RANCHO MIRAGE-Fighting bigger guys proved just a bit more of a problem but not enough to keep Palm Spring?s Timothy ?Desert Storm? Bradley from moving into the welterweight division and junior middleweight Alfredo ?Perro? Angulo had no problems stopping Joachime Alcine early on Saturday night.
A sold out crowd saw Bradley out-speed and use his defensive ability to overcome a surprisingly more defensive-minded Abregu (29-1, 23 KOs) before 2,152 at Agua Caliente Casino. Ultimately, it was Bradley?s defense that proved superior. Angulo was just too strong for the Canadian.
?He?s a hard puncher. He swore he was going to knock me out it,? said Bradley (26-0, 11 KOs). ?It didn?t happen tonight.?
The first three rounds saw each fighter defensive minded and hoping the other would make a move that could be countered. Each fighter looked tight as a core of wire.
A counter right hand by Bradley wobbled Abregu twice in the first round. The smaller fighter jumped on him but couldn?t land a decisive blow. Earlier in the round Abregu landed a counter right following a Bradley jab.
The third round was close as defense took priority for both fighters. A counter right hand by Bradley was again the big punch, but Abregu also got in a left hook. A right hand missed for Bradley and he demonstrated his
Abregu stepped into a higher gear in the fourth round. A right hand connected for the Argentine but he suffered a cut over his right eye. It was his best round but blood dripped down his eye at the end.
A more comfortable Bradley found a good rhythm in the fifth round with some solid body shots and a snapping counter left hook. Abregu couldn?t seem to zero in on the quickness of Bradley.
Abregu shortened his punches in the sixth round and found more success against the fast moving Bradley. Though Bradley landed a good left hook, Abregu landed more telling blows.
During the seventh round an exchange by both fighters led to a clash of heads with Abregu hitting the floor in pain and showing a gash on the side of his left eye. When the fight resumed both got tied up inside but Bradley continued to punch to win the round.
From the seventh round to the ninth it became a tactical fight with less punches and more posing. Abregu had a good seventh but the next two rounds were more difficult to surmise.
?They told me to calm down that he was dangerous,? said Bradley. ?He hits a little harder than in my weight class.?
Bradley seemingly landed more punches in the 10th than he had in the previous two rounds combined. Right hand counters did the job to open it up for some left hooks too.
The two fighters engaged a bit more in the last two rounds with Bradley scoring more with left hook counters to the body and head. Abregu?s attempts to land his right hand bombs proved ineffective against the defensive adeptness of Bradley.
?He was every bit a test as I thought he would be,? said Abregu who suffered cuts on both eyes.
Bradley did not take big chances in the final 30 seconds knowing he was probably ahead and not wanting to test Abregu?s power.
All three judges scored it in favor of the more accurate Bradley 118-110, 117-109, 116-112.
?I didn?t think a unanimous decision was fair. At worse I thought it was a draw,? said Abregu who added that he re-injured his right hand during the fight. ?I would urgently like a rematch.?
Bradley said a match with Manny Pacquiao is preferred but a fight against any leading contender or rival champion is sufficient.
?I?m making a challenge right now to Manny Pacquiao,? Bradley said. ?Any of the top fighters even Devon Alexander if the money is right.?
Angulo KOs Alcine
In the co-main event Mexico?s Alfredo ?Perro? Angulo (19-1, 16 KOs) didn?t need much time to show that a new strength regimen is paying off with a quick demolition of Canada?s Joachim Alcine (32-2, 19 KOs) in a junior middleweight match.
It was expected to take a while for the brawling and slugging Angulo to wear down and catch up to the fleet footed Alcine, but a tactical error by the Canadian based boxer proved pretty bad.
Both boxers opened up the opening round with some opening combinations and tested each others moves. But when Alcine tried to tie up Angulo on the inside with one hand he allowed the gritty Mexican prizefighter to keep hitting him. About 10 punches connected for Angulo on Alcines left side of his head.
?He grabbed me because he didn?t want to fall,? said Angulo. ?Even if they grab me I have one free hand so im going to keep on throwing.?
When both fighters finally broke apart Angulo tore into the taller Canadian fighter with a bloodlust. Alcine found himself on the ropes and was battered by six vicious blows each worse then the last. Referee Lou Moret saw that Alcine?s eyes seemed closed and stopped the fight at 2:59 of the first round.
?My punches were too wide,? said Alcine. ?I wanted to keep the fight going.?
Angulo now becomes the number one junior middleweight contender in the WBC. He already is number one in the WBO.
Angulo attributed added strength to his new conditioning coach Darryl Hudson, who also works with Riverside?s Chris Arreola. The Mexicali native doesn?t care who he faces next.
?Fighting in California, in front of my people, I trained even harder for this fight,? Angulo said. ?When they want to fight me we?ll fight. Whoever they are?I do my job and I do the best I can. If they don?t want to fight the Perro there must be a reason for that.?
Mexico?s Antonio DeMarco (24-2-1, 18 KOs) needed only 2:30 of the second round to figure out Daniel Attah?s (24-6-1) weakness an catch the fellow southpaw with one of his own left hand missiles for a knockdown. Attah survived the knockdown and attempted a left hand bomb of his own but fell flat on his knees again from tripping and missing. He got up and was met with a right hook that prompted referee Raul Caiz Jr. to halt the lightweight contest. It was DeMarco?s first fight since losing by technical knockout to the late Edwin Valero last February.
Glendale?s Art Hovannesyan (12-0-1) took a unanimous decision over Mexico?s wily veteran Cristian Favela (19-28-6) after eight rounds in a lightweight clash. The Mexican fighter waited too long to make his move. Meanwhile, Hovannesyan?s combinations did the job over eight rounds. The scores were 78-74, 77-75 twice for the Glendale boxer.
Gloria Salas (3-4-1) won by unanimous decision over Katarina De La Cruz (0-4-1) in a junior flyweight battle after four rounds. Salas was busier but tired a bit as De La Cruz made her move with some pinpoint counter punches in the third round. All three judges scored it for Salas.
Lancaster?s Joel Diaz scored a second round knockout of L.A.?s Rene Torrez (0-3-1) at 23 seconds of the second round of featherweight bout. A body and head combination ended the fight for Torrez. It was Diaz?s pro debut.
After taking a few right hand shots from Willshaun Boxley (5-7) to wake up La Puente?s Abraham Lopez (12-0, 10 KOs) retaliated with stinging jabs that opened a path for his combinations. It didn?t take long to prove he was the stronger fighter. Boxley was unable to continue at the end of round three for a technical knockout victory for Lopez.
Santa Maria?s Rufino Serrano (6-3) used his quickness and slightly more experience to beat East L.A.?s Eduardo Cruz (1-1) after four rounds of a featherweight clash. The fourth round was Cruz?s best round but it wasn?t nearly enough to offset Serrano?s quick combinations that allowed him to dominate early.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV