Junior welterweight Josue Vargas picked up an eight-round decision win over awkward Adriano Ramirez, with the judges seeing it 80-72 on all three cards. BLH also had it 80-72. Vargas, at 20, is a good looking prospect, and while he does have a loss, it came via disqualification in a 2016 bout. Vargas (13-1, 8 KO) thus doesn’t have the burden of an “0,” which actually might work out for the best. Ramirez (10-3, 6 KO) has now lost three of his last five and has never beaten anyone with a winning record, but he’s got a style that can be valuable for a prospect to face.
Another junior welterweight, John Bauza improved to 12-0 (5 KO) with a six-round shutout of Ricardo Maldonado (8-9-1, 1 KO), winning on unanimous scores of 60-54 from all three judges. BLH also had it 60-54, and that was really the only score to have. The 20-year-old Bauza clearly won every round and had little if any trouble with Maldonado.
Russian featherweight Vladimir Nikitin scraped out a hard-fought majority decision over Juan Tapia in a six-round bout, with scores of 57-57, 59-55, and 59-55. BLH had it 58-56 for Nikitin (3-0, 0 KO). Tapia (8-3, 3 KO) was no pushover for the controversial Olympic bronze medalist, who was given gift decisions over both Chatchai Butdee and Michael Conlan at Rio 2016. In all honesty, if Top Rank really wants to make sure they do Conlan-Nikitin in the pros, they might want to do it next. Nikitin is a really fun fighter to watch, but he’s not good enough to “build.” At 28, he is who he is, and his ceiling is low.
19-year-old lightweight Joseph Adorno won a six-round decision over Victor Rosas, taking scores of 58-54 from all three judges. BLH had it 59-53 for Adorno. Adorno (12-0, 10 KO) looked a little stiff in this one, honestly, but he was still too skilled for Rosas (10-9, 4 KO). That said, Rosas landed some shots along the way, and was there to fight. Adorno did score a knockdown in the fifth round.
Irish junior welterweight Lee Reeves won a four-round decision over Edward Torres on scores of 40-36 across the board. BLH also had it 40-36 for Reeves (3-0, 2 KO), who still has work to do but was just the better fighter here, marking Torres (1-2, 0 KO) up pretty badly. Reeves is a 24-year-old southpaw and has some skills, but this was a competitive fight, with Torres very game to mix it up.