photos by Mike McGuigan
It was another shirt drencher at The Blue Horizon this weekend which was the home of an 8 fight card which can be best described as competitively mismatched.
On a card that had its ups and downs, the fans were treated to a couple of chin checking knockouts and saw some young fighters who have potential to climb the ladder in the future.
In the Main Event, Joey Abell returned to his home away from home to take on West Philly’s Levon Warner in what was supposed to be an 8 round fight. Brick City upstart Alex Perez made the trip down I-95 to put his undefeated record on the line against cagey ring veteran Darien Ford. Jules Blackwell looked to make a pound for pound list statement in his fight against Joe Rosa of the Bronx.
Gee Culmer stayed busy against James North in 6 round middleweight bout. SSG Sam Brown returned to The Blue to prepare for a 3rd tour of duty against undefeated heavyweight Ran Nakash.
Two young Philly kids got it on when Paul Fernandez and Jonathan Ocassio stepped into the ring for a scheduled four rounder. Steve Chambers returned to the ring after 9 months off to take on Jason Jordan who has lost to some of our best in the past.
Naji Murray looked to start his career 2 – 0 against Jeremy Lester of Ohio. In between fights, Steve “USS” Cunningham was honored for recently winning the IBF Cruiserweight title.
The fights were brought to you by Promoter Vernoca L. Michael and matchmaker Don Elbaum and can be seen on Comcast Sports Net in October.
Joey Abell…vs…Levon Warner
16 – 1, 16ko’s….6-4-1, 1ko
On paper, it was Minnesota Ice against the West Philly bad boy, southpaw against southpaw, the youngbuck against the veteran. In the ring it was completely one sided ironing as Abell smoked Warner out of there at 2:53 in the 1st round. Warner stormed out of the gate and tried to bring the fight right to the Minnesota lumberjack. This won him, oh, the first 20 seconds of the fight. After the inital rush, Abell settled in and used a jab for once which set up a traumatizing left hook that knocked Warner down very hard. To Warner’s credit he got back to his feet but was visibly dazed. Abell finished it off with a sizzling 3 punch combo seconds later. Miraculously, Warner was able to walk out on his own after the fight ended.
It was an exciting win no doubt, but is he ever going to avenge that loss to Arron Lyons?
Winner by TKO – Joey Abell who improves to 17 – 1, 17ko’s
Alex Perez…vs…Darien Ford
Newark, NJ……..New Oreleans
8-0, 6ko’s……..11-14, 4ko
In the co-feature, “The Brick City Bullet” Alex Perez and Darien Ford played really rough for the better part of two rounds until a hip toss which was somehow ruled an accidental foul left Ford on the canvas unable to continue resulting in a No Contest. This seemed to be a little bit of payback because Ford gave Perez two bad cuts early in the fight. Hopefully there will be a rematch, Ford was definitely showing that he is much better than his 11 – 14 record and ready to give Perez a stiff test.
Naji Murray…vs…Jeremy Lester
Naji Murray made Jeremy “Big Gun” Lester look like a tiny water pistol by scoring a huge knockout win early in the 1st round. In this 58 second fight, Murray scored his first knockdown with a big left hook to the ear. Lester got up but didn;t learn his lesson as he got clubbed with about 6 more big left hooks to the ear, the last of which polished Lester off and left him down for much longer than the needed 10 count.
With the win, Naji Murray climbs to 2 – 0.
Jules Blackwell started off a little slow but came on nicely down the stretch taking a unanimous decision win over Joe Rosa by scores of 40 – 36 across the board. After the second, Jules was 2 steps ahead of Rosa working upstairs and downstairs, mixing in good footwork to avoid being hit by anything Rosa threw.
With the win, Jules Blackwell raises his record to 5 – 0.
Gee Culmer won in typicial Gee Culmer fashion, and he was in James North’s chest like a heart surgeon. “The Thoroughbred” worked hard to the body and mixed in uppercuts at short range for just about every minute of the fight. North hung in there for the duration but he output was about 1/4th of what Gee gave him.
With the win, Gee Culmer climbs to 11 – 1.
Ran Nakash took a unanimous decision win over SSG Sam Brown by scores of 40 – 36 x2 and 39 – 37. SSG Brown gave good work to Nakash early showing off some technical ability, catching Nakash with jabs and moving out of range before fire could be returned.
The fight started to break down in the second with both fighters staying on the inside trading short rights and lefts. Ran came alive in the third and forth landing solid straight rights and uppercuts upstairs as Brown started to wear down.
With the win Nakash moves to 9 – 0. Now does he fight the winner of Brunelli vs Oaktree?
With the win, Ran Nakash is now 9 -0.
This fight opened the show but Paul Fernandez should be moved higher up the card after this one because he showed signs of developing into an exciting fighter who the crowd will get behind. This one started off nicely as both fighters traded punches but after a while it looked like the stage fright sunk in on Ocassio and that combined with the body work of Fernandez seemed to take its toll. There were no knockdowns but at 1:52 in the 3rd trainer Billy Briscoe saw enough and stopped the fight to save his man from further punishment.
With the win, Paul Fernandez is now 2 – 0 – 1.
Jr. Welterweight Division
Steve Chambers…vs…Jason Jordan
14 – 1, 4ko’s………4-12
If you like power punching and toe to toe exchanges, this was the fight to go step outside and have a smoke. If you like guys who move around the ring and score with punches, this was the fight for you. The fight was the same from the beginning with Steve using the entire ring and throwing light flurries, usually to the ear and Jordan would occasionally step forward and throw a 2 punch combo. When it was all said and done, “Showtime” Steve Chambers won a unanimous decision by scores of 60 – 54 x 2 and 59 – 55.
With the win, Steve Chambers is now 15 – 1.
If you have any questions, comments or suggestions you can email Philly Keith at firstname.lastname@example.org
Go to www.phillykeith.com for up to the minute info on the Philly boxing scene