by Ronnie Nathanielsz
Promising WBO International light welterweight champion Jason Pagara, who is ranked No. 6 in the world by the WBO, faces tough Vladimir Baez of the Dominican Republic in a blockbuster Big Dome card of ALA Promotions and the giant broadcast network ABS-CBN on November 30.
The Araneta Coliseum showdown which features two world title fights featuring WBO minimum weight champion Merlito “Tiger” Sabillo and light flyweight champion Donnie Nietes has been bolstered by the inclusion of three top main event fighters in the highly successful “Pinoy Pride” series.
The 25 year old Pagara who has an impressive record of 31-2 with 19 knockouts will face Baez who is coming off back-to-back TKO victories and has a fearsome record of 17 knockouts in 19 wins with 1 loss and 2 draws.
After dropping a ten round decision to Victor Manuel Cayo in a clash for the Latino light welterweight title, Baez came back with a 1st round TKO of Jose Santos last June 22 and followed it up with a 3rd round TKO of Jose Manzueta, both of whom had poor records according to boxrec.com.
Boxing writer Robert Coster reporting on the Cayo fight said “Dominican boxing fans flocked to the Dominican Fiesta Hotel in Santo Domingo to see IBF No. 7 ranked Victor Cayo continue on his path to rehabilitate his career with a well-earned unanimous decision over previously unbeaten but untested countryman Vladimir Baez with the IBF Latin and Dominican titles 140lbs at stake.”
He said Cayo (31-3, 22 KOs ) “used a powerful jab and good body shots to pile up points against the inexperienced Baez (17-1-2, 15 KOs) who headhunted too much and lacked combination punching. Baez landed with some success at times but the more pedigreed Cayo just scored more often and with more eye-catching punches. All 3 judges had Cayo winning 98-91. Fightnews had it closer at 96-92. The fight was hard-fought and entertaining and both boxers received a good round of applause.”
Also on the Big Dome card, two time world title challenger AJ “Bazooka” Banal will clash with Puerto Rico’s Lucian Gonzalez who fights out of Pennsylvania in the USA.
The 30 year old Gonzalez has a record of 14-7-2 with 3 knockouts.
After dropping a unanimous eight round decision to undefeated Yenifel Vicente (210-1, 14 KO’s) on November 6,2011, Gonzalez won four of his last five fights with one ending nin a majority draw.
Gonzalez has fought some big names including newly crowned WBO super featherweight champion, undefeated Mikey Garcia when he retired in the 5th round of an eight round featherweight bout on February 6, 2009 and in his next fight lost to another unbeaten fighter, Teon Kennedy on June 6, 2009.
A fight story said North Philly's Teon Kennedy ran his budding pro record to 13-0 (5 KO) with an 8-round unanimous decision over Reading's Lucian Gonzalez in the main event at Bally's on Saturday night . Kennedy went right at his foe beginning in round one and chose to trade shots all the way through the bout. The light-punching Gonzalez stayed with him, but was outclassed, especially in the last half of the fight. Kennedy probably won 6 of the 8 rounds.”