ringside recap by Ken Hissner
On August 4, 2016 – Kings Promotions and Premier Boxing Champions put on a good show at South Philadelphia’s 2300 Arena. This live ESPN telecast consisted of an interesting mix of fighters. The bout sheet including multiple Philly fighters but the card was built around a couple of West Coast prospects with true potential to make a run at the higher level.
Philly’s Naim Nelson from the Fast Lane Boxing Gym made the TV portion of the show, slidding in to the co-feature on less than 24 hours notice after Ireland’s Stephen Ormond failed to make-weight for his fight against Alejandro Luna. It can be argued that Luna received a much tougher fight from the late fill in.
Other action of local interest included North Philadelphian Tyrone Brunson in a knockdown, drag out affair with a tough Mexican fighter, fellow North Philly resident Jerome Conquest is a tight one against a New Yorker, and youngsters Kieran Hooks and Jeffrey Torres making their professional debuts.
In the Main Event 19 year-old David “El Bandera Roja” Benavidez, 16-0 (15), Phoenix, AZ, stopped southpaw Denis “Momma’s Boy” Douglan, 20-5 (13), formerly out of Marlboro, NJ, now residing in Las Vegas, NV, at 0:45 of the tenth and final round.
This was an interesting bout with Douglan taking the first two rounds using his jab well. Once Benavidez got warmed up he showed his power taking rounds three through round six. He hurt Douglan on several occasions with right upper cuts to the chin.
Douglan took over the next two rounds as it looked like Benavidez who never completed seven rounds was biding his time until the ninth round when he dropped Douglan who barely beat the count of referee Gary Rosato when the bell sounded. Benavidez stormed out in the tenth and final round landing close to a dozen punches with Douglan against the ropes causing referee Rosato to call a halt.
Benavidez comes from a fighting family turning professional at 16 and is one to watch in the future with the power he has.
In the co-feature Super lightweight Alejandro Luna, 21-0 (15), Bellflower, CA, was in a war with Philadelphia’s Naim “The Dream” Nelson, 13-2 (1), winning a 10 round decision.
The opening round was filled with both fighters letting it all hang out. Nelson held his hands high and Luna had a problem going to the head until just before the bell when he landed a power right to the chin of Nelson.
In the second round, Luna was landing upper cuts to the chin while Nelson consistently landed 3-punch combinations. In the third round Luna had swelling over his left eye. Luna continues landing solid hooks to the body of Nelson who counters well. Luna is the stronger of the two but Nelson has the heart of a lion.
In the fourth round Luna turned southpaw and jabbed following with straight lefts while Nelson came back with combinations. Nelson’s nose was red from the jabs of Luna.
In the fifth round Luna’s left eye was close to shutting which is the reason he changed to fighting southpaw due to his vision. He continued to out land Nelson 3-1. In the sixth round Luna continued to stalk Nelson working to the head and body. Nelson is landing rights to the left eye of Luna trying to close it. Luna fought this round orthodox. In the seventh round it was more of the same with Nelson covering up and landing combinations while Luna never stops coming forward being the harder puncher of the two.
In the eighth round with Luna having his hands low Nelson got in a good straight lead right. It was a close round to score with Nelson having his best round so far. In the ninth round Luna continues being a “body snatcher”. Nelson is countering well with Luna continuing coming forward. Luna dares Nelson to stop moving and slug it out which is Luna’s game.
In the tenth and final round Nelson’s nose is bleeding and has a small cut on his hair-line. Luna is trying for the knockout but Nelson hangs in there as tough as nails. Luna seemed disappointed he didn’t score a stoppage.
Judge Lindsay Page had it 98-92, Dave Braslow 97-93, Dewey La Rosa 99-91 as did this writer. Nelson is possibly the nicest boxer you would want to meet. Where he lacks power he makes it up with heart. Referee was Shawn Clark.
Nelson was placed into the main event when Stephen Ormond fell out. Nelson was schedule to fight in a six round bout moving up to ten for the third time in his career.
In the swing bout Philadelphia lightweight southpaw Jerome Conquest, 6-2 (1), lost by close decision to Victor Vasquez, 6-2 (2), Yonkers, NY, over 6 rounds.
From the opening round thru round 4 Vasquez came forward with hands down and Conquest boxing well, backing up and countering but with little power compared to Vasquez punches.
In the fifth round Conquest sensing he is behind picks up the action. In the sixth and final round Vasquez started show boating doing the shuffle and on the run easily giving Conquest the round. Clark was the referee.
All 3 judges scored it 58-56. This writer had it 57-57.
In the fight of the night Junior middleweight “Young Gun” Tyrone Brunson, 23-6-1 (17), of Philadelphia, came off the canvas twice knocking out Carlos Garcia, 10-17-1 (8), Aguada, MEX, at 0:25 of the fourth round. He also had Garcia down in the second round.
In the opening round Brunson landed an overhand right to the chin of Garcia, dropping him. As Garcia got up the bell sounded.
In the second round it was Garcia’s turn dropping Brunson with a left hook to the chin. Brunson was hurt. After mixing it up a little Garcia landed a right to the chin dropping Brunson a second time putting the Philadelphians head under the bottom rope.
In the third round Brunson ducked into a left hook rocking him. Brunson landed a solid left hook followed by a right to the head of Garcia. In the fourth round Brunson landed a powerful left hook to the chest dropping Garcia who took the count from referee Clark on his knees.
In Super middleweight action – Edward “The Hunter” Ortiz, 1-0-1 (1), San Antonio, TX, fought to a majority draw with Darryl Bunting, 2-0-2 (1), of Asbury Park, NJ, over 4 rounds
In the opening round the much taller southpaw Ortiz pinned Bunting against the ropes throughout the round. Bunting was able to get a good left hook in to the jaw of Ortiz while against the ropes. In the second round both fighters mixed it up well with Ortiz gaining the edge.
In the third round they both continued to mix it up good with Ortiz landing more punches. In the fourth and final round Bunting outworked Ortiz trying to pull out the fight.
Judges had it 39-37 Bunting and a pair of 38-38’s. This writer had Ortiz in front 39-37. Referee was Dali. Dr. Brian Raditz worked the corner who was the physician for Tony Ayala, Jr.
The father of Ortiz was very disappointed with his son’s performance when questioned why Ortiz did not use his jab more. “He usually does but not tonight,” said Ortiz.
In other action Junior middleweight Kieran Hooks, 1-0 (0), of Philadelphia came off the canvas in the first round to defeat Miguel Martinez, 2-2 (0), Reading, PA, over 4 rounds.
The much taller Hooks used his reach holding off Martinez at bay. Martinez dropped Hooks with a right to the chin. Martinez continued to go after Hooks who recovered from the knockdown.
In the second round it was all Hooks backing Martinez up with jabs and an occasional right to the head. In the third round it was all Hooks rocking Martinez on several occasions with hard rights to the head. He drew blood from the nose of Martinez. In the fourth and final round Martinez did his best but it was all Hooks.
Hooks rocked Martinez with a right uppercut to the chin.
Referee was Clark. All 3 Judges had it 38-37 as did this writer.
In the evenings opening bout Philadelphia lightweight Jeffrey Torres, 1-0 (1) scored 3 knock-down in stopping Mariano Rolon, 0-1 (1) of Reading, PA, at 2:23 of the opening round.
Torres dropped Mariano Rolan for the first time with a left hook to the rib cage. The next knockdown was a right uppercut to the jaw. The third and final knockdown was a left hook to the body. Rolon rose to his feet but referee Dali wisely waved it off.