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Ringside Report: 'King' Callum Walsh Wins in Boston; O’Connor Back with Bloody TKO

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  • Ringside Report: 'King' Callum Walsh Wins in Boston; O’Connor Back with Bloody TKO

    Boston University’s Agganis Arena doesn’t host many boxing events. The last time the fight game rolled through this campus venue, it was 2015 and Londoner James DeGale was lifting the IBF world super-middleweight title off of Andre Dirrell. The now retired Edwin Rodriquez won on the DiBella undercard as did Danny O’Connor, Ryan Kielczweski, and Spike O’Sullivan.

    Matchroom’s Eddie Hearn promoted at the Boston Garden 2018 with a stacked card featuring several big names in action but no particularly meaningful matchups. Hearn tried his luck again in 2021 but to an even smaller crowd up in Manchester, New Hampshire at the SNHU Arena.

    360 Promotions’ Tom Loeffler must know that if you want to sell boxing tickets in Boston, you do it with a hot young Irish kid in the main event and a comebacking Irishman in the co-feature. Last night at the Agganis, Irish eyes were smiling inside and outside of the ring. Both Callum Walsh and Danny O’Connor won big to satisfy the overwhelmingly Irish crowd in attendance. Loeffler wore bright green Nike sneakers at ringside and seemed happy with the event’s turnout.

    It’s good to see an international promoter promoting boxing in downtown Boston again. Loeffler worked with local promoters Jimmy Burchfield (CES) and Kenny Casey (Murphys) to round out the rest of his St. Patrick’s Day Eve Thursday night offering titled Hollywood Fight Nights.

    It aired on UFC Fight Pass.


    Irish junior middleweight prospect “King” Callum Walsh, 6-0 (5), Cork, Ireland, scored a second round TKO of substitute opponent Wesley Tucker, 15-5 (9), Toledo, Ohio, to make his successful Boston debut in what was a scheduled ten. Walsh, trained by Freddie Roach, scored three knockdowns in the second round and referee Leo Gerstel stopped the fight at 2:59.

    “Boston, I will be back,” promised Walsh. “Just tell me where and when and ’ll be there. There’s a big tall middleweight who fought tonight, maybe I can fight him,” said Walsh of Francis Hogan.

    When I asked Dana White about the match-up, the UFC boss scoffed at me and walked away.


    Making his dramatic ring walk dressed as a firefighter, the comebacking Danny “BHOY” O’Connor, 31-3 (12), Framingham, Mass, turned up the heat quickly on opponent Luis Garcia, 13-2-1, (9), Richmond, CA., stopping him on cuts in the fourth round. O’Connor, now competing at welterweight, used his busy southpaw jab in the first and second to bloody up Garcia’s nose.

    By the fourth, Garcia’s face was hamburger and O’Connor had his comeback victory at 1:55 of the round. After the fight, the firefighters foundation honored O’Connor with a plaque. “I expected to dominate,” said Danny. “I’m the best I’ve ever been. I want to bring a title home to Boston!”

    O’Connor hadn’t fought since 2018 when he beat Steve Claggett at the House of Blues in Boston. He was to have challenged Jose Ramirez for the WBC world junior welterweight title that same year but O’Connor was forced to pull out when he couldn’t make the 140 lb. limit.


    New England’s top middleweight prospect (and local crowd favorite) Francis “Frank the Tank” Hogan, 14-0 (13), Weymouth, Mass, pounded out a fifth round TKO of Jimmie “Quiet Storm” Williams, 18-11-2 (6), Plainville, NJ. In the fourth round, blood appeared under the left eye of Hogan from a small cut. In the fifth, Williams lost a point for either holding or elbowing, neither of which he appeared to be doing in excess. Williams didn’t answer the bell for the sixth round.

    I caught up to “Frank the Tank” afterwards, asking him what he thought about being called out by Walsh. “Show me the money,” said Hogan. “Walsh fought a scrub tonight, but I can’t hate.”

    Smooth moving Venezuelan featherweight Hegly Mosqueda, 24-0 (18), Caracas, Venezuela (in only his second fight outside of Venezuela) outboxed Honduran toughguy Jose Garcia, 13-4-3 (9) over eight rounds to score a split decision. Official scores were 77-75, 77-75 and 75-77.

    In the opening bout of the evening scheduled for six rounds, light heavyweight Kendrick Ball, Worcester, Mass, improved his record to 20-1-3 (12) against Missouri’s 7-1-3 (3) Mike Stegall. The ordinary looking Stegall is a very inactive and inexperienced professional “boxer” barely out of four rounders. Ball (so slow!) struggled with him to score a decision, 59-55 and 60-54 twice.


    Lightweight Jonathon de Pina, 12-1 (4), Boston, TKO1 Richard Barnard, 1-11-1, Hawaii, super lightweight Nicolas “TNT” Tejada, Haverhill, Mass, 4-0 (2), W4 William Harrington, 1-1, Pennsylvania, and lightweight Kevin Walsh, 8-0 (4), Brockton, Mass, W6 Andrew Bentley, 5-7 (1) New Jersey. The Brocktonian scored a hurtful knockdown in the third to secure the decision.


    Boxing Writer Jeffrey Freeman grew up in the City of Champions, Brockton, Massachusetts from 1973 to 1987, during the Marvelous career of Marvin Hagler. JFree then lived in Lowell, Mass during the best years of Irish Micky Ward’s illustrious career. A former member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and a Bernie Award Winner in the Category of Feature Story Under 1500 Words, Freeman Covers Boxing for the Sweet Science in New England.

    Photos by Emily Harney

  • #2
    I saw Kevin McBride last night, talked to him. Always enjoy him. He introduced me to his son Kevin Junior who’s 15 and starting to box. The Ring’s Doug Fischer was there. So was Ron Borges. Micky Ward was spotted. I chatted with Gerry Cooney and took a photo with him, me being taller. Dana White was there. I asked him a simple question but he treated me like a jerk. Oh well. Let’s go Walsh-Hogan! Them’s fightin words yo!