The Standing Eight Count: Ringside Report at The Pechanga
By Dave Wilcox
The Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula, Ca. played host to “Shobox: The Next Generation” and Gary Shaw Productions, LLC for a night of Boxing on Friday Night. In the main event, The NABF Super Flyweight Championship was up for grabs. Kahren Harutyunyan from Glendale, Ca. squared off against “The Filipino Flash” Nonito Donaire of San Leandro, Ca.
Donaire started quickly in round one and was the more effective fighter. He worked his jab nicely and took the round by a slim margin. In round two, the action picked up. Donaire landed a short hook/uppercut catching Harutyunyan coming in and he went down. Harutyunyan got up quickly and appeared to be ok. Donaire tried to finish him, but by the end of the round, Harutyunyan had completely gained his composure and was throwing back and landing right hands to the head of Donaire.
In round three, Harutyunyan reminded Donaire that he was in fact fully recovered from the knockdown in round two when he landed a big right hand that sent Donaire stumbling backwards. Even though Kahren Harutyunyan’s record shows no knockout in his 13 victories, his seemed to have nice power to me at ringside. Donaire was able to recover from that nice shot and got back to business. It seemed to me that Donaire was being too sloppy in there and his hands were too low. In contrast, Harutyunyan was keeping his hands up nicely, but it appeared he was going to have to throw more punches to be effective against “The Flash”.
Round four began and Nonito Donaire looked to make his move. He landed some vicious body shots that seemed to slow down Kahren . Donaire was hitting his stride and Harutyunyan looked to be getting tired.
Rounds five through eight were very hard to score. Donaire landed more effective shots, but Harutyunyan seemed to be the better conditioned fighter as the fight wore on. His problem was that he was just not throwing enough punches. He dug himself into a hole with the knockdown he suffered in round two. My card was close going into round nine, but it seemed clear that Harutyunyan would need to score a knockout to win. Unfortunately for him, Donaire didn’t want to play ball and came out strong in round nine, as Harutyunyan seemed to be a very tired fighter.
As the two came to the center of the ring to touch gloves to start the tenth and final round, I had the fight scored 86-83 in favor of Nonito Donaire. It seemed Harutyunyan had a similar card in his head, because he came out fast and tried to get Donaire out of there. He fought a nice tenth round up until the final 15 seconds when Donaire landed three big left hooks that stunned Kahren again. Three punches don’t when a round, so I still gave the tenth round to Harutyunyan by the slimmest of margins. As the saying goes, it was too little, too late for him at that point.
The final cards read 97-92, 97-92 and 94-95 for the winner and new NABF Super Flyweight belt holder, Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire. This was a hard fought battle between two good looking prospects. Both guys are young at 23 years old. They put on a nice fight and I’m sure both guys will be appearing on a TV near you again soon.
Donaire improved to 14-1, 8 ko’s.
Harutyunyan fell to 13-3-3, 0 ko’s
Tyrone Harris vs. Israel Hernandez
In the other bout televised on Showtime, hot Lightweight prospect Tyrone Harris was to have his coming out party. He is a fighter who people have been talking about quite a bit. The majority of his fights have been in small cities and Tyrone hasn’t had the exposure that most felt he deserved. This night on Showtime, a star would be born. Or so I thought. Harris came out in the first in his southpaw stance and he pumped his stiff jab in the face of Israel Hernandez. It became apparent from the beginning of the fight that Harris’ straight left hand could land all day. He worked it effectively in round one and won the round decisively. In round two, something strange happened. Hernandez settled down and it started to feel that he was physically stronger than Harris. I gave Harris round two by a close margin, but it was a much better round than the first when it appeared Hernandez might be outclassed by the talented Tyrone Harris.
The bell for round three rang and excitement would begin. Hernandez landed a nice left hook that stunned Harris badly. Tyrone was against the ropes and in big trouble. Hernadez closed in and tried to end the evening. Harris showed his heart and fought back, but when the round ended, it appeared Harris was in very bad shape. Harris came out fast in round four, but he had nothing on his punches at this point. Hernandez would land the first of what seemed like ten straight uppercuts that would be the end of Tyrone Harris. Hernadez would continue battering Harris until the final uppercut put Harris down hard. He gamely got up at the count of eight, but he was not all there. Referee David Mendoza wisely stopped the fight at 1:16 of round four.
Coming in to the fight, we were expecting to see the next lightweight star. I think we still might have, his name is Israel Hernandez. He is a very physically strong Lightweight with knockout power. For Tyrone Harris, he is still a nice prospect. With his talent and character, I’m sure he will be back. If David Mendoza lets that fight continue, it could have done long term damage to the mental well being and physical health of Tyrone Harris. So often we find ourselves back mouthing referees. I just once wanted to praise a guy for a job well done.
Israel Hernandez of Mexico improves his record to 12-1-1, 12 ko’s
Tyrone Harris falls to 14-1, 12 ko’s
In a ten round Welterweight bout former IBA and WBA champ Vivian Harris from Brooklyn, New York was on the undercard looking to keep busy and regain his old form. His opponent this night was “Too Sweet” Marteze Logan from Covington, Tennessee. Logan had Leopard shorts, a cool nickname and played around in the ring real well. Unfortunately, he didn’t throw any punches. Vivian Harris is a professional fighter at the top of the game and he showed Logan that Friday night. If this was a track meet or fashion show, I would have scored unanimous for Logan. As it was, Harris dominated every round and coasted to an easy decision victory. In round six a point was taken from Logan for hitting behind the head. All three judges had the fight scored 100-89, a unanimous victory for Former Champ Vivian Harris.
Harris 26-2-1, 17 ko’s
Logan 22-20-2, 5 ko’s
Casal vs. Noyola
Undefeated Junior Welterweight prospect Nick Casal of Niagra Falls, New York improved to 12-0 with ten knockouts with unanimous decision over Jose Noyola of Mexico. (23-5, 12 ko’s) In this six round affair, Casal overmatched the sloppy Noyola and won a clear cut unanimous decision over six rounds. In round four, Casal scored a knockdown and Noyola had a point taken away for hitting behind the head. A 10-7 round for Casal. My favorite score of the fight was in the sixth and final round when I scored my first ever 9-9 round at a live event. Casal won the round as per usual, but he was penalized for using his shoulder. The referee took a point from Casal and there you have 9-9. All three judges scored the bout 59-52 in favor of Nick Casal.
Barralleza vs. Sanchez
Undefeated Abel Barralleza of Mexico took on his fellow countryman Manual Sanchez in a six round Featherweight bout. All three judges scored the fight 58-56 for the winner Abel Barralleza.
He improves his record to 8-0 with 3 ko’s
Sanchez falls to 2-2-1 with 1 ko
Turtain vs. Gallegos
In a female bout that followed the televised card, myself and the janitor stayed to watch the Welterweight action as undefeated Tricia Turtain of Seattle took on Tanya Gallegos of Denver, Colorado. In a painful display of no Boxing ability whatsoever, these two young ladies went the distance in the scheduled four rounder. Turtain came away with the unanimous decision victory. All three judges had it scored 39-37.
-after writing the name Harutyunyan about a hundred times today, I can’t believe I still don’t know how to spell it.
-if ugly scored points, the female fight would have been the best on the card.
-This was another nice card from Showtime. They seem to be putting more distance between their shows and those of HBO with every telecast. I think HBO’s attitude of names vs. nobodies has seen better days. Showtime seems to match guys in a more competitive manner and it has been a pleasure to watch. The competition of the two networks can only help our cause as Boxing fans. HBO will need to step it up to take away the momentum that Showtime has gained over the past couple years. The competition should make for some exciting stuff this year.
-Did Zab Judah really spend five minutes explaining how he doesn’t make excuses and then go on to blame Don King for making him promote his fight? I have some news for Mr. Judah. He needs to promote your fights heavily because you have a limited following. It is not a coincidence that Zab’s title defenses are usually on undercards. I’ve seen some dumb things in Boxing for sure, but Zab’s “biting the hand that feeds you” routine was a classic for sure.