The fights are underway at Madison Square Garden for tonight's Cotto-Martinez card, with four fights coming later on HBO pay-per-view. We'll have live coverage of those, but right now we're deep in the preliminary bouts, and if you want to join in, catch our live stream right here on BLH.
5. Felix Verdejo TKO-1 Engelberto Valenzuela
Predictable. On moves the blue chipper.
4. Jose Lopez UD-8 Raul Hidalgo
The first fight of the night that was a little competitively matched, and it turned into a bit of a snoozer, though hardly awful or anything. "Wonder Boy" Lopez has some interesting entrance attire, as he looks like a low-level DIY superhero from "Kick-Ass!" or something. He's 20 and there's plenty of time, but he certainly has a lot to work on. Scores were 80-72 twice and 79-73. I had it 79-73, and Col. Bob Sheridan was nice enough to give Hidalgo two rounds, scoring it 78-74.
3. Jose Pedraza TKO-1 Arturo Uruzquieta
Three fights, three mismatch blowouts in the opening round. Referee Arthur Mercante Jr was leaning in early looking for a reason to end this this as soon as he could, and when Uruzquieta went down, Mercante stepped in and called it off immediately at 2:19.
2. Willie Nelson TKO-1 Darryl Cunningham
Well, I hope that's about it for Cunningham as "guy with a decent looking record to sacrifice in stay-busy or bounce-back fights," but probably not. I mean, Golden Boy's running Michael Clark out there still. The stoppage came at 2:43 of the first round here, with Nelson getting, you know, a training camp and then 2:43 of work in to stay fresh if a better fight comes along.
1. Jantony Ortiz KO-1 Elio David Ruiz
This was 2012 Olympian Ortiz's pro debut, and he made quick work of Ruiz, dropping the Texan with a body shot, with the referee reaching a count of ten at 1:51 of the opening round. Ortiz, 19, is a nice-looking flyweight prospect with good tools at this very, very early stage of his career. In London, he bowed out in the round of 16 against David Ayrapetyan. Expect to see Ortiz back in the ring soon, and probably plenty over the rest of the year.
Still to Come: Felix Verdejo vs Engelberto Valenzuela.