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Seanie Monaghan, Taylor, Julian Rodriguez, Diaz Win in NYC

By David P. Greisman

Julian “Hammer Hands” Rodriguez’s power and hand speed was too much for King Daluz, propelling Rodriguez to a unanimous decision victory. Rodriguez scored a body shot knockdown in the seventh. Daluz tried to put up a battle but didn’t have enough to overtake Rodriguez. The scorecards were 80-71 (twice) and 79-72.

Rodriguez, a junior welterweight prospect from Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, is now 12-0 with 9 KOs. Daluz, of Spain, is now 12-3-2 with 2 KOs.

Jean Carlos Torres scored one knockdown in the first round, two knockdowns in the second round and then quickly closed the show with a third-round technical knockout over Miguel Gloria.

He’d hurt Gloria with a right hand in the second round and then followed up until Gloria was on the canvas. The next knockdown came as the round was about to end and seemed at first glance to be more of a push.

Seanie_Monaghan2 (720x488)_1

Nevertheless, Torres came out quickly in the third round. Gloria wasn’t badly hurt, but the referee felt it was pointless for the fight to continue. He jumped in 20 seconds into the round.

Torres, a lightweight from Puerto Rico, is now 4-0 with 3 KOs. Gloria, who is billed out of New Mexico, is now 1-2 with no KOs.

The Puerto Rican fans who came to the Theater Madison Square Garden to see Felix Verdejo arrived early enough and in significant enough numbers to fill the arena and rain down cheers while watching featherweight prospect Christopher Diaz of Barranquitas beat Angel Luna by fourth-round technical knockout.

Diaz had Luna out on his feet in the corner and landed a few more punches on his defenseless opponent. The referee jumped in at the 2:42 mark.

Diaz is now 15-0 with 10 KOs. Luna, who is from the Dominican Republic, is now either 11-2-1 with 6 KOs if you go by BoxRec or 12-2-1 with 7 KOs if you go by the official bout sheet.

Seanie Monaghan once again made his New York fans happy, putting Janne Forsman down in the fourth round and then winning by technical knockout in the fifth.

The light heavyweight hails from Long Beach on Long Island and has a devoted following that comes out whenever he performs in the New York City boroughs of Brooklyn and Manhattan and even out in nearby Newark, New Jersey.

The victory brings him to 27-0 with 17 KOs if you go by Boxrec or 26-0 with 17 KOs if you go by the official bout sheet. He wants a world title fight, though he would be a distinct underdog against any of the top fighters at 175, never mind the world titleholders. Monaghan has yet to beat an opponent of note at light heavyweight, yet his local popularity — and his spots in the rankings of all four major sanctioning bodies — could land him a shot, especially if Sergey Kovalev wants to stay busy while waiting for a fight with Andre Ward.

Forsman is now 21-4 with 13 KOs. All of his defeats have come by knockout.

In the show’s opening bout, Emanuel Taylor bounced back from two straight defeats with his first victory since 2014, scoring a sixth-round knockout of Wilfredo Acuna.

Acuna and Taylor had a firefight in the second round, leading Taylor to box more, wait for openings, tire Acuna out and break him down with heavy blows to the body and good counter left hooks to the head. The end came in the final seconds of the sixth round. Taylor wobbled Acuna with a left uppercut and followed up with a flurry that put Acuna down. Acuna waited for the referee to count to 10 and then got up.

Taylor had lost three of his last four. He was outpointed by Chris Algieri in February 2014, Adrien Broner in September 2014 and Antonio Orozco last May. His last win had been a decision over Karim Mayfield in July 2014. This victory brings him to 19-4 with 13 KOs; his first loss came via split decision to Prenice Brewer in 2011.

Although Taylor weighed just shy of 144 pounds for this bout, his promoter, Joe DeGuardia of Star Boxing, says the hope is for Taylor to get another opportunity down the line at junior welterweight unless something of note is offered at welterweight.

Acuna is now 16-19 with 12 KOs if you go by BoxRec or 15-19 with 11 KOs if you go by the official bout sheet.

Pick up a copy of David’s book, “Fighting Words: The Heart and Heartbreak of Boxing,” at http://bit.ly/fightingwordsamazon or internationally at http://bit.ly/fightingwordsworldwide. Send questions/comments via email at [email protected]

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