By: William Holmes
Greg Robinson’s Power Productions is one of the few, if only, boxing promoters still putting on shows in Philadelphia. Ever since the closing of the blue horizon Peltz Boxing has mainly put on shows in Atlantic City and the Sands Casino in Bethlehem. Joey Eye Promotions puts on shows in Chester, Pennsylvania. Britany Rogers, one of the youngest promoters of boxing in the United States, has put on shows in the suburbs of Philadelphia and has plans on putting on a card in the city, but she has not yet.
Power Productions is keeping the fighting spirit of Philadelphia alive with local talent, and they put on a card on Friday night at the National Guard Armory in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and it featured the pro debut of teenager Milton Santiago. Many local boxing celebrities were in attendance such as Steve Cunningham, Naazim Richardson, Hank Lundy, and Harold Lederman.
The first fight of the night was in the junior welterweight division between Mike Erosa (0-1) and Sultan Staton (2-0) in the junior welterweight division. Erosa, a southpaw, often tried to press the pace and come forward with combinations but he was unable to land any clean punches on the elusive Staton. Staton’s check left hook was landing often and he often snapped the head of Erosa backwards with his punches. Erosa was never really in the match and lost to Staton with scores of 40-36 on all three cards.
The second bout of the night was between Michael Haigood (0-1) and Antonio Dubose (3-0) in the featherweight division. Dubose passed the eye test as a high level prospect in that he dominated an opponent he was supposed to beat and looked like a solid boxer inside the ring, but he often telegraphed and loaded up his punches when he was looking for the finish. He scored a knockdown in the third round with a clipping right hand and won on the score cards with scores of 40-34, 40-35, and 40-35.
Ramesis Gil (8-7-5) and Anthony Flores (9-4-2) met next in the lightweight division. On paper this was the most competitive matchup of the night and both boxers had a high knockout ratio. However, Flores executed a better gameplan and outboxed Gil for the entire night. He showed good foot movement and used his height and reach advantage to stay on the outside and pick Gil apart. Gil did hurt Flores in the sixth and final round but was unable to finish him. Flores won with scores of 59-55, 59-55, and 58-56 on the judges’ scorecards.
The fourth bout of the night was an uneventful and close bout between Israel Suarez (4-3-1) and Frank Trader (10-1) in the junior lightweight division. There wasn’t a whole of action in this bout and both boxers had a combined three stoppages between them. In this writer’s opinion, Suarez put together the better combinations but Trader landed the harder shots. The judges ruled it a majority draw with scores of 39-37 for Trader, 38-38, and 38-38.
Emmanuel Folly (3-0) fought Michael Varela (0-1) in the junior featherweight division. It is often said speed kills, and Folly has that type of speed. He’s a boxer to keep a close eye on as he rises up the ranks of the junior geatherweight division. He absolutely destroyed his opponent and forced toe referee to stop the bout at 2:42 of the first round after crumbling Varela in the corner with a lightning fast combination.
The co-main event of the night was between undefeated Derrick Webster (14-0) and Julio Garcia (6-5) in the super middleweight division. Webster is a prospect that has had trouble landing fights in the past year. This was his first fight in a year but he has sparred with some of the best in the world including Jean Pascal, Sergei Kovalev, and Roy Jones Jr. A 6’4” southpaw would be a nightmare matchup for many middleweights, and Webster is a middleweight. He weighed in at 164.2 pounds an stated that he can easily make the middleweight division.
Webster started off a little slow, he appeared to be tight in the early rounds and was shaking off some ring rust but he was clearly winning the rounds with effective use of his jab and elusive movement when Garcia came forward. He began to double up his combinations in the third round and began to gain confidence as the fight progressed. He unloaded several hard shots on Garcia by the ropes in the fourth round and did so again in the fifth round leaving Garcia unable to intelligently defend himself. The referee stopped it at 1:19 of the fifth round.
After the fight Webster stated that he would like to face Kassim Ouma in the middleweight division. That fight was close to being made before and would be a logical step up in competition for Webster.
The main event of the night was between Milton Santiago (0-0) and Moses Molina (1-4) in the junior welterweight division. Santiago is an amateur standout and trains out of Danny Garcia’s gym. Santiago is also a teenager, and at seventeen is currently the youngest professional boxer licensed by the Pennsylvania Athletic Commission.
Santiago drew a large crowd to the National Guard Armory and made very quick work of Molia. He blitzed him in the first round and it was immediately obvious that Molina was overmatched. Molina got dropped by a body shot and didn’t get up at 1:16 of the first round.