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Rising Stars in Boxing: Episode 6 – In the sixth installment of our weekly series “Rising Stars in Boxing,” our analysts Matt Andrzejewski and Kid Hersh opted to follow Horace Greeley’s advice to go west. In the gyms of Southern California, they found a middleweight who vows to one day light up the Las Vegas Strip in green, white and orange – the colors of the flag of his native country, the Republic of Ireland – and a Mexican-American who has climbed the ladder to the #1 ranking in the 140-pound division in the eyes of the WBC, but yet remains largely a mystery.  Mr. A. gets us started with a look at Jason Quigley.

Rising Stars in Boxing: Episode 6 – JASON QUIGLEY

Jason Quigley is quickly making a name for himself in the sport of boxing. Based out of California and signed with Golden Boy Promotions, his fan friendly aggressive style has made him a popular figure on Golden Boy cards in the early stages of his professional career. Fighting as a middleweight, he has piled up an early professional record of 11-0 with nine of those wins coming by way of knockout.

Born in Ireland, Quigley enjoyed a lot of success fighting as an amateur representing his home country. With numerous honors to his credit, including winning gold at the 2013 European Championships and silver at the 2013 World Amateur Championships, Quigley decided to forgo an opportunity to compete in the 2016 Olympics to turn professional. He relocated to California in 2014 to begin his professional career in the United States under the Golden Boy banner.

After running up 10 wins in the early part of his pro career against less than formidable opposition, Quigley took a big step up in competition in his last fight on the Canelo Alvarez-Amir Khan undercard against James De La Rosa. De La Rosa was not long ago himself considered a top prospect and though he suffered some losses did recently post a career best win against Alfredo Angulo. There were some in the sport who thought this was too big a jump too soon for Quigley. However, Quigley proved them wrong by putting on a masterful performance against De La Rosa. Utilizing excellent footwork and putting crisp combinations behind a solid jab, Quigley out-boxed and outclassed De La Rosa in pitching a shutout win on the cards

When watching Quigley fight, the first thing that jumps off the tape is how fluid and smooth he is inside the ring. The sport just seems to come so natural to him. As his record indicates, Quigley also possesses very good power. He is very heavy handed and his punches tend to take a cumulative effect on his opponents. Finally, Quigley has excellent lateral movement and knows how to set up his punches. He throws in combination very well and tends to position himself at just the right angles to land with maximum efficiency.

The biggest flaw for Quigley is that he has a tendency to stand in the pocket too long after throwing and is susceptible to being countered. His head movement can also be better. He has at times taken punches he really didn’t have to take. These are tendencies that can be corrected in the gym.

With his charisma and style, Quigley is sure to be a hit with fans for however long he is in boxing. He is very marketable and will certainly get his share of opportunities down the road. Jason Quigley is a name that all fight fans should get familiar with now as they will certainly be seeing a lot more of him down the line.  – MATT ANDRZEJEWSKI

 

Rising Stars in Boxing: Episode 6 – ANTONIO OROZCO

Antonio Orozco (25-0, 16 KO’s) certainly isn’t a traditional prospect as he is twenty-eight years old and has been a professional for over eight years.  Sure, we have seen our share of Antonio on television, but this writer gets a feel that the fans as well as myself are wondering just what exactly we have in front of us with him. While Orozco doesn’t seem to be a “scintillating” performer, as Max Kellerman would say, he has a very workmanlike attitude that can get him far and put him in some very exciting fights down the road as he steps up the competition.

Orozco’s amateur record is hard to authenticate.  He has stated in interviews that he did surpass the one hundred fight mark as an amateur but that he had anywhere from twenty to thirty losses.  He came up short at the national level; the quarter and semifinals usually being his exit point.  The Junior Olympics reflected this same trend as Antonio won bronze and silver respectively but never got the coveted gold.

Antonio’s nickname of “Relentless” most definitely applies to his body work.  Every time he has been televised we have witnessed him banging to the body, whether it was breaking down longtime veteran Steve Forbes or fellow tough prospect Emmanuel Taylor.  In those fights he started hot and broke his man down, or at least took the fight out of him, mostly due to the heavy body work he put in the bank in the early rounds.

In more recent fights Orozco has shown the ability to adapt and overcome adversity, as evidenced against Humberto Soto and Abner Lopez.  Against Soto he had a tough veteran that was not willing to bend to his will despite a brutal body attack and fast pace for the aging veteran.  Against Lopez he had to deal with the first cut of his career as well as a bruised eye; both of which he handled well in turning to boxing going down the stretch instead of his usual aggression.

What we have seen of Antonio at the professional level has not induced excitement among the fans just yet.  He seems to be stuck in the same area that Jessie Vargas was for some time, with fans wondering just how good he really is and if he is improving fight to fight. Vargas now reigns as the WBO World welterweight champion.

Overall I can understand why fans would not be too thrilled with Orozco thus far but I would be quick to remind those same fans that Orozco has one of the best body attacks out there among prospects and has shown the ability to deal with things not going his way when the competition got tougher. Let us also not forget that he is performing on the big stage, which in and of itself is a huge learning curve test that many a prospect has failed.  – KID HERSH

Rising Stars in Boxing: Episode 6

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