Friday, March 20, 2015
As any boxing promoter can attest, being able to put on a good to excellent show hinges on many factors and the problems preventing that goal often blindside you. You have a late injury, a boxer with an expired visa, a failed medical test, the change of venue, or in this case several boxers suddenly unavailable just days before the show. When this happens, a Hall of Fame promoter like Bobby De Philippis with his Bobby D Presents promotions has to go into scramble mode and start calling everyone and anyone who can help him secure those last minute replacements.
Some of these replacements end up with less than 48 hours notice and know little about their opponent. When a replacement then gives the performance of their life, the promoter is so elated, he’d like to give each performer a big hug. Without getting too maudlin or getting into specifics, here are the heroes from Friday’s excellent show at the Four Points By Sheraton Hotel in San Diego.
In the evening’s Main Event, Rodney Hernandez (7-2-1, 5 KOs) of Modesto, CA handed the highly touted Scott “The One” Alexander (9-1-1, 5 KOs) his first professional loss, winning by an unanimous decision in this heavyweight six rounder.
What went wrong for the favored Scott Alexander? In the first round, Alexander appeared to have everything going his way. After all he had the best physique, technique, sound footwork and what looked to be the quicker hands. He also landed the heavier blows with better leverage. In that opening round, Hernandez was on the receiving end of more punishment but he never took a step backward.
Over the next three rounds, Alexander’s dominance dissipated as Hernandez began to wear Alexander down with these two and three punch combinations from in close. He would either tie Alexander up, or he’d be leaning on him to wear him down. He even started putting his head on his chest. Hernandez used verbal taunts to distract Alexander and often smiled defiantly each time Alexander landed a punch. Whether in excellent shape or not, Alexander began to slow down. This downtempo gave Hernandez even more impetus and an opportunity to rip Alexander with these hard shots to the body.
The scores of 60-54 twice and 59-55 all favored the wily “Big Rodney” Hernandez.
In the opening bout, Bout #1, the matchmaker featured two debutantes from the City of Angels, Los Angeles. Both had similar backgrounds, both weighed the same 150 pounds. It was Isaac “Puma” Freeman from Crenshaw and Jeff Tabrizi from Reseda by way of Ontario, Canada.
From the outset, it was all about lightning fast punches, these alternating, going for broke blows as the two newcomers got rid of their nervous energy.
Twenty-nine seconds into round four, the battle came to screeching halt when Freeman beat his opponent to the punch with an all or nothing overhand right that landed flush on Tabrizi’s chin. After referee Tony Crebs witnessed the solid blow, saw Tabrizi spin around and land on all fours, he was certain it wasn’t necessary to give Tabrizi a 10-count. He immediately called for the fight doctor. Up to that point, you had to figure Freeman was up two rounds to one and appeared to be landing the higher volume of punches.
Bout #2 took all of 36 seconds. In that time, super lightweight Ngoc Truong (1-1, with 1 KO) from the Power House Gym, otherwise known as “the Whack House Gym” of North Hollywood, ko’d the hard charging lightweight Miguelito Marti (0-4), with a straight right as he came charging at him. It was as if Marti had bus to catch. From the opening bell he kept rushing at Truong with his head tilted forward and arms flailing, always in perpetual motion. His style of boxing? A lot of offense but no defense.
Ever since the announcement of his return to the ring, many local boxing fans were eager to see how Ernesto “Chato” Martinez would do now that he is getting closer to 40 years of age. Like many when they reach these various plateaus in life, Martinez wanted to test himself and see if he’d perform on the professional level. In bout #3 against a 26 year-old power puncher by the name of Jose Alvarez from Sanger, Calif., he got that opportunity.
At the outset, Alvarez was the more aggressive of the two, but as the fight progressed Martinez worked through the rust and began to match Alvarez’s output. In round three and four, it came down to which boxer was the slicker puncher and which wanted it more. Amazingly, Martinez was not huffing and puffing, and from all appearances looked as if he could have gone an additional six to eight rounds. Halfway through the final round, Martinez landed these eight, short but powerful successive blows to his opponent’s head and body which likely convinced the judges that he deserved their support in this tightly contested match.
In the end, you had two judges favoring Martinez, Jose Cobian 39-37 and Fritz Werner 39-36, while the third judge Alejandro Rochin had Alvarez winning 39-36. With the split decision win, Martinez’s record improves to (11-8-1, 5 KOs) while Alvarez’s record drops to (3-4).
In Bout #4, the co-main event, it was lightweight Leon Spinks III (11-1-1, 7 KOs) of Huntington Beach, CA, stopping an overmatched but gutsy Cesar “Mayu” Garcia (11-18-1, 5 KOs) of Ensenada, B. C., Mexico. As early as the second round, the southpaw had begun to make mincemeat out of Garcia’s face. Spinks constant jab with an occasional right, left combination was brutal to watch. There was no need to check any punch stats. They would surely favor Spinks by a wide, wide margin. All told, Garcia may have landed and we’re being generous here, a total of six solid punches.
Before the second round ended, the attending physician, a Dr. Beard, was already concerned about a nasty cut above Garcia’s left eye. At the close of both rounds two and three, the doctor was quick to exam Garcia. Any doubt about continuing the bout ended at 2:10 of round four when the good doctor, for the third time, jettisoned out of his seat, climbed the stairs and made certain the referee knew to stop the bout.
With this being Garcia’s 30th fight without a single victory over a boxer with a winning record, you might think it’s time for him to hang up the gloves.
Next up is the Ringside at Del Mar Boxing Series on Friday, March 27, 2015. In the Main Event they have Elias Espadas (7-1-0, 3 KOs) going up against Adan Leal (9-4-0, 7 KOs) plus six additional bout featuring four local boxers defending the home turf.