Oscar Negrete Revs It Up at Belasco Theater in L.A.

LOS ANGELES-It was a return to normalcy for Oscar “El Jaguar” Negrete and a return to the win column as the bantamweight contender bludgeoned his way to a win on Friday evening.

Negrete (18-1, 7 KOs) returned to the bantamweight division against Diuhl Olguin (13-10-3) after moving up a weight class to challenge for a world title last year. Back in his normal weight division, the Colombian won by unanimous decision at the Belasco Theater.

It was last December when Negrete moved up to 122 pounds to challenge Rey Vargas for the WBC super bantamweight world title. He knew it was a chance in a lifetime so he took the fight against the much taller Mexican fighter. Yes, he lost, but he gained knowledge and attracted more fans.

Against Olguin, another Mexican fighter, the smaller Negrete started slowly but was always a punch or two ahead of Olguin. When the Guadalajara native stepped up the tempo, Negrete boosted his too.

No knockdowns were scored but Negrete got his rounds in and Olguin discovered what he needs to win in the elite weight class. More punches would be beneficial.

The judges scored the fight 79-73 twice and 78-74 for Negrete.

“I give all my respect to Olguin because he’s a tough fighter who came to win. He’s a warrior and can take a lot of punches,” said Negrete who lives and trains in Los Angeles. “I feel I’m now ready to fight for another world title shot. I’m back at 118 pounds where I belong, and I want the opportunity.”

Other Bouts

Rigo Hermosillo (12-0-1, 9 KOs) had problems early with veteran Ernesto Guerrero (29-23, 19 KOs) but once he figured him out, it was lights out in the super featherweight fight.

Sonora, Mexico’s Guerrero used some tricky counter rights to keep the southpaw Hermosillo thinking. A crisp right counter by Guadalajara’s Guerrero in the third round nearly dropped Hermosillo but he kept on his feet. After that round it was all Hermosillo.

Hermosillo began using jabs to keep Guerrero off balance and then attacked the body. In the sixth round, Guerrero walked into a lead left cross and was floored. The veteran fighter could not beat the count at 2:30 of the sixth round. It was Hermosillo’s ninth knockout win.

“I haven’t fought in over a year so it took some time to find my distance,” said Hermosillo. “Then I found it and stopped the fight. I’m back.”

Raul Curiel (4-0, 3 KOs) was too tall and too powerful in winning by knockout over Missouri’s Demetrious Wilson (2-8) in a super welterweight clash. Curiel, who trains under Freddie Roach, used his heavy-handed left hook to do most of the damage in the brief fight. A double left hook to the body and chin floored Wilson who beat the count. Then Mexico’s Curiel unleashed some heavy body shots that enticed Wilson’s corner to halt the fight at 2:13 of the second round.

“He was kind of awkward,” said Curiel who is managed by Frank Espinoza. “I felt a big difference training with Freddie Roach.”

Blair Cobbs (8-0-1, 5 KOs) jumped out in front behind a solid jab and was the busier fighter in winning by unanimous decision against Mexico’s Juan Rivera in a super welterweight fight. Cobbs was the quicker fighter and his southpaw stance gave Rivera problems including a head butt that opened a cut in the last round. After four rounds two judges scored it 39-37 and a third saw it 40-36 for Cobbs who fights out of Las Vegas.

“I felt strong going into this fight and I got the win,” said Cobb, 28, who was born in Philadelphia.

Photo credit: Al Applerose

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