Fernando Guerrero TKO2 Brian Norman - This fight had all the makings of an absolute, all-out war. Norman, a natural super middleweight, came out right to the middle of the ring, and Guerrero, with his fan friendly style, was more than happy to go toe to toe. For the first time in his his professional career, Guerrero was the smaller man in the ring, by a pretty fair margin, with the fight taking place north of 160. Norman made it known immediately. He bullied Guerrero around the ring, and was able to back him into the corner, unloading vicious shots to the body. Guerrero showed his resolve, coming back up top with some hooks and uppercuts while Norman was attacking the body. Occasionally, Guerrero was able to take a step back, but despite being the smaller guy, he wouldn't fight off the back foot to keep Norman off of him. This doesn't bode too well for his career as a prospect, but does bode well for his excitement factor in future fights.
In the second round, the momentum swung 180 degrees in a split second. With Norman dutifully unloading on the body, Guerrero took a quick step back, unloading a big right hook that nailed Norman square on the temple, backing him into the ropes, and a small combo sent him down. Norman got up quickly and tried do keep Guerrero off of him by throwing a few more big punches, this time upstairs, but Guerrero took the punches and came back with some firepower of his own. A huge three punch combo, with a left hook-right hook-left hook all thrown in one fluid motion and with all three connecting cleanly, sent Norman down for good. Norman got up at 9, but his legs clearly weren't back, and the fight was waved off.
While Norman was definitely an opponent, he also had the most experience of anyone Guerrero has faced in his young career. Norman took it to him, and he didn't back down. One one hand, it would help Guerrero to learn some more versatility and to learn how to fight moving backwards, so he can adjust his style as the circumstances dictate. On the other hand, the types of flaws he has are the types of flaws that are exciting. His speed is explosive, as his his power, but he leaves himself too wide open to get hit and he doesn't have the greatest chin in the world. If he can improve his defense a bit, I predict a lot of exciting match-ups in Guerrero's future, even if he doesn't end up becoming a world champion.
Shawn Porter TKO1 Brandon Wooten - Porter looked really sharp in this short, but exciting, fight. Granted, his opponent was a journeyman with 5 KO losses who took the fight on short notice, but he'd never gone down in the first before. Porter kept on the balls of his feet, firing off lightning-quick and powerful combos that his opponent just didn't know what to do with. A quick left hook-right uppercut combo floored Wooten for the first time. After getting up, Porter imposed himself, pushing Wooten back into the ropes and unloading a massive 10+ punch combo of all body shots, each of them landing, and clearly hurting Wooten. From there, it wasn't much to knock Wooten down twice more, as he was swaying like a twig in the breeze.
For those who haven't seen Porter, he was an Olympic alternate at middleweight after coming in third place in the Olympic trials (since Danny Jacobs, who came in second, went pro). As an amateur he scored knockdowns against both Guerrero and Jacobs (and in fact he's the only person to have knocked down Jacobs in a pro or amateur bout). He’s short and stocky, but packs a punch. He's worked his way down to 154 at this point, and has a much better shot of making noise there, or even at 147. He can be explosive, he hits hard and he's technically sound, but his lack of reach will probably hurt him against higher level opponents, unless he can drop another weight class.
Farah Ennis UD Bobby Jordan - What was a fairly drab fight most of the way turned into a war in the 8th and final round, with both fighters realizing the fight was close and knowing that their undefeated records were on the line. Ennis managed to get the better of that round by landing the harder shots, and in the end that probably should have made the difference. However, due to a little questionable scoring, two of the judges already had an Ennis win well in hand before the 8th round. Jordan was the slightly more active fighter, but mostly threw arm punches, and even when he put his weight behind shots, it seemed like he could barely crack an egg. Ennis just wasn't active enough overall, and he seemed to be a bit too easy to hit. It's nice that his handlers challenged him a bit by pitting him against an undefeated fighter, but I just don't see the same ceiling for Ennis as I do for Guerrero, Porter, or even Wade.
Dominic Wade KO2 Anthony Cannon - It was hard to tell too much from this fight, but from the sounds of it, Wade it a legitimate prospect, and he didn't do anything to disappoint. To open the second round, he backed his opponent into a corner and unloaded a vicious combo that left Cannon completely stunned and prone. From what little I saw, it looks like the tools are there to make something of himself, and I'd like to see more of him in the future to get a better evaluation. Wade was a two-time Junior Olympics champion, and also participated in the Olympic trials in an absolutely stacked middleweight division. He's only 19 years old, so he still has a lot of developing to do.
Alex Guerrero MD Rodricka Ray - Alexis Guerrero, Fernando's older brother and third-runner up at the national Golden Gloves at cruiserweight, was making his pro debut. He showed pretty quickly why his brother is the prospect and he's a 27 year old making his debut. Not too much action for the first half of the fight, which rounds Guerrero managed to win based on landing some jabs. In the third round, Ray came out to fight and seemed to bother the stick-like Guerrero, before Guerrero settled down in the 4th round to take the victory. Probably the most entertaining part of the fight was that Ray (normally a heavyweight) had trunks that kept falling down. In the middle of the second, his corner literally needed to duct tape his shorts to his guard. It was the first time I'd ever seen that. The second, of course, happened only a couple hours later, when Michael Simms fought Troy Ross.