It was that time again.
All-Star Promotions, once again, set-up an electrifying night at the Quiet Cannon in Montebello, CA.
Amateur boxers with jobs to financially support their passion and families and friends filled the venue to support their boxer. These were athletes with a mission: to showcase their hardwork. Seemingly, these are “normal” people that you would see walking on the street. Someone you would see working at a gas station. A waiter, an accountant, a real estate agent, your co-worker, your neighbor…you never know.
Thanks to CEO of All-Star, Ed Holmes and VP of All-Star, Pete Hironaka I was given the opportunity to cover the event as part of the press.
The night was…an interesting night.
There was, obviously, boxing, interviews with boxing promoter of K2 Promotions, Tom Loeffler and boxing coach, Abel Sanchez to discuss the upcoming fight with Gennady “GGG” Golovkin vs. David Lemieux and Cotto vs. Canelo, sprinkle in a couple of fan fights during the interviews, and, more boxing.
First fight of the night was Isaac Freeman vs. Ernest Muhammed. Round 1 had Freeman dominating. Freeman managed to knockdown Muhammed. But, eventually, Muhammed got the hint and picked up the speed. Round 2 was just a straight up brawl, with Muhammed putting up a solid defense, but with Freeman coming in to attack. Muhammed backed Freeman up, but the tables were turned once again as Freeman pushed Muhammed against the ropes. Despite the attempt for a come back, it was obvious that Muhammed was fighting to survive.
Round 3? Well, I realized just how close I was when blood, sweat, and spit began to rain on me. Imagine a tiny Filipino girl jumping out of her seat trying to write about the fight all the while trying to look as professional as possible.
Round 4 had Muhammed trying to stay alive, by listening to his supporters to “push forward”.
In a surprising turn of events, Muhammed actually won the fight by UD, with the judges scoring the fight at 40-36, 39-37, and 39-37.
As I was preparing to take notes for the next fight, Pete Hironaka came up to me to tell me that Tom Loeffler and Abel Sanchez agreed for an interview (the boxinghead fangirl in me was livid). Without hesitation, I immediately jumped at the opportunity.
Let me first say, that Tom Loeffler and Abel Sanchez were complete and utter gentlemen. They had a busy day the next day, so the fact that were willing to speak with me for a good 20 minutes or so meant a lot. They were very patient with me and, despite fans suddenly getting into their own brawl near us, they still acted like everything was normal and listened to my questions (even though my excitement caused me to speak faster than usual) and continued the interview.
With the Golovkin vs. Lemieux looming closer, it meant that Golovkin’s schedule was on crunch time. “We’re going to fly to New York on Monday, October 12th,” Golovkin’s promoter Tom Loeffler said, “we’re going to fly early in the morning and then we’re gonna be there all week.” The fight is to take place on October 17, 2015 at Madison Square Garden in New York, New York.
That week included the weigh-in and press conference. “The media workouts going to be on Tuesday, the press-conference on Wednesday, and the weigh-in’s on Friday.” Loeffler explained.
Despite speculation on Golovkin’s age, retirement was not an issue, “No, no,” Loeffler said with confidence, “He still has so much to accomplish in boxing.” No doubt, is true. Golovkin may be in his 30’s, but the man fights like he’s still in his prime.
Golovkin going against a younger fighter is not much of an issue either according to his trainer, Abel Sanchez. “No,” Sanchez explained, “when they step into the ropes, youth has very little to do with it.”
Loeffler did not underestimate Golovkin’s opponent, David Lemieux either, “David Lemieux we have to give a lot of credit to,” Loeffler continued, “because he’s the first champion to have ever to agree to fight Gennady.” Many people have speculated that Golovkin’s opponents have always been sub-par compared to him. The Golovkin vs. Lemieux fight was a pleasant surprise.
As for Golovkin’s plan of attack? “I’ve always been the kind of coach that believes that I have to have my guy prepared to be 100% Gennady and the other guy is gonna have to adapt to us.”
Even more so with the announcement of Golovkin vs. Lemieux, the winner of the bout is designated to fight the winner of the Cotto vs. Canelo fight, which is to take place on November 11, 2015 at the Mandalay Bay Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Cotto vs. Canelo was not much of a secret. However, a official announcement was “delayed”, so to speak, due to debates on where the fight would take place. Options included New York and Texas, with it finally being settled in Las Vegas.
The winner’s of both fights are expected to fight early to mid next year.
Not wanting to keep them any further, I thanked them and went my merry way. (Watch the interviews below for more!)
As luck would have it, I made it back inside just in time for the main event of the night: Gaku Takahashi vs. Adrian Granados.
Takahashi trains at Boxing Hall of Fame’s Freddie Roach gym, the Wild Card Gym, in Los Angeles, CA.
Round 1 began a little slow, with very little action. Round 2 picked up some speed, with Granados attackng. Takashi fights back. Takahahsi, showing his strong chin, seems unfazed by Granados headshots.
Granads landed some solid body shots in round 4, throwing Takahashi off balance. Takahasi simply laughs it off and taunts Granados. Takahashi manages to push Granados against the ropes, but Granados is saved my the bell.
Takahashi is shown to be bleeding on his upper right eyebrow in round 5. Takahashi, once again, taunts Granados to come at him, emitting a laugh from the crowd.
By round 7, Takahashi’s face looks really beaten up. Granados, known for his KO rate, was looking for one. It was’t looking too good for Takahashi, as he looks desperate with sloppy punches.
In the final round, Takahashi has Granados against the ropes. The ref pauses the fight to have Takahashi’s eyebrow examined. The fight resumes once again, with Takahashi throwing punches, but Granados is unfazed.
Surprisngly, the fight ends with no KO. What was no surprise wit Granados taking the UD win, with the judges scoring the fight at 80-72, 79-73, and 79-73.
Up next was Ronald Mixon vs. Lamont Williams.
Round 1 started off a little bit interesting as one of the fighter’s began to talk. This elicited a warning from the ref.
Mixon absoluely dominated the fight, knocking down Williams in round 2. Throughout the round, Mixon lands shots, causing Williams to slightly lose his balance and has Williams against the ropes.
The fight ends in round 3, with Mixon knocking out Williams. Mixon remains undefeated.
The next and final fight of the night, Lucius Johnson vs. Daniel Rodriguez, ended quickly in round 1.
Rodriguez trips, but laughs it off. Johnsons lands a body shot and causes Rodriguez to fall, but seems unfazed.
The ref still stops the fight, despite an angry and confused Rodriguez. The fight is considered a win by KO for Johnson.
At the end of the night, it was announced that the next All-Star is event was to take place during Thanksgiving weekend, which according to Pete Hironaka, was usually their “big event” since it was during the holiday weekend. However, this particular fight night was going to be at a different venue this time: The Bonaventure Hotel in Downown Los Angeles, CA.
The next All-Star Promotions event is to take place on November 28, 2015.