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Gamboa Destroys Solis
NEW YORK, NY—Undefeated WBA/IBF featherweight champion Yuriorkis Gamboa (20-0, 16 KOs) impressed the boxing community with a stunning four-round TKO of Jorge Solis (40-3-2, 29 KOs) at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, NJ on Saturday. Gamboa-Solis was the featured main event of a HBO “World Championship Boxing” broadcast.
Gamboa, a growing fixture on HBO, is inching closer toward a possible showdown with WBO featherweight champion Juan Manuel Lopez. Both are undefeated world champions, and are fresh, young faces in the sport. It’s a fight Top Rank promoter Bob Arum wants to make, but would like to build up their popularity amongst mainstream boxing fans. Gamboa is Cuban, but started his pro career in Germany. Lopez is Puerto Rican.
Having watched both Gamboa and Lopez perform on numerous occasions, it appears as though Gamboa is the more polished fighter. He has greater experience and is the faster, quicker, and sharper shooter of the two. Lopez is good – one of the best at 126 pounds. However, Gamboa continues to raise his game to the next level.
Against Solis, Gamboa was able to prove his maturity as a boxer. Instead of the reckless machine we’ve seen in recent fights, Gamboa used his jab to set-up his power shots.
Gamboa was able to shock Solis scoring a pair of knockdowns in round two, one knockdown in round three, and two additional knockdowns in round four.
“It was a very good fight, compared to what happened last year,” Gamboa said referring to his distance win against Jonathan Victor Barros and having been dropped by Orlando Salido during another points victory.
The Solis performance not only notched Gamboa’s sixth world title win, but the former amateur standout responded to criticism of his lack of poise and defense. Gamboa displayed improved defensive skills by simply moving his head, slipping punches, and using his jab to set-up his combinations. It was an impressive showing. Expect more from Gamboa in the future.
In the co-feature: HBO viewers and the paid attendance witnessed undefeated No. 1-ranked featherweight contender Mickey Garcia (25-0, 21 KOs) defeated Brunswick, NJ hopeful Mike Remillard (23-1, 13 KOs) when Remiilard was deemed unable to continue having suffered knockdowns in rounds nine and ten. It was a brutal beating Remillard absorbed by the more aggressive Californian.
Garcia-Remillard was a good fight overall, but it lacked the drama, action, and excitement of Philadelphia’s Teon Kennedy’s war with Jorge Diaz, of New Jersey. The two undefeated super bantamweights engaged in what had to have been one of the very best fights of 2011. Kennedy (16-0-1, 7 KOs) and Diaz (15-1, 9 KOs) threw everything, but the kitchen sink. The difference, however, was Kennedy’s poise and experience under pressure. In addition to the fact he dropped Diaz twice in the bout.
The judges may have scored the bout in Kennedy’s favor: 118-109, 117-109, and 115-111, but the totals were no reflection as to how competitive and exciting the fight actually was.
Paulie Malignaggi added to Action Heroes
Former IBF junior welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi (28-4,6 KOs)will battle Jose Miguel Cotto (32-2-1, 24 KOs) on the upcoming “Action Heroes” Pay-Per-View undercard promoted by Golden Boy Promotions on Saturday, April 9, from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, NV.
Malignaggi-Cotto will compete in a 10-round welterweight bout.
“I’m very excited to be on this great card that is generating a lot of buzz,” said Malignaggi. “I think fighting Cotto is a good test and an important next step at this point in my career as I climb back to the top of the sport. His brother Miguel is the best fighter I have fought in my career, so I know when fighting a ‘Cotto’ I have to be prepared. I’m excited for the challenge and the chance to keep proving ‘naysayers’ wrong.”
Malignaggi has fought some of the best fighters in the last few years: Ricky Hatton, Miguel Cotto, Juan Diaz, and Amir Khan. He is never in a bad fight and brings a wealth experience to the ring. Cotto himself shouldn’t be underestimated, as he has fought professionally for over 14 years. He has won four of his last five fights including a fourth round technical knockout win over Christopher Henry in November.
“This is going to be a great fight,” said Cotto. “I’ve been in the gym training my hardest and I feel ready. Having a big win over Malignaggi will move me closer to a title opportunity. I will not let this one go by.”
“Action Heroes” is headlined by Marcos Rene Maidana vs. Erik Morales and Robert Guerrero vs. Michael Katsidis on HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.