Danny Roman Retains NABA Title – NABA super bantamweight titlist Danny Roman stepped in the ring against Mexican veteran Christian Esquivel and once again showed an unwillingness to give up the belt in winning by stoppage on Friday night.
Roman (18-2-1, 7 KOs) gave another sterling performance in front of a standing room only crowd at the Doubletree Hotel. Mexico’s Esquivel (28-10, 21 KOs) tried every trick in his book but couldn’t solve the many weapons coming from the L.A. fighter’s growing war chest.
Esquivel, who formerly fought for the bantamweight world title in 2011, showed true veteran skills in matching blows with Roman early on. His punches were crisp and defense pretty tight, but the L.A. fighter always seemed to get the last blow in during exchanges.
Roman never caught anything flush and was able to parry many of the right hands from Toluca’s Esquivel. It was closely fought for three rounds until Roman found a weakness.
Left uppercuts connected solidly three times in the fourth round and a look of bewilderment crossed the face of Esquivel. Roman saw the signs and increased his attack with several more stinging combinations. At the end of the round Esquivel was bleeding around the nose.
Roman wasted no time in the fifth round as he stalked Esquivel who tried hard to fight back. It was no use. A left hook momentarily stunned the Mexican fighter and forced him to grab Roman’s two legs low. The referee stopped the action and then allowed it to continue. Roman rushed into action but referee Raul Caiz saw enough and called the fight over at 1:52 of the fifth round.
Ukraine’s Taras Shelestyuk (14-0, 9 KOs) won the WBA International welterweight title by knockout over Tijuana’s Erick Martinez (11-5-1) at the end of the third round. Body shots broke down the Mexican fighter. Shelestyuk showed a very polished attack and tight form. His pinpoint body work was the key to the knockout win.
Nicaragua’s Roberto Arriaza (12-0, 10 KOs) walked into the ring with a newly signed promotional contract with Thompson Boxing Promotions because of his vaunted power. But Las Vegas welterweight Cameron Kreal (8-10-2) showed a great chin in not only surviving the big hits, but winning rounds near the end of the eight round contest. Arriaza showed concern when his crackling power did nothing but make Kreal smile. But all three judges scored it for Arriaza, 77-75 twice and 78-74. Arriaza has good offensive technique.
New York’s Sam “El Fuego” Rodriguez (4-1, 3 KOs) was stunned in the first round by Tijuana’s Ricardo Espinoza (6-1, 5 KOs) but mounted a furious counter attack in winning by unanimous decision after six rounds of a super flyweight bout. Bronx fighter Rodriguez knocked down Espinoza in the third round with a right hand. All three judges scored it 59-54 for Rodriguez. It was Espinoza’s first loss as a pro.
Boston’s Tracey “Titan” Johnson (3-2-4) came on like gang busters and fought Scott “The One” Alexander (11-1-2) to a majority draw after four intense heavyweight rounds. Johnson jumped on Alexander quickly with a persistent body attack. Alexander took too long to mount an attack and by then it was too late for a decision win. Johnson, who was maybe seven inches shorter than Moreno Valley’s Alexander, used his lack of height to get inside all four rounds. Two judges saw it 38-38 while a third saw it 39-37 for Johnson.
Chris Bautista (4-0) won by unanimous decision against Louisiana southpaw Brandon Broussard after four rounds in their super lightweight match. Bautista seldom attacked while the left-handed Broussard provided all the action. But the judges preferred the strictly counter punching Bautista and scored it 39-37 twice and 40-36 for Bautista. Broussard scored most of the heavy punches in the fight.
Rudy Garcia of Los Angeles won his pro debut by knockout at the end of the second round when Mexico’s Joel Cano (0-3) could not continue in their bantamweight fight. Garcia scored a knockdown in the second round with a right hand to the body. Cano made it through the round but that was it for the boxer from Obregon.