It looked like Joan Guzman might make quick work of Jesus Pabon when he sent him to the floor almost right away in the first round of the main event of Friday Night Fights, which took place at the Westin Diplomat resort in Hollywood, Florida. Pabon, though, was intent on earning his check, and he hit the deck again in the third and fourth, before being sent to the mat for good, off a nasty left hook at 1:23 of the eighth. Guzman, looking to build up a rep in tatters from weight issues, didn't make a statement that will land him a fight with a champ at 140 or 147, but he did look like a still-solid pro, and did get some needed rounds in against a capable boxer.
Guzman (31-0-1 entering; living in Brooklyn; born in the Dominican Republic; 1996 Olympian; age 35) was 140 on a second attempt, after weighing in at 140.4 on Thursday, while Pabon (17-2 entering; from Puerto Rico; age 31) was 139 1/2 .
The ex two division titlist Guzman scored a knockdown, off a sneaky left hook, just 35 seconds into the first round. Guzman used the left shoulder shield, while looking to land a bomb to end the affair on the lefty. In round two, Pabon shuffled laterally, looking to make himself less of a target for the stalker Guzman. He actually landed a few leads, and did better in evading heavy leather than one thought he would from round one. In the third, he jutted his chin out, daring Pabon to launch, and looking to drop a counter bomb on the underdog. He went down with 30 seconds to go off a body shot, a right below the beltline. The ref didn't catch the infraction.
In the fourth, Guzman got another knockdown, from two rights, which was protested by Pabon, because he thought he was pushed. He actually looked to take the lead after that episode, coming forward and getting in Guzman's grill. In the fifth, Pabon's hand speed was still solid, impressive for the punishment he'd taken. He bullied Guzman on the ropes, and scored a few times. Guzman's timing and accuracy wasn't old school style Guzman, it must be said, through five.
In the sixth, and seventh, Pabon showed stamina, and heart. He didn't come to lay down. But he was put on his butt in the eighth, for good, when Guzman, in a slight lefty stance, landed a monster left hook after a sweeping right.