LAS VEGAS-Former world champion Julio “The Kidd” Diaz put on a boxing clinic against the hard-charging Fernando “El Pillo” Trejo and kept his place in line as a top contender in the lightweight rankings on Friday.
Coachella’s Diaz lost his IBF lightweight world title a year ago and is now two-for-two this year in matches as he totally out-boxed Mexico City’s iron chinned Trejo in a 10 round bout at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. The fight was co-promoted by Top Rank and Sycuan Ringside Promotions.
“He is a wild kind of fighter,” said Diaz, (36-4, 26 KOs) who suffered a cut and several welts due to accidental head butts. “I always get cut with these kind of fighters.”
From round one Diaz used his faster hands and mobility to keep Trejo from setting up his punches. Though Trejo had a good second round, after a body shaking left hook in the third round, Diaz was able to keep his opponent from gaining a foothold in the fight.
“I’m past these kind of fights,” said Diaz. “I want the a title shot or someone like (Lamont) Peterson or any top contender.”
Switching back and forth from orthodox to southpaw, Diaz was able to hit Trejo almost at will. But the tough Mexican fighter never surrendered and refused to slow down despite sustaining heavy damage from the eighth round on.
“I don’t agree with the judges,” said Trejo who was never knocked down but wobbled several times. “I would love a rematch but I know he won’t give me one.”
Trejo was moving up in weight from junior lightweight to lightweight and proved he can still fight at the heavier level.
“I thought I did better than what the judges said,” Trejo said.
Joel Diaz said that he told his brother not to look for the knockout and leave himself open for counters.
“If the knockout comes it comes,” said Joel Diaz. “I didn’t want him looking for it.”
In the last round a scorching right uppercut caught Trejo perfectly but though he took a step backward, he finished the round swinging.
The judges scored it 99-91 twice and 100-90 for Diaz.
Oxnard’s Miguel Garcia (15-0, 12 KOs) survived a shotgun left hand knockdown from Colombia’s southpaw slugger Walter Estrada (30-7, 20 KOs) in the fourth round to eke out a unanimous decision. Every round was contested because of the slow pace and fear of each other’s power.
Estrada, 34, kept Garcia on the outside and after scoring the knockdown, the Oxnard fighter seemed uninterested in getting inside. For most of the eight rounds the featherweight bout was fought at a distance with Garcia using his jab and scoring from a southpaw stance on occasion.
The judges scored it 77-74 and 76-75 twice and all for Garcia.
It was guns blazing in a lightweight bout as Las Vegas fighter Sharif Bogere (4-0, 2 KOs) scored knockdowns against Nevada’s Mike Peralta (4-4) with a left hook in the third round and a right hand counter in the second. Peralta scored a third round knockdown with a left to the chest as the fleet-footed Bogere was pulling out he went down. The judges scored it 39-35 for Bogere.
A featherweight between Texans ended in a unanimous decision for Jerry “The Corpus Christi Kid” Belmontes (5-0) who proved too fast for the willing Lupito De Leon (7-4) of Mission, Texas, which is near McAllen, Texas.
Belmontes, who was signed by Top Ranks after the Olympic tryouts in Houston, has quick hands and an excellent assortment of punches. A left jab, left hook combination caught De Leon flush in the second round but he maintained his balance and his defense got him out of trouble.
The judges scored it 59-55 twice and 60-54 for Belmontes.
In a junior lightweight contest Las Vegas boxer Diego Magdaleno (7-0, 3 KOs) out-punched Pennsylvania’s Travis Thompson (3-3-1, 2 KOs) but after the first round, found it much harder the rest of the way in winning a four round bout. The judges scored it 40-36 for Magdaleno.
A junior welterweight bout ended in a one-sided victory for Las Vegas boxer Anthony Lenk (5-0) who proved too aggressive for L.A.’s Alex Flores (1-1). The judges scored it 40-36 for Lenk.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV