Dirrell v. Findley: Round by Round

The main event is at super middleweight between Andre Dirrell and Derrick Findley. Dirrell is a top 10 super middleweight contender. Findly is 13-2 with KOs and is actually fighting 8 inches shorter than Dirrell tonight. That's a serious disadvantage. Dirrell is 17-0 with 12 KOs.

Round 1
The height disadvantage doesn't look as obvious as I thought it would. Dirrell is sticking the jab which is easy when you're fighting a significantly shorter fighter. Findley gets in and lands the jab. Direll lands a great body shot. Dirrell lands a right hook and gets out of the way. He's sticking and moving very well. Dirrell lands an enormous left hook and knocks Findley silly. Findley stumbles against the ropes and Dirrell switches to southpaw and unleashes some serious power shots. Dirrell throws uppercut after uppercut but somehow Findley makes it out of the round. In between rounds Findley's corner said that their fighter's nose is broken.

Spartan117: 10-9 Dirrell

Round 2
They touch gloves to start round 2. Dirrell stays in southpaw now. Dirrell lands a great left straight. Findley isn't throwing much of anything. Dirrell lands a huge body shot that staggers Findley. Dirrell lands a 1-2 combo upstairs. Findley isn't throwing anything which shows that this fight should just be stopped. Now Findley gets in and throws a punch but it misses. It's pretty much target practice for Dirrell right now. Findley has never been knocked down but it looks like he might be tonight.

Spartan117: 10-9 Dirrell

Round 3
Findley is trying harder to get inside now. Dirrell goes back to the jab. Dirrell moves away from Findleys straight right hand. Dirrell's movement is great. Dirrell sticks a jab but isn't throwing much else. Findley finally lands a left. Findley lands a right hand. He gets in again and Dirrell falls from a slip. Dirrell should really be doing more to end this.

Spartan117: 10-9 Dirrell

Round 4
Findley is clearly outclssed but Dirrell isn't doing enough to try to finish this. He keeps sticking and moving and now even clinching. This is a better round from Findley but still not great. Dirrell lands a great jab. There's been a minute of nothing but jabs from Dirrell. Findley isn't doing much of anything either.

Spartan117: 10-9 Dirrell

Round 5
The crowd is not into this fight and with good reason. Dirrell has no reason to stick and move and he continues to do so. Dirrell lands a left to the body and left upstairs. Findley gets inside and Dirrell clinches. Dirrell goes back to the jab. Both fighters keep talking to each other. I'm not sure what they are saying. Findley gets a final warning for hitting on the break.

Spartan117: 10-9 Dirrell

Round 6
Findley waits 30 seconds to throw a punch. Dirrell sticks to his jab. Findley is stalking Dirrell around the ring and Dirrell flashes a big smile. Findley keeps talking to Dirrell most likely talking trash for constantly backing away. Dirrell keeps throwing the jab and now throws a body shot. Another round goes to Dirrell.

Spartan117: 10-9 Dirrell

Findley's trainer doesn't want his fighter to take any more punishment and throws in the towel.

The winner by TKO at the end of Round 6... "The Matrix" Andre Dirrell.

Posted by spartan117

R. Hearns v. Yorgey: Round by Round

The first fight in Saturday's double header is a junior middleweight fight between Harry Joe Yorgey and Ronald Hearns. Both fighters are moving up the ranks in their division even though Hearns is 30 years old, and in case you were wondering, Ronald Hearns is indeed the son of former champion Tommy Hearns.

The ref for the fight is Steve Smoger. I like his officiating style and I haven't seen him in a while. Yorgey is 21-0-1 with 9 KOs. Hearns is 21-0 is 17 KOs. Hearns looks like he has the exact same body his dad had when he was a boxer, long and thin.

Round 1
Hearns has already established the jab. Hearns is able to keep Yorgey away with his long reach. Yorgey gets a jab in followed by a right straight. Both fighters are showing great hand speed. Hearns lands a jab that knocks Yorgey's head back. There are a lot of jabs being thrown from both fighters. Yorgey gets inside and lands a right uppercut. There are really some great punches being landed by both fighters. It's a close round to score but I give it to Hearns for being busier.

Spartan117: 10-9 Hearns

Round 2
Hearns gets in there first in round 2 and lands some big jabs and right hands while Yorgey is against the ropes. Yorgey gets inside and lands two shots that backs Hearns down. Yorgey lands a good right hand that knocks the head of Hearns. Yorgey has been landing and then backing off. Yorgey gets inside but misses his punches and Hearns gets out of the way. Another good round.

Spartan117: 10-9 Yorgey

Round 3
Hears complains to Smoger between rounds of a headbutt. Smoger says that he didnt see anything. Yorgey is rocking Hearns to start this round. He landed some great uppercuts and hooks and Hearns was forced to fight back to keep Yorgey off. Hearns goes back to the jab. Hearns has been pawing at his right eye which looks like is bothering him. Yorgey gets Hearns in the corner but Hearns dodges well. Hearns has controlled the last minute of the round. I still give it to Yorgey.

Spartan117: 10-9 Yorgey

Round 4
Hearns' jab looks to have less snap than it did in round 1. Yorgey lands a great left hook. Hearns lands a jab. Yorgey lands a left hand followed by a right that hurts Hearns badly. Hearns says its a slip but it clearly wasn't. Hearn's looks tired and is backing away. Yorgey is closing the gap and Hearns clinches. Yorgey hasn't done anything to finish Hearns. Hearns lands a fantastic left hook that drops Yorgey! Yorgey also calls it a slip but Smoger calls it a knockdown. Both fighters throw great combos to finish the round. Great round!

Spartan117: 10-10

Round 5
Both fighters look to have their legs back for round 5. Hearns goes back to keeping Yorgey away with the jab. Yorgey tries to get inside. Yorgey gets in and absolutely destroys Hearns with a great right hand. Hearns was out when he hit the canvas. Somehow he makes it up by the 10 count. Hearns is up and now dishing out the punishment. Yorgey isn't doing much now. This turnaround from Hearns is amazing. He's showing great heart. The punch that scored the knockdown from Yorgey would have kept most fighters on the canvas.

Spartan117: 10-8 Yorgey

Round 6
Hearns still looks find but he is definitely more cautious. Hearns throws 3 jabs and lands 1. Hearns is trying to set up the right hand. Yorgey is staying patient and not really trying to end the fight. Yorgey gets inside but doesn't throw any punches. Not much urgency from either fighter in this round. Hearns lands a jab and a hook to the body and Yorgey lands a hook to the head to end the round.

Spartan117: 10-9 Hearns

Round 7
Yorgey's trainer tells him to stick to the jab. Yorgey comes out and does what his trainer told him. Hearns is still the busier fighter amazingly enough. Hearns is doing a good job getting out of the way of Yorgey's right hand. Yorgey gets in and lands a left uppercut. Yorgey is counterpunching now. Yorgey gets Hearns against the ropes and tries to land. Hearns gets out of the way. Hearns gets clocked with lefts and rights upstairs and Hearns tries to clinch to stay alive. Hearns backs away and Yorgey is forced to chase him around the ring. Yorgey gets a great right hand in the spins Hearns around right before the bell. Hearns' father, Tommy Hearns, looks furious at ringside.

Spartan117: 10-9 Yorgey

Round 8
Hearns is still bouncing on his toes in round 8. Hearns has never been past 8 rounds in his career. Yorgey is landing some serious shots to start this round. Hearns is really backing away now. Yorgey could have ended this by now if he was more aggressive. The Showbox commentators discuss that Yorgey hasn't had many KOs and is therefore not a great finisher. Hearns lands a great right hand now. Yorgey nods which shows that it hurt. Yorgey tries to get back inside and Hearns backs away to avoid him. Hearns isn't throwing many jabs like he was earlier. Tough round to score.

Spartan117: 10-9 Hearns

Round 9
Yorgey sticks the jab. He gets inside again and unleashes his right hand. Hearns backs off. Hearns thows 4 jabs and lands 2. Not much happening at all in this round. Hearns is actually the busier fighter. I can't tell if Yorgey is tired or he just doesn't know what to do. Yorgey lands a left hook to the body. Yorgey throws two shots and Hearns takes a step back and drops his hands. Now Hearns is chasing Yorgey around the ring. Hearns lands a great left uppercut but Yorgey comes back and crushes Hearns with a great left right combo and Hearns' legs buckle. Yorgey lands a huge right hand and Hearns goes down again right before the bell! Hearns gets up to his knee but can't get up by the 10 count, he looks like he's in bad shape. It's all over.

The winner by KO at 2:59 in the 9th round...Harry Joe Yorgey.

Posted by spartan117


Samuel Peter vs. Eddie Chambers: Friday Night Fights Main Event Round By Round

The Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles is the setting for a significant heavyweight bout between former champion Samuel Peter and Philadelphia's Eddie Chambers. It's a ten-round contest that could be a big boost to the winner as far as positioning for shots at the titles held by the Klitschko brothers.

Peter is coming off a somewhat lackluster loss to Vitali Klitschko last October. He is 30-2 and has dangerous knockout power, but he enters the ring at the heaviest weight of his career tonight: 265 pounds. Chambers is 33-1 and has won three straight since dropping a decision to Alexander Povetkin in January 2008.

Dr. James Jen Kim is the referee in charge of the action. Jimmy Lennon Jr. does the fighter introductions and we are all set to go.

Round 1

Chambers bounces around as both men test some jabs. Teddy Atlas points out that Chambers isn't exactly looking trim himself. Neither man landing much of note, but Peter has been busier. Nice right hand upstairs by Chambers. Peter still stalks and looks for an opening. Peter backs up Chambers with a three-punch combo. Chambers is blocking a lot of punches with his arms. Short right by Chambers in close.

Franchise: 10-9 Peter
Uatu: 10-9 Chambers

Round 2

Chambers lands a few jabs, but Peter's jab snaps his foe's head back. Peter is still the aggressor and you wonder if and when he will tire. Peter is warned for a low left to the body. Chambers searches with multiple jabs. Eddie snaps off a right hand and several lefts to the face. Peter just misses a loaded right hand. Chambers peppers in some quick shots right before the bell.

Franchise: 10-9 Chambers
Uatu: 10-9 Chambers

Round 3

Peter backs Chambers into the corner but can't pin him down. Chambers has the faster hands but is still staying pretty cautious. He lands a few left hands and backs away. Good one-two upstairs by Eddie. Peter tries to rally with body shots. Peter attempts to cut off the ring but still can't land any flush shots.

Franchise: 10-9 Chambers
Uatu: 10-9 Chambers

Round 4

Chambers smiles as he gets whacked by a right hand. Peter comes charging forward and almost connects with a combo. Atlas would like Eddie to be busier. Both men connect in an exchange in the center of the ring. Peter is eating jabs in an attempt to close the distance. Chambers lands with both hands to the body. Eddie scores with a right and Sam tries to fire right back.

Franchise: 10-9 Chambers
Uatu: 10-9 Chambers

Round 5

Peter's corner was telling him to walk his man down. He's doing his best, but Chambers gets his legs under him and starts throwing back. Sam lands a right; Eddie throws counter lefts. Peter gets the best of a brief exchange. Peter partially lands a right hand before the bell. Have to give him that round.

Franchise: 10-9 Peter
Uatu: 10-9 Peter

Round 6

Incredibly, Atlas gave that last round to Chambers. He absolutely needs to throw more punches. Peter comes forward behind his jab. Chambers is winning a jabbing contest in this round. Peter goes to the body and is met with more jabs. Chambers switches southpaw for a minute and lands some quick shots. Peter attempts to lure his foe into a firefight in the closing seconds.

Franchise: 10-9 Chambers
Uatu: 10-9 Peter

Round 7

Chambers continues to land some potshots as he circles. Both men are jabbing but can't consistently get anything to go with them. Left uppercut by Peter. Eddie scores with a three-shot combo and picks off the return fire. Peter goes to the body. Chambers does nice work in close and dances away. Eddie snaps off a double jab with a right hand behind it.

Franchise: 10-9 Chambers
Uatu: 10-9 Chambers

Round 8

I think Chambers is winning on points but he can't feel too comfortable about it. Peter deserves credit for continuing to press the issue. Chambers lands about five jabs in a row. Both men try to get something done in the middle of the ring. Peter bulls forward but gets whacked with counter shots. Sam tries to load up the right hand. Atlas thinks Eddie may have blown that round, but I don't see it.

Franchise: 10-9 Chambers
Uatu: 10-9 Chambers

Round 9

Chambers' corner was imploring him to win the final two rounds. Peter is still throwing but he's backing up now. Chambers starts to pick up the pace as he lands with both hands. Peter goes to the body; Eddie counters with two jabs upstairs. Left-right combination by Eddie. And here comes another. Chambers has a little swelling around his left eye.

Franchise: 10-9 Chambers
Uatu: 10-9 Chambers

Round 10

We'll see who has anything left down the stretch. Peter opens up aggressively. Both men are swinging away but neither is landing flush. Chambers has found a home for the right hand off the jab, but Peter can shake them off. Wild swings along the ropes. One minute to go. Peter unleashes a combo that is mostly blocked. He backs Chambers against the topes and they tie up. Peter may have won the round on pure aggression, but it's probably too little, too late.

Franchise: 10-9 Peter
Uatu: 10-9 Peter

Franchise and Uatu score it 97-93 for Chambers. The judges score it 95-95, and 96-94 and 99-91 for Chambers. The winner by majority decision... "Fast" Eddie Chambers.

Posted by The Franchise

Friday Night Fights Report - March 27, 2009

It's a big night on Friday Night Fights, live from the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles. The main event is a fairly important heavyweight fight between Eddie Chambers and Samuel Peter.

The Ring magazine currently has Peter ranked sixth, but Joe Tessitore and Teddy Atlas point out that he stands to plummet if he loses tonight. Chambers, on the other hand, can take a step up if he can find a way to get past the much larger Peter.

The first fight on the card showcases U.S. Olympian Shawn Estrada as he goes up against Ray Craig. Estrada is from East L.A. and is 2-0 with two KOs in his young pro career. This one is scheduled for four rounds.

A minute in, Craig stumbles forward and is hit while doing so. It's scored as a knockdown, and Estrada quickly scores another one with a right. A left hand puts Craig back on the canvas, and that's it. Estrada wins by TKO at 1:41 of Round 1. Atlas is pretty vocal with his opinion that the Olympic boxers don't get anything out of fights like this one.

Brian Kenny is in the studio to review last weekend's fights. He introduces highlights from Vitali Klitschko-Juan Carlos Gomez and Roy Jones Jr.-Omar Sheika. We get B.J. Flores and Chris Byrd highlights too.

Jaime Motta talks a little bit about the history of boxing in Los Angeles, dating back to cards at the Olympic Auditorium. This is the first live boxing card at the Nokia Theatre, but there are high hopes that it becomes a regular venue for the sport.

Next up is an eight-round fight featuring John Molina and Carlos Vinan Soto. The outspoken Molina is 15-0 with 11 KOs, while his opponent is 8-6-3 with eight previous fights against undefeated fighters.

This turns into a close-range slugfest right away, with Vinan coming right at Molina and swinging away along the ropes. Both men are getting tagged by some strong shots as they stumble to the mat late in the first round.

Blood is coming from Vinan Soto's nose as the second round. The stats show the guys combined to throw over 230 punches in the opening frame. Molina is able to work with slightly more distance in the second round, and the final minute sees him land a series of vicious right hands that finally force the ref to step in and call a stop to the action. John Molina wins by TKO at 2:40 of Round 2.

Back in the studio with BK, who discusses today's breaking news that the substance in Antonio Margarito's gloves before his fight with Shane Mosley was not just a plaster-like substance, but actual plaster. Other news includes the passing of former Mexican champion Raul Macias.

The next fight sees the professional debuts of Javier Molina and Jamie Cabrera. Molina is a decorated amateur turning pro at age 19, while Cabrera is fighting for the first time as a professional at 36. This is a welterweight bout scheduled for four rounds.

Cabrera is coming forward but getting caught on his way in. Molina shows good movement and mixes up his attack to the body and head in the first round.

Molina also likes to double up on his left hook to the body and head. About halfway through the second round, he sends Cabrera down with a body shot and a right upstairs. A left hook puts Cabrera back on the canvas, and that's all she wrote. Javier Molina wins by TKO at 1:50 of Round 2.

BK introduces highlights of Bernard Dunne and Ricardo Cordoba, a super featherweight fight that Dan Rafael is touting as a possible Fight of the Year candidate. We also see Arthur Abraham video as he retained his title against LaJuan Simon.

Posted by The Franchise


Franchise Thoughts: On Vitali, Roy and Why Hybrid Cards Aren't the End of the World

After watching Vitali Klitschko dispose of Juan Carlos Gomez fairly easily on Saturday, I finally fell firmly into the camp of people who kind of feel sorry for him.

It's not his fault, as many observers have pointed out, that he is a heavyweight champion during one of the division's dimmest eras. It's certainly not his fault that his size prevents him from getting the proper due for his skills or his heart.

Even more than brother and fellow champ Wladimir, Vitali seems to want to please the fans. If there's a problem with both Brothers Klitschko, it's that they care about those title belts a little too much, meaning they will fight any mandatory challenger one of the sanctioning bodies puts in front of them just to keep the straps.

I think the situation that might finally make Vitali a compelling figure is if David Haye (or anyone, really) would beat Wladimir. That would give Vitali a unique dual unification/revenge motivation as he tried to avenge his little bro.

Unless that happens, the Klitschko-dominated heavyweight picture is likely to remain dull for many fans. But it's not Vitali's fault, because he's trying. I think.

Another guy who is still trying is Roy Jones Jr., even if his sights are set a bit lower now. He showed Saturday he could still perform and entertain, and he may be content with that at this point.

I'm not even going to try to figure out who makes sense for him to fight going forward, but as long as he stays close to his Florida home, his fans will come out to support him. Call Jones just the latest example of an emerging boxing trend in 2009: keep all but the biggest fights local, and people will buy tickets.

And speaking of locals, kudos to Square Ring for putting another Floridian, Nate Campbell, on color commentary for the boxing matches on the Jones-Sheika card. He was insightful and funny, and he certainly has a future as a commentator should he want to pursue one when his in-ring days are done.

To top it all off, the hybrid boxing/MMA card came off pretty well in Pensacola despite many naysayers - including some famous ones. At least on the broadcast, it sounded like the fans were into the MMA bouts and the Jones-Sheika main event, lagging just a bit for the B.J. Flores boxing match.

Does that mean mixed cards are the wave of the future? Definitely not, at least at the highest level. But for regional shows with fights that make sense from both sports, there appear to be some synergies that are there to be exploited.

Last 10 Seconds: If you haven't read it yet, go check out William Dettloff's excellent story on The Ring Blog about the trials of former lightweight champion Paul Spadafora. Everyone loves a good redemption angle, and it's hard not to pull for Spadafora as he attempts his latest comeback after you read his tale of learning lessons the hard way.


Roy Jones Jr. v. Omar Sheika: Round by Round

Due to some unforeseen events, I will take over for The Franchise and attempt to fight off the cousin of death and make it to the final bell of Jones-Sheika.

Doing this round by round with multiple computer screens will make for some tricky blogging.

Nate Campbell says that it is hard for Roy to let go of all of these fans.

People who criticized this card have said that there aren't a lot of crossover fans between MMA and boxing. I have heard multiple people say it's like going to an event to see two different sports, like a baseball game and a basketball game.

I disagree. I believe these two sports are closer than that. They are both types of fighting. I see it like going to a track meet and seeing races of different lengths and some with hurdles. Some are relays and some steeplechase. Those events are all track, just different disciplines. Or a swimming meet with different strokes. Just my opinion.

Here comes Sheika to the ring. He comes out to "Victory" by Diddy, who at that time was still Puff Daddy. That isn't a dumb name joke, but that album he was actually still Puff Daddy.

Here comes Roy. He is getting great applause. He came out to some R & B song. It may be "Rehab" by Rihanna or a song that sounds like it. Yes, it is "Rehab."

The crowd really seems into the event. There's more applause for this fight than I have heard for many televised events over the years.

Roy looks to be in excellent shape. You wouldn't be able to tell his age by looking at him. Of course, how you look doesn't necessarily mean that your reflexes haven't slowed, but it sure beats being fat and out of shape.

Round 1
Omar is coming forward. Jumping left hooks from Roy. Jones is showing movement. One-two from Roy and a left to the body. Omar gets him in the corner. Omar is trying hard rights. Two Roy uppercuts. Hard right from Omar. The crowd is going nuts for anything from Roy. Lead rights. A huge left hook for Roy buckles Omar.

Uatu: Jones 10-9

Round 2
Jones is in control. He is showing a ton of vintage Roy: left hand down, lead rights, jumping lefts, small hooks, huge hooks and lots of moving around. Just like vintage Roy, though, he can be pressed to the ropes like Tarver did in their first fight. Unlike that fight, Omar isn't getting through the guard or grabbing.

Uatu: Jones 10-9

Round 3
I have got a great double window thing going. This is better than doing a blog on TV. Omar gets Roy to the ropes and fires his hard rights to the head. Not sure if Roy blocked them. He is best off keeping the fight in the middle. Roy is landing all kinds of jabs now. I think Roy may have been caught there, because he did a cocky dance which makes me think he was hit a little. Big left hook from Sheika. I am not convinced that Roy's chin is sturdy. He got moved a little in Round 1, and if Omar can keep ropes pressure up... he may be winning this round. Roy is back controlling in the middle, but not for long as Omar presses to the ropes. Nice flurry by Roy to close the round. A good left hook in there.

Uatu: Jones 10-9

Round 4
The round starts and Roy is back to the ropes. Both men land there. Roy gets all the credit from The Colonel. It's clear Roy is dominant in hand speed. He is jabbing like a madman and keeping Omar away. Sheika can't get close. Very good stuff from Roy. Now Omar gets him in close, but they grab. Big right from Roy. Omar keeps coming and lands his own. I like Nate's commentary. He is being fair to both men during the fight. There's a slight lull as the men grab each other. Omar is flying in with his aggression. Can he wear Roy down over time? Lots of wrestling - that could tire them both. Left hook from Jones, and he dances as the round ends.

Uatu: Jones 10-9

Round 5
Immediately, Omar gets Roy in the corner. No damage. Big time shot in the middle of the ring form Roy - a left uppercut I think. Roy gets in two more lead left hooks. The crowd "oohs" with every shot. Nate says Omar is only a straight-line fighter, and that is a very apt description of exactly what his limitation has been. Roy is landing and dancing in the middle of the ring. Roy got a bunch of nice shots in. And the fight is over? Omar is bleeding, but not too badly. The Colonel loves the stoppage; Nate doesn't seem to agree as much. I don't agree with it.

We will never know if Omar could have gotten to Roy down the stretch. I think it would have been interesting. The flip side to this, to be fair, is that Roy won every round. In the middle of the ring in the fifth, he ripped off some very nice combinations that had some strings of power punches thrown in there. But Omar wasn't really buckled, he never slowed down, and he was never knocked down. So it goes - a great night overall for RJJ. He looked sharp in there and the crowd loved it.

The winner by TKO at 1:45 of Round 5... Roy Jones Jr.

Roy says he felt very good in there. He felt comfortable with his team of Roy Sr. and Merk.

He gives some shots out to Pensacola.

The crowd wants him back. He says he better go back to training and he will be coming back.

I don't mind that at all. If he wants to fight, and the crowd suport is there, why not? If the fight is worth watching, and this one was, then God bless him. He doesn't even have to fight the top killers in my opinion. That time is over. He can continue his career as a promoter and entertainer and everyone is happy. I wouldn't myself shell out a lot of dough to see him, but if others want to, knock yourself out.

Posted by uatu


Jones-Sheika "March Badness" Undercard Live Blog

We're live from the Pensacola Civic Center for the "March Badness" hybrid boxing/MMA card. Roy Jones Jr. takes in Omar Sheika in the boxing main event, with notable heavyweights Roy Nelson and Jeff Monson colliding in the MMA main event.

B.J. Flores is also in action on the boxing side, and former WWE star Bobby Lashley competes in just his second MMA bout. As an aside, it's great to have Nate Campbell on board as the color commentator for the boxing matches. Seth Petruzelli, a.k.a. the man who knocked out Kimbo Slice, is helping to call the MMA matches.

The first fight of the evening is an MMA bout between Dennis Hallman and Danny Ruiz. This is a three-round welterweight battle. Jimmy Lennon Jr. is doing his thing for the fighter intros.

Hallman shoots in early and after a little work in the corner, he takes Ruiz down. Hallman steadily works and takes Ruiz's back, and he's able to get a choke locked in that forces Ruiz to tap. The winner by submission via choke in Round 1... Dennis Hallman.

We stay with MMA for the second fight of the broadcast, this one featuring featherweights Din Thomas (22-8) and Gabe Lemley (13-8). The announce team is really going out of its way to help boxing fans understand the rules of MMA. As expected, this one is scheduled for three rounds.

An early tie up has both men trying to throw knees. Lemley bounces around and tries to throw punches and kicks while Thomas bides his time. Thomas sprawls to avoid some takedown attempts, and he lands some nice shots that put Lemley on his back. A left hand has Lemley dazed, and a knee catches Lemley right on the chin. The ref calls a stop to it, and Thomas wins by TKO at 4:13 of Round 1.

Thomas gives an entertaining post-fight interview where he downplays the difficulty of fighting in a ring instead of a cage. He gives a shout out to Nate Campbell and also volunteers to kick Chris Brown's ass if Rihanna decides she wants some help.

Next up is Bobby Lashley (1-0) taking on Jason Guida (17-19) in a heavyweight MMA bout. Lashley was supposed to face legend Ken Shamrock until he was suspended for steroid use, forcing Guida to take the fight on short notice.

The tale of the tape shows Lashley with a significant weight advantage, and he's got an edge in reach as well. Guida thinks his experience will help him pull off the upset, while Lashley feels his top-notch wrestling skills will serve him well. Petruzelli has a hilarious line where he says if Lashley can beat Vince McMahon, he can beat anybody.

Lashley shoots in right away and Guida grabs the ropes to keep himself from going down. Guida sprawls to avoid another takedown and they spend time locked up in the corner. Lashley lands a big right hand and they clinch again. Guida turns Lashley around and the ref finally breaks them up. Lashley flurries with several big punches, and they stay locked up for the final seconds of the first round.

A right hand catches Guida early in the second, and Lashley rushes in and puts his foe down with a big slam. Lashley spends some time in Guida's half guard and manages to land a few shots. Guida does a decent job defending from the bottom, but he can't do much with the physically bigger Lashley.

The final round starts with a clinch and both men trying to throw knees. Lashley opens up with big right hands in the corner. The ref puts them back in the corner, where Lashley scores a single leg takedown but falls into a guillotine by Guida. It looks fairly tight, but Lashley manages to escape. Lashley tries to work out of Guida's full guard. Giida tries for an armbar, but it looks like the fight will end in this position. The final bell rings, and we'll go to the scorecards.

The judges score it 30-27 three times, all to the winner by unanimous decision, Bobby Lashley.

Lashley says he had to dig deep to escape the guillotine, which was pretty tight. He credits Guida for getting to him a little bit by talking trash before the fight, and he says he'll go back to work to fix the holes in his game.

We're finally set for some boxing with B.J. Flores taking on Jose Luis Herrera. Nate Campbell calls Herrera an all-action fighter, and his record bears that out: all 16 of his wins and all five of his losses have come by KO.

This fight is scheduled for ten rounds with a minor title on the line. The tale of the tape shows both men almost dead even in weight and Flores holding just a tiny reach advantage.

Flores spends most of the first round stalking and looking to work off the jab. Herrera takes about two minutes to look comfortable and he starts landing some shots of his own. Flores lands a nice right hand right before the end of a close opening round.

Flores' boxing skills control most of the second round, but this time it's Herrera who scores with a right hand before the bell. There is some nice action in the third round with Flores mixing up head and body shots and Herrera getting a little busier.

Campbell thinks Herrera was hurt a bit at the end of the third. I think Flores has won every round, but Herrera is getting a few big shots in there, as he does again at the end of the fourth round.

Herrera has his best round so far in the fifth, keeping Flores a bit off guard with more body shots and more jabs. Flores seizes control once again in the sixth round using nice combination punching.

Both announcers are calling for the uppercut from Flores. I'm guessing he is well ahead on the cards, so with three rounds to go, he just needs to watch out for the home run shot coming back.

Herrera shows a burst of energy at the start of the ninth round. Flores digs to the body and goes upstairs with a left hook. B.J. is still showing excellent movement even this late in the fight.

We'll see if there are any fireworks in store in the final round. Herrera looks like he will fight until the final bell. Flores isn't exactly on his bike, but he is staying extra cautious and avoiding prolonged exchanges. Herrera gets B.J.'s attention with a big right hand with 30 seconds to go. We'll go to the scorecards.

The judges score it 98-92 and 99-91 twice, and Flores wins by unanimous decision.

Flores says he hurt his left hand early in the fight. He thinks he may have been able to get Herrera out of there if it wasn't for that, but he gives his opponent credit for being a tough guy.

The crowd was very much into the Roy Nelson-Jeff Monson MMA fight, which we joined in progress after some technical difficulties. Monson landed some very solid punches in the stand-up in a highlight package.

All three judges score it 29-28, and Jeff "The Snowman" Monson wins by unanimous decision.

Posted by The Franchise

Edited by uatu

V. Klitschko v. Gomez: Round By Round

ESPN is wasting no time with the broadcast of the heavyweight title fight between Vitali Klitschko and Juan Carlos Gomez. The fighters are already in the ring. Michael Buffer is handling the intros. Because of the broadcast is on basic cable we are forced to see commercials in place of the fighter introductions. So I'm assuming that once this commercial break is finished we will be at the beginning of the first round.

Gomez is currently the number 9 ranked heavyweight in the world. This is the first time Vitali has defended his WBC heavyweight title. The crowd is clearly pro-Klitschko.

Round 1
There is certainly a height difference between these fighters, Vitali having the advantage. Gomez goes to work immediately with a flurry and catches Vitali. Vitali keeps Gomez away with some long jabs. Vitali has yet to throw a right hand. Vitali is patient, not throwing any power punches and waits for Gomez to make a mistake. They each paw with their lead hands. Gomez lands a hook to the body and head. Vitali looks a bit awkward in the first round. Gomez lands a left hook to the head. I give round 1 to Gomez.

Spartan117: 10-9 Gomez
Uatu: 10-9 Gomez
Franchise: Gomez

Round 2
Vitali throws 2 hooks and misses and Gomez gets inside and lands 2 hooks of his own upstairs. Gomez is doing a good job getting inside. Vitali's hands look slow which is why he's not landing a whole lot. Vitali lands a jab to the body and the head. Vitali now lands a straight right hand. Gomez sticks out his tongue. This is a much better round for Vitali. The crowd starts to chant his name. Vitali misses with a right hand and Gomez lands a counter. Vitali lands a shot well after the bell.

Spartan117: 10-9 Klitschko
Uatu: 10-9 Klitschko
Franchise: Klitschko

Round 3
Gomez goes to work early again and throws a flurry. Gomez charges forward again to get inside and lands a few soft punches. Vitlali goes back to the jab. Gomez lands a left to the body and they tie up. Vitali lands a right hand to the face of Gomez. Vitali lands another right hand that lands flush. Gomez throws a hook that puts him off-balance and Vitali lands a jab. The two tie up again and they both try to get some shots in. Not much action in round 3.

Spartan117: 10-9 Klitschko
Uatu: 10-9 Klischko
Franchise: 10-9 Klitschko

Round 4
Klitschko sticks to throwing his jab. Vitali follows up with a right hook that lands and the crowd cheers. Vitali is landing his punches flush. Gomez's eye is starting to swell. Gomez is really having trouble getting inside now. Gomez now tries to get inside but it results in a clinch. The ref tells Gomez to watch his head. Lots of clinching going on in the last minute.

Spartan117: 10-9 Klitschko
Uatu: 10-9 Klitschko
Franchise: 10-9 Klitschko

Round 5
Gomez's eye is starting to really swell and appears bloodshot. Vitali is focusing on that eye now and landing all of his jabs there. Vitali throws a body shot. Gomez's eye is now bleeding. Gomez can't get out of the way of Vitali's punches now. Vitali hangs his arms below his waist. Vitali lands a great left hand and Gomez stumbles. Gomez's eye is in bad shape now. The ref doesn't look like he has any interest in stopping the action to examine it. Great round for Vitali.

Spartan117: 10-9 Klitschko
Uatu: 10-9 Klitschko
Franchise: 10-9 Klitschko

Round 6
Klitschko is really landing his jab well. Things have gone from bad to worse with Gomez. Gomez keeps grappling now which shows he's tired. Gomez now trips and falls. Vitali is controlling this fight. His punches don't look like that have enough power behind them to knock Gomez out but I hope he surprises me. Now blood is pouring from the top of the head, behind the hairline of Klitschko's. It had to be caused from a headbutt.

Spartan117: 10-9 Klitschko
Uatu: 10-9 Klitschko
Franchise: 10-9 Klitschko

Round 7
Gomez's eye is almost swollen shut. Gomez just keeps clinching. There have been a lot of breaks in the action due to Gomez tying up. Vitali leans into a huge right hand from Vitali and Gomez goes down. Gomez is in big trouble. He gets up and Vitali punishes him in the corner. Gomez is trying to clinch to stay alive. Gomez grabs him and falls down. It's ruled a slip and Gomez barely makes it out of the round.

Spartan117: 10-8 Klitschko
Uatu: 10-8 Klitschko
Franchise: 10-8 Klitschko

Round 8
Gomez looks like he has his legs back and tries to get inside. Gomez clearly needs a knockout now to win this and it looks highly unlikely. Gomez clinches again. Gomez is loading up on his right hand which he needs to do. Klitschko tries to catch Gomez as he comes in. Klitschko lands a good jab. Gomez gets rocked by another big right hand. It looked like Gomez was thinking about quitting by turning his back, but he turned back around to take a few more punches before the end of the round.

Spartan117: 10-9 Klitschko
Uatu: 10-9 Klitschko
Franchise: 10-9 Klitschko

Round 9
Gomez lands another huge right hand. Another cut opens over the other eye of Gomez. Gomez gets rocked by another power right hand and Gomez goes down. I can't believe his corner hasn't stopped this. Gomez gets clocked again and now Gomez turns his back and quits.

The winner by TKO at 1:48 of Round 9... and still WBC Heavyweight Champion... Vitali Klitschko.

Posted by spartan117

Live Klitschko-Gomez, Jones-Sheika Round By Round Updates Tonight

First of all, a big thumbs down goes to ESPN for moving the Vitali Klitschko-Juan Carlos Gomez heavyweight title fight from its regular station to ESPN Classic. Yes, I know Classic shows a lot of boxing programming, but why bother obtaining the rights to show the fight if you aren't going to put it in front of the widest possible audience?

In any case, if you don't get ESPN Classic or are too carried away with March Madness to watch the fight, we've got you covered. Head on over to our main page and look for a new post with live round by round updates shortly after 6 pm Eastern.

Also, we'll have live updates of the Roy Jones Jr.-Omar Sheika fight later tonight. You can actually watch that mixed boxing-MMA card through your computer thanks to the people at MaxBoxing.com, and if you live outside North America, it works out to just $9.95 U.S. Still, if you can't swing that, our main page will have a round by round thread for the Jones fight as well.

Posted by The Franchise

Predictions: Vitali Klitschko vs. Juan Carlos Gomez

Uatu says...

It's Dr. Ironfist versus the Black Panther for the WBC heavyweight title.

The good doctor is not coming off of a long layoff this time around, as he just fought in October. Gomez actually has the longer layoff.

Vitali is going to have his usual "home" ring advantage as this fight will take place in one of his adopted homes, Germany.

Vitali will enjoy the height advantage once again, probably close to three inches or so, maybe four, so I imagine Vitali will fight in his standing up, somewhat leaning back style, which will make it difficult for Gomez to get to him. Vitali still only has those two losses, his infamous quit on the stool loss to Byrd and his exciting stoppage loss to an exhausted Lennox Lewis.

Gomez is an interesting opponent, however. He still only has one loss, but it came in shocking fashion as he was a first-round KO victim to Yanqui Diaz, who isn't exactly a world beater. Gomez was a fast-handed, skilled heavyweight when he first entered the scene from the cruiserweight ranks. I don't think I have seen him fight for a few years now, but common sense would say that he hasn't gotten any faster, only slower. He could have slightly increased his power, but his last three fights have gone the full 12 rounds.

So what does this all add up to? I believe Gomez comes to win - I think he may actually want this fight more than Kiltschko. I also believe that his drive is not going to be anywhere near enough for him to win. He isn't going to knock Vitali out, he probably doesn't have enough power to keep Vitali honest, and he isn't going to be able to flurry or stick and move safely over a whole fight to get a decision. So the Vitali train keeps chugging

Vitali Klitschko by TKO in Round 7.

The Franchise says...

I have only seen Gomez fight once, so I am approaching this mostly from how Klitschko looked last time out. And actually, he looked pretty darn sharp in dispatching Samuel Peter. You certainly would not have automatically suspected he was coming off a layoff of nearly four years.

The suspicion here is that Gomez will have the same problem most people have with the Brothers Klitschko; namely, that they are too big and too tall. The idea is to get inside and rough them up, but that's tough to pull off for anyone, let alone a former cruiserweight.

There's no good reason to pick against Vitali since I expect he'll have advantages in size, reach, skill and power. Unless he's not taking this fight seriously for some reason, I like Klitschko to roll by mid-round KO.

Posted by uatu


Franchise Thoughts: Floyd Mayweather Returning... But to Face Who?

Now that everyone is reporting the least surprising news in boxing - namely, that Floyd Mayweather Jr. is looking to end his retirement as soon as this July - it's time to give some more serious consideration to who Money might be fighting when he returns.

For the sake of argument, I'm assuming that Mayweather is going to be fighting a serious opponent right out of the gate even though the ESPN story raises the specter of a tune-up fight. As a fan, I sure wouldn't support the idea of a tune-up, because, let's face it, he wouldn't need one if he wouldn't have voluntarily taken the last 15 months off.

Without straining myself too hard, here's a short list of people Floyd could reasonably face before the year is out:

Juan Manuel Marquez

Why It Could Happen: JMM's stock has never been higher, and he's already made it abundantly clear he wants to fight Mayweather. Even though he went to war with Juan Diaz, he could reasonably be ready to go by July 11. His age and relatively small size might make him seem like a ripe target for Floyd.

Why It Might Not Happen: Despite his undeniable skills, Marquez doesn't have name recognition outside of hardcore boxing fans and may not seem like a marquee attraction who can sell tickets and/or pay-per-view buys. JMM also has yet to fight above 135, so he arguably adds the least to the Mayweather legacy with a Floyd win and detracts the most with a loss.

Manny Pacquiao

Why It Could Happen: Assuming Manny gets by Ricky Hatton, this is the biggest fight that could be made in the sport - exactly the kind of thing that should get an undefeated champion to come out of retirement. Pacquiao is thought of by many as the current pound-for-pound king but has fought most of his career at lower divisions than Mayweather, so the risk/reward ratio seems right.

Why It Might Not Happen: Team Pacquiao is unpredictable, to say the least, when it comes to negotiations, so financial issues could always be a factor. And Manny could lose to Hatton, which would torpedo this idea pretty quickly. There's also no way this would take place on July 11 - think fourth quarter 2009.

Ricky Hatton

Why It Could Happen: No doubt Mayweather would love it if Hatton wins on May 2 after handling him fairly easily the first time they met. The Hitman brings plenty of loyal fans to the party and has made enough strides over the past year and a half that he'd look like a more credible threat in a rematch, at least on paper.

Why It Might Not Happen: Put simply, I think Hatton is going to lose to Pacquiao, robbing this match-up of any potential luster. Again, it would have to be scheduled for the fall and not mid-summer.

Shane Mosley

Why It Could Happen: Sugar Shane is riding a wave of momentum after stopping Antonio Margarito and would certainly be up for fighting Mayweather. He's obviously still in possession of most of his skills, but it's not hard to see Floyd looking at his age and thinking he would be easy pickings.

Why It Might Not Happen: Mosley has never been a huge draw but has occasionally lost sight of that fact himself. Wrangling over the purse split looms as a potential hurdle.

Andre Berto

Why It Could Happen: Berto may not be ready for this kind of challenge at this stage of his career, but it's hard to see him turning a Mayweather fight down if one was offered. His status as WBC welterweight champion would allow Floyd to sell the idea (probably successfully) that it would not be a tune-up fight.

Why It Might Not Happen: With even less name recognition than Marquez and less pound-for-pound support than all the men listed above, it could be that Berto simply isn't on the radar for the Mayweather camp. Since Andre is young and potentially still improving, he's also more an unknown quantity than the 30-and-over crowd, and that's something that Floyd never seems to like.

Oscar De La Hoya

Why It Could Happen: It may have the slimmest of chances, but if you aren't cynical enough to think it could happen, then you're probably new to the sport. Welcome. The Golden Boy is certainly capable of duping... um, I mean, convincing people he just wasn't himself when he stunk up the joint against Pacquiao, and we'd hear about the narrow split decision from his first fight with Mayweather ad nauseum to reinforce that line of thinking.

Why It Might Not Happen: If there is indeed a benevolent higher power, He simply won't allow it.

Looking over this short list, I think Mosley would be the leader in the clubhouse if Mayweather and company are married to the July date, with the Pacquiao-Hatton winner even more likely if Floyd is willing to take a lesser fight first and wait until the fall for a huge one.

Posted by The Franchise


Quick Thoughts on Upcoming Fights

Except for the April 4 "Lightweight Lightning" card continuing to fall apart, it's been a pretty quiet week in boxing as we head toward the weekend. I've decided to kill some of the time by looking ahead a little bit on the schedule for some gut reactions.

April 4 - Timothy Bradley vs. Kendall Holt (Showtime) - I find it strange that this fight ended up in Montreal since neither man has ties to the area. That might kill what is usually a live crowd, but at least there won't be any insinuations of home cooking from the judges or referees.

This also seems like the rare fight that seems like a true toss-up. If forced to make a pick right this second, I'd lean toward Bradley, but I'll be giving it more thought in the next few weeks.

April 11 - Paul Williams vs. Winky Wright (HBO) - Williams is a guy I'll watch any time he steps in the ring. And Winky? Well, he's a nice guy in person, and I admire his skill, but some of his fights are pretty boring.

Since you know what you're getting from The Punisher, all the intrigue here comes from waiting to see how much the long layoff - just one fight in the last 28 months - affects Wright. He'll need to be pretty close to peak form to deal with Williams.

April 25 - Carl Froch vs. Jermain Taylor (Showtime) - I've always been strangely fascinated by Taylor. His drive and capacity to keep improving don't seem to be at the same level as his natural ability, which is kind of a shame. I can't help but think that if he had been able to put Kelly Pavlik away in their first fight, he'd be one of the sport's biggest stars right now.

Froch seems to be doing a lot of talking, and it's not really clear if The Cobra is doing it to psyche himself up or to try getting under Jermain's skin. Good luck if it's the latter: If Bernard Hopkins' mind games didn't get to the perpetually laid-back Taylor, nothing will.

May 2 - Manny Pacquiao vs. Ricky Hatton (PPV) - It's way too early to do an official pick, but I like Manny in this one. I expect a great fight and an unbelievable atmosphere even if the global economy is still down in the dumps.

It should be noted that the powers that be are trying to put together an undercard that's actually worth watching, which is much appreciated. Steven Luevano is set to take on Bernabe Concepcion, and James Kirkland is supposed to fight as well.

May 9 - Chad Dawson vs. Antonio Tarver (HBO) - I'd love to see one more outstanding performance from Tarver, who's been a favorite of mine for a while. But what I expect is a replay of the first fight, which doesn't seem too appetizing.

Posted by The Franchise


Amir Khan vs. Marco Antonio Barrera: Round By Round

We're through the undercard at the M.E.N. Arena and ready to watch an intriguing battle between potential and experience as Amir Khan and Marco Antonio Barrera are almost ready to go in Manchester. Commentators Dave Clark, Nicky Piper, Johnny Nelson and Glenn McCrory set the stage, discussing Khan's surprising KO loss to Breidis Prescott and how his mindset might be for this huge test tonight.

Highlights from the undercard show it was a tough night for fighters from the U.K. Nicky Cook lost his WBO super featherweight title to Roman Martinez, while Enzo Maccarinelli fell via ninth-round KO to Ola Afolabi.

Jimmy Lennon Jr. is ready for the fighter introductions, and Barrera makes his way to the ring to the sounds of Kanye West's "Stronger." The Mexican legend is 65-6, but he's lost two of his last four fights and is 13 years older than his foe.

Khan is 19-1 with 15 KOs. He bounced back from the Prescott loss with a second-round TKO of Oisin Fagan, but as announcers Ian Darke and Jim Watt point out, this is a huge step up in competition for the former Olympic silver medalist.

The tale of the tape shows Khan with a significant edge in height and reach. But even though Barrera is coming up in weight, they are roughly even in that area tonight.

Referee Dave Parris is the man in charge of the action. Lennon does his thing and we're ready to go.

Round 1

Khan is the early aggressor. MAB slams him with a counter left. They tie up and both men try to work. Khan shows quick hands as they trade in the center. Quick punches force Barrera back. Two jabs connect for Khan. A right hand cuts MAB as he tries to stand his ground. Now the announcers are saying it may have been a clash of heads that has MAB bleeding. Khan tries to press his advantage. Nice one-two that MAB takes well. Khan flurries to put an exclamation point on that round.

Franchise: 10-9 Khan

Round 2

Khan also has a small cut by his left eye. Barrera looks for some early counters. Khan's reach is giving him problems. Both men miss and they tie up. Khan throws hooks to the head and body. MAB covers up as he's under fire along the ropes. Khan fires and dodges a left hook coming back. Right hand to the head by Khan and he's back to the jab. Now MAB digs in and throws a combination. Both men score with solid shots right before the bell.

Franchise: 10-9 Khan

Round 3

Barrera's cut is high on his head but it is bleeding badly. Khan throws multiple jabs. He smothers MAB and they clinch. Barrera tries to work his own jab. Khan strikes with a nice right upstairs. Khan flashes his hand speed in close as MAB tries to counter. Khan flurries along the ropes. Barrera is covering up well but needs to get busier. Khan eats a left but scores with several punches of his own. MAB tries to bull his way in and is greeted by a clinch.

Franchise: 10-9 Khan

Round 4

Darke and Watt are impressed by Khan's high guard. He looks for an opening and lands several left hands. MAB swings with two lefts of his own. Khan comes forward and Barrera tries to psyche himself up. The ref stops the fight about halfway through the round so the doctor can look at Barrera's cut. MAB wants to fight, and we're back on. He picks up the pace but Khan greets him with a three-punch combo. Amir just misses with another. A left hook forces Barrera to cover up. He tries his own left hook but Khan is moving well.

Franchise: 10-9 Khan

Round 5

Khan keeps the jab in Barrera's face. He throws an uppercut and backs out. MAB snaps several jabs but has nothing to go with them. Khan flashes his hand speed again but has to watch out for a counter left. They trade in the center and both men score. MAB's cut is really bloody, and the fight is stopped by the referee at the 2:36 mark.

We go to the scorecards since the fight went more than four rounds. The judges score it 50-46 and 50-45 twice, all to the winner by technical decision... Amir Khan.

Khan says he has been under scrutiny since day one, but he proved his critics wrong today. He gives a lot of credit to Freddie Roach for turning him into a better boxer.

Roach feels like Khan is mature enough to stick to the script now. He says Khan will be a world champion soon.

Promoter Frank Warren says he never stopped believing in Khan and wants to get him a world title shot as soon as possible.

Khan thanks all of his supporters in Manchester.

Barrera speaks through his translator and says the fight should have been stopped early on since the cut was caused by a headbutt. He blames the cut for his performance and claims he would have had a good chance to win if he could have seen clearly.

He also says Khan had fast hands but not much power. MAB feels he can still fight at a high level, but he'll discuss his future plans with his family and Don King.

Posted by The Franchise

Khan-Barrera Undercard Live Blog

We're joining you in progress after some technical difficulties on our end, The fight in progress is a four-rounder between Craig Lyon and Anwar Alfadie.

Alfadie is making his pro debut and has some trouble with Lyon's pressure. Lyon catches his foe with two sharp right hands in the last 20 seconds of the third round, and the announcer has given all three rounds to him.

Lyon has very little trouble in the final round, and we'll go to the scorecards. The judges all score it 40-36, and Lyon wins by unanimous decision.

A short hype package is shown for the Khan-Barrera fight, and we hear from both boxers. The bout is pitched as a big step up in class for Khan just six months after getting knocked out by Breidis Prescott. Trainer Freddie Roach thinks Khan can have an easy time if he fights the right fight, but if he doesn't, he'll be in for a long night.

The announcer says over 22,000 are expected at the M.E.N. Arena for the main event. Another feature is shown on Khan and Barrera.

There are definitely some production value differences between this broadcast and what we're used to in the U.S. from HBO and Showtime. The announcer seemed like he was ready to throw it down to ringside for more live action, but instead we see the same video package we just saw.

Now we go to Dave Clark with Nicky Piper, Johnny Nelson and Glenn McCrory to talk about the main event. Opinion seems to be mixed, with McCrory feeling very strongly that Khan is stepping up too far in his level of competition.

Well-known ring announcer Jimmy Lennon Jr. is on hand to do the introductions. Nicky Cook is ready to put his WBO super featherweight title on the line against undefeated challenger Roman Martinez.

Cook gets a warm reception from his countrymen in the crowd. He is 29-1, with his lone loss coming via KO to Steven Luevano. He is three years older than Martinez, who is 21-0, and gives away a slight bit of height.

Announcers Ian Darke and Jim Watt think this is a tough mandatory defense for Cook. Martinez is actually a slight betting favorite despite his role as challenger.

Cook loses his mouthpiece in the middle of a cautious opening round. He does do some nice body work, and he almost manages to put Martinez on the canvas with a stiff body shot toward the end of the second round.

Martinez looks like he has quicker and more accurate hands, but Cook has a lot more pop on his shots. The pace picks up in the fourth round, with both men throwing and landing more.

With about 75 seconds to go, a left uppercut from Martinez sends Cook down. He beats the count but is quickly sent back down. The ref makes the call and that's it. The winner by TKO at 2:20 of Round 4... and new WBO super featherweight champion... Roman Martinez.

Khan is interviewed backstage. He says his nerves are fine and his training was excellent. Khan doesn't want to talk about his tactics too much but promises fans will see a new fighter and an exciting bout.

There is a delay for the Enzo Maccarinelli fight as one of Ola Afolabi's people had to go help wrap Khan's hands. So there's a long break the announcers are attempting to fill by talking about the main event.

With the Maccarinelli bout still delayed, we go to action from earlier in the night between Bradley Pryce and Matthew Hall. Pryce can't do much to keep Hall off of him, and he hits the mat less than a minute into the second round.

A big left hook sends Pryce down again with about 30 seconds to go. A right hand catched Pryce right before the bell, and Hall earns a second-round KO in explosive fashion.

We're finally ready to see Enzo Maccarinelli face off against Ola Afolabi. Enzo has a lot of fan support despite the fact that his opponent is originally from London.

Both men are 28 years old and are almost mirror images in height, weight and reach. Afolabi is 13-1 but has not fought a very impressive level of competition. Maccarinelli is 29-2, and he comes in off of one win since his getting knocked out in the second round by David Haye a year ago.

This fight is for the interim WBO cruiserweight title and is scheduled for 12 rounds. Lennon's microphone goes out, causing one final delay, but now it's finally fight time.

Enzo starts out patiently, looking to feel Afolabi out. The crowd chants for Maccarinelli as both men try to load up big right hands. Afolabi is trained by Roach, but Freddie is not in his corner as he is helping Khan prepare.

The second round sees Maccarinelli try to keep things at very close range. There's some nice action as both men work instead of clinch, and some solid shots land in each direction.

Afolabi seems more interested in showboating than fighting at times. But he lands a right hand while backed to the ropes near the end of the third round that has Enzo looking wobbly.

The announcers think Maccarinelli still looks hurt coming out to start the fourth. He's still coming forward and throwing, though Afolabi is taking the punches well. He waves Enzo in, and Maccarinelli obliges with a series of jabs.

Enzo turns it on in the fifth round with some nice combination punching. His work rate is almost certainly winning him rounds, and a barrage of left hands in the sixth round provide his best moment of the fight so far.

After eight rounds, it looks like Afolabi will need to catch Maccarinelli with one big punch because winning on the cards isn't too likely. Enzo isn't landing the power shots you might expect, but the quantity of punches remains high.

But it's not over yet. Afolabi shakes up Maccarinelli with a right hand in the opening minute of the ninth round, and a huge right sends Enzo down a short time later. Maccarinelli can't recover and Afolabi wins by KO in Round 9.

Replays show it was a well-timed overhand right that caught Enzo leaning in. Impressive stuff from Afolabi and a disheartening loss for Maccarinelli.

Enzo blames himself for not taking Afolabi seriously enough. He says he trained hard to get in shape, but was lacking a little bit in sparring. He's honest and gracious in defeat.

Posted by The Franchise

Live Amir Khan-Marco Antonio Barrera Round By Round Updates Later Today

Sure, the BoxingWatchers will plop down a few bucks to see the latest in what seems like a steady stream of youth versus experience bouts. England's Amir Khan takes on multiple-time world champion Marco Antonio Barrera in the friendly confines of Manchester.

If you're intrigued like we are but don't have access to the pay-per-view, fear not. You can follow along with live round by round updates and scoring by stopping by our main page shortly after 4 pm EDT today and refreshing often.

Look for an undercard post first for fights featuring Enzo Maccarinelli and Nicky Cook, while the main event gets its own post. See you in a few hours!

Posted by The Franchise


Lucian Bute vs. Fulgencio Zuniga: Round By Round

The show begins with a look back at Lucian Bute's fight against Librado Andrade. Marlon Wright will not be reffing tonight.

Steve Farhood interviewed Bute earlier tonight. Bute said he is over that Andrade fight incident. It was a hard fight, but he was the better fighter. The most important thing was that he won.

Were there any changes made for tonight's fight considering that fight?
Bute worked a little more with his physical trainer and made more mental preparation.

Zuniga gets discussed. Farhood thinks he needs to fight the same way Andrade did: soak up punishment.

Here comes Zuniga to the ring. As usual, in Canada the ring entrances and the set design are more elaborate. Zuniga comes out to a somewhat mid-tempo to slow song with lots of girls holding flags in the ring.

Bute gets shown on the Jumbotron and the crowd is already going nuts as he walks through the backstage area.

The crowd appears to have borrowed the Terrible Towel angle as quite of few them appear to be swinging white towels. This is a long walk through the tunnels.

They darken the lights and the screen effects have started and out comes Bute. Sounds like "Where the Streets Have No Name" by U2. I think he came out to that against Andrade as well.

One judge from Atlantic City, two from Montreal. Zuniga tipped the scales at 167.7 for the weigh-in, while Bute was 167.4.

Here we go.

Round 1
Bute looks noticably taller. Both men circle and throw jabs. Zuniga jabs to the body. Grab in the middle of the ring. Nice left from Bute. Uppercut from Bute, who knocks Zuniga off balance. Zuniga is fighting conventionally, and he looks okay in there to start.

Uatu: Bute 10-9

Round 2
Bute is fighting his fight so far. He looks just the same as he did in the majority of the Andrade fight. There isn't a whole lot of action going on. Neither man is throwing stiff shots at this point; Bute probably more so than his opponent. Zuniga has been trying the straight to the body occasionally. Bute is having some success with a lead straight left. There's a left to the body from Bute, who is taking control now. He looks confident in there. Zuniga so far doesn't look like he has too much to offer Bute.

Uatu: Bute 10-9

Round 3
Zuniga is keeping his distance. One-two from Bute, nicely done. Big left from Bute. Zuniga had to take a step back. He isn't able to close the distance enough. Uppercut from Bute. If Zuniga keeps at this distance, he is toast. Bute is gaining more confidence and forces Zuniga to cover up. Two more strong lefts from Bute. Zuniga sneaks a left in. Bute looks much bigger and stronger. Add faster to that too. Bute has mixed in a lot of different types of offense, but Zniga has been one note.

Uatu: Bute 10-9

Round 4
Left hook to the body attempt from Zuniga. Right jab attempt from Bute forces a step back again. Zuniga tries to in-fight for the first real time for no real damage. Bute hitting body and head with the lefts. There's another left to the head and a big left to the body. The announcer says it was low, but the ref gives him the count! Zuniga gets up at eight. Here comes in Bute for the win. Zuniga weathers it partially. He isn't clinching, as Farhood notes. Hre comes Bute again in for the finish! H works Zuniga against the ropes and it's over! Bute gets the win!

The winner by TKO at 2:25 of Round 4... and still IBF super middleweight champion... Lucian Bute.

That was a one-sided affair. Bute was able to control the fight and did whatever he wanted the entire time. Zuniga never landed a solid glove on him the entire fight.

They show the replay of the big left hook/uppercut to the body that crumpled Zuniga. Farhood calls it the old solar plexus shot. Zuniga yelled when he was hit by it. He caught a slow count and managed to pull himself up at the count of 8. Eventually Bute just unleashed a lot of shots, most of them blocked with Zuniga's hands up, but he was getting touched too. Zuniga never tried to clinch and was unable to fire back, so that was it.

Farhood tells Bute there are no more questions about Round 12 of the Andrade fight.
Bute says he took Zuniga seriously and prepared hard for this fight.

Farhood says from the start everything was working.
Bute says he knew he was much faster and took advantage.

Did Bute see something that made him use that left uppercut?
He felt from the beginning that it would work, so he used it.

What's the next fight? Andrade?
Bute hopes Andrade wins his next fight so they can fight again and he can demonstrate that he is a better fighter than Andrade.

Posted by uatu

Live Lucian Bute-Fulgencio Zuniga Round By Round Updates Tonight

Last time undefeated super middleweight champion Lucian Bute fought in his adopted hometown of Montreal, he was pretty fortunate to escape with his belt. Despite entering the final round against Librado Andrade ahead on all the cards, he got himself in trouble and had to be bailed out of getting knocked out by some questionable officiating.

Tonight, Bute returns to action at Montreal's Bell Centre, hoping to earn a less controversial win. He'll have a shot at it against Colombian slugger Fulgencio Zuniga on ShoBox.

If you can't make it to a TV tonight, you can join our own Uatu for live round by round updates. Head out to the main page and look for a new post shortly after 11 pm EST tonight.

Posted by The Franchise

Franchise Thoughts: Boxing Needs 21st Century Media Plan

I exchanged a few tweets with Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports yesterday concerning his latest column, the crux of which was the decline of newspaper coverage of boxing and the negative impact it's had on the creation of the next generation of mainstream stars.

Newspapers have so many problems right now that they are in danger of shuffling toward extinction, so I wasn't sure if convincing them to cover the sport again was really a goal worth chasing. But Iole explained that without them to put the bouts in context, to explain to people why they should care about the fights and fighters, there won't ever be the proper awareness of boxing to restore its previous standing in the public consciousness.

The days of boxing "beat writers" for newspapers are gone for good. Network TV, one of the few old school media outlets that can still wield tremendous influence, doesn't seem too interested in boxing either.

With the tools of the past no longer viable, boxing needs to be more open-minded about the present and future. And that's where things need to improve drastically.

Iole points out the sport's solid online presence, but the same article has promoter Lou DiBella and writing legend Michael Katz bemoaning the fact that most internet sites are for hardcore fans only. It's a fair point - you aren't visiting MaxBoxing, Boxing Scene or even a little blog like this one if you aren't already an enthusiast.

Still, the long-form human interest-type stories are out there on the internet. Not just in print either, as web shows like HBO's excellent Ring Life fill the same role. The challenge facing the sport isn't one of content, but of distribution.

That's also true for the fights themselves. Boxing is bigger in many other countries than it is in the U.S., and yet too many fans can't watch the best fights (legitimately anyway) when they air on American premium cable channels or pay-per-view.

Why isn't there streaming video or audio of fights available for a fee to people around the world? I'm sure someone who knows more than I do about the business side of boxing knows the reason, but it better be a good one considering how vital the question appears.

The bigger more popular U.S. sports organizations like the NFL and NBA have been enthusiastic about using emerging technologies to supplement their tried and true publicity efforts, partially because they have an eye on expanding their reach to other countries. Boxing already has a global reach, but it lags behind in figuring out how to exploit it.

Boxing promoters, managers and PR people need to be early adopters. They need to be on top of what the current big thing is in terms of communication (like, say, Twitter) and have their eyes open for the next one as well. They should be cultivating any and all forms of new media, as it's never clear which one may explode and help put the sport in front of a wider audience.

Some retro thinking has helped the live gates for recent fights by putting boxers closer to their local fans. That's a smart way to go, but it's exactly the opposite of the mindset that's necessary to push the sport in-between big bouts.

Newspapers and CBS aren't coming to save the day. We're almost a full decade into the new century, and it's high time for boxing's media approach to reflect that.

Posted by The Franchise


Franchise Thoughts: Who's the Better Trainer, Freddie Roach or Floyd Mayweather Sr.?

Kevin Iole's most recent boxing mailbag for Yahoo! Sports leads off with a look at an intriguing subplot to the upcoming Manny Pacquiao-Ricky Hatton fight: the rivalry between trainers Freddie Roach and Floyd Mayweather Sr.

It's no secret that the two men don't have high opinions of each other. Iole mentioned that Roach started the verbal sparring this time by saying he'd be more worried about Hatton if he was trained by Roger Mayweather, a remark intended to get under the skin of Floyd Sr. given his contentious relationship with his brother.

Mayweather has yet to really let loose for this fight, but in the past has given Roach little credit for his accomplishments, downplaying his role in molding champions like James Toney and Pacquiao. With Floyd you get the sense that some of his posturing is strictly for show, but there's little doubt that he means it when he calls himself the best trainer in boxing.

Trying to figure out who is the "best" trainer is largely a subjective matter because there are so many factors that go into the trainer-boxer relationship that are difficult to quantify. It's also not just a two-horse race - Nazim Richardson, just to name one, would deserve some consideration after his work with Bernard Hopkins and Shane Mosley.

Still, there are a few different areas where you can stack Roach and Floyd Sr. up head to head to see where they stand, and that's exactly what I did to formulate my own opinion:

Top fighters trained:

At first glance, I was ready to give this category to Roach. The list of fighters he's worked with at some point in their careers sometimes seems endless, and includes huge names like Mike Tyson, Oscar De La Hoya, Hopkins, and, of course, Pacquiao. But Roach was sometimes a short-term solution for many boxers, and it's hard to determine how much impact a trainer has when he is in the corner for just a fight or two.

Mayweather trained his son Floyd Jr. during his formative years and worked with De La Hoya when he was the most dominant force (at least economically) in the sport. He also currently trains Chad Dawson, who's getting increasing support as one of the top pound-for-pound fighters today. (Uatu note: Eddie Mustafa Muhammad trained Dawson for the Dawson-Tarver fight.)

Advantage: Push


At least publicly, both men do a great job propping up their fighters' confidence levels. They go about it a bit differently, with Roach preferring to make simple statements that he has a winning plan and Mayweather opting for brash, sometimes comical boasts.

Floyd Sr. clearly loves being the center of attention, but I think he's also crafty enough to know that he can take some pressure off his boxers by putting it on himself. Roach is starting to show a similar side to his game with his comments leading up to the De La Hoya-Pacquiao bout, but Mayweather really has it down pat.

Advantage: Mayweather

Power to transform:

Conveniently, the boxer each man is currently training provides some of the best insight into this category. Roach's impact on Pacquiao has been undeniable, changing Manny from a one-dimensional destroyer (albeit a really good one) into a complete package. Footwork, spacing, variety of punches... virtually every part of Pacquiao's game has improved under Roach's tutelage.

Mayweather may be working a similar makeover on Hatton; it's just too soon to tell. The Hitman showed a much greater range of skills when he took out Paulie Malignaggi last November, but that was the first time Floyd Sr. was in his corner.

If Hatton gets past Pacquiao, that may give Mayweather the nod here, but for now, Roach gets the edge.

Advantage: Roach

Reputation and intangibles:

Simply put, Roach is the hottest trainer in the sport. Pacquiao is considered by most reputable sources to be the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world, and even people outside the sport, like MMA fighter Andrei Arlovski, are seeking Roach's counsel.

On top of that, Roach seems like a guy who genuinely has the best interests of his fighters at heart. He's been very vocal about the more unsavory characters in Team Pacquiao and has tried to ensure Manny hasn't been taken advantage of financially.

By contrast, Mayweather comes across as much more of a mercenary, concerned primarily with his paycheck and his status. It almost goes without saying that his dysfunctional family ties always threaten to be huge headaches at any time.

Advantage: Roach

That's obviously a very simplified analysis, but it's enough for me to give Roach the nod over Floyd Sr. as the better trainer in this fight, and probably any fight in the sport today.

Posted by The Franchise


Kirkland v. Julio: Round by Round

The third and final fight of the night is between James Kirkland and Joel Julio. The fight is at 154 pounds. Both fighters are 24 years old. Both fighters are considered the future of the junior middle-weight division. Julio is 34-2 with 31 KOs, while Kirkland is undefeated with a record of 24-0 with 21 KOs.

Intos are finished, here we go.

Rd 1
The action starts right away. Kirkland is throwing all kinds of punches. He's just smothering Julio. Julio gets one left hand in. Kirkland is landing a lot of punches upstairs, mostly hooks. Julio looks like he doesn't know how to handle this. Kirkland is mixing up his punches to the head and body. Kirkland lands a good jab. Julio lands an uppercut. Now Kirkland comes back with a mean combo to the head. Julio comes back with a combo of his own. A cut opens over the eye of Julio from a punch. That looks like trouble. Great first round.

Spartan117: 10-9 Kirkland
Uatu: 10-9 Kirkland

Rd 2
Kirkland mouths "I'm comin" before he comes out for round 2. Kirkland wastes no times and lands some great combos. Julio gets in a two punch combo that looked hard. Julio misses with a wide right hook. Julio lands a good uppercut. Kirkland is still applying the pressure. Kirkland dodges another wide hook with good body movement. Julio has a better second round than the first. Kirkland lands 2 shots to the body. Another good round for the viewers.

Spartan117: 10-9 Kirkland
Uatu: 10-9 Kirkland

Rd 3
Julio throws the first punch and misses. Kirkland establishes the jab. They both trade massive shots in the corner. Kirkland gets the best of the exchange. Julio throws a punch to the head and body. Kirkland lands a good left straight. Now Julio lands a huge power shot and Kirkland goes on the defensive. It's amazing Kirkland shook off that combo. Kirkland comes back with a great power combo of his own. Julio lands another great left hook. Best round so far.

Spartan117: 10-9 Kirkland
Uatu: 10-9 Julio

Rd 4
The ref stops the action to warn Kirkland for punching in the back of the head. Kirkland comes right back and rocks Julio with a combo. Julio is punching and moving well. he's been landing one punch and getting out of the way often. The commentators say that Julio looks tired. I disagree. He's still moving around on his toes. Julio now lands some good combos. Julio is starting to hold which shows signs of fatigue.

Spartan117: 10-9 Kirkland
Uatu: 10-9 Kirkland

Rd 5
Kirkland is still applying the pressure. Kirkland leans in to a big right hand from Julio but it doesn't phase him. Kirkland goes to the body with a 2-punch combo of hooks. Julio tries to clinch and Kirkland lands 2 left hooks to the chin. Julio's eye looks like a mess. Kirkland digs away to the body again. These punches look like they are really adding up. Kirkland lands a straight right hand. Julio lands 2 nice right hands. Kirkland is landing his jab at will.

Spartan117: 10-9 Kirkland
Uatu: 10-9 Kirkland

Rd 6
Julio's eye is cut and is now swelling shut. Kirkland is really taking it to Julio. Julio isn't backing down which is amazing. Kirkland is stalking Julio with big punches and is walking through everything that Julio is throwing. Kirkland keeps landing the jab. Julio lands a left to the body. Julio follows with a jab. Julio turns it on now with some good hooks and straights. Kirkland comes right back with stronger punches. Kirkland's hand speed is great too. Kirkland lands a huge left straight. Julio is holding on for his life. He makes it out of the round.

The ref sees that Julio can't take any more damage and stops the fight in the corner.

The winner by TKO at the end of Round Six... James Kirkland.

Kirkland says that he didn't feel any power from Julio. He trained hard to take power. Kirkland's trainer says that you need to be in shape to take a beating and Julio wasn't in shape. James says that he will take anyone they want him to fight next.

Uatu says...

I am happy to admit that I was dead wrong about Kirkland not being able to take Julio's power. Kirkland looked like he is going to be a handful for anybody out there at 154. He has some serious star potential, and he will be must-watch in his next appearance.

Posted by spartan117

Ortiz v. Arnaoutis: Round by Round

The second fight tonight is between Victor Ortiz and Mike Arnaoutis. Ortiz is a young up-and-comer in the 140 lb. weight class at 22 years old. Arnaoutis is 29.

Time to fight.

Rd 1
Ortiz starts out bouncing on his toes. They feel each other out in the first minute of the round, not much gets thrown. Ortiz backs up Arnaoutis with a stiff jab. Arnaoutis tries the counter-punch tactic with little success. Ortiz gets a left hook in. Lennox says that Ortiz looks too stiff. Arnaoutis gets in with a hook to the body. Ortiz is the more active fighter and that wins him the round for me.

Spartan117: 10-9 Ortiz
Uatu: 10-9 Ortiz

Rd 2
It's important to note that Anaoutis is trained by Buddy McGirt. Ortiz blocks 2 body shots and lands 2 hooks to the head. Anaoutis is using a lot of movement around the ring. Oriz lands an enormous left hook that knocks Anaoutis stumbling. Ortiz puts the pressure on and the ref stops the action.

The winner by TKO at 1:27 of Round Two... Victor Ortiz.

Victor says that the plan was to keep calm and go off of what Anaoutis came with. He gives a lot of credit to Anaoutis and says he's a tough fighter. He says he will follow what his team says and right now he could go for some Taco Bell. Ortiz says he wants a shot at the top of the division.

Posted by spartan117

Guerrero v. Yordan: Round by round

Tonight's first bout is between Robert Guerrero vs. Daud Yordan at 130 pounds. It's for the vacant NABO title. Yordan is undefeated with a record of 17-0 with 12 KOs. Guerrero is 23-1-1.

The intros are finished, here we go.

Rd 1
Guerrero tries to get in first. He's showing so fast hand speed. He seems to be focusing on the body. Yordan hits Guerrero with a few hooks upstairs. Not a whole lot of defense for Guerrero in round 1. Guerrero gets a few shots in by holding and hitting. The ref breaks them up. Yordan uses his jab. Guerrero loads up the straight right but it gets blocked. Guerrero is trying to counter punch. Yordan gets 2 shots in before the bell.

Spartan117: 10-9 Yordan
Uatu: 10-9 Guerrero

Rd 2
The fighters do a lot of clinching to start round 2. Yordan lands two great hooks that land flush upstairs. A cut opens above the eye of Guerrero. It's a bad one. The ref stops the action for the doctor to look at it. Guerrero complains that he can't see anything. The ref decides to stop the action. It is caused by an accidental headbut. Since it didn't go to 4 rounds this fight is a no decision.

The crowd is not happy about this outcome. Michael Buffer makes the announcement to a chorus of boos.

Posted by spartan117

Predictions: James Kirkland vs. Joel Julio

Uatu says...

I like Julio in this one. Kirkland is a beast in there, but he is definitely there to be hit. Julio is actually the betting underdog in this fight, but he has superior experience to Kirkland as far as their records go. In the one Julio loss that I was able to watch, Julio was in tough against a quality fighter in Carlos Quintana, and no one that Kirkland has fought can measure up to that. Kirkland doesn't fight like Quintana at all either.

Kirkland has an agressive, maximum-leverage-in-punches style, and he is usually in supreme condition as well. So this fight does have the potential to have an explosive knockout either way. I think Julio has enough skill to evade the big bomb and fire back with some big shots of his own. Do I have the guts to pick Julio by KO? I do. I don't see this fight going the distance. Julio by late stoppage.

I will also take Victor Ortiz to pound out a decision against Mike Arnaoutis.

Posted by uatu


Delvin Rodriguez vs. Shamone Alvarez: Friday Night Fights Main Event Round By Round

The March 6 main event of Friday Night Fights pits welterweight Delvin Rodriguez against Shamone Alvarez. It's just Rodriguez's second fight since his fight last July sent Oscar Diaz to the hospital for emergency brain surgery.

There's a good video package that shows Rodriguez dealing with the effects of the Diaz fight. He's from Danbury, Connecticut, which is not too far from the site of tonight's card, the Mohegan Sun.

Mike Greenberg is the guest for Teddy Atlas' Fight Plan. The plan for Rodriguez is to land the right hand off the jab when Alvarez is bouncing. Atlas likes the right uppercut-left hook combination as a key for Alvarez.

Rodriguez is 23-2-2 and is coming off a draw in his last fight. Alvarez is 20-1 with 11 KOs.

Round One

Alvarez comes out very aggressively with rights to the body and lefts upstairs. He catches Rodriguez with a left and wobbles him. Rodriguez gathers his wits and tries his own left hands. Another left crashes home for Alvarez. Rodriguez tries to keep things at range. He scores with two right hands but takes a shot coming back. Alvarez misses and is whacked by two body shots.

Franchise: 10-9 Alvarez

Round Two

Rodriguez fires sharp right hands off the jab. Alvarez is warned for low shots. Alvarez is still trying to get inside. Rodriguez is controlling distance a little better, but Alvarez sneaks in a right hook. Right to the head and left to the body by Rodriguez. He lands another straight right and ducks out of trouble.

Franchise: 10-9 Rodriguez

Round Three

Good exchange in the opening seconds. Rodriguez lands to the body but takes a head shot in return. The ref warns Rodriguez for a low shot. Another good exchange ends with the two men tying up in the center. Rodriguez chases his foe to land a right. More warnings from the ref. Nice combination work from Rodriguez. Alvarez lands a stiff shot at the bell but it may not have won him the round.

Franchise: 10-9 Rodriguez

Round Four

One-two by Rodriguez. He lands a right coming in and ties up. He's finding a home for the right hand more often, and his footwork has been better. Alvarez jabs and chases. Counters to the body by Rodriguez. Nice left finally scores from Alvarez. He's landed a few very clean shots but is getting hit with a lot more quantity.

Franchise: 10-9 Rodriguez

Round Five

Alvarez retreats and is hit with a left hook. Rodriguez is avoiding a lot of the return fire in this round. Right-left combo from Rodriguez. Alvarez jabs his way in but catches rights to the body and head. Alvarez tries to rough his foe up on the inside. Good exchange before the bell and both men have their heads snap back.

Franchise: 10-9 Rodriguez

Round Six

Alvarez lands a few left hands as a bit of a brawl breaks out. Another left knocks Rodriguez back as he tries to rally. Rodriguez lands a jab but can't score with power shots right now. Both men hold and try to work inside. Good round for Alvarez.

Franchise: 10-9 Alvarez

Round Seven

Atlas doesn't like how straight Rodriguez stands when he's defending. He starts a little faster in this round. Alvarez smothers Rodriguez inside. Several body shots score for Rodriguez. A short right finds Alvarez's head too. Sneaky uppercuts from very close range by Alvarez. Both men throw some wild shots, with Rodriguez scoring with an uppercut to the body.

Franchise: 10-9 Rodriguez

Round Eight

Rodriguez pumps the jab and circles. Atlas has the fight even right now. Rodriguez goes body and is hit upstairs. Alvarez just misses a big left as they wrestle. Alvarez lands a sharp left hook and steps on the gas a bit. Rodriguez comes back firing with a huge right hand. Another big right smacks Alvarez in the face. Nice action in that round.

Franchise: 10-9 Rodriguez

Round Nine

Rodriguez tells his corner he may have broken his wrist. He seems to be favoring it a bit. Rodriguez gets some work done fighting with just his left hand. Alvarez forces Rodriguez back, but Delvin is doing an excellent job with just one hand. Alvarez connects with a left hand and they tie up. That was a close round despite the apparent injury.

Franchise: 10-9 Rodriguez

Round 10

The ringside doctor spends a lot of time in Rodriguez's corner. Alvarez bulls his way in and lands body shots with both hands. Rodriguez goes down but it was an obvious push and slip. Both men connect as they stand and trade. Another Alvarez body shot lands and their feet get tangled. More stumbling with some punches landing at close range. Rodriguez lands a late right hand but that was an ugly round that favored Alvarez.

Franchise: 10-9 Alvarez

Round 11

Alvarez comes charging out of the gate. Rodriguez shakes out his right hand after he connects. Nice combo by Rodriguez. Alvarez comes forward again with several lefts. Left and a right hook by Alvarez. Rodriguez scores with a right hand and Alvarez goes down! He's up quickly but Rodriguez tries to close the show. Good action in the center of the ring. Alvarez is game as they brawl to the bell.

Franchise: 10-8 Rodriguez

Round 12

Wild swings from Alvarez. Rodriguez is chasing him and landing shots. They trade along the ropes and Rodriguez is wobbled. Delvin is running a bit and looks shaky. Alvarez is looking for his opening with a minute to go. Rodriguez stands his ground and keeps throwing. The ref literally has to jump in as the final bell rings. Great, great entertainment in that last round.

Franchise: 10-9 Alvarez

Franchise scores it 116-111 for Rodriguez. The judges score it 115-112 and 114-113 twice, all to the winner by unanimous decision, Delvin Rodriguez.

Posted by The Franchise