Rolando Romero TKO-7 Anthony Yigit
Kind of an awful fight from a style standpoint, really ugly work between two guys whose styles didn’t gel to create anything approaching the “sweet science,” and Romero made himself the fight’s villain to the San Antonio crowd, too, a lot of roughhouse nonsense — elbows, shoving, grappling — that they didn’t like at all.
The fifth round was really dramatic because of that, as Romero (14-0, 12 KO) was docked a point by referee Rafael Ramos, and he deserved it. But then right at the bell to end the round, he dropped Yigit (24-2-1, 8 KO) on a right hand, and that switched a possible 10-8 Yigit round to a 10-8 Romero round, 9-8 Romero when you take the point off.
But the scoring didn’t much matter. Despite Yigit being “bigger” by virtue of not even coming close to making 135 lbs on Friday, he’s not actually bigger, and certainly not a harder puncher, and Romero’s power wore on him. Yigit also hadn’t fought in two years, and was a short notice replacement for Austin Dulay here, though he had been training to fight on the untelevised undercard.
“I fought a tough dude, man, I fought a dude that wasn’t in my weight class. I fought a 140 pounder and I fuckin’ stopped him, simple as that,” Romero said when asked about the boos. “European fighters are always awkward for everybody. They’ve got a completely different style from everybody over here.”
And Romero has a big target, and a fight that could be made easily if the teams want to do it.
“I want Gervonta Davis at 140. I want him at 140,” Romero said. “I’m gonna stop him. I’m gonna knock him out. I know what he can do, but I know what I can do, and I’m a lot stronger.”
Amilcar Vidal Jr MD-10 Immanuwel Aleem
A terrific opener for the card, a hard-hitting, physical fight that really could have gone either way.
Scores were 95-95, and then two cards of 97-93 for Vidal, which is pretty controversial. Not a massive outrage, maybe, but controversial. Bad Left Hook had the fight 95-95 and 96-94 Aleem on our two unofficial cards, and Showtime’s Steve Farhood also had it 96-94 for Aleem. A 6-4 Vidal card wouldn’t have been any travesty to me, but 7-3 is starting to stretch it pretty hard, arguably.
Still, Vidal (13-0, 11 KO) proved he can go a hard 10 with a capable, crafty, tough guy in Aleem (18-3-2, 11 KO), who at times tried to box at range despite being the shorter man with less reach, and at other times had to meet Vidal toe-to-toe in the phone booth, which he proved mostly did well enough, though it was clear Vidal was the heavier puncher.
It’s a huge learning experience for Vidal, and while he may not project to be some P4P elite type of guy, he’s tough, he’s big at 160, he can bang (Aleem did get hurt, especially in the sixth round on a body shot), and he marches forward, fun to watch. He’s going to get the opportunities, and you have to love the body attack he showed here.