Cleaning out the DVR: Vol. 1

I record a lot of stuff, and sometimes I don't watch it immediately. Or for weeks. And sometimes months. Hey, I get behind, I get discouraged, and so on. Times like now in the dead of winter is when I go ham watching stuff because I have next to nothing else to do. And so, because I like to keep notes about stuff I watch and I like to share, my first edition of this. I'll try to do it weekly, if for no other reason than to inspire myself to actually watch old fights.

The first item I'm watching dates from a record date of 12/5/2010 and Fox Sports Deportes, and its a Boxeo Thompson program. Oh, great. It comes from that legendary boxing venue, the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel in Ontario, California. I'm sure that's not far from the airport, Scandia Family Fun Center, or both. The actual card took place on October 8th of 2010, so I got this generally irrelevant boxing card just under 14 months after it happened. That's not very good.

Christian Cruz vs. Daniel Roman is the first fight on the show, and it occurs at mysteryweight. It lasts all of 14 seconds, with Cruz being hurt by a body punch (or a headbutt), turning, and quitting immediately. Roman has not gone on to great success, losing his 3rd pro bout.

Mike Cross vs. Sergio Nunez is the next bout. Again, I have no idea who these guys are or why to care, but here I am watching. Both, say the almighty Boxrec, are making their pro debuts. We get Mike Cross making himself on the end of lots of power punches from Sergio Nunez and being hurt repeatedly and dropped twice in the second round. The second one was preceded with an all time great example of the highlight reel baby giraffe dance. Nunez doesn't look so bad, but Cross is abjectly bad as a pro fighter, which is probably why he hasn't fought since.

MAIN EVENT TIME: Chris Chatman against Alberto Herrera. Both are 7-1, and Chatman makes it clear that he thinks the winner is the top welterweight prospect in the area. Herrera is the promoters favorite and clearly that of the crowd as well. If either of these names is familiar to you, its probably Chatman, who gave Demetrius Andrade a tough fight last year and got an appearance on ESPN2 afterwards as a result.

Chatman is extremely muscular and comes out bringing fire. Drops Herrera twice in round one on the end of punches. Herrea might have more technique but is not able to deal with the speed of Chatman as he dives in to jab or throw the straight left. The southpaw stance of Chatman probably doesn't help either. As the rounds continue, Chatman continues to control the inside and even the outside in spite of a reach disadvantage thanks to the immense advantage he has in terms of athleticism. By round 4, the ref sees enough and calls a halt to the action as a badly shook up Herrera absorbs more blows. In the post fight interview, he calls out Andrade again demanding a rematch.


The next show I decided to catch up on was of much more recent vintage: Telefutura's 10/21/2011 extravaganza episode of Solo Boxeo, featuring a headlining 8 round fight. OK, not much of an extravaganza, I'll admit.

We open with a 6 round contest between 4-0 Jorge Suarez and 10-6 Larry Smith. Smith is the bigger of the two men and actually a semicompetent fighter. The problem is that he falls into sparring partner mode not long after having success, and that drags him into a decision loss. He drops an off balance Suarez in round 1 and actually is the more successful fighter offensively in round 2 as well. After that, he falls into a defensive shell. He taunts his man and makes a lot of noise, but does little to nothing to actively back that up. Meanwhile, Suarez, a one dimensional offensive puncher just comes forward with basic combinations, shortening up the distance, and landing shots inside while Smith mugs and grunts. Its a case study depending on your perspective: Either a how to on torpedoing your own career aims, or a step-by-step blueprint for how a professional opponent should carry a lesser fighter than himself when the need arises. In either sense it doesn't really make for compelling television.

The main event of the evening is Eric Cruz and Fidel Maldonado Jr. for some ridiculous WBC belt. Apparently they have Silver versions now of the Youth titles. Can't wait for the Double Bronze WBC Super Flyweight FECARBOX Senior 6 Round Title. Maldonado enters at 11-0 with 10KOs and Cruz at 12-7-3 and 12 KO wins. After Cruz is knocked down early in the first round, he falls into sparring partner mode most of the fight. He does win a couple rounds here and there (in fact getting as many as 4 on some judges cards) because of Maldonado Jr's inactivity. For a guy with a lot of KOs, he sure doesn't seem to be much of a finisher. He tries to goad in Cruz many, many times with smiles, sticking his tongue out, waiving him in, and so on. Taunt after taunt after taunt, and Cruz keeps sticking the jab out and eating right hands on the end of it. He never really bothers Maldonado with anything except an inside uppercut in the 7th, whereas pretty much every time Maldonado makes contact, Cruz's legs buckle and he grimaces or makes sounds. Clearly, Maldonado has some pop, but I'm not sure if he intentionally went to go get in rounds here and not finish off Cruz early. My scorecard read 78-73, but the official cards went 76-75 twice over, and 77-74. Cruz may have earned rounds 2 and 3 along with 4 and 7 if you want to be really kind, but I thought 4 and 7 were the only rounds that were clearly his and where Maldonado didn't land the most effective punches.

Since there is time to fill, we get Jose Garcia and Javier Rodriguez fighting a super flyweight contest. Both fighters are merely teenagers of 17 and 18 respectively, but Rodriguez (the younger of the two) actually appears to be the older and is much, much larger. Garcia has better defensive technique and gets pretty wild with his counter punching and we get a wild 4 round affair with a lot of shots landed very cleanly, but neither fighting getting particularly hurt by them. I gave it to Garcia as a 39-37 score, but the fight was a majority draw officially, which is just as well. Garcia looks like he can drop to 112 or even 108 with ease, whereas Rodriguez is bound to end up a super bantam later on in his life, should he continue with the sport.

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