HOLLYWOOD, Ca.-You can always count on Denis Shafikov for a dog fight.
In front of a hometown crowd including IBF/WBA cruiserweight world champion Murat Gassiev shouting instructions, super featherweight contender Shafikov (39-4-1, 20 KOs) stormed to victory at The Avalon by decision over Mexico’s Hector Ambriz Suarez (12-7-1, 6 KOs).
Regardless of the situation Shafikov always has a tough opponent and makes the most of it. This time he had the younger, less experienced Suarez before him for eight rounds. Each three-minute stanza was a mini war.
Perhaps it’s his lack of height, but every opponent Shafikov faces seems to have an advantage. In this fight Suarez was the taller fighter with seemingly longer arms. Though fighting hard in every round Suarez always lacked the ability to crack Shafikov’s security code of defense. Though he connected often the Russian fighter was much more accurate.
The win could put Shafikov back in the hunt.
“I definitely look to fight for a title shot,” Shafikov said through an interpreter. “Or a mandatory.”
With 360 Promotions backing him he has an excellent chance.
Another fighter just recently signed by 360 Promotions looked his most comfortable.
Brooklyn’s Brian Ceballo (3-0) manhandled Adan Ahumada for all four rounds and if he had 10 seconds more he would have scored a knockout. But he was content with the outcome.
“I wanted to dominate,” said Ceballo, a middleweight. “I wanted to stop him but the time wasn’t there.”
Ceballo looked composed and destructive in landing his jabs and combinations. An eight punch combination put Ahumada not completely down on the ropes but it was correctly ruled a knockdown. He beat the count but Ceballo connected even more severe blows and nearly scored a knockout but time ran out.
“I went for the kill,” said Ceballo.
Speaking of killers it looks like trainer Abel Sanchez has another assassin in Big Bear.
Serhii Bohachuk (9-0, 9 KOs) demolished rugged Mexican fighter Cesar Berumen (26-38-3, 16 KOs) at 1:56 of the second round in a welterweight fight. It’s yet another killer from Eastern Europe.
Bohachuk has very heavy hands. In the first round a counter right floored Berumen who had a look of astonishment when he got up. The 23-year-old welterweight from Ukraine has found it difficult to find an opponent to last more than three rounds.
“I felt very good,” said Bohachuk. “I was switching up my attack like coach told me to.”
Anaheim’s Jonathan Esquivel (6-0, 6 KOs) knocked out Sergio Gonzalez (6-6) in the third round but floored him in the first and second round as well in the one-sided middleweight fight.
After stumbling in her American debut earlier this year, Australia’s Louisa Hawton (8-1) was dominant against Mexico’s Elvia Trevino (2-4) in winning by knockout at the end of the fourth round in a light flyweight bout.
Earlier this year Hawton was beaten by a veteran Mexican fighter, but this time she was better prepared and used a body attack to break down the defense of Trevino who is not easy to hit. By the third round Hawton was unloading punishing body shots that made Trevino move out of the pocket to avoid more punishment. After two rounds of the punishing attack, the ringside physician advised the referee to stop the fight at the end of the fourth round giving Hawton the win by knockout.
Elvina White (2-0) scored a wide unanimous decision over Mexico’s Annette Pabello (0-3) in a super lightweight fight after four rounds. White, who is trained by Buddy McGirt, looked very strong against Pabello who though winless has talent. All three judges scored it 40-36 for White who is a native of Austria. Pabello fights out of Tijuana.
Mexico’s Luis Rosales (8-1-1) scrambled for a victory over fellow Mexican Roberto Pucheta (10-14-1) who seemingly out-punched his taller foe over six rounds. But all three judges favored Rosales who landed the harder blows in the super featherweight showdown. Pucheta, who strongly resembles Marco Antonio Barrera in his appearance, was accurate with the left-right combination. But Rosales took every blow and when he fired, he landed the harder blows in winning by scores 59-55 twice and 58-56.
A super featherweight fight saw Mario Ramos (5-0, 5 KOs) take advantage of his size, speed and southpaw stance to stop willing Lupe Arroyo (3-12) of Huntington Beach in the sixth round by knockout. It wasn’t easy. Arroyo has a knack for slipping and rolling with blows despite Ramos trying throughout the fight to overwhelm the shorter fighter. When the fight was stopped in the sixth round it was a surprise. Arroyo was no more hurt than in the first round. But Ramos was the winner by knockout at 1:35 of round six and now has a six-fight knockout streak to begin his pro career.
Photo credit: Tom Hogan / Hogan Photos
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