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Former WBA super bantamweight champion Rico Ramos stormed back from defeat in his previous bout to topple Juan Ruiz over eight rounds. The featherweight tilt was entertaining throughout, but Ramos was the far superior man, winning in lopsided fashion via tallies of 79-73 (thrice). Neither man was ever in any real danger of being knocked down, but Ramos (24-4, 12 KOs) tore into Ruiz (24-16, 7 KOs) several times in each frame.
Heavyweight contender Gerald Washington scorched Mike Sheppard in the opening round to remain unbeaten. A left hook first felled Sheppard and when the fight resumed, the former USC Trojan football player was all over his foe. Follow-up punches and a crushing left hook to the liver floored Sheppard again, but even though he bravely climbed back up to his feet, referee Tom Taylor waived it off. The official time of the stoppage was 1:26 of the first as Washington improved to 15-0 with 11 KOs. Sheppard dipped to 22-18-1 with 9 KOs.
Malcolm McCallister won his pro debut with a second round stoppage of Fernando Najera. The super middleweight knocked Najera down in the second left hook and then finished him off shortly thereafter when the Tijuana fighter’s corner threw in the towel. The official time of the TKO was 1:42 of the second; Najera fell to 1-6.
2012 Olympian Marcus Brown kept his unbeaten pro ledger intact by obliterating the overmatched George Blades (23-7, 16 KOs) in just 85 seconds. Brown scored two knockdowns before the fight was mercifully stopped. The win allowed Brown to improve to 13-0 with 10 KOs.
Welterweight prospect Vatche Martirosyan won a four round unanimous decision over Eddie Diaz to rise to 4-0 (2). Martirosyan was too good for Diaz and won the fight by margins of 40-36 (twice) and 39-37. Diaz remains winless at 0-3.
After picking apart his opponent for almost eight full rounds, unbeaten contender Terrell Gausha finally got through with a vicious four-punch combo, ending his fight against Cesar Vila. Gausha was well ahead on the scorecards but he was constantly throwing his punches with bad intentions. Late in the eighth round, an exchange opened a window of opportunity which allowed Gausha to unfurl a perfect left/right/left/right, flattening Vila.
The Brooklyn fighter crumbled onto his back, prompting referee Jack Reiss to immediately call it off with only 30 seconds left. Vila (7-2, 3 KOs) protested the stoppage (which seemed a bit premature as Vila bounced right up to his feet), but to no avail. The highlight reel flurry allowed Gausha to bolster his record to 13-0 with his seventh professional KO.
Junior featherweight contender Tyson Cave was stiffed in the 2004 Olympic Trials at the hands of one Oscar Escandon. Cave lost to his Colombian adversary and never made it to the Games. Ever since that day, he’s had revenge on his mind. On Thursday night, he got it by trouncing Escandon over 12 rounds in the co-main event of the special ESPN Thursday Night Fights telecast.
Cave was all over his foe from the start, throwing (and landing) dizzying combos from all angles. Escandon covered up repeatedly and hardly ever made the Canadian pay for his mistakes, even when he dropped his gloves to his sides. Cave landed hundreds of shots to the head and body, but his lack of sheer punching power disallowed any real damage to be inflicted, thus Escandon never coming close to being taken off his feet. Still, Cave dominated the fight and was on his way to winning a clear-cut unanimous decision.
Or so it was believed.
In an inexplicable turn of events, two of the ringside judges somehow scored the fight in favor of Escandon, one of them seeing it 117-111. When the split decision verdict was announced, the crowd and presumably the overwhelming majority of those watching at home, could only watch in stunned disbelief as Cave heard the decision going the other way. Ringside commentator Teddy Atlas angrily denounced the decision, deeming it a “crime” and a “sham.” Atlas had Cave (24-3, 8 KOs) winning 118-110, as did Sherdog.com. Escandon improved to 25-2 with 8 KOs with verdict.
Austin Trout vs. Luis Grajeda
Round 1Trout cautiously comes out of his corner and paws with his right jab. Grajeda is leery as well, but is fighting out of a conventional stance. Grajeda shoots a right hand to the body, but is clipped by a counter right to the top of the head. Trout is very patient, looking to jab his way in. Trout lands a glancing right hook behind the ear but Grajeda shakes it off. Trout unloads a right/left but he misses by inches. Grajeda digs a right to the gut. Stiff right jab from Trout snaps the Mexican’s head back with 20 seconds left. The round ends with the two pawing with their jab. 10-9 Trout.
Round 2The action is bit brisker early on, with both men snapping meaner jabs at each other. They clash heads early in the round but neither man sustains a cut. Grajeda doubles up his jab but thinks twice about throwing his right hand. Trout is tossing out plenty of jabs but hardly any find their mark. Trout throws a right and then unfurls a nasty left uppercut, but it misses. Grajeda throws a sweeping right cross but misses badly. Trout looks to counter with a right hook, but he’s off by a foot. 10-9 Trout.
Round 3Much of the same; the two jabbing and not much more. Trout lands a grazing right hand somewhat behind the head and then clinches. Grajeda throws a right uppercut behind the left jab. Trout looks calm inside the ring but he’s very tentative to let hands go. Trout throws a sweeping right hook, but he misses wildly. Nice lead right uppercut from Grajeda as he comes in on the inside, the best punch of the fight. Grajeda looks to add more punishment, but Trout backs away and regroups. 10-9 Grajeda.
Round 4Trout jabs a few times early but he walks into a Grajeda right hand. Trout resets his feet and continues to jab his way in. Trout fires off a right/left but Grajeda is able to parry both. Trout throws three left hands down the pipe but none of them land cleanly. Grajeda backs away and then digs to the body. Hard left hand by trout, followed by a right hook. Grajeda takes it well and returns the favor with a left of his own. Trout digs a right uppercut on the inside but swallows a left hook at the bell. Better round for both. 10-9 Trout.
Round 5Trout appears to be more aggressive entering the fifth, but he’s not landing anything worthwhile. Grajeda moves side to side, avoiding the incoming punches. Trout is chasing him down, but he can’t pin him in the corner or along the ropes. Trout lands a right hook and then a straight left. Grajeda delivers a right uppercut as Trout lands a short right hook. Short right/left drops Grajeda onto the seat of his trunks but it looked more like a slip. It’s ruled an official knockdown. The fight resumes and trout thinks about unloading on him but once he sees that his Mexican foe is not hurt, he backs off at the bell. 10-8 Trout.
Round 6Replays show the knockdown came during the combo but while Grajeda clearly tripped over Trout’s right foot. Trout throws a hard right jab. Another and it lands. Grajeda backs away and narrowly avoids a vicious right uppercut. Trout is utilizing his jab beautifully now and has seized complete control of the action Right jab/straight left by trout snaps Grajeda’s head back. Grajeda paws with a weak left jab and then digs to the body. Trout lands a straight right to the body. 10-9 Trout.
Round 7Trout resumes his jab fest as Grajeda backs away, not willing to engage. The New Mexico native fires off three straight left hand, but they are of the glancing variety, doing little damage. Hard left to the body by Trout. Grajeda is on his bike now, disengaging from virtually everything. Nice right to the head/left to the body from the former world champion. Austin again goes to the body. Grajeda seems to want nothing to do with his American opponent. Grajeda throws a loopy left hook from a mile away near the bell. 10-9 Trout.
In between rounds, Grajeda’s corner threw in the towel, suggesting that he was hurt to the body. The official ruling is Austin Trout wins via TKO at the end of the seventh round.
The Official ResultAustin Trout def. Luis Grajeda via TKO (Corner Stoppage) 3:00 R7
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