By: Ken Hissner
On Thursday night Golden Boy Promotions put on a card from The Hangar, in Costa Mesa, CA, on ESPN2. The main event featured NABF Bantamweight Champion Colombia’s Oscar “Jaguar” Negrete, 18-1-1 (7), living in Rosemead, CAL, and San Antonio’s Joshua “El Professor” Franco, 14-1-1 (7), over 10 rounds.
In the first round both fighters were mixing it up quite well. Both fighters were skilled going to body and head. Negrete seemed to have a slight edge. In the second round Negrete was getting away with low blows. In the final minute Franco drove Negrete into the ropes with a flurry of punches. Negrete came right back with a solid right to the head of Franco.
In the third round Franco landed four punches to head and body. Negrete came back with half a dozen punches of his own. Negrete was warned by the referee about coming in with his head. It was another good round by both. In the fourth round Franco came out firing punches while Negrete came right back. Negrete comes in with his head again but no warning from the referee. Good round for Franco.
In the fifth round the fists were flying once again with Franco landing three or four punches and Negrete coming right back with his three or four punches. To say they were throwing close to 100 punches a round is no exaggeration. It’s been a torrid pace with Negrete landing a solid right to the head of Franco just prior to the bell.
In the seventh round Negrete was landing half a dozen punches with Franco coming back with a combination. Negrete had a mouse under his right eye. Negrete walked into a right hand getting rocked by Franco. At the end of the round they were still punching. In the eighth round Franco was still holding his own with Negrete comes back after a Franco rally. Franco landed three punches to the head then ended with a left hook to the ribs of Negrete. Franco ended the round rocking Negrete with a right to the chin.
In the ninth round Franco drove Negrete into the ropes. Negrete came back driving Franco into the middle of the ring. The action on both parts of the fighters is still action packed. Both fighters have surpassed the 1,000 punch mark. In the tenth and final round Franco landed a hard right to the chin buckling the right knee of Negrete. The fans have been hollering the entire fight.
Scores were DeLuca 96-94 Franco, Sandoval 96-94 Negrete and Viarial 95-95 as did this writer.
“One more round right now,” said Negrete. “I didn’t think he was going to be this tough. But look at his face,” said Franco. They both laughed after their comments.
In the co-feature Welterweight Danielito “El Zorro” Zorrilla, 9-0 (8), of Rio Piedras, PR, stopped Dakota “The Lone Wolf” Linger, 10-1-2 (6), of Buckhannon, W.V., 2:59 of the second round of a scheduled 8.
In the first round Linger landed three rights to the head of Zorrila who moved several steps away. Zorrilla landed several left hooks to the head of Linger. There was “no feeling out” in this round with both mixing it up.
Seconds later Zorrila rocked Linger with a right uppercut to the chin. Then drove Linger into the ropes with ten punches and what looked like he broke the nose of Linger who was about to collapse when the referee gave him the 8 count and asked him to come forward as Linger wiped his nose with blood gushing and the referee wisely halted the fight.
In the third round Gonzalez was leaning on Delgado and hitting him in the ribs without warning from the referee. Gonzalez landed four unanswered punches from Delgado. Delgado came back with a flurry of half a dozen punches. In the fourth round Gonzalez landed a double left hook to the head of Delgado who grabbed him. Gonzalez then while tied up hit Delgado behind the head with warning from the one sided referee favoring Gonzalez. Gonzales landed three punches than a fourth a right had to the head of Delgado in the punches he threw. In the sixth and final round Delgado landed a double left hook to the body of Gonzalez. The referee warned Delgado for hitting behind the head while in a clinch. Gonzalez was coming off knee surgery last month.
Scores were 58-56 Delgado, 57-57 twice. This writer had it 58-56 Gonzalez.
“I respect the judges but I haven’t fought in about six months and thought I won,” said Delgado. “I will fight anyone and thought I won,” said Gonzalez.