William Zepeda was a buzzsaw tonight, totally overwhelming a brave but out-matched Mercito Gesta in their lightweight main event on DAZN.
Zepeda went to 29-0 (25 KO) with a one-sided TKO win, when Gesta’s corner called for the fight to be stopped at 1:31 of round six.
Zepeda, 27, was just relentlessly throwing at the 35-year-old Gesta (34-4-3, 17 KO) from the jump, and though Gesta did what he could to fire back — and did land some good shots — he just couldn’t put the frenetic pace or output of his opponent.
The win doesn’t necessarily tell us anything new about Zepeda, because he’s won and won well at this level already, but he did do basically everything possible to make whatever statement he could in this matchup.
“Thank you to Team Gesta, I wanted a fight with an experienced opponent and he gave that to me,” Zepeda said after the bout. “In the first round, I knew he was dangerous, and that I had to keep on working.”
“We want to fight all the champions, we want to fight who’s out there at 135. I think he’s ready for each and every one of them,” said trainer Jay “Panda” Najar. “As of right now, Devin Haney is the world champion, so we want to fight Devin Haney.”
Haney, of course, is moving up to 140 lbs in December to face Regis Prograis, so soon enough all four titles at 135 will be changing hands. At the moment, Gervonta “Tank” Davis is in position to simply be the actually recognized WBA titleholder (he has their secondary belt), while Shakur Stevenson will face Edwin De Los Santos for the vacant WBC belt in November.
That would leave the IBF and WBO titles, and those would be clear targets for Zepeda at 135.
- Victor Morales UD-10 Edwin Palomares (96-94, 99-91, 100-90): Well, one card here was alright, the other two too wide for my tastes. I had this 97-93 for Morales, but 100-90 is silly, there were a couple rounds Palomares clearly won, I think. Morales (19-0-1, 9 KO) didn’t have it easy in this one, not his best showing, but he bit down and got through it, too, and that’s important. Palomares (18-5-2, 9 KO) gave this all he had, but it wasn’t quite enough. Morales separated himself over the last four rounds, I thought. Pretty good fight, too!
- Yokasta Valle UD-10 Maria Santizo (99-91, 99-91, 100-90): As “entertainment,” an honest review is this was pretty fun for a few rounds, and then all the rounds basically looked the same, and the energy petered out. But a win for Valle (29-2, 9 KO), who retains her IBF and WBO belts at 105 and hopes to make an undisputed clash with Seniesa Estrada, but we’ll see. Santizo (11-4, 6 KO) gave her usual honest effort but has one speed and it’s not enough to beat the better women she’s faced. Those are her four losses.
- Darius Fulghum TKO-2 Ricardo Luna (1:30): Fulghum, a 27-year-old who’s working his way down to 168 lbs, only started boxing at all in 2015, and he’s an intriguing project-prospect for Golden Boy. There’s definitely a good bit to like with Fulghum (7-0, 7 KO); a lot to learn still and learning on the job, but a good bit to like. Luna (25-11-2, 16 KO) got cut on the side of the head and dropped in the second round, and his corner pretty much decided that was plenty. He’s a knockaround guy, gets fed to prospects, wouldn’t even really call him a gatekeeper, and he basically did what was expected here, however you wanna slice that.
- Eric Priest MD-8 Simon Madsen (76-76, 79-73, 80-72): The MD part will look suspect, but no, the judges who had it for Priest had it right, I think. BLH unofficially scored it 79-73 for the 24-year-old Preist, who goes to 11-0 (7 KO), while Madsen drops to 13-2 (10 KO) with his second straight loss. Actually can kinda understand how a judge got to even. Do not agree at all, but this was a phone booth fight, competitive throughout, Madsen was never overwhelmed, and he was throwing a lot. Tim Bradley may want to contact his judging professors to explain to him how this could possibly have happened since, as he has recently learned at one (1) seminar where he was yelled at, all judges follow a strict code of ethics and guidelines, and have no personal preferences or biases whatsoever.