Derrick Coleman Jr: Lights, Camera, Action
By: Hans Themistode
Motivation can vary for every individual. For many boxing prospects, the ability to live a life long dream is the sole driving factor behind their work ethic.
Not everyone however, has that same motivational factor. For the undefeated boxing prospect Derrick Coleman Jr (9-0, 7 KOs) his motivation lies within the bright lights that come associated with becoming a star boxer.
“Growing up in Detroit and not having the life that other kids had,” said Coleman Jr. “That just motivated me because I knew that the only way that I was going to have the life that I wanted was through boxing. I knew that going to college and getting a regular job wasn’t going to get me the lifestyle that I wanted.”
The driving force behind Coleman Jr might be slightly different than others, but it is all the same. His desire to become great was instilled in him ever since he was a young boy.
“I started boxing when I was 4 years old. My Grand father introduced me to the sport. He was an amateur boxer himself so I’ve been around the sport for a long time.”
Those young lessons have seemingly served Coleman Jr right as he gave boxing his full attention. The results were outstanding. An amateur record consisting of 129 wins against only 7 defeats would lend credence to that belief. On the outside looking in, it would seem as though he was successful through his amateur endeavors, but that just isn’t the case according to Coleman Jr.
“I wouldn’t say I was really successful because there was a lot of fights that should have gone my way but they didn’t. I should have won a lot more. I think it was because I have a pro style. I’m more comfortable in a pro ring.”
Comfortable would be an understatement for Coleman Jr. Not only has he gone undefeated through the early parts of his career, but he has stopped his last four opponents he has faced.
Just what makes him so good at the early age of 20? It all boils down to the experiences he has been able to get both in and outside of the ring.
“The great thing about the way my career is going right now is that I’ve been able to spar top level guys. I’ve been in the ring with a bunch of prospects who are currently coming up through the ranks like I am but I also got a chance to spar against Charles Conwell, the Olympian. I’ve also sparred Tony Harrison a few times as well. I’ve held my own in every situation and it has just allowed my confidence to grow even more. The biggest thing that I learned from that wasn’t just that they’re terrific fighters but they also taught me a lot of patience and really understanding what you’re doing in there.”
As is always the case with success, it always leads to other issues. For Coleman Jr, he noticed right away that his surroundings were not ideal. If he wanted to truly reach his potential, he knew that he had to leave his immediate Detroit area.
“I was starting to receive a lot of hate because of what I was doing. I was accomplishing what other people weren’t and looking good while doing it, so me and my team decided it was in my best interest to move.”
Not only was a change of scenery necessary but so was a change in promoters. At the time, Coleman Jr worked closely with his uncle, who did his best to steer his career in the right direction, still, the undefeated prospect needed the help of a big time promoter.
“My uncle took me as far as he could take me in my pro career. We decided it was time to step up with a major promoter because things were getting real expensive. Food, cost of living, the entire lifestyle can get really expensive. We just wanted a promoter to handle a lot of things for me so that I can focus on boxing. Vito Mielnicki was the perfect guy. I really like his approach because he’s a hands on guy unlike other promoters. Most promoters will sign you than forget about you. With Vito Mielnicki, he’s more like a family guy. It’s been a great move for me and my career.”
Coleman Jr will look to continue his dominant start to his career on October 25th, at the 2300 Arena, in Philadelphia. Although he would love to keep his knockout streak alive, more than anything, he just wants his hand to be raised at the end of the night.
“If the knockout comes then it comes but all I want to do is win.”
For Coleman Jr, he has dreams that stretch far beyond just winning his next fight.
“I want to become a world champion and become a legend in the sport. That’s the main goal. To become a hall of famer, become that name that everyone can remember. I looked up to guys like Floyd Mayweather Jr, Marvin Hagler and Roy Jones Jr. I want to be remembered like they are.”
Trainers Derrick James and Kenny Porter Get into Altercation
By: Hans Themistode
The dislike between WBC Welterweight champion Shawn Porter (30-2-1, 17 KOs) and IBF titlist Errol Spence Jr (25-0, 21 KOs) has stretched to their respective trainers as Kenny Porter, the father and trainer of Shawn Porter and Derrick James, who has been the trainer of Spence for several years had to be separated.
The altercation reportedly steamed from comments that James made about the way Porter treats his son.
“His father treats him like trash,” said James about how Kenny has been treating Shawn.
Kenny would go on to approach James about the situation and the two had to be separated. Following the dispute, James did not hold back when speaking about his rival trainer.
“He just says a lot of things that aren’t true. He said in the Kell Brook fight that Errol was looking at him for advice. Do you know how asinine that sounds? Well the same instruction that you claim that you gave Errol then why didn’t you tell your son the same thing to beat Kell Brook then? Errol fights nothing like wild man Shawn Porter.”
The WBC champion, who has been known to fight on pure will and aggression as opposed to solely skill, has been called out before in the past for his inability to box. James believes that the critics are spot on in their analysis.
“I believe in boxing technique and skill. It’s hard to watch him fight anybody. He does a lot of things but he doesn’t know when to do it. Kenny doesn’t even know what he’s talking about. That shows you the level of intellect that the father has which is his teacher.”
Further bashing his rival trainer, James took it a step further as he was critical of the ability of Shawn up until this point in his career
“I think that he’s gotten to a point to where he’s not getting any better,” said James of Shawn Porter. “He’s in a horrible situation, with somebody that doesn’t respect him. He forgets the way this thing works. The trainer works for the fighter, right? The manager works for the fighter. So, what happens is regardless of whatever you think about the father thinks he is, you don’t have to let your employee talk to you like that. You understand? We have a order, where we are. So, if he wanna get treated like a real man, somebody gonna respect him, come over here. That’s where he need to come – hands down. He wanna be treated like a real person – not yelled at, not belittled, not demeaned – he can come over here, with us.”
With the fight coming up in just merely a few short hours, James has some immediate questions about the future of Shawn Porter.
“He’s gotta do something,” James said. “Because after this knockout, what is he gonna do? I’m asking you what is he gonna do? Where is his relevance at? You wonder why they go to every fight. They wanna be relevant. They wanna be relevant. They wanna be relevant. After this fight, what do you do? He gets treated like trash by his father so if he wants to get treated like a real fighter, then he can come over here.”
Clearly things have crossed into personal territory between the two trainers. What was first viewed as a contest between just the fighters, have quickly shifted into a battle of the trainers as well. The question of not only who is the better fighter between Spence and Shawn, but also who is a better trainer, will soon be answered.
Webster, Pizarro, Teah & Cuevas Win in South Philly
By: Ken Hissner
On Saturday night Hard Hitting Promotions Will Ruiz and matchmaker Manny Ramirez put on 8 bouts before a very good attended crowd. These bouts took place at the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia.
In the Main Event Super Middleweight southpaw Derrick “Take It to The Bank” Webster, 27-1 (14), of Glassboro, NJ, halted Les “Lock Load” Sherrington, 37-11 (21), of Broadbeach, Australia, at 1:32 of round 9 in a scheduled 10 rounds.
In the first round Webster landed the first effective punch a lead left to the mid-section. Sherrington landed a right, left to the chin backing up Webster. Webster landed a 3-punch combination rocking Sherrington who immediately tied him up until the bell sounded. In the second round Sherrington landed a combination to the head as Webster acknowledged it. Webster landed a left uppercut to the chin of Sherrington who came right back at Webster.
In the third round Sherrington landed a low blow having referee Gary Rosato give Webster a minute rest. Sherrington landed three straight punches as Webster was backing up. In the fourth round the boo’s started. Webster not being the most exciting boxer playing it safe. Whenever Sherrington comes forward he does well but sitting back Webster pick’s him apart with his jab.
In the fifth round it was more of the same with Webster backing up piercing Sherrington with his jab. Sherrington landed the last punch of the round a right to the body of Webster. In the sixth round Sherrington landed a combo as Webster was moving away. Webster landed an effective 3-punch combo to the head of Sherrington getting his attention. Webster ended the round with a solid jab to the chin of Sherrington.
In the seventh round Webster started bouncing around like a “kangaroo” to the “man from down under”. Webster landed a partially blocked left to the right glove of Sherrington. Sherrington landed several body shots causing Webster to spin around. In the eighth round Sherrington landed a lead right to the chin of Webster who immediately grabbed Sherrington. Webster landed a flurry of punches backing Sherrington to take a knee. Webster jumped on him with a flurry dropping him again causing referee Rosato to step in and stop it.
Very impressive was 18 year-old Lightweight Branden “The Gift” Pizarro, 11-1 (5), of Philadelphia, stopping Hector Marengo, 7-12-4 (4), of Arecibo, PR at 1:32 of the second round of a scheduled 6.
In the first round it didn’t take long before crowd pleasing Pizarro landed a right, left and right dropping Marengo barely beating the count of referee Steve “SS” Smoger. Pizarro jumped on him right up until the bell sounded! In the second round Pizarro picked up where he left off in the previous round throwing punch after punch until Marengo dropped to the canvas. He was up but wobbly as referee Smoger wisely waved it off.
Back in the win column Lightweight Liberian Samuel “Tsunami” Teah, 14-2-1 (7), of Philadelphia, stopped Zack “AK 47” Ramsey, 8-4 (4), of Springfield, MASS, at 2:49 of the first round in a scheduled 6.
In the first round it was all Teah having Ramsey on the defense. Suddenly a right uppercut to the mid-section dropped Ramsey who tried to get up causing referee Rosato to call a halt.
Exciting southpaw Lightweight Jeremy “King” Cuevas, 10-0 (8), of Philadelphia, stopped southpaw Uganda’s Deo Kizito, 3-4 (2), of Dubai, UAE, now living in Wash., DC, at 2:02 of the sixth round in an action packed fight in a scheduled 6, in the best fight of the night!
In the first round Cuevas wasted no time throwing punches backing up Kizito. Halfway through the round Cuevas hurt Kizito with a right hook to the head that had Kizito wobbling several feet backwards. Cuevas jumped on him but Kizito managed to weather the storm. In the second round Cuevas landed a chopping right to the head of Kizito. Half a minute later Kizito got into an exchange with Cuevas showing he didn’t come to fall down.
In the fourth round Cuevas came out twirling his left hand while landing a snapping jab to the chin of Kizito. Cuevas had Kizito in a corner landing a barrage of punches and it looked like referee Smoger was stepping in to stop it as Cuevas backed off thinking it was stopped. All of a sudden both fighters went to war. Cuevas thought he knocked Kizito down ending the fight and ran to the corner and up on the ropes with hands held high. Referee Smoger called it a slip as Kizito went down but Cuevas didn’t see the slip signal. Cuevas went right after Kizito who held his own until the bell.
In the fifth round Kizito for some reason must have thought it was the last round and went to touch gloves as Cuevas smashed him with a straight left to the chin. Kiziot showed very good recovery when he got hurt. Cuevas continued landing punch after punch as Kizito backed up before coming back with punches of his own. The fans were loving it! In the sixth and final round they touched gloves and Cuevas landed a straight left to the chin of Kizito. Kizito landed several low punches as referee Smoger gave him a break but Cuevas waved it off and went after Kizito. Cuevas went after him landing punch after punch until Kizito hit the canvas with referee Smoger wisely waving it the end!
Super featherweight Gadwin “El abayarde” Rosa, 7-0 (6), of Ocala, FL, stopped southpaw Angel Albeio, 4-10-3 (1), of Kissimmee, FL, at 2:05 of the fifth round in a lack luster bout scheduled for 6 rounds.
In the first round it was rather uneventful as both threw few punches other than jabs. In the second round Rosa landed a left hook to the chin of Albeio to start the round. There was little action after this with both back to jabbing which continued into the third round as Rosa continued for the most part being the aggressor.
In the fourth round the Philly fans were growing restless after following a good match prior to this. With both boxers being from FL you have to wonder if the sparred before and are continuing it now. Albeio is on the move as Rosa caught him with a glancing left hook to the side of the head. Rosa landed four punches to the body. Seconds later a Rosa right to the head started what a left hook to the mid-section finished dropping Albeio. As he got up he walked to his corner forcing referee Rosato to call a halt.
In the opening bout Cruiserweight and holder of half a dozen regional titles Prince Badi Ajamu, 29-5-1 (15), of Camden, NJ, lost a decision to Kenny Cruz Carasquillo, 3-2-1 (2), of Bayamon, PR, over 6 rounds.
In the first round Carasquillo landed wicked body shots on Ajamu. Ajamu continued using his jab and landed a punch a second past the bell and both touched gloves in good sportsmanship. In the second round Carasquillo turned southpaw and immediately back to orthodox. Halfway through the round Carasquillo landed a hard left hook to the chin of Ajamu. Ajamu pinned Carasquillo in a corner as both exchanged punches for half a minute. In the third round while against the ropes Carasquillo fought well with Ajamu getting the last punch in a right uppercut to the chin as the bell sounded.
In the fourth round Ajamu with hands held high throughout the fight brought them down with a vicious body attack from Carasquillo. In the fifth round a right hand from Carasquillo on the chin of Ajamu brought a roar from the crowd. Ajamu landed a left uppercut to the chin and followed with a right cross to the chin of Carasquillo. At the end of the round Ajamu looked spent. In the sixth and final round Carasquillo started opening up more and backed into a corner drawing Ajamu in landing several punches of his own. Then, just prior to the end of the round Carasquillo landed a flurry of punches.
Scores were 59-55 twice and 58-56 with this writer having it 59-55. The referee was IBHOF Steve “double SS” Smoger.
Super bantamweight Puerto Rican Romuel “Cuco” Cruz, 2-0-1 (1), of Philadelphia, and Jose Lopez, 0-0-1 (0), of New York, NY, battled to a majority draw over 4 rounds.
In the first round after several exchanges Lopez landed a solid right to the chin of Cruz. Lopez had a mouse under his right eye at the end of the round. In the second round Lopez landed an overhand right knocking Cruz back several steps. Cruz landed a left uppercut to the mid-section and Lopez came back with a right uppercut to the mid-section of his own.
In the third round Cruz worked the body of Lopez well. Lopez knocked out the mouthpiece of Cruz with a right uppercut to the chin. Cruz landed several punches but got countered by a Lopez right to the chin. The last 30 seconds both fighters went to war! In the fourth and final round Cruz used his jab well while Lopez missed with a big overhand right. Cruz landed several left hooks to the body of Lopez. Cruz moved better than in the previous rounds evading lunges by Lopez. Cruz landed a solid right to the chin of Lopez almost knocking him down just prior to the bell.
Scores were Werlinsky 39-37 Cruz, McNair 38-38, Page 38-38 and this writer had it 39-37 Lopez. Smoger was the referee.
Bringing his own cheering section Super featherweight Christian Tapia, 5-0 (4), of Coamo, PR, defeated southpaw Israel Suarez, 4-6-2 (2), of Luquillo, PR over 4 rounds.
In the first round every solid punch Tapia landed had his many fans cheering. Both fighters fought on even terms for the most part. Suarez got the last punch of the round in a straight left to the chin of Tapia. In the second round Tapia was out landing Suarez for the most part. In the final seconds of the round Suarez got in a solid lead left to the chin of Tapia.
In the third round Tapia landed half a dozen unanswered punches while inside. Tapia drove Suarez against the ropes rocking him several times until Suarez spun out. In the fourth and final round Tapia landed a vicious body attack of half a dozen punches almost doubling Suarez over. Tapia having Suarez in a corner brought his already standing large group of fans roaring their approval. Suarez was able to get through the round.
Scores were Weisfeld 40-36, Page 39-37 and McNair 39-37 as did this writer. The referee was Gary Rosato.
At ringside were unbeaten Jaron “Boots” Ennis, Garrett “The Ultimate Warrior” Wilson, Angel Pizarro, Jr. and Greg Hackett. Ever popular cut man Joey Eye worked several corners including the main event.
Derrick “Take it to the Bank” Webster Defeats Oscar Riojas in AC
By: Dave Ruff
Derrick “Take it to the Bank” Webster, 26-1 defeated Oscar Riojas, 16-10-1, over 10 lackluster rounds Friday night at the Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City, NJ, on a Mis Downing Promotion.
Webster called out the two WBA champions and wants a USBA title bout. Webster isn’t rated in any of the WBA, WBC, WBO or IBF and No. 44 in the IBO so unless he gets rated there will be no world title bout for him.
Webster is No. 3 in the USBA with Philadelphia’s Jesse “Hollywood” Hart, 27-1 holding that title. They were once both managed by Doc Nowicki and Dave Price at the same time. It’s doubtful they will ever meet because neither wants to fight the other. Hart defeated Webster twice in the amateurs and is looking for an opponent in August in Atlantic City. Webster should contact Top Rank who is promoting and put his name in the hat.
Beating club fighters like Riojas will not get Webster ranked. He has to step up sooner or later. Hart also has the NABF belt and Webster is not in their ratings.
In the co-feature Atlantic City’s Isiah Seldon, 12-1-1 and defeated Lamar Harris, 9-15-4, of St. Louis. In his previous fight Harris fought Webster. This is why Webster isn’t ranked fighting the club fighters like Harris. Seldon is a wild swinger but can excite the crowd. 60-52 twice and 59-53 were the scores over 6 rounds.
Prince Badi Ajamu, 29-4-1, of Camden, NJ, got back in the win column defeating Edgar Perez, 7-25, of Chicago, IL, over 8 rounds, 80-72 twice and 79-73. The 46 year old Ajamu is up there in age and defeated Perez last August.
Brooklyn’s James Wilkins, 4-0, won his 4th straight by stoppage over Joe Gbola, 3-3-2, of Newbergh, NY, who couldn’t come out for the third round.
In the opening bout Felix Manzueta, 2-0, of Dover, DE, stopped Antonio Allen, 0-8-1, of Philadelphia in the second round.
The show didn’t start until 9:30 and was over past midnight. Seemed the gloves were not there so it cost a big delay in the starting time.
Lundy and Webster Win at 2300 Arena
By: Ken Hissner
At the 2300 Arena in South Philly Saturday night Hard Hitting Promotions put on a six bout card with the main event having Philly’s “Hammerin” Hank Lundy defeating former WBO Super Lightweight Champion DeMarcus “Chop Chop” Corley.
In the Main Event southpaw Lightweight “Hammerin” Hank Lundy, 29-6-1 (14), defeated former WBO Super Lightweight Champion southpaw DeMarcus “Chop Chop” Corley, 50-29-1 (28), of Washington, DC., over 8 rounds.
“Chop Chop” made his entrance on a “hoverboard” with flags in each hand to the delight of the crowd.
In the opening round Lundy flipped Corley without a warning from referee Shawn Clark. Lundy out landed Corley though it was Corley who ended the round with a good combination to the head of Lundy. In the second round Corley landed a solid right hook to the head of Lundy. Lundy was having a problem landing as Corley showed his defensive skills. Then a Corley left to the head of Lundy had the crowd cheering. Corley evened the score.
In the third round Corley landed a combination with Lundy missing wildly in return. Even though missing half his punches, Lundy still out landed Corley, who did more on defense. Lundy turned to orthodox in the round. In the fourth round Corley landed a solid lead left to the mid-section of Lundy. A lead left from Corley rocked Lundy taking one on the chin. As it seemed both boxers collided a right from Lundy to the body of Corley caused a flash knockdown.
In the fifth round Lundy landed a 3-punch combination backing Corley up several steps. Lundy switched back to southpaw still out working Corley. In the sixth round Corley landed a 3-punch combination to the head of Lundy. Lundy missed several punches looking to end it to no avail. In the seventh round a lead left by Corley to the chin of Lundy backed him to the ropes. Lundy got a warning from referee Shawn Clark for a low blow. Again missing more than landing Lundy still did enough to take the round of an aging Corley.
In the eighth and final round Corley landed several combinations but Lundy came back rocking him with a left to the head at the bell.
Judge Poturaj 79-73 and judges Rubenstein and Page 79-72 as did this writer.
In the co-feature Super Middleweight southpaw Derrick “Take it to the Bank” Webster, 25-1 (13), of Glassboro, NJ, won a lopsided decision over Francisco “El Volcan” Cordero, 38-10 (29), of Barranquilla, Colombia.
Through an interpreter Cordero said “how does he win a fight running all night?”
Judge Kenny had it 79-73 with Poturaj and Rubenstein having it 80-72 as did this writer.
In the opening round the much taller Webster had an easy time of it but Cordero either smiled or waved him in for more. In the second round taking many jabs Cordero landed several overhand rights backing Webster up. Cordero landed a right and left to the head of a smiling Webster. Webster went back to his usual counter punching style taking the round. In the third round Cordero kept coming forward showing little respect to Webster’s punching power. Webster continued giving Cordero a boxing lesson until a Cordero punch went a little south making referee Benjy Esteves, Jr. gave a warning to Cordero and Webster getting several minutes rest.
In the fourth round both boxers were pounding their chests when Cordero drove Webster back several steps with a pair of wild punches to the head. Webster could land his jab with his eyes closed the way he is painting Cordero’s face. In the fifth round Cordero landed several wild left hooks backing Webster up. Webster came back with his jab while Corder landed a right and left to his head. Webster landed a hard straight left to the chin of Webster. In the last 10 seconds Cordero started chasing Webster who was pack pedaling.
In the sixth round Webster landed a rare left uppercut which seemed to be the punch to hurt Cordero. Webster decided to stop moving around the ring pop shoting Cordero in the middle of the ring until a Cordero right to the chin got Webster back on his bicycle. The fans started cheering for the underdog Cordero by the end of the round.
In the seventh round Webster continued Webster had press row wondering how Cordero was still upright. In the eighth it was all Webster but it was Cordero with his hands held high and the crowd cheering him for chasing Webster in spite of the obvious size difference.
For the vacant WBC International Super Featherweight title Nydia “DaPhenopenal” Feliciano, 9-10-3 (0), of the Bronx, NY, lost a lopsided decision to Alicia “The Baum” Baumgardner, 5-0 (4), of Fremont, OH, over 8 rounds for the vacant WBC International Super Featherweight title. In Feliciano’s corner was Brian Cohen who is well known for his stable of female boxers.
Judge Page and Poturaj had it 79-73 and Kenny 78-72. This writer had it 79-73.
In the opening round Baumgardner came out throwing bombs to the head of Feliciano. Halfway through the round Feliciano got Baumgardner’s attention with a right to the head. In the second round Baumgardner landed half a dozen unanswered punches without return in the middle of the round. Feliciano kept coming forward. Baumgardner’s percentage of landing punches is near perfect.
In the third round Feliciano made it close finishing strong after taking her share of punches coming forward in a peek-a-boo defense. In the fourth round Baumgardner landed good uppercuts to the chin of Feliciano finally rocking her with a good right to the chin that got the crowd’s reaction. In the fifth round Baumgardner worked the body trying to bring the defense of Feliciano down. Baumgardner kept up the attack. In the sixth round Feliciano landed a nice combination to the head of Baumgardner. Baumgardner has gone into the fifth round for the first time and slowed down in the round. Close round with Feliciano possibly pulling it out.
In the seventh round this round was similar to the first 5 rounds with Baumgardner landing a solid right uppercut to the chin of Feliciano just prior to the bell. In the eighth and final round Baumgardner was using the ring well with Baumgardner never giving up coming forward.
Lightweight prospect southpaw Jeremy “King” Cuevas, 7-0 (5), of Philly, won a workman like stoppage scoring several knockdowns as southpaw “Mighty” Mike Fowler, 6-13 (2), of Milwaukee, WI, couldn’t come out for the fifth round.
In the opening round both southpaw’s mixed it up well. With about 10 seconds to go in the round a left from Cuevas to the head of Fowler dropped him for referee Clark’s 8 count as the bell sounded. In the second round it didn’t take long before another chopping left from Cuevas to the head dropped Fowler. Cuevas followed up with a good right uppercut to the chin of Fowler who was fighting back. Good round for Cuevas but Fowler is better than his record show’s.
In the third round Cuevas started to go to the body of Fowler who held his own though falling short once again. In the fourth round Cuevas landed a jab followed by a straight left to the chin of Fowler. Cuevas landed the best punch of the round a lead left to the head of Fowler just prior to the bell.
Fowler couldn’t come out for the fifth round. Assisting Tony Bersani was long time Philly trainer Charles “Cornbread” Ramey.
Heavyweight southpaw Hasim “Gold Blooded” Rahman, Jr., 4-0 (3) of Baltimore, MD, took a majority decision over Rony “Big Country” Hale, 3-11 (3).
In the opening round southpaw Rahman was pin pointing his punches well. Hale got in one wild right to the side of Rahman’s left side of the head. Near the end of the round Hale got in a good right to the head that got Rahman’s attention. Rahman landed too many punches in taking the round. In the second round Rahman turned orthodox after taking a wild right to the chin. He had been landing shots to the big mid-section of Hale who turned southpaw and back to orthodox. It was a very close round. Both looked winded.
In the third round Hale had Rahman against the ropes landing half a dozen punches without return before tying up Hale. Halfway through the round Hale landed a lead right to the chin putting Rahman against the ropes. Both looked exhausted with Hale coming back to take the round. In the fourth and final round with both tired, especially Hale, there wasn’t much action as Rahman seemed to pull it out.
Judge Page had it 38-38, Judge Rubenstein 39-37 and Kenny 40-36 for Rahman. This writer had it 39-37 for Rahman.
In the opening bout Middleweight “Dangerous” Dillon Kasprzak, 0-1 (0), of Philly, lost a split decision to southpaw Michael “The Hammer” Crain, 1-1 (0), of Smyrna, DE, in a spirited 4 rounds.
In the opening bout southpaw Crain is outworking Kasprzak who halfway through started to go to the body since he couldn’t hit him in the head. Crain went to body and head with leading lefts to the chin. In the second round both mixed it up well with Crain landing the best punch a short left to the chin of Kasprzak. Crain continues to land more than Kasprzak.
In the third round Crain landed a left uppercut to the chin hurting Kasprzak. Near the end of the round Kasprzak’s head cleared and both boxers ended the round slugging it out. In the fourth and final round a wide left hook from Kasprzak dropped Crain for referee Clark’s mandatory 8 count. Crain came back and Kasprzak looked spent.
Judge Page had it 38-37 Kasprzak. Both judges Poturaj and Rubenstein had it 38-37 for Crain as did this writer.
Ring Announcer was Mark Fratto. There were not any “fighters of the night” in this one in which looked like another full house for Hard Hitting Promotions. They will be coming back the end of March with a site to be determined.
Zhilei Zhang, Derrick Webster & Prince Badi Ajamu Win in AC
by: Ken Hissner
Mis Downing Promotions in Association with Roy Jones, Jr’s Square Ring Promotions put together a six bout show at the Claridge Hotel & Casino and Radisson Hotel in Atlantic City, NJ, Saturday night with a nine bout card. Rene Aiken was matchmaker.
Chinese 2008 Olympic Silver Medalist heavyweight southpaw Zhilei Zhang, 17-0 (13), now out of Las Vegas, NV, stopped Nick “2 Gunz” Guivas, 13-8-2 (9), of Topeka, KS, at 2:43 of the first round of a scheduled 10.
In the opening round Zhang used a jab and right hook keeping Guivas on the defense rarely throwing a punch. Zhang dropped Guivas in his own corner with a right hook body shot. Shortly later another Zhang right hook this time to the head and down went Guivas for the second time as referee Shada’ Murdaugh waved it off. Guivas came in for a pay day and Zhang needs to step up the competition.
In the Main Event super middleweight southpaw Derrick “Take It to the Bank” Webster, 24-1 (13), of Glassboro, NJ, stopped Lamar “King of Pain” Harris, 9-14-4 (5), of St. Louis, MO., at 0:28 of the second round.
In the first round Harris came out fast until several Webster jab’s hit him in the face followed by a straight left to the head. A right hook from Webster spun Harris a full 360 degrees. A follow-up combination from Webster dropped Harris who got to his feet as referee Murdaugh gave him the 8 count as the bell sounded ending the round. In the second round a flurry of punches from Webster had Harris out on his feet causing referee Shada’ Murdaugh to call a halt. Webster needs to step up the competition.
In the co-feature cruiserweight “The Boxing” Prince Badi Ajamu, 28-3-1 (15), of Camden, NJ, returned after 8 years, to win a lack luster decision over Puerto Rico’s Edgar Perez, 7-22 (3), of Chicago, IL, over 8 rounds.
In the first round Ajamu used an effective jab to the midsection keeping Perez at bay. It was a feeling out round. In the second round Ajamu landed a 3-punch combination to the body and head of Perez. A jab by Ajamu pushed Perez back several steps. In the third round Ajamuj landed half a dozen punches mostly to the body of Perez putting Perez against the ropes. Ajamuj landed another 3-punch body shot bringing the defense of Perez down. In the fourth round Ajamuj landed half a dozen unanswered punches from Perez. It was nothing more than a sparring match.
In the fifth round Ajamuj landed eight light punches as Perez continued fighting a survival fight. Ajamuj continued to work the flabby body of Perez. Near the end of the round Ajamuj got Perez upset causing the best exchange of the fight. In the sixth round Perez used and effective jab as Ajamuj was in a peek-a-boo defense. In the seventh round they continued to go through the motions. In the eighth and final round of a real snoozer it finally came to an end. Referee Gonzales had little to do with few clinches.
Judges Pasquale and Page had it 80-72 while Barnes scored it 79-73. This writer had it 80-72.
Middleweight Shady Gamhour, 4-0 (3), of Sweden living in Pensacola, FL, knocked out Jessie Singletary, 0-3, of D.C., at 1:43 of the first round.
In the opening round Singletary came out throwing punches while Gamhour was using his jab. Suddenly a lead right hand from Gamhour on the chin of Singletary and down he went for the count from referee Ricky Gonzales. Former world champion Roy Jones, Jr., worked the corner of Gamhour.
Cruiserweight Mike “Super Beast” Hilton, 7-0 (6), of Trenton, NJ, was fortunate to get a decision over Willis “The Prophet” Lockett, 4-12-6 (5), of Takoma Park, MD, in a foul filled 6 rounds.
In the first round Lockett is throwing more punches with little power while Hilton hurts him every time he lands a punch mostly to the body. In the second round Hilton landed a 3-punch combination as Lockett came in low. Hilton got a warning from referee Glover for pushing Lockett’s head down. Lockett outworked Hilton in the round. In the third round a lead overhand right from Lockett landed on the head of Hilton to the crowd’s delight. Both fighters tumbled to the canvas. Lockett continues to outwork Hilton who was too busy loading up and throwing little.
In the fourth round after both fighters missed wild left hooks Lockett landed a lead right to the midsection of Hilton. Lockett continues to outwork Hilton. In the fifth round Hilton was missing with wild punches until he finally landed a right driving Lockett to the ropes. Hilton warned for pushing by referee Glover. Hilton landed a power punch to the body of Lockett hurting him. There was much too much holding in the round. Both fighters looked exhausted. In the sixth and final round Lockett landed a left hook to the head of Hilton. Hilton landed a low left south of the border putting Lockett on the canvas. Referee Glover gave him but 30 seconds to re-coup. Again Hilton landed a low right hand putting Lockett on the canvas for another 10 second rest from the referee Glover who doesn’t understand the fouled fighter can take up to five minutes to re-coup.
Judge’s scores were Barnes 60-54, Pasquale 60-53 and Page 58-56. This writer had it 57-57.
In the opening bout Cruiserweight southpaw Lamont “Lay Em Down” McLaughlin, 0-2 (0), of Philly, was knocked out by Tahlik Taylor, 2-7 (0), of Freeport, NJ, at 0:31 of the first round of a scheduled 4.
In the opening round McLaughlin came at Taylor who countered with a right hand and down went McLaughlin for the count from referee Mary Glover. The crowd loved it as Taylor won his second fight in nine starts.
Mis Downing Promotions will return November 4th.
Zhang, Webster, Ajamu and Cauthen at Claridge in AC Saturday
By: Ken Hissner
Mis Downing Promotions and Square Ring Promotions will have a nine bout card at the Claridge Hotel & Casino in Atlantic City, NJ, Saturday night! In a ten round boutunbeaten 2008 Olympic heavyweight Silver Medalist from China southpaw Zhilei “Big Bang” Zhang, 16-0 (12), who has scored nine knockouts in his last ten fights. He is No. 13 in the WBO rankings. His opponent is Nick “2 Gunz” Guivas, 13-7-2 (9), out of Topeka, KS.
Headlining in an eight round bout is Glassboro, NJ, Super middleweight southpaw Derrick “TakeIt to the Bank” Webster, 23-1 (12), seeking a ranking in one of the four organizations taking on Lamar Harris, 9-13-4 (5), of St. Louis, MO, in an eight round bout.
In the co-feature 6 round bout returning to the ring after an eight year layoff and holder of the WBC Continental Americas, WBO NABO, World Boxing Foundation, CABOFE, IBC Inter-Continental and PA State titles is Camden, NJ, cruiserweight Prince BadiAjamu, 27-3-1 (15), who won eight of his last nine fights only losing to Roy Jones, Jr., taking on Edgar Perez, 7-21 (3), of Chicago, IL. Perez holds a win over Atlantic City’s Lavarn “Baby Bowe” Harvell, who was 13-0 at the time. “What better way to bring the attention to child abduction which is a big problem in this country than to be in the ring and get this message out there”. He would also like a rematch with Jones who as co-promoter will be in attendance.
Another match-up of two NJ middleweights is former Olympian Terrance “Heat” Cauthen, 36-8 (9), of Trenton, NJ, after a five year absence taking on Nick Valliere, 5-2 (2), of Forked River, NJ. Trenton’s cruiserweight Mike Hilton, 6-0 (6)trying to make it seven straight ko’s against Willis Lockett, 14-20-6 (5), of Takoma Park, MD, who holds a win over Wildwood, NJ, boxer Chuck “The Professor” Mussachio.Camden, NJ, unbeaten featherweight Vidal Rivera, 6-0 (4), is listed against tba. These three are over six rounds. In four round bouts Newark, NJ, super lightweight Dion Richadson, 3-1 (2), meets FelipNazario, 0-7, of the Bronx, NY. Shady Gamhour, 1-0 (1), of Pensacola, FL, meets Jesse Singletary, 0-2, of D.C. and Philly cruiserweight Lamont McLaughlin, 0-1, meets Tahlik Taylor, 1-7, of Freeport, NY.
There will be a press conference at 5pm Thursday at the Flagship Hotel, 60 North Main Avenue in Atlantic City. The first bout Saturday will be at 7pm.
Interview with Derrick James, Trainer to Errol Spence Jr.
Boxing Insider Interview with Derrick James
By: Marley Malenfant
Derrick James is busy man.
When he’s not training his stable of boxers, like current IBF Welterweight champion Errol Spence jr or Jermell Charlo, he hosts private and group boxing sessions at the Cooper Aerobics Institute in Dallas.
Photo Credit: Sky Sports
James has trained professionally for over ten years. His career as a professional boxer is 27-7-1 and he’s a former two-time Golden Gloves champion in Texas.
Not one to really hype himself up, James said the formula to his success is to never stop working.
“All of our strength and conditioning work is done at Cooper and our boxing work is done at R&R [Boxing Club in Dallas].”
In a Q&A, James discussed his working relationship with Spence, consideration for trainer of the year, plans to finish out the year and brief talks with the indecipherable Al Haymon.
BI: Do you think boxing media was ignoring you and Errol Spence’s rise prior to a championship because you’re both from Texas?
DJ: I don’t think they ignored Errol as much as they did myself. A couple years ago he was prospect of the year. He was an ESPN prospect of the year and Premier Boxing Champions named him prospect of the year. The boxing media and the boxing world have not ignored him. I think myself, yes. A little bit but not much.
BI: Why do you think that is?
DJ: It’s like a small, small community. I think they like the same ol’ guys. Errol is not my first world champion. It’s Jermell Charlo, who’s from Texas as well. But I don’t know, man. But they almost don’t have a choice now [but to respect it]. I have 23 guys and three champions. So my third guy, Robert Brant, he’s fighting for the world title sometime in August or September for the WBA belt that Danny Jacobs gave up to fight [Gennady Golovkin] GGG. I have three world champions. So there’s no way the public can deny.
BI: Are there things that you do as a trainer that other trainers should be doing?
DJ: Well, I’m happy that they’re not doing what we’re doing. And they don’t need to do it because what works for me does not mean that works for them. They need to stick to what they do and let us stick to what we do. That’s how I’ll say that.
BI: With Spence’s success, has anything changed with the way you two work?
DJ: No not at all, man. Everything thing has been the same. What’s funny is that initially, when I started training him as an amateur, my whole focus was that he would become world champion. Not professional. But it was amateur world champion. I wasn’t thinking that far off because the goal was the amateur world title. And then the Olympic games came. At that point, I never really set a goal except just work hard. For me as a trainer, I don’t feel right pushing my ideas on somebody else. I hope to make him the best he is. We haven’t changed anything. It’s the same pace, same everything since he was an amateur. The only thing we changed is the work we do a little bit. We spar 19 rounds instead of 10 rounds. That’s the difference. We just work a little bit harder and we always work the same pace and the same weight. And that’s why I think it’s getting a little bit harder for everybody to keep up.
BI: What would you like to see for Spence next?
DJ: I really don’t like to interject my personal feelings on who he should fight. I want him to fight whoever he wants to fight. So I listen to him. I go off of whatever he says. He says he wants to fight the best. He wants to fight Keith Thurman. If he can’t fight Keith Thurman because of an injury, then you know whoever the next possible opposition is. It could be Shawn Porter, Danny Garcia. These are the names I’ve heard him say. I’m just repeating what he said. I just get him prepared.
BI: Does he ever mention anyone from Top Rank or Golden Boy? Does he ever say ‘I wouldn’t mind getting at a [Terrance] Crawford or Manny Pacquiao’? Does he mention those guys to you in private?
DJ: Well, Pacquiao… he did say Pacquiao right after the last fight. And really, it’s not about Manny Pacquiao. It’s about that he has that title. So if he didn’t have that WBO belt, he wouldn’t mention his name at all.
BI: What’s it like working with Al Haymon. He’s a mysterious guy and you don’t see him in the media.
DJ: I don’t know, man. I don’t talk to him [laughs]. I’m serious. There’s a liaison that I generally work with and we’ll go from there. I really don’t work with him. I’ve met him before and have talked to him a couple of times. But I really don’t have to talk to him.
Derrick “Take It to the Bank” Webster Wins in Return to the Grundy Arena in Bristol, PA, Saturday!
Derrick “Take It to the Bank” Webster Wins in Return to the Grundy Arena in Bristol, PA, Saturday!
By: Ken Hissner
Three new promoters in Deuce Promotions and Kane 5 Promotions in association with MIS Downing Promotions in an ice rink presented five fights before a crowd of about 500. Sacred Downing from Trenton, NJ, was an outstanding amateur boxer who was an Olympian.
Super Middleweight southpaw Derrick “Take It to the Bank” Webster, 23-1 (11), of Glassboro, NJ, won the WBF International title stopping southpaw Frankie Filippone, 22-6-1 (7), of Norfolk, VA, at 0:32 of the seventh round. Referee Eric Dali who worked the entire five matches saw enough after Filippone was knocked down in the sixth round and twice in the seventh of a scheduled ten rounds. Filippone had won his six previous fights.
Webster much taller than Filippone rarely used his left hand controlling the fight with a jab. Filippone tried urging Webster into mixing it up and not just eating jabs all night and when Webster did Filippone wouldn’t exchange with him. It was not a performance by Webster that would get him into the top 15 of any of the organizations. Up until the final round it was more like a sparring session.
The co-feature was cancelled when female lightweight Ikram Kersat, 7-1 (5), of Pensacola, FL, born in Tunisia and previous only fought in Germany had several opponents fall out. The WBF Jr. Regional title belt was given to her by James Gibbs of the WBF. Webster made Filippone wait some ten minutes in the ring before he came out of his dressing room. Commissioner Rudy Battle and Boxing Director did little to make Webster appear.
In the new co-feature Mikkel Lespierre, 16-0-1 (7), of Brooklyn, NY, won a fairly interesting bout over the once prospect Jerome “The Messenger” Rodriguez, 7-9-3 (2), of Bethlehem, PA, who has lost eight of his last nine fights. Rodriguez landed more punches in this battle of southpaws but Lespierre was too heavy handed for him.
Judges scores were Lundy and Page 59-55 twice and 58-56 Weisfeld all in favor of Lespierre as this writer had it 58-56 for the winner.
Featherweight Vidal Rivera, 6-0 (4), of Camden, NJ, won a majority decision over southpaw Jesus Salas, 1-1 (1), of PR over six rounds.
Salas was the much taller of the two and may have took the first round but from the time the bell sounded to start the second round Rivera got inside the reach of Salas and took it to his body and head. “I felt I won the fight and have gotten few fights due to my job and opponents lacking to fight me,” said Rivera. He had an outstanding amateur career.
Cruiserweight Mike Hilton, 6-0 (6), of Trenton, NJ, scored a technical stoppage over Eric Cason, 2-6 (2), of Davenport, IA, at 2:51 of the second round in a schedule 4.
Hilton won a close first round but gave Cason a beating in the second round until referee Dali called a halt. Cason complained to no avail.
Light heavyweight Brandon “Brob” Robinson, 3-1 (2), of Upper Darby, PA, easily defeated by knockout over Phillip Legrand, 1-5 (1), of Atlanta, GA, at 0:45 of the second round.
In the show opener Liberia’s Gowarr Karyah, 1-0 (1), of Philadelphia stopped Jose Homar Rios, 1-5 (1), of Moorhead, WI.
Rios tried by kept get tagged by Karyah and the referee Dali had seen enough. There were no complaints from the loser’s corner.
In this writer’s ten years of covering fights the conditions were the worst. The freezing ice hockey rink was so cold we moved to the penalty box to get off of the covered ice. The speaker system was poor and a late start. This facility should not be approved by the commission in the future. With a lack of security the fans stood in front of the penalty box making the writers stand for the entire show.
Christopher “Ice” Brooker Headlines at SugarHouse Casino Friday!
Christopher “Ice” Brooker Headlines at SugarHouse Casino Friday!
By: Ken Hissner
Kings Promotions with CEO Marshall Kauffman and David Feldman come back looking for another sold out arena Friday night at the SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia!
A press conference was held at the SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia Tuesday on 1001 N. Delaware Avenue. There will be seven bouts with a total of 38 rounds of competitive boxing. First bout at 7pm.
Philadelphia’s ever popular super middleweight Christopher “Ice” Brooker, 11-3 (5), will be in the main event looking to stop a two fight losing streak as he takes on southpaw Oscar Riojas, 14-7-1 (4), from Monterrey, MEX, over 8 rounds.
Promoter Kauffman said “no soft fights for the fighter’s only entertaining fights. We sold out the arena in our first show and expect to do it again in our second show here at the SugarHouse Casino come Friday night”.
“I made the mistake of trying to box instead of my usual aggressive style in my last fight. There will be none of that this time,” said Brooker. He had a new trainer in his corner last fight named Muhammad Aziz who will be there again. “I didn’t have a big amateur career so every fight is a learning experience for me,” said Brooker.
First boxer to speak was Philadelphia’s cruiserweight Sam Orapeza, 1-0 (1), a cruiserweight and former MMA fighter at 13-3 with all knockout wins. “I look to knockout every opponent they put before me,” said Orapeza. He debuted at the SugarHouse Casino March 11th scoring a first round knockout! He will face Kyle McNutt, 1-2 (1), of Battle Creek, MI. Like BrookerOrapeza is all action!
The co-feature will be headlined by Lightweight Jerome “The Conqueror” Conquest, 6-2 (1), of Philadelphia who had his trainers Wade and Randy Hinnant there. “I broke my foot but wasn’t diagnosed properly and did my roadwork for 17 weeks before it was discovered broke. I was out for 6 months but it feels fine now,” said Conquest. He is matched with veteran Daniel Perales, 10-9-1 (5), out of Monterrey, Mexico, over 6 rounds.
David Feldman let all in attendance know that “Sam, Chris and Jerome didn’t have it easy growing up and it prepared them for the sport of boxing”. Bantamweight Harold Lopez, 1-0 (1), who is out of Allentown and who was on the Puerto Rican Olympic team is backafter scoring a first round knockout on the last show. He faces Sergio Aguilar, 2-5 (2), of Mexico City, Mexico. Anytime a Puerto Rican and Mexican meet it usually means fireworks!
From out of state will be Featherweight Chaise Nelson, 4-1 (3), of Dayton, OH, will be in a 6 round bout. He will be in against his sixth straight Latino opponent in Bryan Perez Nevarez, 2-5-1 (1), of Puerto Rico. Also from out of state is lightweight Jeffrey Torres, 2-0 (1), out of CT, who takes on Kashon Hutchinson, 2-2 (1), of Reading. Torres wins were both in Philadelphia. In a 6 rounder is super middleweight Blake Mansfield, 4-0-1 (2), coming in from Burlington, NC, taking on Henry Beckford, 4-6 (1), of Coram, NY.
Also on Saturday at the Grundy Arena in Bristol, PA, on 475 Beaver Street will feature southpaw Derrick “Take It to The Bank” Webster, 22-1 (11), out of Glassboro, NJ, who will face southpaw Frankie “The Freight Train” Filippone, 22-5-1 (7), from Norfolk, VA, who is on a 6 fight winning streak for the WBFInternational super middleweight title over 10 rounds!
There will be a female bout in the co-feature with super lightweight Tunisian IkramKerwat, 7-1 (5), out of Frankfort, Germany against Atlantic City welterweight Althea “Lady Thunder” Saunders, 3-3-2 (0), who is known at times to sing the National Anthem. It will be for the WBF Junior Regional title over 6 rounds.
On the undercard will be Trenton’s Mike Hilton, 5-0, Camden’s Vidal Rivera, 5-0, New York’s MikkelLesPierre, 15-0-1, Asbury Park’sDarryl Bunting, 3-1-2, and Pensacola’s Frederick Wilhite, 5-0.
New to the area will be promoters Deuce Promotions, Mis Downing Promotions and K5 Promotions per Marc Abrams who is the PR man for both shows.
Chisora vs Whyte – My Fight Of The Year
Chisora vs Whyte – My Fight Of The Year
By: Oz Ozkaya
Well, well, well. It has been just over 5 months since I wrote a devastatingly harsh piece on the status quo of world level heavyweight boxing, and I am saddened to say that this notion was proven once again in Saturday’s underwhelming clash between IBF world champion Anthony Joshua and challenger Eric Molina. Prior to this, the recent fight between Luis Ortiz and Malik Scott in Monaco last month had a similar effect, in addition to the dire showing between Dereck Chisora and Kubrat Pulev that we witnessed back in May. Maybe I am being a little cynical with my criticism of Joshua, after all, it’s not his fault he’s easily able to knockout the mediocre opponents that are always put in front of him!
Yet, as you recall from my last heavyweight-boxing piece, I am here to say that there may yet be some brighter days ahead. Chisora and Dillian Whyte made me very aware of this during their undercard performance on the Joshua vs Molina show. They proved me and my anti-heavyweight division rhetoric wrong in such gladiatorial fashion that the main event that followed had a near impossible task of living up to it. I can’t remember the last time such a scenario occurred in boxing.
Chisora (26-7), a now 32-year-old veteran of the sport, behaved like a human rhino in the build up to the fight – puffing a lot of steam and making a lot of noises. One scene, in particular, resulted in a table being thrown in the middle of a press conference, this resulted in Chisora being slapped with a £30,000 fine and being handed a two-year ban (suspended) by the boxing authorities. Whyte, on the contrary, was in such a chipper mood during Chisora’s meltdown that he decided to goad and excite ‘Del Boy’ further, which accumulated in bottles being thrown from all corners and trainers and coaches alike looking for a piece of the action too.
Weeks before this, unsurprisingly, Chisora and Whyte had engaged in a near “fisty cuffs” affair at a Sky presser before being separated by a rather speedy army of security. Chisora, again, the culprit on that occasion that sparked the fire by exploding a bottle of water on Whyte (excuse the reverse pun) before motioning towards him in a “ready for battle” manner. This scene only fuelled public interest for the fight; I, however, still wasn’t convinced. After all, we have been here many times before with this overly scripted WWE styled melodrama, right?
For Chisora, many (myself included) had dubbed this fight as an almost ‘last chance saloon’ at the time of its announcement. Having previously fought and lost to Wladimir Klitschko, David Haye, Tyson Fury (twice) and Kubrat Pulev at world level, it would be easy to think that there aren’t many corners left for Chisora to turn to if he were to lose this one. But, lose he did. However, this is where the story gets interesting as I believe that Chisora did just about enough to take the victory on the night. Chisora was in the best shape and form of his career. It was a big change to the overweight and out of touch character that we had seen a few times in the past.
Dillian Whyte, on the other hand, will be overjoyed to have nicked the victory on Saturday. Only a year after his spectacular matchup with Anthony Joshua at the 02 Arena in London, Whyte looks more focused and better than ever. The one thing does remain from that loss to Joshua is that Whyte is still one hard-headed machine. A number of crushing haymakers and steely uppercuts Chisora landed on him were getting beyond countable towards the end. His resilience and determination were two factors that may have earned him the victory from those two judges. The split decision really did say a lot.
After the sluggish affair that followed this firework like frenzy, you may have wished that Joshua had been billed to fight one of these two instead. There was energy, determination, resilience and desire on both sides. And although it was originally only billed as a British title fight (which the boxing board subsequently aborted following the antics of Chisora) the fight actually lived up to world title level, which is fitting considering Whyte will now be one step closer in the eliminator contest for Deontay Wilder’s WBC crown.
On the night it was during the 5th round where I believe the show really took off between Chisora and Whyte. Chisora seemed more charged up at the start bell before he wobbled Whyte with a thunderous overhead right – a punch that may well have ended another opponent.
The following round it was clear to see that the adrenaline rush had slowed Del Boy down, and it was in this period where Whyte came back with some lethal combinations of his own.
In the 8th and 9th, both Men offered some sublime boxing virtuosity, Whyte, in particular, using some great jab for jab combinations and scoring intelligently against the now deflated Chisora. However, Chisora would go on to land another huge left hook that would have led you to believe it was the beginning of the end. Whyte was again resilient and somehow hung on in.
In the 10th Chisora excelled again by appearing to have landed the punches with greater effect, and I for one was stunned at how Whyte was able to sustain such power. At this point, I had a flashback to last year when Whyte so admirably gave Joshua his longest and most difficult fight.
As the 12th came around you wondered if either fighter had any energy left in the tank, but as their determination kicked in at the start of the bell you knew that it was going to end in an appropriate style. Both men extremely sluggish, but still had enough encouragement to try for the knockdown. It wasn’t to be, and Whyte nicked it 115-113. 115-114 to the one judge who scored it 115-114 to Chisora.
The aftermath reaction of the fight just goes to show the profound effect that this match has had, with many in the boxing business and outside calling for a second fight on its own headline. I don’t usually rant and rave about a heavyweight contest in the way that I am about this one, especially as I was adamant that it was going to be a lousy fight with two over deflated heavyweight’s looking for a fast payday, it just wasn’t to be.
I do feel slightly sorry for Chisora after this one though as his record now has another unnecessary blemish following his previous loss – another split decision to the fridge sized Bulgarian, Kubrat Pulev. Whyte should be in no rush for his heavyweight title chance if and when that comes against Wilder. He and his promoter should be thinking of getting in the ring with Chisora again, using the experience gained from the win and training that little bit harder to try and beat Chisora just that little bit more convincingly.
Hopefully, this match will invigorate the rest of the heavyweight division as more fights like this are most definitely needed to keep up public interest. Far too many pointless and unappetising showdowns have left many of us looking elsewhere for that quality boxing entertainment.
Dereck and Dillian, I tip my hat to you both!