By Jake Donovan
Eventually, Christopher Martin will transition from prospect to contender. Until then, he’s enjoying the ride on the Telefutura Solo Boxeo circuit.
The trick for the San Diego product is to find a way to continue to enjoy what he has to offer.
A breakthrough campaign in 2010 that enabled him to land on Boxingscene.com’s Top Prospect list has yet to be properly followed up. The undefeated bantamweight seemed to settle for a win more than an inspiring performance in defeating Mexican trialhorse Jose Silveria on Friday at Casino Del Sol in Tucson, Arizona.
Scores were 99-90 (twice) and 98-91 in their 10-round bantamweight bout.
The boo birds came out early and often in a bout that hardly featured any clinching or breaks in the action, but unfortunately also didn’t feature very much action.
The tempo of the fight was in stark contrast to what you can normally expect from Martin, who burst onto the scene last year after his upset win over power punching Chris Avalos.
Action eventually picked up in the second half of the fight, although it didn’t seem to satisfy a restless crowd that didn’t appreciate sitting through five rounds of pawing and posing.
Martin put rounds away early solely on the strength of his superior boxing skills. Perhaps cognizant of the discontent patrons, he picked up the pace considerably once the second half began.
A double left hook to the ribs and midsection of Silveria brought the crowd to life in the seventh, at which point Martin already had the fight in the bag and was merely fighting to put in the rounds.
Still, it didn’t stop him from trying to make up for lost time as he let the offense flow over the course of the final four rounds.
Silveria didn’t seem to know how to respond, most notably in the ninth when he appeared to be searching for the exit in complaining about a rabbit punch that never occurred.
Once he realized that he too would have to bite down and fight back, Silveria did just that in the 10th and final round. It was too little and far too late, but still made for entertaining two-way action as Martin was caught off guard and forced to adjust.
The fight ended far better than it began, though not to the overall satisfaction of the vocal crowd.
In the end, it was enough for Martin to improve his record to 23-0-2 (6KO), while Silveria falls to 12-4 (4KO).
While Martin’s second win of 2011, it’s also now the second time this year where he has failed to live up to elevated expectations. Prior to Friday, the standout prospect struggled to a surprisingly widely scored decision win over former highly touted prospect Charles Huerta.
Martin came under fire for that fight, especially considering the number of locals who believed that Huerta deserved the decision that evening.
No such mistake was made on Friday evening, as Martin never came close to relinquishing momentum at any point of the fight.
What Martin needs to do now is rediscover the momentum that led to his standout 2010 campaign, which included five wins against mostly respectable competition.
In the televised co-feature, lightweight prospect Mark Salser remained unbeaten with a six-round unanimous decision over Rodolfo Armenta
Salser was in control of the action throughout, despite the aggressive nature of the green-haired Armenta. Such was reflected in the final scores, which read 60-54 across the board.
After a relatively inactive stretch (for a prospect), Salser now picks up his second win in just over a month as he improves to 13-0 (9KO). Armenta drops his second straight in falling to 10-5-1 (8KO).
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter at twitter.com/JakeNDaBox or submit questions/comments to [email protected]