Boxing

Clottey, Zarusa get wins on undercard

The Boxing Tribune Kelsey McCarson
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HOUSTON

From the Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. vs. Peter Manfredo Jr. undercard at Reliant Arena in Houston:

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— Featherweight prospect Luis Zarazua (2-0, 1 KO) defeated Ricardo Avila (1-6, 0 KOs) by unanimous decision in what proved to be a workmanlike victory considering it was his second professional fight. Zarazua, fighting in classic Mexican style, dug to the body constantly and was aggressive throughout the bout. All three judges had the expected 40-36 scoring at the end of the fight in favor of Zarazua.

— Former titleholder Joshua Clottey (36-4, 22 KOs), in his first fight since his loss to Manny Pacquiao in March 2010, was a TKO winner over local brawler Calvin Green (21-7-1, 13 KOs). Green’s best moment in the fight came when Clottey had missed with such a vicious punch that he actually fell halfway out of the ring. Moments later, Clottey gathered himself and put Green on the canvas. The referee wisely stopped the super welterweight contest when Green stumbled around after courageously making it to his feet.

— Early arrivers were treated to a good scrap between super featherweights Ivan Otero (7-0, 1 KO) and Gino Escamilla (5-11-2, 2 KOs). There was back and forth action throughout the fight. Both fighters landed clean shots though the undefeated, hometown fighter, Otero, had enough of them late in the fight to pull out the hard earned majority decision.

— Lightweight Mickey Bey, who has the audacity to use the nickname “Sugar,” proved too much for the very game Hector Velazquez (51-17-3). Bey, who is trained by Floyd Mayweather Sr., had to climb off the canvas in the second round, but was able to use his superior skill to outbox the sluggish Velazquez over the majority of the fight to take home a close but clear unanimous decision.

— Making his professional debut, welterweight prospect Alex Saucedo (1-0, 1 KO) scored a sensational first round knockout over Cedric Sheppard (0-2, 0 KOs). Sheppard appeared overmatched from the beginning of the fight, which is exactly something you’d expect to see for a prospect like Saucedo’s first time in the ring. The fight was stopped at 2:28 of Round 1 after a barrage of punches sent Sheppard to the canvas. He rose to his feet at the count of 9 but was rightfully deemed unfit to continue by the referee.

— Welterweights Lucky Boy Omotoso and Lanardo Tyner fought a wildly entertaining fight. During the early action, both fighters landed clean blows but it appeared Omotoso got the better of the exchanges. That set the tone for the rest of the bout as Tyner would repeatedly rush ahead while Lucky Boy effectively stepped aside for enough room to make his shots count.

Omotoso proved to be the more educated practitioner throughout the bout. His opponent swung heavy but wide which allowed Omotoso to cleanly counter him. Tyner was fairly outclassed but you wouldn’t have known it by his showboating which was world class. He consistently ate shots but kept pressing the action, often making a show of it by dropping his hands behind his back and to his side. At one point, he actually stuck his head all the way through the ropes to scream it up at Roy Jones Jr., at ringside, who he obviously very much admires. All in all, it was an entertaining fight worth getting to the fight early for. Tyner proved to be tough, but in the end Lucky Boy Omotoso stayed undefeated without actually needing any luck at all. Omotoso took home the unanimous decision by scores of 78-74, 79-73, 79-73.

— Super welterweight Jose Pinzon (20-2-1, 13 KOs) battled Larry “Slow Motion” Smith (10-7, 7 KOs) in the preliminary fight before HBO aired Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. vs Peter Manfredo Jr. The fight wasn’t fought in slow motion but it might as well have been, being sandwiched as it was between the good scrap that was Omotoso vs. Tyner and the main event. Still, the fight was fairly competitive throughout with Pinzon coming out the rightful winner by unanimous decision.

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