Video by Ryan Burton
Las Vegas - The first Las Vegas born world champion, Ishe "Sugar Shay" Smith (29-8, 12 KOs) defeated Frank "Notorious" Galarza (17-2-2, 11 KOs) via majority decision in his hometown from The Chelsea inside The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas in the main event of Premier Boxing Champions (PBC): The Next Round on Bounce TV.
"I had to dig deep. This was the first time in a very long time I had to dig deep," said Smith of his victory. "They kept telling me in my corner that its was close. He came to win, but in the end I got the victory."
Smith and Galarza used the first round to feel each other out, but the action picked up in the second as Smith threw a straight right hand that dropped Galarza to the canvas.
"He caught me off balance and it turned out to be a knockdown. I think that made the difference in the whole fight honestly."
Galarza came back swinging in the fourth, pressing Smith against the ropes with a tight combination of punches. Smith controlled the fifth round throwing hard blows to the body of Galarza followed by a hard left hook to end the round. The tides turned in the seventh round as Galarza pinned Smith against the ropes with a flurry of body punches. But it was the tenth and final round that sealed a win for Smith as he land punch after punch. Judges saw the bout 95-95, 96-93 and 95-94.
"Young guys feel like I'm old. They like to apply pressure, but I set him up with the traps. I got comfortable in the middle rounds he turned it up a gear and applied pressure I wasn't ready for," continued Smith. "It took me a round or two to get adjusted, once I got adjusted I thought I did real well and was able to close the show. I was surprised in the 95-95 and 95-94, I was thinking wow if I didn't get that knockdown it may have swayed his way for the victory.
"Training with the best like Floyd, Bernard Hopkins, it has allowed me to learn. I have learned so much from the greatest fighter in the world, and pick up something from each of them. I am thankful I was able to pick up a lot along the way in my career."
Galarza felt as though he had to do much more to get the win.
"I'm in his hometown, Vegas, its his promotion. Those little slip ups were going to cost me the fight. I had to be active, be in his chest, stay busy. There were moments where I was doing that, but I let some of it go at times.
"I think the knockdown made me want to press on the gas and start pushing. He is awkward. He's wide. He's all over the place and I didn't want to get hit with any silly punches.
"It happens. It's one of those things where we have to go back to the drawing board and we will be back at it again."