CABAZON, CALIF.---Anxious to prove his pedigree, Vanes “The Nightmare” Martirosyan battered and pressed Mexican tough guy Mario Lozano, but the knockout wasn’t in the cards on Friday night.
Glendale’s Martirosyan (34-1-1, 21 Kos) dominated 10 rounds in winning a unanimous decision over Lozano (27-5, 20 Kos) at Morongo Casino. Though the junior middleweight contender put on a decisive performance before a crowd of nearly 1,000, a knockout would have been the topper on a fight shown on ESPN.
In the opening seconds of the fight Martirosyan landed a counter right hand flush on the jaw of Lozano and seemed to stun the Mexican fighter. Both let loose with some good blows in the opening round of their junior middleweight contest and Lozano emerged with a cut under the right eye and was bleeding from the nose.
A counter right from Martirosyan dropped Lozano early in the second round and it didn’t look good for the Mexican fighter from Chihuahua. Somehow he survived the round and both fighters were pretty aggressive. But for every blow landed by Lozano, he ate three from Martirosyan.
Lozano made adjustments in the third round and was able to avoid the counter right hands for the first time in the fight. It was a good sign that he was finally able to avoid the big blows and allowed him to survive some tumultuous exchanges.
After taking a pummeling for five rounds Lozano seemed to figure out how to attack Martirosyan. A four-punch combination by the Mexican fighter landed flush and seemed to rejuvenate the battered fighter. It was his best round, however Martirosyan still captured the frame with more accurate punches.
Martirosyan was having trouble landing during the seventh round. Though he seemed to have his legs, the steam in his punches lost some of their zip. Lozano wasn’t throwing many in return which allowed the taller Armenian boxer to score from a distance.
“I was pleased with my performance. I only had three weeks with my new trainer,” Martirosyan said of his new mentor Joe Goossen.
In the final three rounds Martirosyan seemed to find more energy and was able to fire and land more combinations. Occasionally he looked to land the big blow but was never able to land the crushing blow against Lozano, who made the adjustments to Martirosyan’s hand speed.
“I hurt my knuckles on his head,” said Martirosyan. “I thought for sure I was going to knock him out but he was able to keep going. Nobody has ever knocked him out.”
Dan Goossen, president of Goossen-Tutor Promotions, said it was the kind of performance that he expected from Martirosyan.
“I wanted to see him come out aggressively and that’s what he did,” said Goossen. “His power punching was phenomenal, but the kid he fought was tough as nails.”
Martirosyan looks forward to fighting for a junior middleweight title soon.
“Better things are yet to come,” Martirosyan said.
It was the former U.S. Olympian’s first fight under his new promoter Goossen-Tutor Promotions.
In the semi-main event, Anthony Peterson (33-1, 21 Kos) won almost every round but Marcos Jimenez (20-5, 13 Kos) made him work for it in a 10-round lightweight bout that was filled with head clashes, low blows and holding. Washington D.C.’s Peterson was plain busier and more accurate against Dominican Republic’s Jimenez, who had good boxing skills but was conservative with his punching. Peterson is the younger brother of IBF junior welterweight titlist Lamont Peterson, who attended the fight card.
Abel Ramos (9-0-1, 5 Kos) hammered Mexico’s Rodolfo Armenta with some vicious right hands until referee Pat Russell stopped the fight at 2:37 of round three of a junior welterweight contest. Ramos looked too fast for Armenta, who refused to go down but was receiving too much punishment.
Welterweight prospect Tevin Watts (2-0) wobbled Vicente Guzman (0-4-1) in the third round with a counter right and then cruised to victory. All three judges scored it 40-36 for Watts, who has decent hand speed and power. He needs a little work on using his jab more.
A lightweight clash between Paramount’s Benito Salazar and Santa Maria’s Manuel Romero ended in a technical draw after two rounds. An accidental clash of heads resulted in a gash alongside Salazar’s head and the fight was stopped. California rules state that if a fight does not go three rounds it is ruled a draw.
Razvan Cojanu (9-1, 4 Kos) out-fought Avery Gibson (3-5-2) in a four round heavyweight match to win by unanimous decision.
Vatch Martirosyan (3-0, 2 Kos) knocked down Gustavo Lopez (0-2) once in the second round and twice in the third round before the welterweight fight was stopped. Vatch is the younger brother of Vanes Martirosyan.
WBC Heavyweight title bid for Chris Arreola
Chris “The Nightmare” Arreola (36-3, 31 Kos) of Riverside will fight Bermane Stiverne (23-1-1, 20 Kos) of Las Vegas for the vacant WBC heavyweight title on May 10, at the Galen Center in Los Angeles, said Goossen-Tutor Promotions on Friday at Morongo Casino.
Stiverne defeated Arreola by decision in April 2013 in Ontario, Calif. Both are ranked one and two by the WBC. “I’m excited about fighting close to home,” said Arreola, who attended the fight card at Morongo Casino. “It’s going to be a tough fight but I want that title.”
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV