The Week That Was (July 30 – August 4, 2013)

By Teron Briggs on August 5, 2013
The Week That Was (July 30 – August 4, 2013)
For Stevens, the future is as bright as the spotlight shining on the Yankee's Alex Rodriguez.

The Brownsville native possesses above average power in both hands but his left hook is the most devastating punch in his repertoire…

Mohegan Sun Casino, Uncasville, Connecticut, USA

Curtis “Showtime” Stevens saves Fight Night card with highlight reel knockout

After two uninspiring 10-round undercard contests, restless boxing fans tuning in to the NBC Sports Network “Fight Night” card badly needed a jolt of excitement. Top middleweight contender Curtis “Showtime” Stevens (25-3, 18 KOs) provided just that when he brutally annihilated Saul Roman (37-10, 31 KOs) in the first round of their 10-round fight.

Before the combatants exchanged leather NBC fight analyst Kenny Rice said longtime contender Saul Roman, who had spent the majority of his career at junior middleweight, told him he felt most comfortable in that division. Unfortunately for him, his fight with Stevens was at middleweight.

From the moment the first round bell rang the two came out throwing bombs. The Brownsville native Stevens possesses above average power in both hands but his left hook is the most devastating punch in his repertoire. Both fighters refused to back down as they recklessly flung shots at the other. At the 1:50 mark of the round, Stevens dropped Roman to the seat of his pants with a huge left hand. Roman, instead of holding on to try clear his head, instead went right back into the heat of combat. Stevens kept swinging for the fences and at the 2:26 minute he unleashed a sick left hook that flattened Roman on his back and will undoubtedly merit consideration for Knockout of the Year. The referee immediately called a halt to the contest, without administering a count, as he frantically called for medical attention for the fallen Roman.

Roman came into the contest on a three-fight winning streak but he was simply outgunned by the larger man. He should probably return to the division he feels most comfortable in.

For Stevens, the future is as bright as the spotlight shining on accused steroid cheat Alex Rodriguez. He’s 4-0 since returning to the ring after a more than two-year layoff with three of those wins coming by first round knockout. He’s being discussed as an opponent for popular WBA middleweight titleholder Gennady Golovkin in November on HBO. When asked after the victory if he would be interested in facing Golovkin he said “Why not.” It would be a pretty lucrative bout, however Main Events, Stevens’ promoter, seems a bit reluctant to put their shining star in with Golovkin, at least until he is designated mandatory challenger which would fetch him a larger payday. It will be very interesting to see where Showtime goes next.

Tomasz Adamek easily cruises past late replacement Dominick Guinn

When the best thing you can say about a fighter is he’s never been knocked out, that’s not saying a lot. Yet that’s what NBC commentators said about the past-his-prime Dominick Guinn (34-10, 23 KOs) prior to his lopsided loss to former light heavyweight titleholder and heavyweight title-challenger Tomasz Adamek (48-2 29 KOs).

The hardnosed fringe contender Tony Grano had to back out of his fight with the popular fighter from Poland, now fighting out of Jersey City, due to two herniated discs in his neck. But even with that injury, Grano probably could’ve given more of an effort than Guinn. However, with less than a month to find an opponent for Adamek, Guinn was probably the best late replacement that could be found on short notice.

As with all Adamek fights a large contingent of enthusiastic Polish fans were there to cheer on their beloved countrymen. Adamek gave them much to cheer about as he outworked the docile Guinn over 10 rounds. Adamek, who’s always been a high volume puncher for a heavyweight, averaged an astounding 70 punches per round. In comparison, Guinn averaged a mere 20, as he spent much of the night eating left and right hands from Adamek. Guinn landed an occasional right hand, but almost never more than one at time as he kept waiting for Adamek to slow down, which never happened. Going into the 10th and final round, no one would’ve faulted Guinn’s corner if they threw in the towel as it was evident their fighter was probably down big on the scorecards and was suffering from terrible swelling over his left eye. However, they didn’t and Guinn once again managed to make it to the final bell, while taking unnecessary punishment. Adamek was awarded the decision on scores of 98-92 and 99-91 twice.

It says a lot that even though he was winning the fight by a wide margin, Adamek still pressed for a knockout in the final round. It’s why his fans continually come out to support him in droves, even after losses, because of his fighting spirit. All signs seem to be pointing toward a winter showdown between Adamek and undefeated rising contender Bryant Jennings. If that fight is made, get your popcorn ready because both fighters are almost always in good scraps.

Philadelphia’s Chambers shows too much “Brotherly Love” in lopsided loss

Former heavyweight title challenger Eddie Chambers’ (36-4, 18 KOs) career is suddenly taking a similar path to that of his hometown Philadelphia Eagles and Phillies, which is to say not a good one. Much was expected of his debut in the cruiserweight division against the unknown Thabiso Mchunu (13-1, 9 KOs). But like the two teams who failed to live up their perceived potential, Chambers failed miserably and now has a ton of questions to answer.

Chambers earned a mandatory title shot against heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko in March of 2010, after outclassing a number of contenders. Though Chambers was knocked out in the 12th round by the champ, many considered it an accomplishment since Chambers was undersized compared to modern heavyweights. After a controversial loss to Tomasz Adamek in June of last year, Chambers and his brain trust thought a move to down to cruiserweight would give him a better chance at success.

Thabiso Mchunu was supposed to be a steppingstone on the way to a title shot for Chambers. Instead, the man nicknamed “The Rock” might have ended Eddie’s career in the spotlight. Little was known of Mchunu who racked up an impressive looking record against a bunch of less than quality opponents in his hometown of South Africa. He did knock out 10 of the 13 men he faced, so Chambers’ trainer, the respected James Bashir, assumed Mchunu would be “aggressive.” Instead, the South African fooled Bashir and Chambers and coasted to a one-sided 10-round decision.

Mchunu, a southpaw who stands at only 5-foot-8, spent most of the fight confusing Chambers with his defensive posture as he sat on his back foot and picked off the few shots that the bigger man threw him at him. Chambers, who is used to being the counterpuncher, was forced to lead and he just simply couldn’t mount any kind of sustained offense. Mchunu was more than content to counter with accurate hooks as he effectively fought backing up for most of the fight. By the third round, a few boos could be heard in the Mohegan Sun Arena and as the action failed to pick up they only increased over the course of the night. In the later rounds, Mchunu opened up a bit with his combinations, as he probably realized he had little to worry about from the zombie-like Chambers who was following around the smaller man without punching. The scorecards accurately reflected the effort that Chambers put forth as he was awarded one round on two judges’ cards, 91-99, and three on another, 93-99, in the toughest loss of his career.

I don’t think anyone can explain why Chambers fought with such little passion and failed to adjust his fight strategy. Yeah, Mchunu was as dominant in this fight as Tiger Woods was winning the Bridgestone Invitational but he didn’t match the latter’s flare for victory. Mchunu certainly has skill, but I doubt he gained many fans with his performance on Saturday night. He was too satisfied to walk away with a decision when the opportunity was there for so much more.


Buffalo Run Casino, Oklahoma, USA

Fortuna and Franco fight to dull draw over 10

The best thing that can be said about this fight is thank goodness it was only 10 rounds. Undefeated contender Javier Fortuna (22-0, 16 KOs) and Luis Franco (11-1, 7 KOs) fought so badly that neither deserved to win. The judges scored the fight 99-91 Fortuna, 96-94 Franco, and 95-95.

The Dominican Republic native Fortuna captured the interim WBA featherweight title in December of last year, but then lost it on the scales when he failed to make weight for a bout against Miguel Zamudio in April of this year. Fortuna viciously knocked out Zamudio in the first round and Franco, a good fighter from Cuba, was supposed to be the toughest test of his career.

As it turned out, the only test in this fight was could boxing fans make it the 10th round without falling asleep or waving the white flag. In the first round, just a few seconds into the fight, the Buffalo Run Casino experienced a blackout that caused the bout to be delayed for close to 10 minutes. There was about as much action in the dark and empty ring during that time as there was the rest of the fight. Fortuna appeared to land the harder shots as he kind of attempted to press the action but the fight was a tactical bore. Both fighters failed to establish a rhythm, as neither was able to land effective combinations. Ringside expert, Teddy Atlas, scored the bout for Fortuna 96-94, but admitted the decision could’ve gone either way.

Franco came into the bout off a loss, so I guess it was good he didn’t get another one, though he certainly didn’t do much to improve his profile. Fortuna, who is considered a top 10 featherweight, has talked about moving up in weight to face Yuriorkis Gamboa. Fights like this one aren’t going to get anyone to demand that bout.

“Ugly, ugly win” for Cintron over Batista

Those are the words of ESPN ringside blow-by-blow commentator Joe Tessitore in describing this fight. If Kermit Cintron (34-5, 28 KOs) continues to get television dates on ESPN Friday Night Fights I’m going to have to believe he or someone he knows is doing their programming. Cintron was awarded a wide decision by scores of 99-88 and 99-89 twice over Jonathan Batista (14-2, 7 KOs).

Cintron always seems to come up short on the big stage. Two losses to Antonio Margarito, a decision that should’ve been a loss to middleweight champion Sergio Martinez, and losses to Canelo Alvarez, Paul Williams and Carlos Molina have left nasty marks on his career. Cintron’s one claim to fame is he was the first man to beat feared puncher Alfredo Angulo, way back in 2009.

There’s less grappling and mauling in a woman’s mud wrestling contest then there was in this fight. Both fighters were responsible for some roughhouse tactics that resulted in Batista unfairly being deducted points by the clueless referee, Gary Ritter, who seemed overwhelmed by the occasion. He scored a knockdown for Cintron in the eighth round, in what replays show probably was a slip/trip.

It was the first time I saw Batista and if it’s the last I won’t bat an eye. Cintron has not only just come up short in his recent fights, he’s 1-3-1 in his last five, and they’ve been tedious affairs that have been anything but entertaining. Haven’t we seen enough of him at this point?


IMP Hall, Osaka, Osaka, Japan

Former WBA 154 lb. titleholder Nobuhiro Ishida returns with a win

The last time we saw the Japanese fighter Nobuhiro Ishida (25-9, 10 KOs) he was brutally knocked out, almost out of the ring, by Gennady Golovkin in March of last year. He returned to the ring after a lengthy layoff and blasted out the inept Elly Pangaribuan (3-3, 1 KO) in two rounds.

Ishida is best known for shockingly KO’ing previously undefeated power puncher James Kirkland in the first round of their 2011 bout.  But at age 37, Ishida will probably fight out the rest of his career in his native Japan.

Follow Teron Briggs on Twitter @TeronBriggs

Follow us on Twitter@boxing_com to continue the discussion

2013-08-03 Curtis Stevens vs Saul Roman



Tomasz Adamek vs Dominick Guinn - Full Fight (HD)



2013-08-03 Eddie Chambers vs Thabiso Mchunu



Javier Fortuna vs. Luis Franco



2013-08-02 Kermit Cintron vs Jonathan Batista



2013.8.4 Nobuhiro Ishida vs Elly Pangaribuan Full Fight Video



Discuss this in our forums

Related Articles

Comments

This is a place to express and/or debate your boxing views. It is not a place to offend anyone. If we feel comments are offensive, the post will be deleted and continuing offenders will be blocked from the site. Please keep it clean and civil! We want to have fun. We want some salty language and good-natured exchanges. But let's keep our punches above the belt...
  1. Ted 06:03pm, 08/05/2013

    Teron, is Cintron shot in your opinion?

  2. bk don 05:56pm, 08/05/2013

    Thanks, Ted! It was actually one of the hardest recaps i’ve had to write b/c the fights this past wknd were so bad. 5 out of the 6 televised bouts were either horrible or tough to watch, so it was difficult tuning in and writing my observations. I would be lying if I didn’t say I felt like simply turning the channel more than a few times. Hopefully this upcoming wknd’s shobox and FNF cards will deliver more action.

  3. Ted 11:22am, 08/05/2013

    Thanks Teron. I shall steal most of this it is so good. lol

Leave a comment