Sometimes it’s better when things end sooner

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Despite all the excellent fights last week, they were hard pressed to get a horse across the finish line.

ESPN devoted two hours of programming for three bouts that didn’t total 10 minutes of boxing.

Out of the seven matches on that card from Indio, only one bout lasted longer than two rounds…several were done in one.

Keandre Gibson laced them up against Eddie Gomez in a Welterweight contest.

They started slowly, but that changed quickly.

Garcia looks like a boy band heartthrob.

At the top of the 2nd Gibson offered a pawing jab and Gomez countered with an overhand right that sent Gibson to the seat of his satins.

He got up and took the mandatory 8-count but the referee looked into Gibson’s eyes, saw “Gone Fishing” signs, and wisely called an end to the competition.

Good call, ref.

Eddie Gomez improves his record to 21 wins against 3 losses, with 12 victories coming by way of knockout.

***

Next up: Super Welterweight newcomers Aaron McKenna (2-0, 1 KO’s) and Jose Palacios (1-2, 1 KO’s).

Long and lanky McKenna rocked Palacios with a chopping right, followed it with another solid shot to the head, and then landed a left to the body.

Palacios crumpled to his knees.

He beat the count and went back at it, but McKenna peppered him with body shots before slipping in an uppercut that caused Palacios to quit on his feet in the opening frame.

***

The main event…was even shorter.

In the second defense of his NABF Junior Super Featherweight title, 19-year-old knockout artist Ryan Garcia took on Fernando Vargas.

Garcia has the looks of a matinee idol. If that reference is lost on you, try this: Garcia looks like a boy band heartthrob.

Either way, there was a large contingency of beautiful young women in attendance.

For such a young fighter Garcia has excellent defensive skills coupled with solid tactical proficiency, and the ability to make adjustments.

He fought like he was double-parked, consistently picking up the pace throughout the 1st round.

Garcia had success using his jab to set up an overhand right; and he applied the one-two combination with increasing frequency.

With only seconds left in the round he landed the combo and immediately threw it again; then finished with a left hook.

Every punch landed; and the hook folded Vargas up like a lawn chair.

He was counted out on the carpet.

Ryan Garcia (14-0, 13 KO’s) remains undefeated, retains his title…and preserves his good looks.

***

Only half of the scheduled rounds were needed to determine the WBC Silver Heavyweight champ.

Dillian Whyte put his belt on the line against undefeated Lucas Browne, in a bout from the U.K.

Whyte was throwing jabs early and often. He found face with an overhand right that opened a bad cut to the outside of Browne’s left eye. It was a bloody mess by Round 3.

As the match progressed, it became exceedingly apparent that Browne was out-classed and overwhelmed.

Whyte pounded him like he was tenderizing a side of beef, and then sealed the deal at the top of the 6th with devastating left hook that sent Browne face-first into the canvas.

Browne was out. It was over.

Dillian Whyte (23-1, 17 KO’s) kept his belt and proved he is a legit contender in the division.

***

In a card from Puerto Rico, Junior Bantamweight Lucas Fernandez got within one lap of the checkered flag. But Joshua Franco came off the canvas in Round 2, took it into the 9th, and landed a flurry of headshots that caused the ref to step in and call a halt to the contest.

Fernandez felt it was premature. It wasn’t.

You were right, ref. Good call.

***

In a bout that finally went the distance, Junior Bantamweights Alejandro Santiago and Jose Martinez fought in a rematch…which ended in a very unsatisfying split decision draw.

Just like their first bout.

God Bless and Happy Easter!

Mark Felicetti wishes his wife “Happy Anniversary” and thanks her for not killing him in his sleep. Reach Mark at mark@tolucantimes.com.  

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