Saturday, January 27, 2018

Evander Holyfield's Real Deal Showcase Series I - Friday, January 26, 2018 (Philadelphia, PA)

Numerous stars of boxing were out last night in Philadelphia for Evander Holyfield's The Real Deal Boxing show. Evander Holyfield, Larry Holmes, Michael Spinks, Buster Drayton, Bert Cooper, Kevin Howard, Lionel Byarm, and Jacqui Frazier-Lyde were all in attendance to see the promotion's inaugural show at the SugarHouse Casino in South Philadelphia. The card featured seven professional bouts in weight classes ranging from lightweight to cruiserweight.

The opening bout of the evening featured welterweights, Janelson Bocachica (9-0-0, 6 KOs) and Victor Eddy Gaytan (2-4-0, 1 KO) in a six round bout. In the first round, Bocachica fought aggressively and pinned his opponent against the ropes with a barrage of punches. Mexico's Gaytan was knocked down in the second round by a Bocachica right hand to the head. The Mexican recovered from this knockdown to fight valiantly through the next two rounds. In the fifth round, it was evident that his opponent's punches were taking their toll physically on Gaytan, who had bad swelling under his right eye. The end came at the 13 second mark of the fifth round when Detroit's Bocachica connected with another hard right to the head that sent his opponent to the canvas. This was Bocachica's second straight win by knockout.

Middleweights, Edgar Berlanga (7-0-0, 7 KOs) and Jaime Barboza (19-14-0, 9 KOs) were scheduled to fight in a six round bout. The New York native, Berlanga, looking to preserve his knockout streak had other plans for the length of the fight as he went on the offensive from the opening bell. Early in the first round, Barboza was knocked down by a left upper cut to the head. He recovered from this knockdown only to be knocked out by a vicious multi-punch combo to the head and body at the 2:42 mark of the first round.

The third bout of the evening featured local prospect, Brandon Robinson (9-1-0, 7 KOs) and Juan Celin Zapata (5-12-2, 3 KOs) of the Bronx, New York. Robinson made quick work of his opponent by knocking him out with a right hand to the head at the 1:50 mark of the first round of the super middleweight bout that was scheduled for six rounds. Robinson has now won nine straight fights since losing his professional debut in 2016 to Trenton's Mike Hilton.

Kennedy Katende (3-0, 1 KO) and Lyubomyr Pinchuk (4-1, 3 KOs) fought in the first and only fight to go to the judges' scorecards last night. The cruiserweights fought in a six round bout in which Katende controlled a bulk of the action. Pinchuk, the lengthy Ukranian fighter, was knocked down in the first round by a Katende left hook to the head. Pinchuk recovered from the knockdown, and stayed on his feet for the remainder of the contest. Katende controlled the tempo of the fight by effectively working his opponent's body. Pinchuk landed a series of multi-punch combos on his opponent, but the shots lacked power. Two judges scored the bout 59-54, with the third judge scoring the contest 58-55 all in favor of the winner by unanimous decision Kennedy Katende.

Philadelphia's Poindexter Knight (2-0, 2 KOs) fought Sunbury, Pennsylvania's Jordan Morales (2-4, 2 KOs) in a welterweight bout that was scheduled for four rounds. Knight came out as the aggressor after the opening bell rang, and bullied his opponent from the outset. Morales was knocked down by a Knight left hand to the head in the first round. Morales, clearly shaken from this knockdown, rose from the canvas only to be knocked out soon after by a two-punch combo of a left and right hand to the head that sent him crashing down to the canvas at the 2:19 mark of the first round.

The co-main event of the evening featured a welterweight contest between Jaron Ennis (18-0-0, 16 KOs) and Gustavo Garibay (13-10-2, 5 KOs). Philadelphia's Ennis appeared to hurt Garibay in the first round with a multi-punch combo, but the tough Mexican fighter managed to stay on his feet. Ennis dominated the second round, and closed out the round's action with a brutal multi-punch combo that was highlighted with big left and right hooks. Garibay answered the third round bell despite showing the damage on his face from the previous two rounds. Garibay took more damage in the third round, but the fighter managed to survive the round. Ennis continued to viciously beat Garibay throughout the fourth round. The referee stopped the bout after Ennis landed a hard right hook to Garibay's head. The action ended at the 2:14 mark of the fourth of six rounds, with Ennis winning by TKO.

The main event of the evening featured Philadelphia prospect, Steven Ortiz (8-0-, 3 KOs) and Washington D. C.'s Joshua Davis (11-3, 5 KO's). The two lightweights fought for the WBF North American Regional Junior Lightweight Title in a bout that was scheduled for eight rounds. Ortiz controlled the action through just under two rounds of boxing. In the second round, Ortiz sent Davis to the canvas three times. The first knockdown came after Ortiz connected with a left hook to Davis' head. The second knockdown came after Ortiz landed a brutal multi-punch combo to the head and body of his opponent. The third and final knockdown was the result of an Ortiz right hand to Davis' head. Referee Gary Rosato called an end to the bout at the 2:21 mark of the second round.

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