In front of a packed house at Club Nokia at L.A. LIVE on Tuesday night in downtown Los Angeles, Premier Boxing Champions kicked off nPBC On FOX Fight Week In Los Angeles with an exciting fight card on TOE-TO-TOE TUESDAYS on FS1 and BOXEO DE CAMPEONES on FOX Deportes.
Headlining the card, undefeated welterweight Jamal James of Burnsville, Minnesota (19-0, 9 KOs), won a 10-round unanimous decision over local favorite Javier Molina, (17-2, 8 KOs). Scores (99-91, 98-92 and 97-93) were surprisingly wide as most ringside observers thought it was a much closer fight.
Battling from the opening bell, James and Molina each had success with swift jabs and power shots throughout the first half of the fight. The intensity continued in the second half with both fighters sensing the bout was hanging in the balance of each stanza.
Said James, “I thought when he first came out in the first couple of rounds, it was pretty close. He was making it a tough fight. As the fight went on, I got him to fight my fight. I kept him on the outside.
“I stuck to my game plan. I felt like I should have been busier. He had some tricky movement with his feet. The range was tough. I had a hard time finding my range, but once I found it, everything fell into place.
“I believe I did gain a lot of fans tonight and I can’t wait to get back in the ring.”
Stated Molina, “I thought it was a close fight. I had a game plan, but I should have stayed inside more. He got wild and I stayed there and let him go out I started locking up. He would throw some punches that I shouldn’t have let him. I didn’t really do what I had to do.
“I didn’t feel like the scorecards were fair. One judge only gave me one round. No way that was right. Either way I think I fought a good fight.
“I felt like I had a lot of people behind me. I am bummed out and I feel like I let them down. I didn’t pull it off. I just hope I gave them an exciting fight.”
Middleweight prospect Caleb Plant of Nashville, Tenn. (12-0, 9 KOs) stayed undefeated with an entertaining sixth-round stoppage of Spain’s Adatar Rodriguez (11-5-2, 7 KOs).
Plant showed excellent technique and defense keeping Rodriguez off-balance with an array of power shots. Battering the valiant Rodriguez who suffered two facial cuts, Plant earned the stoppage as the one-sided bout was stopped at 2:37 of the sixth round.
“My performance was great. We are always looking to get better. I stayed patient,” said Plant. “I’ve fought on five or six PBC cards. It’s a blessing.
“I want to dedicate this to my daughter Leah in heaven. She passed last year on January 29. The anniversary is 10 days away and she gives me a lot of motivation.
“I want to get back in the gym and get back as soon as I can. I’m not interested in taking time off. I’m a professional and this is what I do day in and day out.”
In a scheduled six round super middleweight clash, knockout artist Malcolm McAllister (7-0, 7 KOs) who represented nearby Long Beach knocked out Tyrone Selders of Baton Rouge, LA (9-7-1, 6 KOs) in the third stanza. Dropped in the first round, Cobb also suffered a cut over his right yet as McAllister set a relentless pace.
Continuing to batter Selders in the next two rounds, McAllister was awarded the victory as referee Zachary Young stopped the bout at the 2:39 mark of the third round.
Stated McAllister, “I am always going to do what I have to do. I’m happy I beat a tough guy. I’m a fighter. I come to fight. I don’t care where it is, we come to fight. It’s a great opportunity and being on TV is a bonus.
“This is my backyard. There were more people here supporting me and cheering me on than I expected. That was a great feeling.”
Opening the telecast, undefeated super middleweight prospect David Benavidez of Phoenix (12-0, 11 KOs) stopped Burlington, VT’s Kevin Cobb, (10-2, 4 KOs) in the second round of their scheduled eight-round battle. Using heavy handed left hooks to the body, Benavidez controlled the action from the opening bell.
Staggering Cobb with an overhand right in the middle of the second round, Benavidez followed up with a full arsenal of power shots causing referee Raul Caiz Jr. to stop the bout at the time of 1:08.
About the victory, Benavidez said “I feel great we had a great training camp. If you saw my fight, I looked great as well. Phoenix has always had a lot of great talent, but not that many guys come out of Phoenix and I am proud of making a name for myself.
“I knew I was going to get my opponent out that fast. I saw him fight. He doesn’t have that many skills. He was running a lot in the first round and that’s why I didn’t get him out there sooner. As soon as I got my hands on him…it was goodnight.”
Four of the fighters featured on this Saturday’s Premier Boxing Champions on FOX event were also on hand enjoying the fights to kick off their fight week.
“There are some great fights tonight. I am happy my fighter Tommy Velasquez won by fourth round knockout. I am happy to be here.
“I am proud of my fighter, he had an excellent performance and got the guy out of there.
“This is a great week to start off my fight week, with a team win. The momentum is building and I can’t wait for Saturday night.”
“There are some great fights here and tough competitors. It makes me more excited for Saturday’s fights.
“This is where you need to showcase your skills. On TV is where you need to be dominant, you need to be 100 percent on your A game. If you’re not, it gives someone else an opportunity to take your spot.
“I don’t get to watch fights as a fan as much as I would like so this is a real treat for me.”
“This is a great way to kick off fight week. FS1 is here in town in downtown LA.
“I am excited about the workout tomorrow, press conference and the weigh-in. All of the activities coming up.
“These fights have been great so far. Guys going punch for punch, blow for blow, cut for cut.”
“My last fighter was Gerald Washington and he was taller than Breazeale. So you have to make adjustments for taller guys, but I’ve been fighting taller guys. you will see some definite changes in my game plan.
“I thought I won my last fight. I want to take the judges out of the equation.
“It’s sad that you’re putting your all into something. You’re making sacrifices and then you get in a situation that you have to knock the guy out.
“I’m surprised Breazeale took this fight. I’ve faced better competition.
“I’m really happy to be here and cheer on these up and coming fighters and start fight week watching some great fights.”