Luis Palomino retained his BKFC lightweight (155 lbs) championship, beating James “Lights Out” Lilley by unanimous decision tonight in Hollywood, Fla., in the main event of BKFC 45.
Palomino (9-0) deserved the victory, but you get the sense that at 42, he is understandably starting to slow down just a bit, though still clearly a top-level fighter, and still has his claim to the top spot pound-for-pound in the sport, both now and in their short history.
Lilley (3-1) hung in the fight, but didn’t have an argument to win it, really, with the 48-47 card for Palomino fair, and the two 49-46 cards also fair.
The fight wasn’t one of Palomino’s more exciting, to be honest, and he started his post-fight interview with a combination apology/explanation for that, saying he’ll only “risk it” in the ring with a bigger name.
“I bang a lot harder than that, but you guys gotta understand my position,” he said. “I’m the only champion that has defended successfully more than three times. This was my sixth title defense. I’m 9-0 today, the only two-weight division, undefeated champion in the world. I’m the best in the world, but if I’m gonna risk the circumstances of a fight that can possibly go to a loss, I want to do it to a name that everybody knows around the world.
“I’ve seen Eddie Alvarez thought that (Lilley) was gonna take this fight today. Eddie Alvarez, where you at? My brother, why don’t we do it? We share some words, we keep that in private. All respects to you, I’m a fan, but you’re a beast, I’m a beast. For you, I’ll risk it all, baby.
“You give me a name known worldwide, you will see 10 times what you saw today. But I had to fight a smart fight. This dude Lilley was 8-0, come on, man. How many people have reached 8-0 in bare knuckle? I can’t risk it with him because people don’t really know him. No disrespect. I need a big name. Eddie Alvarez is already in the house. I’ll do a super-fight with Mike Perry if he’s down for it. Jose Aldo’s out there, maybe he wants to come over here and take the gloves off. Jeremy Stephens. Give me a name that’s known worldwide, man, and I’ll put it all on the line.
“I will not care about keeping an ‘0,’ because I like to fight. But I want to do it with a fighter that is known worldwide. That’s all I want.”
- Jake Bostwick UD-5 Erick Lozano (49-46, 49-46, 50-45): Really half-expected at least one judge to get this wrong, but they all got it right. Bostwick (3-2-1) was a clear winner here to me, but he also didn’t so clearly, utterly dominate that I couldn’t possibly imagine a judge giving it to Lozano (1-2), not because he deserved it but because I have seen fight sports before. Bostwick did a good job from the jump here, never letting himself get baited into exchanges inside, and using his superior speed and explosiveness to pretty much neuter Lozano’s chance at the win.
- Howard Davis KO-1 Eduardo Peralta (1:36): Davis (4-1-1) just caught Peralta (0-2) right in the eye with a jab, and that was it. It was a delayed reaction but Peralta just couldn’t open the eye, and had to take the 10-count. It wasn’t a foul, it wasn’t dirty, it was just perfectly placed for that to happen.
- Bryan Duran TKO-3 Gilberto Aguilar (2:00): Never seen anyone so happy to be stopped by the ringside physician after a round has ended. Very odd, though not to take away from the effort of Aguilar (0-3), who tried it seemed to do a bit of a Homer Simpson on Duran (4-0), who just dominated the fight in terms of, like, doing damage and landing punches.
- James Dennis TKO-2 Rene Rodriguez (1:32): Pretty big upset, Dennis (2-1) was a +375 underdog here, Rodriguez (2-1) a -500 favorite. And early, it looked as though the odds were about spot-on, with Rodriguez dropping Dennis in the first round. But Dennis cracked Rodriguez hard in round two, and Rodriguez was rocked pretty bad, and never quite recovered. He went down a second time, then a third when they both sort of tumbled over while throwing, because Rodriguez was instinctively just winging it and trying to land a big shot in return, so this became a proper scrap in the amount of time it lasted. Fun stuff.
- Gee Perez KO-1 Ryan Carroll (1:52): Carroll (0-2) definitely came to fight, but Perez (3-0) was just way too much for him. Carroll was down three times, and really never recovered from the second one, where he got caught clean coming in. Perez is also a cut man for BKFC!
- Alberto Blas TKO-1 Roberto Armas: Blas goes to 2-0 in just 47 seconds, landing a shot that backed down Armas (1-2) and then just overwhelming him, throwing punch after punch in the clinch, with Armas doing nothing but covering up. A lot of what Blas was throwing was being blocked, but body shots weren’t, and some to the head did get through, and really, Armas just wasn’t fighting back, and the ref couldn’t let it continue as it was going.
- Dillon Winemiller KO-2 Steve Townsel: Really good opener, just two lads slugging until one got slugged too hard. Winemiller (2-1) took some shots and was already marked and cut up pretty good, but Townsel (2-2) got cracked with a good, hard counter and went down. He tried to get up for Sam Burgos’ count, but kinda stumbled back down and Burgos had no choice but to call it.