Williams wins technical decision over Cintron
Ringside by Rocco Morales & Francisco Salazar
Photography by “Big” Joe Miranda
"The Weight Is Over" was the name given to the Paul Williams vs. Kermit Cintron 154 pound matchup, but at the end of the evening, dissatisfied fans were still waiting to see a fight, as the fight was called off just seconds into the fourth round when both fighters got tangled.
Both fighters tumbled and Cintron, who tumbled out of the ring, onto a table and finally fell all the way to the ground, was neither unable nor unwilling to continue.
As is the growing trend with top fighters such as Floyd Mayweather and Bernard Hopkins, although this was a 12 round championship distance fight, there was no official belt on the line, despite Williams and Cintron having a combined ten world championship fights. The lucrative payday and exposure offered by an HBO is proving sufficient enough for many top fighters to forego fighting for the championship belt of an official santioning body.
Williams, the favorite coming into the fight, was coming off a tough but well earned victory over now WBC/WBO middleweight champion, Sergio Martinez, who earned the belts with his dominant victory over Kelly Pavlik.
Cintron, on the other hand, received what many consider a gift draw against Sergio Martinez in their fight for the interim WBO light middleweight championship fight that took place early last year. Cintron would go onto redeem himself in his next fight by handing then undefeated hard hitting Mexican, Alfred Angulo, his first career defeat. Angulo, coincidentally, just recently won the same interim WBO light middleweight championship last month with his decisive victory over Joel Julio.
The first round opened well, with the southpaw Williams trying to land from long range and Cintron countering Williams punches. The action really picked up in the second half of the round with Williams pressing the action and Cintron standing in there an responding with right hand counter punches.
Cintron apparently earned the respect of Williams by way of his first round performance, as Williams was a lot more tentative in ths second round, which did not give Cintron the opportunity to counter. This resulted in a whole lot of nothing happening in the second round. Neither fighter was willing to press the action which drew a chorus of boos from Southern California fight fans, who turned out to support the fight despite neither main event fighter having any fan base, whatsoever, in Southern California.
The third round was almost a replay of the second round, which did not go over well with the fans who again booed the fighters. Cintron seemed content to wait for Williams to launch his straight left in order to counter with his hard right cross counter. As a result, Williams seemed gunshy to throw the straight left cross and instead jabbed from long distance, with very few jabs actually landing.
For once, the fourth round started out at a brisk pace when Williams seemed to make a conscious decision to finally make a fight out of it. With Williams pressing the action, a slugfest momentarily broke out but this lasted for all of about 15 seconds as then, in the midst of the action, Williams missed a big shot, and with both fighters tangled up, Williams fell to the canvas, while Cintron was not as fortunate and first went headfirst out of the ropes, onto a table and, finally, onto the concrete that serves as a professional tennis court when the arena is not being used as a boxing venue.
Cintron, despite being able to freely move his arms, legs and neck and seeming totally coherent, never made an effort to get up and was carried off on a stretcher. Cintron only started protesting when he seemed to realize that the fight was going to the scorecards, as the rules in California dictate that a fight only needs to have the fourth round start in order for a decision to be reached.
By scores of 40-36, 39-37, 36-40, Williams earned the split decision victory to improve his record to 39-1, 27ko, while Cintron drops to 32-3-1, 28ko.
Following the fight, Williams said, "I just hope Cintron is alright." "It was just starting to get heated up in there." "I thought he would have got up and continued but a win is a win." Williams continued, "I wanted to give the fans their money's worth but the fight ended too early." When asked who he would like to face next, Williams said, "I want Mayweather and if I cannot get Mayweather I want Pacquaio." "If I can't get Pacquaio, all Sergio Martinez has to do is call me up." - R.M.
Honorio outhustles Mendez
In co-main event action, a 12 round fight for the vacant USBA jr. lightweight championship belt, Martin Honorio outhustled Argenis Mendez only to lose a majority decision.
The 23-year-old Mendez, a member of the 2004 Olympic team representing the Dominican Republic, had faced obscure opposition in all his previous fights and was making a big jump up in class to face the far more experienced Honorio. Meanwhile, Honorio had faced much tougher competition and owned wins over highly regarded fighters such as lightweight contender John Molina and former WBO featherweight champion, Steven Luevano.
While Mendez had his moments, Honorio did all he could to press the action and was the far busier fighter. Neither fighter was hurt in the bout but the judges seemed to favor the counterpunching of Mendez over the superior punch output of Honorio. It was Honorio chasing Mendez around the ring for the final half of the fight while Mendez was content to counterpunch sporadically.
By scores of 116-112 (twice) and 114-114, Mendez wins the USBA jr. lightweight championship and improves to 16-1, 9ko, while the unlucky Honorio drops to 28-5-1, 14ko. Unofficially, FightNews had it scored 116-112 for Honorio.
Following the fight, Mendez said "I never felt his punches, they had no power." "The only punches I felt were the ones he was hitting with me in my legs." Mendez continued, "He kept coming and I had to use my intelligence but that was the plan." Mendez concluded, "This is just the start of my career and I am very proud of my effort tonight." - R.M.
Martyniouk wins split over Ramirez.
Lightweight Stan Martyniouk won a six round split-decision over Brian Ramirez.
After an even first round, Ramirez dropped Martyniouk with a left uppercut to the head towards the end of the round. Martyniouk stood up immediately, not visibly shaken from the knockdown.
The knockdown seemed to wake up Martyniouk as he was busier and very effective with landing his combinations. As the bout progressed, Martyniouk was more confident, throwing on the inside when it was necessary or landing punches from the outside.
Ramirez was busier in the fifth round. His punch output and aggression increased, landing more to the head and body of Martyniouk. However, Martyniouk took control in the sixth round, landing hooks to the head and effective right hands as well.
One judge scored the bout 57-56 in favor of Ramirez, but was overruled by the other two judges who scored the bout 57-56 for Martyniouk. Fightnews.com scored the bout 57-56 in favor of Martyniouk.
Martyniouk, from Sacramento, CA by way of Tallin, Estonia, improves to 9-0, 1 KO. Ramirez, from Los Angeles, CA by way of Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico, falls to 5-3, 3 KO’s. - F.S.
Sarnoi decisions Aleman.
Super bantamweight Walter Sarnoi won a four round majority decision victory over Adrian Aleman.
Aleman was effective in the early going, landing punches as he went forward at Sarnoi. As Sarnoi attempted to land, Aleman countered with an occasional left hook or right hand to the head.
As the bout progressed, Sarnoi was busier, outlanding Aleman by throwing numerous combinations. Not all connected as Sarnoi missed with a lot of them or his punches landed on Aleman’s shoulders. However, he was the busier and more effective fighter of the two.
One judge scored the bout even at 38-38, while the other two judges scored the bout 40-36 and 39-37 in favor of Sarnoi. Fightnews.com scored the bout 38-38.
Sarnoi, from Los Angeles, CA, goes to 6-0, 2 KO’s. Aleman, from Indio, CA, drops to 6-7-3, 4 KO’s. - F.S.
Ruiz knocks out Pacheco.
Bantamweight Michael Ruiz knocked out Jose Pacheco in the second round of a scheduled four round bout.
The southpaw Ruiz was too quick for the slower Pacheco, who tried to make the fight a brawl. Ruiz constantly found a home for lead left hands to the head.
Ruiz scored a knockdown in the second with a right-left combination. Pacheco did not go down all the way as his glove and the ropes broke his fall, standing up immediately at the count of four. After getting up, Pacheco threw a lazy jab, which Ruiz countered with a short right hook to the head that dropped Pacheco. Referee David Denkin immediately stopped the bout at 1:37.
Ruiz, from Fresno, CA, goes to 2-0, 1 KO. Pacheco, from Cudahy, CA by way of Guanajuato, Mexico, falls to 2-13-6. - F.S.
Wiggins decisions Diaz
In other action, a 6 round super welterweight fight, Jeremiah Wiggins and his opponent, Juan Diaz, slugged it out for all rounds. Diaz was valiant in his effort but it was Wiggins who landed the cleaner and harder shots, bloodying Diaz with his stiff jab and hurting him with hard hooks to the body. By way of unanimous decision, Wiggins improves to 8-0-1, 3 KOs, while the game Diaz drops to 9-10, 6 KOs. - R.M.
Dallas picks apart Gonzales
In opening action, welterweight, Mike Dallas Jr. used his superior handspeed and footwork to pick apart his overmatched opponent, Daniel Gonzales. At 2:03 of the second round, the referee called a halt to the action to save Gonzales from unnecessary punishment. With the victory, Dallas improves to 14-0-1, 5 KOs, while Gonzales drops to a hapless 9-29-2, 3 KOs. - R.M.
- Middleweight titleholder Sergio Martinez, Light Heavyweight titleholder Beibut Shumenov, Heavyweight contender Chris Arreola, Lightweight John Molina, former world champions Bobby Chacon and Fernando Vargas, including former contender Randy Shields took in the action from ringside.
- Jim Lampley, Larry Merchant, Emanuel Steward, and Harold Lederman called the action from ringside for HBO’s World Championship Boxing.
- While the boxing action was taking place at the tennis court stadium, less than 200 feet away at the soccer stadium, Chivas USA lost to the Houston Dynamo 2-0.
- Ring announcer was Michael Buffer for the Williams-Cintron bout. Sonny Franco and radio personality Vic “The Brick” Jacobs shared the ring announcing duties throughout the non-televised undercard.