ShoBox lands in Albuquerque
Avalos, Marquez featured
Story by Chris Cozzone
Hoping to remain undefeated, two hopefuls face stern tests when Showtime hits Albuquerque, N.M. on Jan. 29 with the year’s first telecast of ShoBox.
In the main event, bantamweight Chris Avalos (14-0, 11 KOs), of Lancaster, Calif., will fight his first 10-rounder, against Puerto Rico’s Jose Nieves (17-1, 8 KOs).
It’ll be Avalos’ second ShoBox appearance, but first headliner.
“I don’t know nothing about Nieves,” says the 20 year old Avalos, who knocked out Giovanni Caro in his first Showtime appearance, last year.
“But I just look back at my fight with Caro – it shows me that hard training and hard work in the gym is going to get me where I need to get.”
Nieves, however, says he knows everything he needs to know about Avalos, courtesy of YouTube and Showtime. The boxer-brawler says he’s coming to win.
Nieves has lost but once – a 12-round, close decision to undefeated Victor Fonseca in 2008. In 2009, Nieves was 1-0-1.
Marquez moves up
In the co-main event, Albuquerque’s hottest prospect, jr. lightweight Archie Ray Marquez (9-0, 7 KOs), will take his toughest opponent to date in journeyman Derrick Campos (20-7, 11 KOs), of Topeka, Ks.
Campos has never been stopped, and has been in the ring with tougher opposition than Marquez.
“Archie Ray – he’s going to be in trouble,” avows Campos, who took the fight on a few weeks’ notice. “I’m there to fight and there to win.”
The 21-year-old Marquez, on the other hand, says whatever Campo brings, he’ll make the adjustments.
“Whatever they bring, I can adjust to it,” says Marquez. “I can jab and move around, use a lot of angles, and sometimes I go forward. It all depends what the fighter brings to me.
In addition to the Marquez bout, five additional local bouts and a special sixer guarantee a strong local crowd.
In the most significant bout, undefeated Albuquerque jr. middleweight Carlos “El Gallo” Sanchez (4-0, 1 KO) will rematch former amateur standout Arturo “Tudy” Crespin (3-1, 1 KO), of Las Vegas, N.M.
Last year, Sanchez shocked local fight fans by handing Crespin his first loss. Since then, both have won their following fights.
Before his last fight, Albuquerque kayo artist David Proa (6-1, 6 KOs) was being heralded as the state’s hardest hitting prospect. But quitting on his stool after losing two rounds to .500 fighter Robert Guillen (4-5-3) in December has pegged him as a quitter.
Proa will get his chance at redemption against an even tougher opponent next Friday, when he steps into the ring for four rounds against former amateur standout Adam Ochoa (2-0, 1 KO), of Amarillo, Tex.
Returning after nearly three years, light heavyweight “Mad” Max Heyman (22-10-4, 13 KOs), of Albuquerque, will attempt a comeback in a sixer against Roy Ashworth (5-6, 1 KO), of Ogden, Utah.
Ashworth is on a two-bout win streak while Heyman is coming off a second-round TKO loss in his last bout, May 2007.
The unofficial state welterweight champ, Vincent “Li’l Man” Mirabal (4-0, 1 KO), of Albuquerque, will go four with unwon Michael Gallegos (0-2), also of Albuquerque.
In a four-round female featherweight bout, former amateur standout Amanda Crespin (0-1-1) will get a chance at redemption in a rematch with Nohime Dennison (1-1), of Albuquerque. In her pro debut last August, held in her hometown, Crespin was on the short end of the scorecards against Dennison. With local fight fans, it’s even money on Crespin in the rematch.
A six-round heavyweight bout rounds out the card: Maurice Harris (20-14-2, 10 KOs), of East Orange, N.J. takes on Billy Zimbrun (23-10-1, 13 KOs), of Ogden, Utah. Harris is coming off a 26-month layoff while Zimbrun was 2-0 during 2009.
The card is also a homecoming, of sorts. For Las Vegas, New Mexico-born promoter Gary Shaw, the eight-bout, 46-round card will mark his first show held in the state of his birth.
The show will also mark the return of Showtime announcer Nick Charles, who’d taken a leave of absence last summer to battle bladder cancer. With cancer in remission, Charles will return to work in the state he now marks as home, having just begun construction of a house in Santa Fe.