The Boxing Diary

Views and Opinions

Saturday, April 20, 2024

Ryan Garcia knocks Devin Haney down Three times in route to majority decision win

BROOKLYN, NY (April 20, 2024): After months of enduring ridicule and scorn from so-called experts who gave who him no shot at victory, Ryan “Kingry” Garcia (25-1, 20 KOs) shocked the world Saturday night in Brooklyn, flooring Devin “The Dream” Haney (31-1, 15 KOs) three times en route to a majority decision victory, capping an action-packed Golden Boy Promotions card at the Barclay’s Center.

Garcia of Victorville, Calif. rocked Haney in the middle of the first round with a left hook and rolled through the back of the half of the fight to secure the decision by scores of 115-109, 114-110 and 112-112.

“I shouldn’t have put too much pressure on myself to stop him, because every time I hurt him, I went crazy and I couldn’t stop him,” said Ryan Garcia. “I think the ref should’ve stopped the fight. He (Haney) was really hurt. I felt bad, I even looked at Bill to stop the fight. [Regarding the point being deducted in seventh round] The guy was holding me for dear life, and I felt the opportunity to keep swinging while my hands were free. I should’ve knocked him out that seventh round. They stole that from me. I’m surprised he has so much heart and recovery. He got wobbled bad in the first round. I thought it was over. He even hurt me with a hook. At the end of the day, I’m going to fight him, win or lose.”

“Ryan just shocked the world and proved once and for all that he is the face of boxing and a pound-for-pound athlete in our sport,” said Golden Boy Promotions Chairman Oscar De La Hoya. “Despite all of the talk from armchair psychologists and so-called boxing pundits, Ryan clearly had a plan and executed it.”

In a co-main event for the WBO Intercontinental Super Lightweight Title, Arnold Barboza, Jr. (30-0, 11 KOs) defeated Sean 'The Public Nuisance' McComb (18-2, 5 KOs) via split decision in a back and forth 10-round fight that went the distance. McComb fought off his back foot the whole night as Barboza Jr. slowly tried to get in. Ultimately the fight ended in Barboza’s favor with the judges scoring the fight 96-94 and 97-93 in Barboza’s favor and 92-98 in McComb’s favor.

“I felt good. It was a very tricky fight,” said Arnold Barboza Jr., “He was a lefty, tall and he moved a lot. He gave me a lot of trouble, but it was a learning experience. I’ll be back better. We’re going to talk to Oscar and see what’s next.”

Retaining his WBA Intercontinental Super Middleweight Title, Bektemir “Bully” Melikuziev (14-1, 10 KOs) went to war with Frenchman Pierre Dibombe (22-1-1, 12 KOs) in a fight scheduled for 10-rounds. The nonstop action left both fighers cut with battle scars; the corner doctor stopping the fight due to a deep gash over Melikuziev’s eye caused by an accidental headbutt. The judges went to the scorecards, awarding the “Bully” the technical decision victory with scores of 79-73, 78-74 and 79-73.

“He was a good opponent. Unfortunately, the fight was stopped,” said Bektemir Melikuziev. “During the fight he kept coming forward with his head. There was nothing I could do. I just needed another minute or two in the ring to finish the fight. I slowed down a bit because I felt that my opponent was getting tired.”

David “Medallita” Jimenez (16-1, 11KOs) of Cartago, Costa Rica pulled off an upset win against fan favorite John “Scrappy” Ramirez (13-1, 9 KOs) of Los Angeles, Calif. claiming the WBA Interim Super Featherweight Title via unanimous decision in a 12-round grudge match. Jimenez won with scores of 111-117, 112-116 and 111-117 all in his favor.

“I am very happy to become a champion again. I want to thank Golden Boy for the opportunity,” said David Jimenez. “I am ready to plan for what’s next. I felt great in the ring, and I felt like I was controlling the fight from the second round. Scrappy has a good punch and is a good boxer. Like all fighters, I want to become undisputed.”

Charles "Bad News" Conwell (19-0, 14 KOs) of Cleveland, Ohio opened the DAZN PPV card in spectacular fashion as he stopped Nathanial Gallimore (22-8-1, 17 KOs) of Des Plaines, Illinois in the sixth round via TKO in a super welterweight fight originally scheduled for 10 rounds. Conwell won the fight with a time of 0:52 of the aforementioned round.

“I feel good,” said Charles Conwell. “It was the coming back party. I thought he was a tough-game fighter. He came with a lot of experience, but I did what no other fighter has done. I stopped him in the sixth round. I don’t think any other fighter has beat him as bad as I did. He was a tough fighter and I appreciate him for taking the fight. We’re looking to get back in the ring asap, sometime in July or August. I’m back in the gym getting better. The ring rust is off. We’re ready for what’s next.”

On the preliminary card, Sergiy “The Technician” Derevyanchenko (15-5, 10 KOs) of Brooklyn, New York defeated Vaughn Alexander (18-11-1, 11 KOs) of St. Louis, Missouri via unanimous decision in a 10-round Super Middleweight bout. Derevyanchenko won with scores of 100-89 by all three judges. Darius “DFG” Fulghum (11-0, 10 KOs) of Houston, Texas successfully defended his WBA Continental Super Middleweight Title against Cristian Olivas (22-11, 19 KOs) of Baja California, Mexico stopping him in the fourth round via TKO in a fight originally scheduled for eight-rounds. Fulghum won with a time of 0:50 of the aforementioned round.

Also a part of the preliminaries, Jonathan “Sugar Cane” Canas (4-0, 2 KOs) of Houston, Texas beat Markus Bowes (2-6, 2 KOs) of Roxboro, North Carolina via unanimous decision in a 4-round Super Lightweight bout. Canas won with scores of 40-36 by all three judges. Amari Jones (12-0, 11 KOs) of Las Vegas, Nevada beat Armel Mbumba-Yassa (10-2, 7 KOs) of Remscheid, Germany via TKO in the sixth round of an 8-round Super Middleweight fight. Jones won with a time of 0:39 in the aforementioned round. In a dazzling KO, Kevin Newman II (16-3-1, 1 KO) of Las Vegas, Nevada stopped Eric Robles (9-4, 8 KOs) of Tijuana, Mexico via TKO in the fourth round of an 8-round Cruiserweight fight. Newman II won with a time of 1:53 in the aforementioned round. Opening fight night, Shamar Canal (8-0, 4 KOs) of Albany, New York defeated Pedro Borgaro (7-2, 4 KOs) of Sonora, Mexico via unanimous decision in a six-round super lightweight bout with scores of 60-53.

Friday, April 19, 2024

Devin Haney vs Ryan Garcia: Preview and Prediction

Devin Haney (31-0-0, 15 KOs) and Ryan Garcia (24-1-0, 20 KOs) will meet again, this time, in a professional boxing match on Saturday night at the Barclays Center, Haney will defend his Super Lightweight in a huge DAZN PPV main event. 

Garcia and Haney are familiar opponents as they met several times in their amateur career. In fact, they met 6 times and the outcome is even. This fight will be a tie-breaker.

With the above being said, I think it would be impractical to base my prediction of this fight on their amateur matches. They fought when they were just 10 years old and 14 years old. They are both 25 years old now. So, I think it's better to look at their respective professional boxing record. 

Haney is still undefeated in 31 fights while Garcia lost once out of 25 fights. Therefore, Haney has the advantage of experience. He also faced former and present world champions such as Vasily Lomachenko, George Kampboso Jr. Jorge Linares, and Yoriorkis Gamboa.

Garcia lacks the quality of opponents in his resume and failed to come on top against Tank Davis. Another thing that bothered me was how Garcia behaved during the build-up to this fight. I mean, I did not see something that I can attribute to the qualities of a disciplined fighter. Is he even ready? Mentally? Phsically? Well, that remains to be seen Saturday night. Or at least some hint during the weigh-in. Anyway, I'm not here to judge but to give my prediction. 

So, without further bush-beating, I have no reason to pick Ryan Garcia here. I got Haney by stoppage in round 8 or by a crystal-clear unanimous decision.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Paddy Donovan not looking past Lewis Ritson

NEW YORK (April 15, 2024) –Undefeated Irishman Paddy “The Real Deal” Donovan (13-0, 10 KOs), the reigning World Boxing Association (WBA) Continental Welterweight Champion, is fully focusing on his next opponent, former British lightweight champion Lewis “Sandman” Ritson (23-3, 13 KOs), and not his rumored showdown later this year with Northern Ireland’s Lewis “The Croc” Crocker (19-0, 11 KOs).

Donovan vs. Ritson is the 10-round co-featured event May 25th on a Matchroom Boxing card, headlined by a domestic clash between UK super lightweights Josh Taylor (19-1) and Jack Catterall (28-1), to be streamed on DAZN live from First Direct Arena in Leeds, United Kingdom.

The 25-year-old Donovan, who is now ranked No. 11 in the world by the World Boxing Association (WBA), will defend his title belt for the second time after a TKO win over William Andres Herrera (15-2) in his last fight this past January 27.

Donovan vs. Crocker has been percolating and if both fighters continue winning it will be one of the most anticipated 2024 fights in Ireland and the UK. The key is for both fighters to continue winning without a hiccup. Donovan understands that he needs to avoid any distractions as he prepares to fight Ritson, especially with the possibility of a future fight against Crocker as it continues to build exponentially into an epic super-fight.

“I do not look past any opponent,” Donovan said. “I know Lewis Ritson is a really good opponent for me at this stage of my career. I’m really excited to be ranked No. 11 in the world and I’m checking all the boxes in training to be ready for any fighter, Lewis first, and then we can move on to beating whoever my managers and promoter put in front of me. Ritson is a very good opponent for me. This is the fight I need, the challenge that will prepare me for bigger fights, especially against Crocker, or anyone else. For me, it doesn’t matter who the opponent is, I will be ready mentally and physically, and just be me.

“This is the biggest test of my career, every fight from now is like my world title fight. I believe he will throw caution to the wind early in the fight, but I will match him for everything he does, and I’m going into the ring to win every battle, every moment, every round, and every fight.”

Ritson, also a former WBA Inter-Continental Super Lightweight Champion, lost his last fight on March 4th, stopped by a body shot from Ohara Davies (24-2) in the ninth round. Donovan has finished-off his last two opponents with crushing liver punches.

“Under the trusted eye of trainer and co-manager, Andy Lee, I am confident Paddy will be primed and ready to showcase his boxing skills and punching power on May 25th,” commented NYC-based attorney Keith Sullivan, Donovan’s co-manager. “This is Paddy’s breakout year. I don’t envy anyone we match him against, because he’s on a mission to fight for a world title. He’s hungry, and he’s earned it, but first he has to handle business in the ring with a very formidable Ritson.”

Ideally, Paddy Donovan would like to put “Sandman” Ritson to sleep, then and only then, look toward Crocker, or whomever else stands in his path to a world title.

Sunday, April 14, 2024

Jared Anderson Dominates Ryad Merhy

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (April 13, 2024) — Jared "The Real Big Baby" Anderson did not have a particularly eager opponent in Ryad Merhy, but the heavyweight hopeful from Toledo, Ohio, got the job done.Anderson faced little resistance and defeated Merhy via 10-round unanimous decision in the main event Saturday evening at American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas. There was little drama when the scorecards were read, as Anderson prevailed by margins of 100-90 2x and 99-91.

Merhy (32-3, 26 KOs) showed little interest in engaging, throwing only 144 punches over the course of the fight. Anderson (17-0, 15 KOs) kept an active pace for a big man, landing 128 of 662 punches, including 49 power blows.

Anderson said, "Another day, another night in the office. I wanted to give the fans a better show, but what can you do when they show up to fight like him. It’s just another day in the office. We’re going to continue working.

“I stayed sharp for 10 rounds. That’s the biggest takeaway. I got to make some changes. I made some mistakes. I got hit with a few punches. I shouldn’t have gotten hit at all because he didn’t even come here to fight.

“I want all of the names. If I’m ranked with you and your name is near mine, then we can get it crackin’. We’re coming to knock everybody off."

Ajagba Outworks Vianello

Nigerian heavyweight contender Efe Ajagba (20-1, 14 KOs) earned a 10-round split decision over Italy's Guido Vianello (12-2-1, 10 KOs) in a phone booth battle of 2016 Olympians.

Vianello rocked Ajagba with a right hand in the second stanza and tried to end the fight swiftly, but “The Silent Roller” kept his composure and connected cleanly in the fourth and fifth rounds. The 29-year-old found a consistent home for uppercuts with both hands, though he controlled most of the action behind jabs and straight right hands.

Ajagba switched to southpaw in the later rounds. Vianello was perplexed by the change but figured him out by the final round. However, Ajagba had by then done enough on two of the judges scorecards to clinch the victory.

One judge had it 96-94 for Vianello, which was overruled by two scores of 96-94 for Ajagba.
Conceição Batters Guardado

Brazilian Olympic gold medalist Robson Conceição (18-2-1, 9 KOs) scored his first victory in two years by stopping Jose Guardado (15-2-1, 5 KOs) in the seventh round. Returning from a majority draw against Emanuel Navarrete in November, Conceição was quick to demonstrate the skill disparity with rapid combos in the opening chapters.

Conceição continued volume punching in rounds five and six, which prevented Guardado from mounting an attack. And in the seventh, the Brazilian landed a left hook to the body that dropped Guardado, who rose from the canvas, only to be stopped moments later with a flurry at 2:27.

Middleweight: Julian Delgado entered the paid ranks in front of his hometown fans today. The 22-year-old, who became the first Corpus Christi native to win a national Golden Gloves title in four decades, decisioned Juan Tamez (1-1) across four rounds of sustained action. Scores: 40-36 2x and 39-37.

Featherweight: Ruben Villa IV (22-1, 7 KOs) moved one step closer to a second world title shot by decisioning Cristian Cruz (22-7-1, 11 KOs) over 10 rounds to pick up the WBC Silver belt. Villa scored in the initial rounds with combinations from the outside, while Cruz found success to the body in rounds four and five. Villa retained control with constant pressure and counters in the final rounds. Scores: 98-92 2x and 97-93.

Welterweight: Corpus Christi's John Rincon (9-0, 2 KOs) defeated Yainel Alvarez (3-4-2, 1 KO) via six-round majority decision. Rincon worked behind a southpaw jab to land early, though he had to overcome Alvarez's erratic offense. Alvarez pressured in the final two rounds, but it was not enough. Scores: 57-57, 58-56, and 59-55.

Lightweight: 20-year-old phenom Abdullah Mason (13-0, 11 KOs) delivered a resounding fourth-round TKO against Ronal Ron (14-6, 11 KOs). Mason landed a flawless left hand that floored Ron as he was attempting a left hook. A Mason left to the solar plexus dropped Ron for a second time. He stepped on the throttle in the fourth and ended matters at 1:02 of the round.

Junior Lightweight: Filipino Olympian Charly Suarez (17-0, 9 KOs) tallied a workmanlike unanimous points verdict following eight rounds against Louie Coria (15-7, 7 KOs). Coria worked off a good jab and occasionally landed sharp uppercuts, but he was overwhelmed by sudden left hooks and right hands from Suarez. Coria scored a knockdown at the final bell, but it wasn't enough to close the gap. Scores: 77-74 2x and 76-75.

Junior Lightweight: Texas native Alejandro Guerrero (13-4, 10 KOs) upset Jalen Walker (12-1-1, 10 KOs) by flooring him twice before forcing Walker's corner to halt the action at 1:36 of the seventh. Guerrero, who snapped a four-fight losing skid, was dropped in the sixth before regaining the momentum in the seventh, He was ahead on all three cards, 56-55, at the time of the stoppage.

Heavyweight: Team USA's Ali Feliz (1-0, 1 KOs) made a successful pro debut by dispatching Anthony Woodson III (1-2, 1 KO) in two rounds. Time of stoppage: 1:16.