Philadelphia, Pa- Friday night's "standing room only" crowd at the Drexel National Guard Armory endured over a 90 minute delay from the advertised 7:30PM start time as no medical personnel or ambulance was on hand, as required.
As it turned out, the "Round the Way Rumbling" fightcard was not worth the wait.
Philly's own Yusef Mack certainly didn't disappoint, though, as he brilliantly out-boxed and out-hustled the more experienced Ray Berry (19-14-2, 7 KO's) in the evening's super middleweight main event. Mack improved to 15-0-1 (9 KO's) with his dominating performance and earned the 6 round unanimous decision victory.
Bruce Seldon continued on his comeback trail as he breezed by his mismatched, made-to-order opponent, Lenzie Morgan. Morgan, now 14-28-3 (7 KO's), had lost his last 10 fights coming in and, at 217lbs., was over 35lbs. lighter than the former world champion. Morgan hadn't won a boxing match since December 22, 1995 - over 8 ½ years ago - and he had no intention of winning this one either.
Seldon, nicknamed "The Atlantic City Express", rolled over Morgan in the 1st round with his solid jabs and hurt his game opponent with a big right hand. In round 2, with Morgan still hurt, the powerful Seldon dazzled the Philly fight fans with his best Joe Frazier imitation and sent the beaten Morgan crashing to the canvas with a picture perfect left hook. Morgan, with his head resting on the bottom rope somehow managed to beat the referee's count but was unable to continue. Seldon, with his dramatic 2nd round technical knockout victory, improves to 35-4 (32 KO's) and, while deservedly happy with his performance, must realize he will have to step up his competition soon if he wants to get back into the mix of today's "wide open" heavyweight division.
While not interested in a comeback of his own, Philly's beloved "Terrible Tim" Witherspoon delighted the crowd with his 3 round exhibition bout with former IBF Jr. Middleweight Champ Robert "Bam Bam" Hines. While the quicker Hines showed that he could still "bring it", it was the 2-time World Heavyweight Champion Witherspoon's dancing "up on his toes" and his crushing body shots which brought out the roar of the crowd.
On the undercard.....the talented Najal Turpin, now 10-1 (9 KO's), battered Gary Grant (10-18-5, 5 KO's). Turpin put on a boxing clinic en-route to his 3rd round technical knockout win. Light heavyweight David Hamilton (3-0) continued on his winning way with a close 4 round split decision victory over Bertrand Tchandjev, who slipped to 2-8. Derrick Ennis stayed perfect (4-0, 2 KO's) with his 4 round unanimous decision victory over the tough and courageous David Gogichaishvili. Gogichaishvili was taking a beating from Ennis in this jr. middleweight contest yet refused to quit and went the distance.
The fightcard was a tribute, in memory of Philadelphia fighter Tybius Flowers, former USBA Champion who was recently murdered. As all members of the James Shuler Gym entered the ring - with promoter, trainer and mentor Custus Percy - a final 10 count rang out for their loved and always-to-be-remembered fellow ring warrior. A donation to the Tybius Flowers family, as a gesture of caring, respect and dignity, was given by the Retired Boxers Foundation.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV