Decades later, he made him pay for the eggs.
As kids in Ciudad, Mexico, Antonio Escalante got hassled by the Roman brothers on his way back from the market. Some eggs were broken, and he and little bother Micky Roman duked it out. No decision was handed out way back when, but in the main event on ESPN's Friday Night Fights from the Haskins Center in El Paso, Escalante made Roman answer for the eggs.
The rivals rumbled fiercely for ten rounds, but Escalante's technical edge, and eighth round knockdown, gave him the nod in the long-awaited rematch.
The judges saw it thusly: 97-92, 96-93, 96-93, for Escalante, who had so much on the line, as the top ranked junior featherweight in the WBA's ranking ladder.
Escalante (21-2 coming in; age; 24; from Ciudad,Mexico, now living in El Paso) weighed 126 pounds , while Roman (28-6 entering; age 24; from Ciudad, Mexico; now trained by Nacho Beristain) was also 126.
In the first, Roman roughoused some. He got Tony in a headlock in a clinch. Tony, who is by the way ranked as high as No. 3 at 126, by the WBO, put together some neat combos, went low and high, and looked to be of a higher echelon. But Roman scored with a left hook late, serving notice that this would be a rumble with back and forth chapters. In the second, another left hook hit Escalante. The Texan gives off a nervous energy vibe, versus Roman, more of the gritty, straight forward type. In the third, both men too often threw wide shots. Who would pick up on that, and go straight and to the point? In the fourth, Tony kept up what was working. He moved, got off and got out from Roman, who likes toe to toe tussles.
In the fifth, Roman tagged Tony good with a left hook early. His pressure was severe and consistent. Kid would make a tremendous telemarketer…In round six, Tony scored to the body but he never made Roman wince. In the seventh, Tony put together five shots, and Roman didn't buckle. But he did huff and puff after taking some body blows, finally, midway through the round. Blood dripped from Tony's nose, but he kept up the energy. In the eighth, Roman, born without the reverse gear, kept up the attack. Like a surly tide, he rolled forward. Tony's left hook did make him at least hesitate. Tony scored a knockdown, from a combo platter, with 15 seconds to go. His nose was bloodied, and he looked a bit dazed. By the way, they hugged after the round. Respect was flowing. Then it was back to punches flowing. In the ninth, Tony ran to start the round. The crowd hooted, and they went back to rumbling. But Tony then backed off again, and Roman was back in his face. With ten seconds to go, he clinched. On to the tenth and final frame. Tony came out banging to start the tenth. The crowd was standing, all of em. A bunch of hooks hurt Roman at the 1:20 mark. He almost went down. Another combo, with 25 seconds to go, stopped Roman in his tracks. We'd go to the cards. By the way, there won't be 50, or maybe 30, better fights than this one in 2010.
The numbers: Tony went 300-652 , while Roman went 234-602. Atlas scored it for Tony, 97-92.
Danny “Swift” Garcia (age 21; 15-0 coming in; from Philly) earned a SD10 over Ashley Theophane (25-3-1 entering; from London; coming in with five straight wins) in the TV opener. The scores were 95-94 (Theo), 95-94 (Garcia) and 96-96 (Garcia). In this junior welterweight scrap, Golden Boy fighter Garcia was in tough from round one, as the Brit scored with left hooks and looping rights. Theo respected Garcia's power; he kept his feet moving, and concentrated heavily on the D in the second. We saw how the jab could work for Garcia more in the third, but not often enough. Theo started to back the prospect up, and it brought to mind what Theo said before the bout, that he saw fear in Garcia's eyes pre-fight. Garcia comes off as a middle distance guy. He's not completely decided if he wants to work mostly from the outside, or be more of a trench guy…A right upper bothered Theo in the fourth. The Brit is a looper, and Garcia maybe started to time that better in the fourth.
In the fifth, Ward, who turned 26 on the 23rd, said Theo was setting Garcia up for trouble down the line. Not sure I agreed with that. Garcia looked pretty sharp and smarter than most 15 fight hitters. He countered in timely fashion, working inside Theo's wide tosses. A right counter really stung Theo in the seventh. Garcia got stung with a right in the eighth, and then grinned and shook his head. No means yes in these cases, of course…Garcia dropping both hands when throwing the hook is quite a noticeable bad habit, which one would think will bite him down the line. The ref took a point from Garcia for a low blow in the ninth, after earlier warning him. Bad call, on replay. Theo pushed Garcia's head down with his forearm. He picked it up, big time after that. In the tenth, Garcia told all that he wanted it more. He left it all in the ring. We'd go to the cards. Garcia went 168-530, to 137-501 for Theo. Atlas scored it 96-94 for Garcia.
Andre Ward hung with Brian Kenny in studio. Andre, Teddy Atlas said, has to be in the mix in the pound for pound discussion. Agree, TSS U?
SPEEDBAG Golden Boy would've gotten flak if Roman took down Escalante, for poor matchmaking. Nonsense, I say. Pundits shouldn't try and have it both ways. If guys are booked in rollovers we bitch, if they get kncoked off, we bust on Golden Boy for bad matchmaking. Just enjoy the drama, people! End of self righteous rant…