By: William Holmes
HBO returned to Madison Square Garden to present three world title fights on their Boxing After Dark series.
The first fight of the evening was between Rocky Martinez (26-1-1) and Juan Carlos Burgos (30-1) for the WBO Super Featherweight title. This was a another Puerto Rico vs. Mexico bout and t it was an action packed and exciting fight. Burgos and Martinez exchanged ferocious combinations but it was Burgos who landed the heavier shots and continuously worked on the body of Martinez. Burgos had Martinez hurt several times throughout the fight including a left hook to the temple in round seven. Martinez never stopped fighting but his punches were clearly not as powerful as Burgos. Juan Carlos Burgos appeared to win most of the rounds but the final scores were 117-111 Burgos, 116-112 Martinez, and 114-114 making the fight a draw.
Rocky Martinez retains the WBO Super Featherweight Title but fails to win the fight. Martinez was lucky to receive a draw as it was clear to the announcers on HBO and to this writer that Juan Carlos Burgos was the winner.
The next fight of the night was between Gabriel Rosado (21-5) and Gennady Golovkin (24-0) for the WBA Middleweight title. Rosado came up from the junior middleweight division to take on Golovkin, but inside the ring Rosado did not look that much smaller than Golovkin. Golovkin started to take control of the fight in the second round as his jab started to snap the head of Rosado backwards. A cut opened up over the left eye of Rosado in the second round and it effected his vision later on in the fight.
Rosado was a game contender, and was able to land some of his punches and place a mouse under the right eye of Golovkin. But Golovkin was clearly the better boxer and continued to outland Rosado as the fight continued.
The ringside doctor checked out the eye of Rosado but Rosado insisted on be allowed to continue to fight. A straight right hand hurt Rosado but Golovkin landed several punches behind the head and Rosado was given some time to recuperate. Rosado can be heard informing his corner before the start of round seven that he was having a hard time seeing, and the action inside the ring seemed to indicate that Rosado was having a hard time seeing some of the punches by Golovkin. Golovkin landed some stiff uppercuts and Rosado’s corner wisely stopped the fight.
Gennady Golovkin wins by TKO at 2:46 of round seven.
The main event of the night was between Orlando Salido (39-11-2) and Mikey Garcia (30-0) for the WBO Featherweight title. Salido is a tough veteran who’s had good showings against high profile fighters such as Gamboa, Marquez, and Robert Guerrero.
However Salido was inside the ring with a young and talented fighter who comes from a deep amateur background and is ready for the big stage. Garcia started off quickly and knocked Salido down twice in the first round. He landed a quick lead left hook that knocked Salido down early in the first round and landed another left hook that knocked Salido down for the second time in the round.
A solid right uppercut by Garcia knocked Salido down to the ground in the third round, and a straight left hand knocked Salido down again in the fifth round. Salido was clearly behind on the cards and fought desperately in the ring by throwing wide looping hooks and trying to fight dirty on the inside. Salido head butted Garcia in the eighth round and it broke the nose of Mikey Garcia.
The accidental head butt stopped the fight and it went to the scorecards. The judges scored it 79-70, 79-69, and 79-69 for Mikey Garcia.