By: Sean Crose
The DAZN streaming service presented a live night of Golden Boy Boxing from the Honda Center in Anaheim, California Friday featuring rising lightweight star Ryan Garcia.
A power punching 19-0 fighter with a reported five million person Instagram following, Garcia was the man to watch walking in. Meanwhile the 25-2-2 Francisco Fonseca stood in the 21 year old Garcia’s way on the path to big time success. In fact, it was worth noting that Foncesca’s only losses came to top names Gervonta Davis and Tevin Farmer. It was not as if the up and coming Garcia was being handed a soft touch.
First, however, there were three fights for viewers to watch leading into the main event. The 13-0 showman Blair “The Flair” Cobbs started things off in a scheduled ten rounder against the 23-2 Samuel Kotey. Cobbs, sharp and fluid, dominated the first three rounds. The crowd may have gotten a bit restless due to Cobb’s ability to maintain distance, but the young fighter was putting on a sharp performance. Although Kotey tried to catch his man, Cobbs was able to keep his veteran foe at bay throughout the next five rounds. Cobbs lost a point for a low blow in the ninth, but performed well enough in the tenth and final chapter. Cobbs walked away with a SD win.
The next fight was a scheduled 10 round welterweight affair. Veteran Brad Solomon, 28-2, faced the 15-0 up and comer Alex Rocha. Although Rocha was viewed as the rising star, the beginning of the fight was surprisingly close. By the third it was clear Rocha was having a hard time getting to his man with any consistency. Things remained close through the halfway part of the bout. By the final rounds it looked as if it could be anyone’s fight. It was a story of punches and counter punches. Then, in the tenth round, Rocha sent his man to the canvas. Solomon got up and survived, but it seemed that Rocha had ultimately done enough to seal the deal. Rocha got quite a surprisingly wide UD win.
Former world lightweight titlist Jorge Linares was up next. At 34 years of age, the 46-5 fighter stepped into the ring to face the 19-4-4 Carlos Morales in a scheduled twelve round bout. Morales seemed to have edged the first, a round where Linares received an accidental cut. Things remained relatively close in the second. Then, in the third, Linares sent his man down to the mat. Morales got up and was able to survive the round. No matter. A thunderous shot put Morales down – and out – in the fourth. It was time for the main event.
The feature fight of the evening was a frightening affair. For, in the very first round, Garcia dropped his man. Then, after Fonseco got up, Garcia dropped him again in explosive fashion. The camera held on Fonseca, who lie there unconscious with his eyes open, as the referee stopped the match.