by David P. Greisman
Mike Dallas Jr. needed this.
Barely a year ago he was undefeated, a 140-pound prospect in a feature spot on ESPN2’s “Friday Night Fights.”
A year later he was again on “Friday Night Fights,” needing a win over Miguel Gonzalez after two straight losses on the network — a technical knockout in January 2011 against Josesito Lopez, and a majority decision defeat in June against Mauricio Herrera.
Dallas Jr. needed the win, and he got it, ending his losing streak with a 10-round decision win over Gonzalez at the College Park Center in Arlington, Texas.
The scorecards were 100-90 (twice) and 100-89. The fight was as one-sided as those scorecards reflected.
Though Dallas is not at all a knockout puncher, he came out aggressively and set the tone against Gonzalez, including several right hand leads landed in the second round, the perfect punch to throw against his southpaw opponent.
A clash of heads opened a large gash over Dallas’ left eye. His cutman stemmed the bleeding, however, allowing Dallas to focus on the fight.
Dallas used his advantages in hand speed and foot speed to give Gonzalez problems, darting inside with quick one-two combinations or digging to Gonzalez’s body, then moving back or weaving under or away from Gonzalez’s sporadic responses.
Dallas was warned for a pair of low blows in the fourth round and also for holding. That was as close as Gonzalez would come to having a round in which Dallas was given nine points instead of 10.
Dallas, 26, of Bakersfield, Calif., improves to 18-2-1 (7 knockouts). Gonzalez, 26, of Cleveland, falls to 20-3 (15 knockouts).
In the televised co-feature, Shawn Estrada won a unanimous decision over Terrance Woods in what should’ve been an eight-round light heavyweight bout but ended up as a cruiserweight bout.
That’s because Estrada came in at much higher than the negotiated weight limit, tipping the scales at 196 pounds. Woods, meanwhile, had agreed previously to increase the limit — but not by that much. He weighed in at 177 pounds.
Estrada, while out of shape, still out-sized and out-powered Woods. It already would have been a mismatch even had the two men come in at light heavyweight. Estrada is 26, a former touted amateur who is undefeated as a pro. Woods is 32, a game but unheralded fighter who had come in with a record of 9-3.
Estrada is still undefeated now at 14-0 (12). Woods is now 9-4 (6).
The scorecards read 80-72 (twice) and 78-72. Estrada clubbed and clobbered Woods for the distance, walking through Woods’ punches and landing his own thudding shots. Woods didn’t have the boxing pedigree for dealing with the bigger man, nor would he have had much room anyway in what appeared to be a very small ring.
Estrada hurt Woods with about a minute to go in the second and proceeded to pummel him for the remainder of that round. Woods survived the distance, too, but took a pounding in the process.
Estrada never pushed the fight again to try to get his man out of there, perhaps because he wasn’t in good enough shape to do so, and also because he had never been past six rounds before.
David P. Greisman is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow David on Twitter at twitter.com/fightingwords2 or on Facebook at facebook.com/fightingwordsboxing, or send questions and comments to [email protected]