By John G. Thompson: Last night, Oscar De La Hoya’s Fight Night Club from Club Nokia in Los Angeles, California featured several short but action packed bouts, headlined by Frankie “The Pit Bull” Gomez who scored an impressive first round knockout. In other action from Club Nokia, Fidel Maldonado, Jr. also stopped his opponent in the first and Ernesto Ocon stopped his man in the third. What made Gomez’s knockout so impressive was the Tyson-like speed with which it happened. The event was broadcast live on Fox Sports.
Frankie Gomez (9-0, 7 KO’s) and Jason Davis (11-9-1, 3 KO’s) both came out aggressive, and just fourteen seconds into the round Gomez connected with a left hook and followed it up immediately with an overhand right to Davis’ temple. Davis was lucky to go down when he did as another huge left hook narrowly missed him as he fell. Davis was unable to beat the count by Referee Raul Caiz, Sr. From Vancouver, Washington, Davis has now lost eight of his last nine bouts, with the one exception being a no contest. Though to be fair to Davis, his losses came against excellent competition in Joel Casamayor, Breidis Prescott, Ernesto Zavala, Mauricio Herrera, Steve Forbes, and Joan Guzman (no contest) to name a few. At just nineteen years of age, Frankie Gomez from East Los Angeles now has his fourth first round stoppage in nine fights.
Fidel Maldonado, Jr. (10-0, 9 KO’s) from Albuquerque, New Mexico also scored a first round knockout, stopping Jorge Cardero (4-7, 4 KO’s) of Puerto Rico. Maldonado came out throwing fast hard hooks, which immediately backed Cardero into the ropes. Cardero managed to cover up well, blocking many of Maldonado’s punches with his arms and gloves. Then Cardero tried to exchange, and paid the price for leaving himself open. Cardero threw a right, but the southpaw Maldonado countered with a hard left and Cardero hit the canvas. Cardero was up quickly, but when Referee Raul Caiz, Sr. asked him if he was okay, he got no response, prompting Caiz to wave off the fight. It seemed like an odd stoppage with Cardero up on his feet and seemingly okay, but there was no argument from Cardero over the stoppage.
Local Los Angelino Ernesto Ocon (3-0, 2 KO’s) pleased the fans who came out to see him by stopping Puerto Rican Miguel Pizarro (1-2, 0 KO’s) who now resides in San Antonio, Texas. Ocon, a southpaw, worked behind the right jab in the first and second rounds, not really connecting with it, but using it as a measuring stick for his harder shots and combinations. Ocon came out more determined in the third round, catching Pizarro with a straight left during an exchange which seemed to hurt Pizarro. Ocon smelled the win and came in throwing as Pizarro covered his head and went back to the ropes. Ocon showed great ring intelligence for a twenty-three year old fighter, seeing that Pizarro was in trouble and covering his head, Ocon wisely chose to go under Pizarro’s guard and land to the body. Ocon planted his feet and ripped to Pizarro’s ribs with precise haymaker hooks and uppercuts until Pizarro went down. Referee Jack Reiss counted Pizarro out before he could get up.
Ramon Valdez (8-1, 4 KO’s) from East Los Angeles has now won seven straight since losing a unanimous decision in Club Nokia in July of last year. His opponent, Rafael Lora (11-5, 5 KO’s) made it a close match even though two of the judges scored the six round contest a shutout for Valdez (as did I). Lora, from the Dominican Republic and now living in New Jersey, was a game competitor, moving well, throwing as many if not more punches than Valdez, though Valdez landed the harder shots with greater accuracy. Ringside commentator Doug Fischer said it best of Valdez in the second round, “His hook is more compact and it’s more accurate; it’s getting there first.” Fischer was referring mainly to Valdez’s left hook, which won him the close rounds. The third judge only gave Lora one round, awarding Valdez the unanimous decision.
Also in action Alfonso Blanco (5-0, 2 KO’s), originally from Venezuela but now living in Oxnard, CA, won a four round unanimous decision over Mexican Juan Carlos Diaz (7-13, 6 KO’s). This win does not speak much of Blanco’s power, as Diaz had been stopped five times in his career. Diaz has now lost his eighth straight bout.