Super Fly 2 Is Highlight of HBO’s Thin Schedule
By: Bryant Romero
The Super Fly 2 card which takes places this Saturday at the Forum in Inglewood, California is so far the highlight of HBO’s so far thin schedule. The card will feature 2 world title fights and a matchup between top contenders in the super flyweight division as part of a triple header on HBO’s “Boxing After Dark” telecast. Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (44-4-1, 40 KOs) is the main event headliner as he will put his WBC super flyweight strap on the line against former two-belt flyweight champ Juan Francisco Estrada (36-2, 25 KOs) in a mandatory title defense.
The main event is a can’t miss fight between two top operators in the Super Flyweight division that is not a foregone conclusion on who will win, which has been norm so far in the HBO boxing 2018 schedule. The fans are genuinely interested and looking forward to the event as once again people from across the country and all over the globe will be flying in for this show.
It’s ironic that a card featuring some of the smallest fighters in the world is the can’t miss event of the year so far on HBO. There was a time when the network hardly ever showcased fighters south of 118 pounds. But former pound-for-pound King Roman Gonzalez paved the way for the smaller fighters to showcase their skills on a premium network in the U.S. And with the success of the previous Super Fly card at the Stubhub Center that also featured quality matchups, promoter Tom Loeffler has no doubt that Super Fly 2 will leave a greater mark on TV, which will mean even more cards in the future featuring the smaller weight classes on HBO’s airwaves.
The times though have certainly changed as HBO boxing is no longer the 800 pound gorilla in the industry and now no longer considered as the best premium platform to watch boxing. Showtime has been giving them a run for their money over the past year and it remains to be seen if HBO can continue to produce quality matchups on a more consistent basis on their flagship network and not matchups that the public will have to pay extra on PPV.
Also on the Super Fly 2 card, three-weight champion Donnie Nietes (40-1-4, 22 KOs) will be opening the “Boxing After Dark” telecast when he defends his IBF flyweight title against mandatory challenger Juan Carlos Reveco (39-3, 19 KOs) and the middle bout will feature the return of former champion Carlos Cuadras (36-2-1, 27 KOs) in a crossroads bout with the hard hitting McWilliams Arroyo (16-3, 14 KOs) in a ten round bout.
Juan Estrada, Naoya Inoue and Sor Rung Win at the StubHub Center, Carson, CA, Saturday
By: Ken Hissner
In the first bout of an HBO Triple Header Juan Estrada, 36-2 (25), of MEX, defeated Carlos Cuadras, 36-2-1 (27), of MEX, over 12 well fought rounds, with a knockdown proving to be the difference.
Photo Credit: Tom Hogan-Hogan Photos/K2 Promotions
After 5 rounds of Cuadras controlling the fight in all of the first 5 rounds but in the 6th round it was Estrada’s turn. In the 7th round Estrada with a pair of body shots and a right hand to the jaw of Cuadras rocked him. Shortly afterwards Estrada again rocked Cuadras with a right to the jaw. Even with this finish by Estrada it was Cuadras’ round.
In the 8th round Cuadras seemed to get his second wind doing well until 15 seconds to go in the round when Estrada rocked Cuadras. In the 9th round at the halfway mark Estrada rocked Cuadras with a left hook to the side of the head. Cuadras was on the run switching from orthodox to southpaw but Estrada came forward no matter what Cuadras offered.
In the 10th round Estrada rocked Cuadras with a left hook to the side of the head. Shortly later a left hook to the head followed by a straight right hand by Estrada knocked down Cuadras. The referee started the count but Cuadras got up before 8. Then the referee gave him another 5 seconds before Estrada was permitted to come forward.
In the 11th round Cuadras boxed well keeping Estrada at bay for the most part. With half a minute to go in the round Estrada rocked Cuadras with a left hook to the jaw. In the 12th and final round Estrada landed with left hooks and shortly afterwards with right hands all to the head of Cuadras. Cuadras came back in the second half of the round to possibly pull it out.
All 3 Judge’s had it 114-113 for Juan Estrada though ring announcer Michael Buffer announced the winner was Carlos Estrada confusing everyone. One of the judges handed Buffer his scorecard showing it was Juan Estrada the winner. This writer agreed with the scoring.
In the Main Event in a re-match WBC World super flyweight champion southpaw Sor Rungvisai, 43-4-1 (39), of Bangkok, TH, retained his title knocking out former champion Roman “Chocolito” Gonzalez, 46-2 (38), of NIC, at 1:18 of the 4th round to retain his world title.
In the opening round Rungvisai controlled with his jab and scored more punches. In the second round Gonzalez seemed to come back to take the round. In the third round in a slugfest Rungvisai seemed to pull out the round. In the fourth round twice dropped Gonzalez scoring a knockout. The first knockdown both boxers threw punches at the same time with Rungvisai’s right hook getting there first ending the fight.
WBO World Super Flyweight champion Naoya “Monster” Inoue, 14-0 (12), of JAP, won by stoppage at the end of the 6th round over Antonio Nieves, 17-2-2 (9), of Cleveland, OH, with Nieves not coming out for the 7th round.
In the opening round Inoue started off with jab after jab and then landed an overhand right to the head of Nieves. Inoue kept Nieves on the defense throughout the round. In the 2nd round Nieves landed 3 consecutive right hands to the head of Inoue. A 3-punch combination by Inoue ending with a left hook to the body got the attention of Nieves. With half a minute to go in the round Inoue landed a solid right hand to the head of Nieves. With the 10 second timekeeper warning Inoue buckled the knees of Nieves but then started back to his corner thinking it was the bell after rocking Nieves but it was the timekeepers warning. In the 3rd round a 3-punch combination to the body of Nieves by Inoue got the attention of Nieves.
In the 5th round a wicked left hook by Inoue caused a delayed knockdown. Inoue continued throwing a majority of left hooks to the body of Nieves until the end of the round. With a minute to go Inoue started showboating. Nieves staggered back to his corner where his trainer stopped the fight.