|The Cyber Boxing Zone Newswire -- JULY 29:2001|
by Chris Strait
This being my first time attending a ppv fight live, I was unaware of the unusually early start time of the preliminary fights. The card started at 4:30 pm, and by not arriving until 6:15, I had missed 4 fights. I was told, however, that I didn't miss much. Except that Mia St. John was lucky to get a draw against an 8-12 opponent. That would've been fun to watch. I had meant to arrive at 6pm... the time ppv cards always seem to start on television. I can't believe I was fooled by that. An L.A. native should be more wise to programming tricks. The extra fifteen minutes that I was delayed were part stereotypical Los Angeles lateness, and part window shopping for the best parking lot. There is no rhyme or reason to this search. One could end up paying $15 five blocks away, or $5 two blocks away. What was to happen in the ring would be the most logical events of the day, regardless of outcome.
One major plus that arose out of my lateness was that I only saw the billed fights... the ones I was interested in. This did not stop the night from getting off to a sour start, though. Less than two rounds into the Andrew "Six Heads" Lewis- Ricardo Mayorga fight, a head clash ended things right away. Side note: I must say I have been seeing this at least once on every card I have watched recently. I think it is time to stop panicking when we see blood. There is a guy in each corner who is paid to handle this. Besides, shouldn't the doctors be there to prevent brain damage instead of scarring. If someone is eating deadly rights from a blinded left eye, fine! But at least give us some time to find out! Anyway, I didn't stay to find out whether it was a technical draw or a no-contest, but frankly, the point was made. It was disappointing also because this was the only fight of the night that was preceded by trash talking. Although the two threw bombs, it wasn't pretty. We were likely cheated out of a slugfest, but not before determining that Shane has nothing to worry about just yet.
Miguel Cotto didn't give us much fill in time following this.... earning his sixth victory without a loss, when his overmatched opponent, Arturo Rodriguez, elected to remain down after the second knockdown in the second round. This brought us to the saving grace of the night.
Erik Morales is slipping, but in doing so, he is giving us some great wars. I dare not say he is permanently slipping, but for now, a one-dimensional attack like the one Injin Chi put on Morales, would not have been as effective on a pre-Barrerra or pre-Espadas Morales. The fight was marred only slightly by dirty tactics. Morales did his share of holding, but Chi was a bit reckless with his head, as well. This seemed to be due to Chi's mauling tactics, as well as hthe challenger's penchant for dipping his head straight down. Morales suffered a badly swollen left eye as a result. Both men were staggered occasionally, but neither was ever in real trouble. The majority of the crowd entered to this fight, and it turned out to be an unfair tease. After quite an action-packed fight, there was talk of a rematch, but I doubt this will take place. I also doubt the buzzing that Espadas will receive a rematch as well. Morales is a talented, honrable fighter, but it is hard to root for a guy who wins multiple bad decisions. He earned this one tonight, and put on a great show, but friendly judging cannot save someone forever. Just ask Julio Cesar Chavez.
It may not seem appropriate to mention less about the main event, but there is just less to mention. What was expected took place, less the knockout. Roy proved his superiority in less than a round. Julio, like Roy's other opponents, was befuddled by the speed and talent. Julio, unlike Roy's other opponents, remained strong, and kept moving forward, yet Julio, like Roy's other opponents, could not mount anything effective. The lulls in the action, which will always get loud, relentless booing from a California audience, were mostly a product of both men attempting to counterpunch. It was logical. Both men are usually faster than the man in front of them. This was true again for Jones, not for Gonzalez. Therefore, Roy's counters and flashy right hand leads were effective, while Julio's late attempts, and off-balance right hands were not.
Julio has a future in boxing, but not if he in continuously floored three times in fights. He was down in the opening seconds from a left hook... again in the closing seconds from a right hand, and another hook had put him down in the fifth. With defensive improvement, and a more defined style, he could continue to make noise. The heart and tools are certainly there. As for Jones, he was at the press conference in all his Roy-ness, with his son on his lap, promising to be even better at 168. With his mind more focused on Trinidad, I assumed all plans for Dariusz Michalchewski were pushed way back. I asked Roy if he would ever fight in Europe for any reason, or what it would take to get him there. His answer was blunt and honest, "a whoooole lotta money." But with the European fighters making that same money fighting stiffs, their motivation to take a beating is low. I can't explain why I want to see Roy Jones fight in Europe. I guess I was so happy to see him come to L.A. and overcome his fear of earthquakes, I was hoping he'd tackle his fear of foreign judging next.
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