William Zepeda had way too much firepower for Jaime Arboleda tonight, scoring a second round knockout in their DAZN main event from Arlington, Texas, scoring three knockdowns thanks to heavy pressure and body work.
Zepeda (28-0, 24 KO) was facing an opponent coming up from junior lightweight, and this was a bout meant to be on last weekend’s Davis vs Garcia pay-per-view, as it was to be Golden Boy’s PPV undercard slot. But when Vergil Ortiz Jr had to withdraw from tonight’s originally scheduled main event against Eimantas Stanionis, this fight was bumped to a DAZN headliner slot, and Zepeda made whatever eyes he had on him take notice this evening.
Arboleda (19-3, 14 KO) was probably pretty much done on the first knockdown, was definitely done on the second, but he kept trying, and was doing his best to wing shots back. A third knockdown was just too much, and the referee reached the count of 10.
It’s not an unexpected outcome at all, but it keeps Zepeda unbeaten, adds to his highlight reel, and keeps him firmly in the mix at 135 lbs.
Zepeda vs Arboleda highlights
Undercard highlights and results
- Victor Morales Jr KO-2 Diego De La Hoya: Morales asked Golden Boy specifically for this fight. He got it. He made the statement he wanted. De La Hoya (24-2, 11 KO) was dropped twice in the second round, and was counted out on the second knockdown, official time was 1:08 of round two. Diego has the name but Golden Boy have been careful about any monster push with him ever, and for good reason, because this is the second time he’s just been overwhelmed by a talented opponent, and he has also fought exactly two guys you’d really notice at all on his record. Morales (18-0-1, 9 KO), at 25, had a good amateur background but hadn’t done much as a pro yet, and he came in here a slight underdog, but it just showed really quickly that here’s a guy who really wants it against a guy who just has never shown that in his career. De La Hoya’s 28 and has been found badly wanting twice in the ring, and has had weight issues at various times, too. The writing is on the wall for him.
- Fredrick Lawson UD-10 Estevan Villalobos: Scores went to Lawson on 96-94, 96-94, and 97-93 tallies. BLH unofficially had it 95-95. This was a good fight to watch, not a great fight or anything, but good action, had some swings in momentum, two guys who had plans and wanted to win. Lawson (30-3, 20 KO) was meant to be a B-side to prospect Raul Curiel, and Villalobos (16-2-1, 12 KO) came in on very short notice. You may remember Villalobos from a 2019 loss to Blair Cobbs. He pressed hard late and got close to maybe forcing a referee stoppage in the 10th and final round, but not close enough for this particular referee. Great effort, though, and both guys showed heart. All things considered, you cannot possibly ask for more from this fight than simply being a good fight to watch, and it was. They delivered.
Estevan Villalobos delivering the punishment pic.twitter.com/F60zcqUSLE— DAZN Boxing (@DAZNBoxing) April 30, 2023
- David Stevens UD-8 Marco Antonio Periban: Scores were 77-74, 78-73, 78-73. BLH unofficially had it 78-73, too. A good little learning experience for the 22-year-old Stevens (13-0, 9 KO), who is a good super middleweight prospect but not exactly a can’t-miss, blue chip sort of guy. He’s a nice pickup for Golden Boy following a dramatic ShoBox win in January, and while he didn’t dominate this fight, he gets a win over the 38-year-old Periban (26-7-1, 17 KO), who still has some veteran craft, landed some shots, made clear some flaws in Stevens’ game that need to improve, and I’m sure Stevens and his team would say the exact same thing. It’s a valuable fight for the young man. Stevens did get dropped on a cuffing shot in round three, which may have been more due to a clash of heads than anything, but it counted. It didn’t change the fight, though; flash knockdown at worst, and I didn’t think Periban won anything in the fight other than that, basically.