By Jake Donovan, photos by Chris Farina/Top Rank
All fighters successfully made weight on the first try during the pre-fight weigh-in for Saturday's 'Fists of Gold' boxing event at the Venetian Macao in China.
Headlining the show, two-time Olympic Gold medalist and hometown hero Zou Shiming makes his highly anticipated pro debut as he faces Eleazar Valenzuela of Mexico.
Shiming hit the scales at 111 lb. for his first pro fight, while Valenzuela (2-1-2, 1KO) came in at 111.6 lb.
A pair of title fights highlight the supporting cast, though both stand a tremendous chance of easily stealing the show.
Brian Viloria makes his first appearance of 2013, on the heels of a second straight Fighter of the Year-level campaign. A member of the 2000 U.S. Olympic Boxing squad, Viloria (32-3, 19KO) enters the fight on the heels of his thrilling 10th round stoppage of Hernan 'Tyson' Marquez in their flyweight unification bout last November in Los Angeles.
The Hawaiian-based, Filipino-proud three-time titlist travels to Asia for the 7th time in his past ten contests as he defends his belts against Mexico's Juan Francisco Estrada (22-2, 18KO). The challenger also appeared on the aforementioned L.A. show last November, coming up short in an epic 12-round brawl in pursuit of Roman Gonzalez' 108 lb. belt.
Both fighters hit the mark for their 12-round flyweight title fight; Viloria came in at a trim and ready 111.2 lb, while Estrada tipped the scales at the divisional limit of 112 lb.
Roman 'Rocky' Martinez has lived up to his nickname in recent times. The free-swinging Puerto Rican super featherweight won his title in a close affair against Miguel Beltran last September and then was lucky to escape with a draw against Juan Carlos Burgos in New York City this past January.
A stiff challenge awaits him in his supporting bout, when he faces Diego Magdaleno. Martinez (26-1-2, 16KO) makes the second defense of his 130 lb. belt, while Magdaleno (23-0, 9KO) attempts to become the second Las Vegas-born fighter to win a major championship, just weeks after Ishe Smith won a 154 lb. belt this past February.
Martinez and Magdaleno both came in right at the 130 lb. divisional limit for their scheduled 12-round affair.
All three bouts will be televised on HBO2.
Zou Shiming (pro debut), 111 lb. vs. Eleazar Valenzuela (2-1-2, 1KO), 111.6 lb.
4 rounds, flyweight
Brian Viloria (32-3, 19KO), 111.2 lb. vs. Juan Francisco Estrada (22-2, 18KO), 112 lb.
12 rounds, for Viloria's unified flyweight titles
Roman Martinez (26-1-2, 16KO). 130 lb. vs. Diego Magdaleno (23-0, 9KO), 130 lb.
12 rounds for Martinez' super featherweight title
Wilfredo Vazquez Jr (22-2, 19KO), 122 lb vs. Yasutaka Ishimoto (21-6, 5KO), 121.8 lb
12 rounds, super bantamweight
Milan Melindo (28-0, 11KO), 112.6 lb vs. Tommy Seram (23-1, 14KO), 108.8 lb
10 rounds, flyweight
Dodie Boy Penalosa Jr (10-0, 10KO), 123.4 lb. vs. Ngaotawan Sithsaithong (10-9-1, 5KO), 122.4 lb.
6 rounds, featherweight
Paul Fleming (17-0, 12KO), 129.4 lb. vs. Usei Yoshida (22-5, 10KO), 129.2 lb.
8 rounds, super featherweight
Dave Penalosa (5-0, 3KO), 119.8 lb vs. Cheroenchai Sithsaithong (4-3, 3KO), 118 lb.
4 rounds, super bantamweight
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox