LIVE FROM RINGSIDE - Staples Center, Los Angeles, California, United States
Author: Mark Ortega
Saturday night in front of a packed crowd at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California, Cristobal Arreola gave as good of an effort as any heavyweight in the last few years at dethroning a Klitschko brother of his world championship. Like most of the rest, it wasn't enough, as Klitschko was able to stop Arreola after dishing out a ten-round beating that caused trainer Henry Ramirez to call it off and live to fight another day. Arreola had his moments, but was unable to control many rounds. At the time of the stoppage, Arreola was given three rounds across all three scorecards.
Trainer Henry Ramirez deserves to be given a lot of credit for stopping the fight when he did. As a largely unknown trainer, Ramirez may have been tempted to let the fight go on and hope his fighter could land a miraculous punch to change things, but he instead stepped in to keep his fighter from taking more unnecessary punishment. Arreola gave as good of an effort as any recent heavyweight, not allowing Klitschko to just jab him to death without trying to get inside. Klitschko was very effective with the jab and right hand, and Arreola's best moments came when he could catch Vitali on the ropes with wide overhand rights and left hooks before Klitschko would eventually move out of the way.
Vitali's movement was especially surprising, as he was able to move out of the line of danger of Arreola's unusually wide punches that came one at a time. Vitali would fire his jab and straight right and not allow Arreola to respond before he got out of the way. Arreola had his best moments in the fourth and seventh rounds, with the fourth round being pretty much even and the seventh being the much more dominant round. A lot of people gave Arreola the fourth because he got less beat up than in the first three rounds, so unsuprisingly two judges gave the round to the Ukranian fighter.
Following the fight, an emotional Arreola broke down in tears and proclaimed that this isn't the last you will see of him. Expect him to return in January against obviously much more limited opposition. It is unclear where Klitschko will go from here, as the young contenders are getting knocked off slowly, little by little.
Covina, California's John Molina took care of Mexico City veteran Efren Hinojosa in impressive fashion, stopping him with a series of punches that began with a right to the body and ended with a hook that sent him down for the count. Hinojosa was put down to one knee, but was unable to reach his feet before the count of ten. Molina, who is trained by Joe Goossen, was able to stop Hinojosa seven rounds earlier than current 130-pound champion Robert Guerrero. The official time of the stoppage was 34 seconds into the first round. “Once I saw that look in his eyes, I went after him and he was done,” Molina said following the victory. “Believe me, I hit him with some hard shots.”
Goossen-Tutor super bantamweight prospect Rico Ramos of nearby Pico Rivera, California took another step-up in competition against veteran Kermin Guardia of Antioquia, Colombia, earning a wide unanimous decision victory. Ramos [13-0, 8 KOs] controlled the opening round as Guardia [37-10, 20 KOs] backed up most of the round. Much of the same continued in the second. Ramos' superior handspeed along with the pressure he brought proved to be too much to overcome for Guardia, who dropped a unanimous decision to the local prospect. Ramos worked the jab, sometimes doubling or tripling up on it to great effect. Late in the fight Ramos was able to stun Guardia numerous times but never put him down. The official scores of the bout were 60-54 twice and 59-55 for Ramos. As for Ramos' next fight, Craig Goossen stated, “We want the biggest possible test for his next fight. He can handle it.”
In a scheduled six-round featherweight bout, Salvador Sanchez of Tianguistenco, Mexico dealt with trialhorse Trinidad Mendoza of Sonora, Mexico, handing him a third-round technical knockout. Sanchez [14-3-2, 7 KOs], the nephew of the great Salvador Sanchez, took the fight to the older Mendoza [28-25-2, 3 KOs] until he stopped him with a body shot in the third round. Official time of the stoppage was 1:23 in the third round.
The card would begin with heavyweights, as Atlanta, Georgia's Cedric Boswell did battle with late substitute Cisse Salif of Las Vegas, Nevada in a scheduled eight-round bout, emerging victorious by unanimous decision. Salif [23-16, 21 KOs] fought most of the fight in retreat while Boswell [31-1, 24 KOs] pressed the action. Boswell landed a number of solid straight right hands in a fight that didn't provide much in terms of action. Boswell had a fight fall out with undefeated Belarusian heavyweight Alexander Ustinov that would have been the biggest test of Boswell's career and his second attempt at knocking off an undefeated prospect from Eastern Europe. Boswell previously knocked out Roman Greenberg in two rounds back in August of last year. At the time, Greenberg was 27-0 against limited opposition. All three judges scored the bout a shutout, 80-72.
In the fight before the night's main event, heavyweights Johnathon Banks and Javier Mora fought each other in a lull of a fight. Both fighters had each other hurt early on, with Banks controlling the first round and most of the second before Mora stunned Banks late in the round. Aside from that, there was a lot of holding throughout the fight. The third round received a ton of applause, but not because of the action in the ring but because of the entrance made by Mike Tyson to his seat. The lone highlight aside from that was when Mora gave a chicken dance in the middle of the fourth round. Everytime the two would begin to exchange, Mora would hold, keeping the pace from picking up. Late in the fifth, Mora got tagged hard by a series of shots that had Mora reeling and nearly stopped. As the fight wore on, both fighters grew tired and the pace came to a halt. The official scores of the bout were 79-73, 78-74, and 76-76 for Banks.