RINGSIDE REPORT: Collazo Scores Stunner in BK

luis-collazo-1120 829d5Ortiz vs. Collazo 1/30/14–With God in his corner, all things were possible for Luis Collazo on Thursday night at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center.

There the Brooklyn born welterweight surprised even his most loyal fans with a second round KO destruction of Victor Ortiz.The two Golden Boy fighters were the main event in a night of boxing televised by Fox Sports Network. The winner of the 12 round bout for Collazo’s WBA International title would certainly has a big fight in his future. For the loser it might be the end of the road.

Ortiz, (29-5-2, 22 KO) of Ventura, Ca, was returning to the ring after a 19 month layoff brought about by the broken jaw he suffered in his last fight against Josesito Lopez. During his break from boxing Ortiz filmed a role in The Expendables 3 action movie and dabbled in other business pursuits. Questions about his desire to be a fighter followed him throughout the fight’s buildup.

Collazo (35-5, 18 KO) came into the ring riding a three fight win streak and with aspirations for another world title shot. He credited his dedication to living a spiritual life for giving him the strength and focus needed to continue his boxing career.

The crowd cheered wildly for Collazo as the bell sounded for round one. The cheers quickly turned to boos as Ortiz used his head the first time the fighters got close to one another. Ortiz’ aggressiveness was clear from the beginning as if he was feeling the pressure to silence his doubters with a statement performance. Always the crafty boxer, Collazo stayed calm, parried Ortiz’s punches, and countered when the opportunities presented themselves.Round two started with Ortiz applying the pressure and looking to land the big shot. Collazo answered with punches of his own that were quicker and sharper. Ortiz may still have had a coat of ring rust to shed.

Near the end of the round the action intensified with both fighters trading combinations. A short right hook by Colazzo sent Ortiz stumbling and then down. He looked dazed as referee Benjy Esteves picked up the count and remained down as Esteves counted ten. The end came at 2:59 of the second round.

With the win Collazo jumps right back into the mix for a world title shot. After the fight he extended an invitation to Floyd Mayweather to come meet him in Brooklyn.

In the co-feature Eddie Gomez (16-0, 10 KO) of the Bronx, faced Daquan Arnett (11-1, 7 KO) from Orlando, FL in a ten round battle between undefeated junior middleweight prospects.

The fighters had previously faced each other as twelve year old amateurs with Arnett knocking Gomez down three times in capturing the win. Both fighters quickly realized they were in Brooklyn when the crowd began to boo heartily due to the lack of action in round one. A boxing class was not going to be appreciated by the Barclays audience.

Gomez responded to the vibrations by opening up his attack at the beginning of round two. However the rest of the round turned into a feinting spell as each fighter tried to force the other into a mistake. The chess board was open. The chess match continued through the middle rounds with periodic bursts of action from the fighters. Gomez began to have some success in landing his right hand.

In the seventh round Gomez dropped Arnett with a straight right and left hook to the body. Arnett beat the count and Gomez continued his assault by firing right hands, some of which landed. Gomez landed a flush right hand to start the eighth with blood spraying from Arnett’s nose. Arnett stood his ground and came back with combinations of his own.The final two rounds played out with back and forth action and when the scores were totaled, Gomez emerged with the unanimous decision victory.

In the evening’s first televised bout, Gary Russell Jr. (24-0, 14 KO) squared off against Miguel Tamayo (14-8-2, 12 KO) in an eight round super featherweight bout.

The talented Russell Jr., from Capitol Heights, MD, was facing another opponent suspected of being nowhere near his skill level. Tamayo, of Obregon, Mexico, fit the bill.

In the first three rounds Russell’s hand speed and footwork were on display. His punches moved Tamayo around the ring. When Tamayo tried to answer back with punches of his own, he missed with room to spare.In the fourth round a four punch combination punctuated with a big right hand sent Tamayo down. The referee waved the fight off at 1:04 of the round.

20012 Olympian Marcus Browne (9-0, 7 KO) failed to impress in a six round cruiserweight tilt against Kentrell Claiborne (4-9, 3 KO). Browne, of Saten Island, NY, should have dispatched Claiborne, from Shreveport, LA, within the distance. Besides a significant height advantage, Browne’s boxing pedigree should not allow a limited opponent to hang around.

Claiborne was tough and durable, but Browne should have added to his KO tally instead of notching the unanimous decision victory.

Emanuel Gonzalez (14-0, 7 KO) of the Bronx, earned a unanimous decision against tough Victor Sanchez (5-8-2, 2 KO) from Houston, TX in an eight round super featherweight contest. Brooklyn homeboy Zachary Ochoa (6-0, 3 KO) had his hands full in taking a unanimous decision from Jose Valderrama (3-7, 3 KO), of Manati, PR, in a four round super lightweight battle.

The first fight of the evening produced fireworks when Rafael Vazquez (10-1, 8 KO), of Brooklyn, sent Bradley Patraw (10-7, 5 KO), from St. Paul, MN, to the mat twice with vicious left hooks in the first round. After dropping Patraw for the second time, the referee had seen enough and Vazquez had a short night’s work.