Alfonso Gomez headlined last night's Golden Boy Live card against Florida's Ed Paredes. However, the real star of the broadcast was a rock 'em sock 'em slugfest between two young fighters on the undercard.
Unbeaten young featherweights squared off in the swing bout and proceeded to provide the best action of the night. Joseph Diaz Jr., an unbeaten featherweight from Southern California, was in against once-beaten Ramiro Robles of Mexico.
The two spent little time getting acquainted before launching serious leather in the opening rounds. Diaz Jr. had the obvious speed advantage, at one point putting together 11 unanswered punches to Robles' body and head. However, Robles weathered the storm and answered back with his own volley while Diaz Jr. regrouped.
Action would continue that way through ten rounds. Diaz Jr. earned a unanimous decision (99-91, 99-91, and 98-92) and, more importantly, gained valuable experience of how to finish a fight when your opponent takes your best stuff and keeps coming. Diaz Jr., while not a blue-chipper, is worth keeping an eye on.
Back to the "Main Event" ... Alfonso Gomez returned to the ring for the first time since losing a unanimous decision to Shawn Porter in July 2012. His career has been an unusual one, starting with a stint on The Contender boxing reality show in 2004 where he placed third. His career peaked when he retired Arturo Gatti with a TKO in 2007. Since then, Gomez has played the gatekeeper role well, including a good effort against Canelo Alvarez in 2011.
Ed Paredes had won 15 in a row against mediocre competition since a loss to Carlos Molina (the one who fought James Kirkland, not the one who was sacrificed to Amir Khan).
Their fight was forgettable. Paredes followed Gomez around and essentially failed to throw any meaningful punches. Commentator Paulie Malignaggi explained (repeatedly) that Paredes was waiting for the opportunity to throw one big punch. The opportunity never came.
Gomez hurt Paredes multiple times with looping overhand rights, but couldn't seem to muster the energy or will to finish his man. In the end Gomez won on scores of 99-92, 98-92, and 96-93.
In the opening fight, Diego De La Hoya (yep, that's Oscar's cousin) stopped Miguel Tamayo in the fifth round. De La Hoya was fighting for the sixth time as a professional and he showed good speed and an excellent variety of punches and angles.