By: Ken Hissner
Former world Cruiserweight and Heavyweight champion Evander “The Real Deal” Holyfield’s THE REAL DEAL BOXING made their promotional debut in Philadelphia Friday night before a sold out crowd at the SugarHouse Casino in Philly!
It was a smashing success with all four Philly based boxers turning in wins. In the Main Event for the WBF North American Regional lightweight title Philly’s Steven Ortiz, 8-0 (3), stopped solid opponent Joshua “Dynamite” Davis, 11-3 (5), of D.C. at 2:21 of the second round in a scheduled eight.
In that round Ortiz landed a counter left hook to the chin of Davis dropping him. After referee Gary Rosato administered the 8 count Davis got up smiling like it was an accident. Well, the right hand that dropped Davis again was “no accident”. Determined not to being stopped Davis landed a right to the head of Ortiz putting him back a couple of steps. Ortiz came right back with a right to the head of Davis dropping him for the third and final time as referee Rosato waved it off. WBF President James Gibbs and VP Greg Hackett, Sr. presented the belt to the winner Steve Ortiz.
Asked if he was nervous being his first main event Ortiz said “I’m usually somewhat nervous but was cool with this fight. I didn’t get warmed up until the second round and he was a good opponent.”
“Steve turned in a good performance considering he hadn’t fought for over a year. He signed with Real Deal recently. Considering he was under house arrest it wasn’t easy at times getting him into the gym but when the fight came up he spent six days in the gym and should be about 10-0,” said trainer Raul Rivas.
In the co-feature co-promoted by Chris Middendorf’s Victory Promotions the best prospect in Philly since 1984 Gold Medalist Meldrick Taylor welterweight Jaron “Boots” Ennis, 18-0 (16) scored another victory with a technical stoppage at 2:14 of the fourth round over durable Mexican Gustvo “Vitamina” Garibay, 13-10-2 (5), in a scheduled six.
“I was just having fun out there,” said Ennis. It was another brilliant showing by the 20 year-old brilliant prospect Ennis who has won eighteen fights in twenty-one months behind Middendorf’s Victory Promotions. “He needed the rounds,” said father-trainer “Bozy” Ennis. He should know being the best trainer in Philly.
Manager Dave McWater who has a stable of some thirty-five fighters should be quite pleased having two of them post victories on the show. First in the opening bout welterweight Janelson “Figuero” Bocachica, 9-0 (6), of Detroit, MI, scored a second round knockdown after receiving a small cut under the right eyebrow from an accidental head butt (cut-man Joey Eye kept the cut in tact).
Bocahica would go onto score a clean knockout stopping his game Mexican opponent Victor Eddy Gaytan, 2-4 (1), at 0:13 of the fifth round with a right hand to the chin. Referee Rosato didn’t even have to count. “The cut was from a head butt. I set him up for that right hand,” said Bocachica.
In McWater’s most recent signee Philly’s National Golden Glove champion welterweight Poindexter “The Savage” Knight, 2-0 (2), made short work of Jordan “F4J” Morales, 2-4 (2), of Sunbury, PA, at 2:10 of the first round. Knight scored the first knockdown with a 3-punch combination with the left dropping Morales. He then came right back with a right hook scoring a second knockdown forcing referee Rosato to call a halt. “It was Savage Time,” said the happy Knight!
Super middleweight Brandon “Silver Back” Robinson, 9-1 (7), of Upper Darby, PA, scored a knockout at 1:50 of the first round over Juan Celin Zapata, 5-12-2 (3), of Honduras now living in the Bronx, NY. It was a perfect right at the beltline ending if for the exciting Robinson.
Rosato was the referee in this scheduled six.
Cruiserweight southpaw Kennedy “The Shadow” Katende, 3-0 (1), from Uganda living in the West Hampton’s, of New York scored a first round knockdown helping him win a solid six round decision over the taller Lyubomyr Pinchuk, 4-1 (3), from the Ukraine now out of Pittsburgh, PA. Judge Anthony Lundy had it 58-55 while judges Adam Friscia and Dave Braslow scored it 59-54 as did this writer. The fourth judge Gail Jasper never had a chance to score a bout since this was the only one to go the distance in the seven bout card.
Asked why Katende only fought orthodox in the third round after dominating the other five rounds he shrugged it off saying “I am from Uganda who I represented in the 2008 Olympics in China and moved to Sweden who I represented in the 2012 Olympics in Rio”. On the back of his trunks was “God Walks With Me” and that didn’t hurt him any. He suffered a small cut in the third round from an accidental head butt. Eric Dali was the referee.
In a scheduled six round middleweight bout 20 year-old Edgar “The Chosen One” Berlanga, 7-0 (7), kept his record perfect stopping Jaime Barboza, 19-14 (9), of San Jose, Costa Rica at 2:42 of the first round. He scored a first knockdown with a right to the chin and a second knockdown with a combination to the chin forcing referee Dali to wave it off.
In attendance was former World Heavyweight champion Larry “The Easton Assassin” Holmes, recent title challenger Tevin “The American Idol” Farmer who lost a disputed decision and should be getting a rematch, former world contender Kevin Howard, Lionel Byarm who was Holyfield’s first opponent and the popular former IBF Super welterweight champion Buster Drayton, all from Philly except Holmes.