I think Miguel “Mickey Mouse” Roman beat Fernando Beltran in the featherweight main event of ESPN’s Friday Night Fights, which took place at the Laredo Entertainment Center in Laredo, Texas.
And if you don’t choose to believe me, and if you didn’t see it for yourself, maybe you’ll accept my call when you know that the crowd, with a shower of boos, didn’t seem to agree with the judges, who saw it 117-111 (Roman), 115-113 (Beltran) and 115-113 (Beltran), as they handed Beltran a split decision win in a battle of busy Mexicans.
Beltran, who to me frankly looked older than his 27-years, mileage-wise, went 326-1087, while Roman went 295-1008; but to me it looked like Roman definitely threw more, if not landed more as well. Analyst Bernard Hopkins saw it 117-113, Roman, and I thought his card was solid.
What can be said to Roman to cheer him up? Hey, Roman, Hopkins thought you won, and so did TSS.
The lefty Beltran (age 27, 125 ¼ pounds, from Culiacan, Sinaloa, Mexico, Julio Cesar Chavez’ home turf) brought a 31-3-1 mark into the ring with him, while Roman (age 23, 126 pounds, from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico) was 25-4.
Beltran has had shots at titles, but lost to Joan Guzman in 2005 and Steve Molitor in April 2008.
Beltran, who had a tiny bit of flab on his belly, used his reach well in the first. Roman was a bit wide with his shots. In round two, Roman crashed forward, but he kept moving to his right, the same side as Beltran’s power hand, the left. In the third, Roman buzzed him with a short right. Both men threw in body shots for variety. The underdog Roman fought with underdog fervor, as he barreled ahead full steam.
In the fourth, the short-armed Roman blew off the jabs, and mostly hurled power shots. Beltran did better at dictating spacing. In round five, Roman did well to whack Beltran’s body. Maybe, he thought, he could sap the lefty’s energy, and reduce his movement. In the sixth, Roman hit with straight rights, and scored with his left hook as well. Was he breaking down Beltran, with his perhaps superior conditioning?
In the seventh round, Roman again kept the spacing to his liking. Beltran found himself trading on the inside, not the best place for him to be. He took punishment to the body, and was caught on the ropes a few times. In the eighth, we noted that there was some superb body work going on. Roman, to me, was fighting the more judge-friendly fight. In the ninth, both men had surprising levels of energy remaining. In the tenth, Beltran tied up, and his mouth was open more than Roman’s. In the 11th, the crowd picked it up, with the end in sight. Roman bounced as he bore in, looking to dig to the body. Beltran didn’t use the uppercut on Roman, who was a perfect candidate for it. In the 12th, Beltran came out, tapped gloves and then tried to hug Roman, who quickly broke that up, and went to work. Some blood trickled from Roman’s nose, and he initiated and cooperated in a couple clinches. We would need the judges to call a winner.
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