Advertisement
Advertisement

Orlando Cruz Cruises To Landslide Win Over Jorge Pazos

By Jake Donovan

It’s been a big month for featherweight Orlando Cruz. On Friday evening, he made headlines for all of the right reasons after scoring a wide unanimous decision over Jorge Pazos in their Telemundo headliner at the Kissimmee Civic Center in Kissimmee, Florida.

Scores were 118-110 (twice) and 117-111 in favor of Cruz, who made headlines earlier this month in becoming the first openly gay active male boxer. 

While the news helped generate more press than is normally afforded for a Telemundo-level fight these days, the two boxers were all business throughout the promotion. Once the opening bell rang, who does what with their personal lives was left in the rearview mirror and it was all about who was the better fighter.

On this – and perhaps any other – night, it was Cruz and with room to spare. The Puerto Rican southpaw mastered the art of hit-and-don’t-get-hit all evening, jumping out to a huge lead early as Pazos struggled to even lay a glove on his opponent.

The fiery Mexican managed to somewhat close the gap in round three, but his most successful moment didn’t even count as a clean scoring blow. Cruz fired a punch and then slipped to the canvas midway through the round, at which point Pazos connected with a punch. Cruz shook it off and proceeded to box for the rest of the round.

A similar sequence took place in round four, at which point Pazos was issued a warning by the referee. From there, Cruz controlled the fight’s pace and distance. His performance was hardly limited to sticking and moving, as evidenced by the reddening of Pazos’ eye, which was beginning to swell shut towards the midway point of the fight.

Action was uneven over the final six rounds. Cruz was brilliant even when forced to fight in reverse, while Pazos frustratingly attempted to minimize the distance between the two with each passing round. There was very little clinching in the fight, but Pazos’ best efforts at forcing an inside fight were thwarted as Cruz smothered his way out of whatever brief trouble he ran into at any point in the fight.

Mild booing graced the otherwise rabid crowd in the ninth and tenth rounds, each of which featured too much boxing and not enough banging for the crowd’s liking. The boo birds were quieted the moment Cruz planted his feet and unleashed combinations, at which point appreciation came of his ability to fight off of his back foot without taking much in return.

Pazos enjoyed mild success in the championship rounds (a regional title was at stake), but hardly enough to erase the massive deficit that awaited him at fights end.

The reading of the scorecards was a mere formality, as it was a given from the moment the bell sounded to end the 12th and final round that Cruz was clearly the winner. The 31-year old advances to 19-2-1 (9KO) with the win, his third straight. 

Pazos suffers his second straight loss and third in his last four fights as he falls to 20-5 (13KO).

In a vacuum, the win hardly rates compared to what else Cruz has been able to accomplish both as a pro and amateur, including a tour with the 2000 Puerto Rico Olympic boxing squad. Some will argue the real victory was the fact that he made it to the ring at all for this fight, given the general machismo that comes with a sport that in several areas remains in the dark ages.

While easy to diminish the significance of his announcement and that it shouldn’t matter in this day and age, a more relaxed version of the featherweight was featured in the ring. Long gone is the fighter who looked overwhelmed in suffering back to back knockout losses to Cornelius Lock and Daniel Ponce de Leon some three years ago.  

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter: @JakeNDaBox
Tags: Orlando Cruz image  
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by ShoulderRoll on 10-20-2012

[QUOTE=Rikanlynx86;12621603]Orlandos antics in the ring was a little over the top for me, It had me cheering for Pazos to drop him.[/QUOTE] I agree. He's too flamboyant for my liking.

Comment by jtcs1981 on 10-20-2012

[quote=-Hyperion-] do people forget how Ponce De Leon crushed Cruz????doubt he fares any better vs Salido or Garcia..... [/quote] And Cornelius Lock did it too. Cruz cant compete with the best in the division. [SIZE="1"][I]Posted from Boxingscene.com App for Android[/I][/SIZE]

Comment by -Hyperion- on 10-20-2012

do people forget how Ponce De Leon crushed Cruz????doubt he fares any better vs Salido or Garcia.....

Comment by Mr. Anti-Duck on 10-20-2012

Good win for the gay community in boxing

Comment by CapitalTruck on 10-20-2012

The guy has heart, but man, does he also have excellent footwork and avoidance skills. I'm only a casual viewer, but Cruz has some of the best moves I've seen. The sexuality thing indicates he's strong mentally (it takes balls…

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (9)
Top Headlines Daniel Jacobs Wants To ‘Hurt’ Sergio Mora, ‘Shut That Trap Of His’ Canelo: Golovkin-Brook? GGG Should Have Shut His Mouth! Joseph Parker's Coach Discusses Strategy For Dimitrenko Clash Clearing The Deck For The Fall: BoxingScene Ratings Update Golovkin Ready To Jump Right Back To The UK For Saunders Fight Gamache Warns Not To Underestimate Svensson in Lauren Bout Chisora To Whyte: Let's Do It and I'll Whoop Your Ass - It's Easy! Canelo Jabs Critics: Nobody Will Pressure Me Into Golovkin Fight! Chocolatito To Finish With 113 Rounds of Sparring For Cuadras Imminent Big Fights Prompt 2017 Wish List Canelo Smiles: Lara Calling Out GGG, Golovkin Won't Fight Him! Danny Roman Hopes To Continue Raising His Competition Joseph Parker's Younger Brother To Make Pro Debut on October 1 David Lemieux Had Surgery To Repair a Torn Meniscus Jean-Claude Van Damme Wants Mayweather-Pacquiao II Eric Molina: If No David Price - Bring on David Haye Showdown! Del Valle Provides a Tough Litmus Test For De La Hoya, Team Says Canelo: I'm Making History - Golovkin is Older and Fought Nobody! Rosado, Monroe Exchange Harsh Words Ahead of Sept. 17 Fight Ray Edwards, Former NFL Veteran, Inks Boxing Promotional Pact Rosado-Monroe Winner Could Get Canelo Next, Says Golden Boy VP Diego De La Hoya: Just Having The Last Name is Not Enough Jermall Charlo is NOT Yet on Board For Julian Williams Defense Tommy Oosthuizen Resumes Career With a Stoppage Win Peralta Parks Cab in The Garage, Ready For Guerrero Rematch De La Hoya: Canelo in The Process of Being a Worldwide Superstar Canelo vs. Smith: Sadam Ali, Eddie Gomez Added To The Card Kid Galahad: Brook Will Beat Golovkin in Style, Box His Ears Off! Malignaggi: I Wouldn't Mind a Shot at David Peralta Next P. Fury: Brook in a Win-Win Position Against Gennady Golovkin David Price Eager To Face Joseph Parker on Joshua Card Crolla Very Motivated To Topple Jorge Linares in 'Legacy Fight' Ricky Burns, if He Beats Relikh, To Land Adrien Broner Next? Mayweather vs. Pacquiao PPV: Strange Twist in Waiter Lawsuit Lauren's Trainer: Svensson Never Fought Anyone on This Level Teddy Atlas: Nobody at 147 is in a Hurry To Face Errol Spence Abel Ramos Breaks Down Juan Jesus Rivera in Six Rounds Edwards Gaining Steam in Camp as Casimero Bout Nears "Fighting Words" - Guerrero, Angulo and the Right Time To Go Canelo: Ready To Face Golovkin? He Has To Be Ready For Me!
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement