‘L.A. Fight Club’ results: Rene Alvarado spoils Roger Gutierrez’s night
Rene Alvarado played the role of spoiler on Friday night and, after giving Roger Gutierrez a boxing lesson for seven rounds, a corner stoppage put an end to a disastrous American debut for the Venezuelan. The junior lightweight contest was the main event of an “L.A. Fight Club” card held at the Belasco Theater in Los Angeles, California, televised live on Estrella TV, and streamed by RingTV.com.
Fighting out of Managua, Nicaragua, Alvarado also marred Gutierrez’s first fight under the Golden Boy Promotions banner and, as a veteran fighter who’s no stranger at testing their young guns, he was finally able to climb the turnbuckle and rejoice.
Alvarado, 26-8 (18), actually slipped on the rope when he went up to celebrate but that was in complete contrast of his coordinated breakdown of a young fighter. Gutierrez, 22, had the look down: a bleached quaff with a rat tail to match, a tattooed body, a character of a trainer and Reyes gloves. It seemed like he was holding his shots back at first but nodded with satisfaction once feeling a few of Alvarado’s shots. Eventually he started to let his power right hand go, as the fight went on. That was pretty much the only shot Alvarado had other than the jab.
Gutierrez, 15-1-1 (12), started to have some bad rounds, as early as the third. A left hook buckled him for a moment and there was no nodding after that point. Alvarado began noticing that Gutierrez was getting slower as the fight went into the middle rounds and his pace sped up in return. From all different angles, Alvarado landed combinations that had Gutierrez reeling in moments and, in the fifth round, a cut over Gutierrez’s right eye made everything worse.
It was clear that Gutierrez was getting bamboozled and perhaps the stoppage had something to do with the glaring eye of Golden Boy Promotions matchmaker Robert Diaz, who had a discerning look toward the prospect’s corner, starting in the third. Alvarado, a typical test for many of the company’s prospects, earned the right to celebrate on this evening.
Featherweight prospect Edgar Valerio earned a wide unanimous decision (80-71 twice, 79-72) win over Jairo Ochoa to stay undefeated but early fireworks made this fight a memorable one.
Valerio, 11-0 (6), got off to a slow start but, in the very last second of round one, he landed a left hook that abruptly sent Ochoa to the canvas. Ochoa, Torreon, Mexico, seemed fine after the flash knockdown and, within the first minute of the second, repaid the earlier mishap with a left hook that dropped Valerio onto his butt. Just seconds later, Valerio dropped Ochoa with a left hook and the crowd went nuts.
The fight got real interesting real quick but Ochoa, 18-12 (9), showed signs of wear after the thrilling third round. With his mouth open and his arms down, at times, Ochoa became defensive while Valerio kept pushing his pace. Some late rallies from Ochoa in the proceeding rounds made the fight seem closer but Valerio landed the most meaningful shots. Fighting in his first eight-rounder, Valerio, Los Angeles, California, tired late in the fight, as well, but got some good experience against an opponent who came to win.
In the opening bout of the Estrella TV telecast, Joshua Franco had a stay-busy fight against Antonio Rodriguez and, while he pitched a shutout in the unanimous decision win, the fight wasn’t as easy as it was on paper.
Franco, 12-0 (6), went up to bantamweight for this one to get some rounds in but the super flyweight prospect still had to work hard to remain undefeated. Rodriguez, 11-17-1 (5), came out of the gate, firing his long power right hand and it didn’t take long for them to get into some heated exchanges. The Mexican national got the better of most early on and seemed to consistently land the lasting shot but Franco had more up his sleeve as the fight entered the second.
From San Antonio, Texas and fighting out of Riverside, California, Franco had a busy lead left hand that came from an array of angles and, once he started to time Rodriguez coming in, he stepped back and threw a short right of his own. Franco also started to attack the body much more in the middle rounds and a few of those shots caught Rodriguez low, warranting a time-out in the third. It was clear that Franco was the craftier fighter and his ability to use just about every punch in the book was what distanced him in an action fight with a couple of close rounds.
Fighting out of nearby Huntington Park, California, Cristobal Ortiz scored his first knockout against Ronald Rodriguez and, with a perfect left hook, it will forever be in his highlight reel. The junior welterweight contest was scheduled for four rounds.
Just after scoring his first knockdown in the second round, Ortiz, 2-0 (1), took a step back from a desperate opponent and landed his left hand so perfectly, it weakened Rodriguez’s body long enough to make him fall forward and facefirst onto the canvas. Referee David Mendoza waved off the fight immediately, given how hard Rodriguez’s face hit the canvas and, while it may have woken him up, Rodriguez, 1-6 (1), was conscious once the fight was over. The Pomona, California native presented a strange, drunken style and, while it confused the raw Ortiz in the first round, an accumulation of shots against the ropes for the first knockdown was the beginning of the end.
In the opening bout of the Golden Boy Promotions card, Meiirim Nursultanov made easy work of Lanny Dardar, knocking him out in the first round. The super middleweight contest was scheduled for six.
Nursultanov, 3-0 (2), a 23-year old Kazakh fighting out of Oxnard, California, stood fundamentally, while his Louisiana-born opponent quickly went for haymakers, once eating the first clean right hand. Those shots always came off a pumping jab and, as Dardar, 5-8-2 (3), started to back up from those shots, the end seemed to a be a blink away.
Nursultanov, who is promoted by Main Events, had Dardar crumbling against the ropes, after a few more rights landed, but a left hook to the body forced Dardar to a knee. Before referee Rudy Barragan even started his count, Dardar shook his head no and readied himself to spit out his mouthpiece.