CAROLINA CRISIS: THIS IS BIGGER THAN YOU By Michael...
Hernandez’s great night
This changed few months ago when he splattered former WBO junior welterweight Demarcus “Chop-Chop” Corley in five rounds.
Friday night on Showtime, Hernandez faced another former champion Michael Anchondo and if he won this fight, a potential championship belt with WBC welterweight champion Andre Berto.
Anchondo held the WBO junior lightweight title when he was 22 but at 28, he was fighting one of those crossroads fight at welterweight. The feeling around the boxing game that he was already finished as a fighter.
Anchondo needed to show the boxing world that there was something still left in the proverbial gas tank. The first round saw a close tense round as he attempted to move inside Hernandez.
Having a six-inch deficit in reach, Anchondo wanted to fight Hernandez in tight and he attempted to jab his way in. Hernandez seemed to be content to allow Anchondo to punch and occasionally counter, trying to get his right over Anchondo’s left.
In the first round, he missed a couple of those rights but in the second round, Hernandez nailed Anchondo with a solid right that stunned him at the 1:00 mark and followed up with another stunning right one minute later.
In addition to those rights, Hernandez unleashed some powerful left hooks to the body and weakened Anchondo. He continued to advance, but his advances resembled a World War I attack from the trench into no-man’s land.
He kept getting machine gunned by those nasty right hands over the top of his lowered left hand and a left hooks that shook his body. Anchondo’s own punches had little impact on Hernandez but every one of Hernandez’s punch left a red mark on his body.
Anchondo got nailed with some more rights in the third round that shook him and the last one minute and half, he switched to survival mode. The fourth round began with yet another accurate Hernandez right that sent Anchondo down for an eight count.
Anchondo rose to his feet but this merely delayed the inevitable. Hernandez attacked with a solid combination that forced Anchondo to retreat back to the rope.
With hands up, he stayed motionless as he merely soaked up punishment. The referee stopped the fight as the hapless Anchondo simply stood like a statue and was throwing nothing in return.
Hernandez got his impressive win and now he wait for his team to talk Berto into a title shot.
In the first bout, Cuban immigrant Luis Franco appeared in his seventh professional fight against the rugged Wilton Hilario, who had only one lost on his record. Franco came into the professional rank with 400 amateur fights and his team decided to push Franco quickly.
His last two opponents had won 57 fights out of their last 80 bouts, providing tough opposition for a fighter with just handful of professional fight. Franco began the fight with sharp combinations but he rarely used a jab while fighting inside.
He dodged many of Hilario’s wide punches while connecting on his own punches.
Franco’s strategy actually worked toward Hilario advantage for it allowed him to stay in front of Franco while nailing him with some tough body shots. Both men went toe to toe and Hilario occasionally used his head as additional weapons.
The latter strategy cost Hilario a point in the third round but Franco occasionally looked flustered by the rough house tactics. Hilario closed some of the distance in the fourth and fifth round as he consistently moved forward but even in these rounds, Franco counter were the more cleaner accurate punches.
On the sixth round, Hilario connected on his best punch, a right that sent Franco back for a brief second. Franco actually attempted to move and jab, a strategy if done earlier would have made his night easier.
When Franco jabbed, he forced Hilario on the defense and established some distance. However, most of the fight was fought in tight quarters. Franco showed that he could beat Hilario at Hilario’s game but sometimes in boxing, the smarter course is the least painful.
If Franco moved and jabbed, using his jab to set up combinations, he would have won easily. Franco still needs to learn to sit down on his punches as many of his punches slapped as opposed to stinging his opponent.
Overall, this evening belonged to Freddy Hernandez as he won an impressive victory and created the impression that he is championship caliber.