight right hand at the body of De La Rosa. De La Rosa is mixing up his head and body combinations nicely on Brunson, and lands a hard right hand to the chin of Brunson. Brunson has no answer for the volume punching attack of De La Rosa. Brunson lands a decent left hook and straight right hand on De La Rosa. De La Rosa thuds a good right uppercut on Brunson. De La Rosa lands another two punch combination on Brunson, and Brunson is continuously getting trapped in the corner by De La Rosa. De La Rosa finishes the round with body blows on Brunson by the ropes. 10-9 round for De La Rosa.

Round 5:

Round five starts off like the other rounds, with De La Rosa the aggressor backing Brunson up. Brunson misses with his jab and is unable to find his range. De La Rosa gets a momentary pop from the crowd as he lands a left hook. Brunson connects with a two punch combination, and follows it with a left hook to the body. De La Rosa lands a left uppercut to the chin of Brunson. Brunson comes forward with a double jab but is unable to find it’s target. De La Rosa lands a good right hook to the body of Brunson. De La Rosa lands several short shots on Brunson while in close. Brunson looks tired. Not as much action this round, 10-9 for De La Rosa again.

Round 6:

De La Rosa should be up comfortably on the cards, and he backs Brunson up again with several jabs and hooks to the body. Brunson fires off some hard shots to the body, but misses with his right hands. De La Rosa lands two good left hooks to the temple of Brunson. De La Rosa lands another right hook, and Brunson slips the left hook that follows. Brunson connects with a jab and a straight right hand. De La Rosa lands a solid left uppercut. De La Rosa connects with a double jab. Brunson sticks a right hook to the body of De La Rosa, and fires off a three punch combination immediately afterwards. De La Rosa is just simply outworking Brunson, but eats two hooks from Burnson in the middle of the ring. De La Rosa answers and finishes the round strong with a combination. Close round, 10-9 Brunson just because he seemed to have landed the harder shots.

Round 7:

De La Rosa comes forward with a three punch combination but misses. Brunson has some swelling underneath his left eye. They both land jabs at the same time. De La Rosa comes forward with three punches but doesn’t land cleanly. De La Rosa sticks two jabs in the face of Brunson. De La Rosa misses with a left uppercut. De La Rosa catches Brunson with a jab as he comes forward. De La Rosa lands a short left hook upstairs. De La Rosa just misses with a two punch combination. De La Rosa lands a good jab and misses with a wild left hook. De La Rosa starts to showboat in the middle of the ring, and lands a straight right hand and left hook to the head of Brunson. 10-9 for De La Rosa.

Round 8:

Brunson clearly needs a knockout to win. Brunson comes forward with a double jab to the body of De La Rosa. Brunson misses with a three punch combination, but lands a decent left hook on De La Rosa. Brunson charges forward with a two punch combination. Brunson coming forward more this round, and misses with a wild right. De La Rosa moves out of the way of a double jab from De La Rosa, and De La Rosa catches Brunson with a left hook by the corner. De La Rosa ducks under a two punch combination from Brunson. Brunson comes forward with another jab that De La Rosa ducks under. Brunson misses with another wild right hand. De La Rosa stays on his bike and backs away from the attacks of Brunson. Brunson gets the round, but too little too late. 10-9 round for Brunson.

Official scores are 78-73, 77-74, and 79-72 for James De La Rosa.

Antwone Smith (21-3-1) vs. Roberto Garcia (30-3); Junior Middleweight

Round 1:

Garcia and Smith come out to the center of the ring and both look to be in good shape. Garcia comes out on the attack and has Smith backing up with a straight right hand. Smith lands a short over the top right hand, and Smith lands a solid left hook upstairs. Garcia lands several body shots on Smith. Garcia throws out a double jab, but gets nailed with a jab from Smith. Smith lands another jab and ducks out of the way of a combination from Garcia. Garcia lands a short left hook upstairs. Smith connects with a right hand, and Garcia answers with straight left and right hands. They both land jabs at the same time. Smith connects with a left hook to the body and a short right uppercut. Garcia sticks another jab in the face of Smith. Garcia lands two stiff jabs and two left hooks to the body of Smith. Garcia lands another jab followed by a straight right hand. Garcia touches the face of Smith multiple times with soft jabs, and Smith attacks the body of Garcia in response. Smith lands a solid left hook to the chin of Garcia. Smith connects with a sold right hook and Garcia with a good right hand at the end of the round. Tough one to score, 10-9 for Garcia.

Round 2:

They come out to the middle of the ring and Garcia goes off on the attack with two jabs and several shots to the body. Garcia lands a nice body head combination on Smith. Garcia lands a decent jab, and Smith answers with one of his own. A left hook from Smith appears to momentarily stun Garcia. Smith lands a decent right hook and sticks two jabs in the stomach of Garcia. Smith connects with another left hook to the body of Garcia. Garcia lands a good right hook to the chin of Smith. Garcia is pressing forward and tries to trap Smith in the corner, but Smith is able to punch his way out. Garcia touches the face of Smith with seveal soft jabs. Smith barely misses with a three punch combination. Garcia lands a soft left hook on Smith. Smith is doing a pretty good job of keep Garcia at bay with his back to the ropes. 10-9 round for Smith in another close one.

Round 3:

Garcia stabs a jab in the face of Smith, and they exchange several short hooks. Smith connects with a body head combination on Garcia. They exchange body blows, and Garcia lands several clean hooks on the inside. The referee warns Garcia for elbows. Garcia connects with a double jab and barely misses with a straight right hand. Garcia lands a decent right hand to the body of Smith. Garcia connects with a decent two punch combination on Smith. Smith catches Garcia with a right hand as he comes in. A left hook from Garcia sends Smith backwards. Garcia continues to apply the pressure while Smith tries to counter Garcia as he comes in. Garcia smiles after being hit with a body blow from Smith. Fighters exchange near the ropes but neither lands cleanly. Garcia lands a good right hand to the body and touches the face of Smith twice with a jab, and connects with a straight right hand that may have been the best punch of the night for Garcia. 10-9 round for Garcia.

Round 4:

Garcia comes out behind his jab, and Smith comes out with his yelling. Smith lands a short left hook to the body, and Garcia answers with two lunging jabs at the chin of Smith. Garcia lands a good right hook to the body, and Smith answers with a right hook upstairs. Garcia mixing it up well with body shots and shots to the head. A left hook from Garcia connects, and Garcia lands a decent combination in the center of the ring. The jab of Garcia is starting to find its home. Garcia continues to stalk Smith, but gets tagged with a left hook as he comes in. Smith connects with another straight right hand, and Garcia lands a right hook to the body. Garcia digs a left hook to the body of Smith. Smith sticks two jabs in the face of Garcia, and a decent left hook upstairs. Garcia lands a good right hook to the body of Garcia, and connects with a clean left hook upstairs. Smith attacks Garcia but most of them are blocked. Another very difficult round to score, 10-9 for Garcia.

Round 5:

Smith comes out firing early and lands two early jabs. Garcia lands a decent jab, and continues to stalk Smith from corner to corner. Garcia lands a decent right hand to the body of Smith, and Smith fires off one shot at a time on Garcia They both land jabs at the same time, but Garcia’s aggressive style may be winning him the rounds. Smith connects with a decent hook to the body on Garcia. Garcia flicks another jab on the nose of Smith. Garcia thuds a right hook to the temple of Smith. Smith connects with two straight left hands and a short left uppercut. Smith lands several hooks to the body of Garcia. Smith connects with a right hand, and Garcia lands a harder right hand that gets the attention of the crowd. Smith fights back with two right hands and a left hook to the body. Garcia thuds another jab in the nose of Smith. Garcia connects with several hooks in close near the end of the round. 10-9 round for Garcia.

Round 6:

Smith starts the round off by firing off several body shots and pressing forward. Smith lands an over the top right hand and a short left hook. Garcia comes back on the aggressive, and lands several short body shots. Smith partially lands a two punch combination, and a good left hook and straight right hand. Garcia comes forward with his head down, and lands more short hooks to the body. Smith lands two consecutive right hands. Garcia’s jabs are blocked by Smith, and Smith lands soft shots to the body of Garcia. Smith connects with a double left hook, and Garcia lands a hard right hand. Garcia connects with a right hand to the body and a right cross to the temple of Smith. Smith connects with a short left hook near the end of the round, and another very tough round to score. 10-9 for Smith.

Round 7:

Garcia comes out aggressive in round seven, and Garcia lands several two punch combinations on Smith. Garcia lands a good right hand and two left hooks to the temple of Smith. Garcia connects with two straight right hands. Smith lands a short right hook as they exchange on the inside. Garcia lands a short right hook, and Smith doubles up with a left hook to the body and head. They both land a jab at the same time. Garcia connects with a nice short right uppercut and another straight right hand. Most of Smith’s punches are being blocked, and when Garcia lands he is landing the harder shots. They exchange more blows within a phone booth, and another extremely tough round to score. 10-9 for Garcia.

Round 8:

Garcia again comes out the aggressor, and tries to keep the fight in close. Garcia is landing several short shots to the body and head of Smith. A sold right hand breaks through the defense of Smith. Smith partially lands a short right uppercut, and Garcia connects with a two punch combination in the center of the ring. Garcia lands an over the top right hand. Garcia leans in on Smith, and connects with more short uppercuts. Smith lands a few good jabs on Garcia. Smith lands several good right hooks to the body, but has his back towards the corner again. Garcia lands a good right hook to the body of Smith, and Garcia has some loose tape hanging off his glove. Garcia lands a good right hand to the body and another one to the temple of Smith. Garcia is clearly landing the harder shots on Smith. 10-9 for Garcia.

Round 9:

Round nine starts off like the rest of the rounds, with Garcia being the aggressor and landing short shots to the body of Smith. Smith eats a straight right hand from Garcia, and Smith comes back with a combination. Smith is throwing one punch at a time on Garcia, and seems hesitant to let his hands go with a combination. Garcia sticks a jab in the face of Smith as he continues to stalk. Garcia lands a good over the top right hand and is able to avoid the combinations of Smith. The body shots of Garcia appears to be having a bigger effect on Smith than before. Garcia lands a good short left hook on Smith and leans in on him by the corner. Garcia has a cut by his left eye, and they exchange punches by the corner, with Garcia landing the harder punches. A solid right hand gets through the guard of Smith for Garcia. 10-9 for Garcia.

Round 10:

It’s been a very tough fight to score so far, but Garcia should be head on the scorecards. Garcia stabs two jabs in the face of Smith, and connects with a hard straight right hand. A combination from Smith is partially blocked by Garcia. Garcia lands a good right hook to the body and a straight jab to Smith’s nose. Garcia is landing more combinations on Smith by the corner. Smith tags Garcia with a short left hook, but Garcia lands more hard hooks to the body of Smith. They exchange in the center of the ring, and Garcia is landing the better shots again. Smith connects with a jab and two hooks to the body of Garcia. Garcia leans in on Smith by the ropes and continues to stay the aggressor. Garcia lands several hard right hands near the end of round ten to put a stamp on who the winner of this fight should be. 10-9 for Garcia.

The official scores are 98-92, 97-93, and 97-93 for Roberto Garcia.

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