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Fast Results from the “Big D”: Garcia KOs Campbell; A Split for the Alvarado Twins

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  • Fast Results from the “Big D”: Garcia KOs Campbell; A Split for the Alvarado Twins

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    By Arne K. Lang

    When Canelo Alvarez flew the coop, Ryan Garcia became the most valuable property in the Golden Boy Promotions stable. This afternoon in Dallas, Golden Boy sent their prized property into the ring against England’s Luke Campbell in what was widely seen as a risky fight. Garcia passed the test with flying colors, but not without adversity.

    In round two, Campbell countered Garcia’s jab with a looping left hook that put him on the canvas. Garcia wasn’t badly hurt but now found himself in the unaccustomed position of fighting an uphill battle. Against Campbell, the older man by 11 years, he was meeting a former Olympic gold medalist with a high ring IQ.

    The turning point came moments before the bell ending round five when Garcia hurt Campbell with a right hook. Two rounds later, Garcia put Campbell to his knees with a crunching left hook to the body and Campbell wasn't able to beat the count. The irony is that Garcia’s detractors had stereotyped him as a headhunter with a limited offensive arsenal.

    Garcia, whose following on social media suggests he can transcend his sport and become famous for being famous, improved to 21-0 with his 18th KO. Campbell, who hasn’t been able to get over the hump in his biggest fights, declined to 20-4. He hadn’t previously been stopped.

    Co-Features

    In a big upset, Venezuela’s Roger Gutierrez wrested the WBA 130-pound world title from Nicaragua’s Rene Alvarado, pulling the fight out of the fire in the 12th round to win a razor-thin decision.

    This was a rematch. They previously met in July of 2017 in L.A. and Alvarado dominated en route to a seventh-round stoppage. Based on that encounter, a rematch seemed pointless, but Gutierrez came out with guns blazing and nearly ended the fight in the third round when he had Alvarado on the deck twice.

    Alvarado did more than fight his way back into the fight. He won most of the ensuing rounds and was up on the scorecards heading into the final frame. But Gutierrez (25-3-1) unleashed another uppercut to knock Alvarado off his pins and that proved to be the difference as all three judges had it 113-112. Alvarado, who was making the first defense of the title he won with a dominant performance over Andrew Cancio before a hostile crowd in Indio, CA (after Cancio had won the first meeting) had an eight-fight winning skein snapped. His record fell to 32-9.

    Gutierrez, who trained in Medellin, Columbia, dedicated the fight to his late mother who succumbed to cancer in late November.

    In a match originally slated for April 25, IBF world light flyweight champion Felix Alvarado, the fraternal twin of Rene Alvarado, had too much pop in his punches for game but out-gunned Dee-Jay Kriel who was rescued by the referee at the 1:39 mark of round 10.

    Alvarado put Kriel down hard with a big left hook in round two and had him on the deck again two rounds later. Kriel was able to out-box Alvarado when he kept the fight at a distance, but couldn’t keep Alvarado from boring in. Kriel was in distress at the end of round nine and one could sense that he wasn’t going to make it until the final bell.

    It was the 18th straight win for Felix Alvarado (36-2, 31 KOs) whose only losses came in world title fights on the road vs. Japan’s Kazuto Ioka and Argentina’s Juan Carlos Reveco and who was making the second defense of the title he won in the Philippines. Dee-Jay Kriel, who hails from Malvern East, South Africa, and has been training in Las Vegas, falls to 16-2-1 with the first loss occurring in his pro debut. Kriel briefly held the IBF minimumweight title which he relinquished to move up in weight.

    Other Bout

    In a match slated for 10 at 154 pounds, Guadalajara’s Raul Curiel, a 2016 Olympian, blasted out fellow Mexican Ramses Agaton in the second round. It was a one-sided beatdown from the opening bell. Curiel advances to 9-0 (7). Agaton (22-13-3), who took the fight on short notice, has now lost 11 of his last 15 and was stopped for the eighth time.

    Photo credit: Tom Hogan / Hogan Photos / Golden Boy Promotions

    Check out more boxing news on video at the Boxing Channel

  • #2
    Score three knockdowns, barely win a WBA title by a point on all cards . Reminds me of the tired old boxing axiom about “you have to really beat the chanpion” to take his title. Or basically the judges won’t let you win the belt. Nice little fight though.

    Credit to the fighters.

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    • #3
      Got three fights out of the card can not complain about that. I had those two fights marked for something to happen it payed off. Nice to have a solid undercard even tho they did not hype or talk about it before the card opened.

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