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Pacquiao's main spar mate Ray Beltran and young star Jessie Magdaleno victorious in Las Vegas


PhilBoxing.com




Las Vegas, Nevada - Top Rank Incorporated and network giant ESPN presented the first offering of Fight Week with a seven bout card at The Mirage Hotel & Casino here at the famous Las Vegas strip.

The show was broadcasted in a special Thursday night edition of the network's Friday Night Fights and featured three exciting bouts for its national viewers.

BELTRAN VS. KIM

The night is headlined by current Manny Pacquiao stable mate and sparring partner Raymundo Beltran who figured in an exciting slugfest against fellow lightweight Ji-Hoon Kim of Goyang City, South Korea.
The two hard nosed fighters exchanged knockdowns in the initial round of their scheduled ten rounder with Kim drawing first blood with a well placed left hook to Beltran's chin.

Beltran who is being coached by Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach, then replied with a staggering left hook of his own that floored Kim on the final moments of the round.

The action never stopped from there as both went hard against each other, throwing hurtful punches that aim to knocked the other guy out. Both fighters figured out in closed quarter fighting both in the middle of the ring and in the four corners of the ring. Beltran mixed his attack with mean body shots that halted Kim's fearless aggression, enough to give him an edge on closely contested rounds.

Meantime, Kim also poured his own brand of punishment towards his foe. The South Korean slugger countered with head shots on Beltran who pressured him in the corner posts and the ropes with his attack.

Beltran won the fight and successfully defended his NABF Lightweight belt with a hard earned Unanimous Decision victory. The scores for Beltran were identical marks of 98-92 and a 97-94 tally on another judge.


MAGDALENO VS. ARELLANO

In the co-feature of tonight's TV offering, popular rising star Jessie Magdaleno 12-0 (9 KOs) overwhelmed the tough and game Jonathan Arellano 13-1-1 (3 KOs) in the initial broadcasted fight out of ESPN.



Magdaleno utilized his superior hand speed against his opponent from Ontario, California. Arellano was dropped twice in the scheduled eight round Super Bantamweight fight courtesy of Magdaleno's furious combinations.

But Arellano did not give up, even when he is under his opponent's attack. He cracked his opponent with hard left hooks that halted Magdaleno's advances several times in the fight. The two fighters tested each other's chin with hard punches that landed for both.

Magdaleno earned all three of the judges' approval at ringside with a lopsided Unanimous Decision scores of 80-69 and two cards of 80-70.

The win improved Magdaleno's perfect record to 13 consecutive wins and also gave him the vacant NABO Youth Super Bantamweight title.

GRADNOVICH VS. VILLANUEVA

The night opened with a seven round domination of Russian born fighter, Evgeny Gradovich 14-0 (7 KOs) over William Villanueva 10-4-1 (2 KOs) of Albuquerque, New Mexico.



Gradnovich 26, who is now based out of Oxnard and is train by popular trainer,Robert Garcia, pressed Villanueva from the opening bell with shots to both the head and the body. He floored his opponent in Round 3 via vicious body shot and stunned him again in the 6th with hard combinations.
The bloodied Villanueva bravely put up a fight but was clearly overwhelmed by Gradnovich's assault. Referee Robert Byrd halted the fight for good at the 2:03 mark of the 7th round after witnessing another brutal onslaught by Gradnovich.

OSIOBE VS. ROMAN

Hometown fighter Robert Osiobe 13-5-4 (6 KOs) scored a Split Decision upset of previously unbeaten Lightweight Jose Roman 14-0 (11 KOs) of Garden Grove, California. The slick Osiobe answered Roman's advances with effective counterpunching and ring movement producing a clash of styles between the two fighters.

Roman caught his opponent in the eight and final round which sent Osiobe to the floor. The latter recovered quickly and finished the fight afterwards.

Two judges scored it a close 76-75 for Osiobe while one official had it at 77-74 for Villanueva.

VERDEJO VS. CHAVEZ

Puerto Rican Olympian Felix Verdejo was victorious in his professional debut with a four round UD win over Leonardo Chavez 1-0 (1 KO) of Los Angeles, California.



The 19 year old Super Featherweight was the aggressor in the early stages of the fight and maintained his aggressiveness in the entire four round fight which was also shown live on national television.
Verdejo earned his victory with two dominating scores of 40-36 and a 39-37 mark on another.

GUTIERREZ VS. MALDONADO

In a battle of unbeaten Lightweights, Las Vegas' own Jesus Gutierrez 6-0-0-1 (2 KOs) defeated Mike Maldonado 6-0 (1 KO) of Altus, OK in a six round bout. Gutierrez brought not only a big crowd with him to the venue, but he also had his own band cheering for him throughout his fight.

The Mirage Convention Center was filled with cheers from his fans and loud drum rolls every time he unloads on his foe. The two fought a close four rounder, earning Gutierrez a UD victory with scores of 58-56 and a pair of 59-55 card.
Gutierrez remained unbeaten with a 7-0 record while Maldonado suffered the first loss of his 7 bout career.

KAHN-CLARY VS. GARZA

Toka Kahn-Clary 2-0-0-1 (2 KOs) of Providence, Rhode Island finished the night of fights here at The Mirage Hotel and Casino with a four round UD win over Jesus Garza 2-2-1 of Dallas, Texas. The two fought a hard battle which earned Kahn-Clary the third straight victory of his young career.


You can reach the author at rrmaze24@aol.com.

Photos by Dr Ed de la Vega.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Rich Mazon .


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