When Joe DeGuardia, announced that he was going to be getting his “Punchin at the Paradise” fight series back in full swing in 2011, he stated that the main idea behind the concept was that he wanted to bring live exciting boxing back on a regular basis to the Bronx. That is exactly what happened earlier tonight, before a well-attended house, as Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing presented an action-packed, thrilling, nine bout pro-am card. From top to bottom there wasn’t one fight that didn’t produce fireworks and kudos must be given to Star Boxing’s match-maker Ron Katz for the great night of boxing at the Paradise Theater in the Bronx.
In the main event bout of the evening, popular Yonkers middleweight Bryant Pappas, was given a much tougher than expected challenge from Denver’s Allen Medina. You could throw out the records in this match, as it was clear that Medina came to fight from the opening bell, against the heavily favored Pappas.
Pappas, a Sergeant with the Yonkers Police Department, came out stalking Medina, looking to get inside, but Medina worked behind a stiff jab keeping Pappas off balance in the early going.
In the middle rounds, Pappas was able to cut off the ring, and work his way inside where he would score with combinations to the body and head, but Medina’s jab was still giving him problems on the outside, and Pappas was forced to fight much of the contest bleeding profusely from his nose.
There was good two-way action in the 5th and 6th as both fighters gave as good as they got. Pappas dug down deep in the 6th and had probably his best round of the fight.
In the end, one judge had it 59-55 for Pappas, with the other scoring it 58-56 for Medina, and the third scoring it dead even at 57-57, resulting in a majority draw, and the only blemish on Pappas’s otherwise perfect record which now stands at 12-0-1, 12KO’s. Medina’s record now reads 8-19-1, 1KO.
VALLE IMPRESSIVE AGAINST TORRES
In the co-feature bout of the evening The Bronx’s Danny Valle won a hard, and very entertaining six round decision over Yonkers, Angel Torres.
Both Valle and Torres had strong contingents of fans on hand to witness there showdown, and they didn’t disappoint.
Very early in the first round Torres landed a perfectly timed overhand left that dropped Valle on the seat of his pants. Almost immediately after the fight resumed, Valle returned the favor sending Torres down with a straight right hand that landed flush on his chin.
In the 2nd Valle began boxing from the outside landing hard combinations at range against the hard charging Torres. Valle would switch comfortably from orthodox to southpaw throughout the fight, and scored with big punches from either stance, but to Torres credit he took them well and would work his way inside where he would score with shots to the body of Valle.
It was clear that Torres’ game plan was to entice Valle into a firefight, and while he was successful at times, Valle wouldn’t veer too much away from his game-plan and boxed beautifully down the stretch, closing strong as he countered well and picked his smaller opponent off from the outside.
There was great two-way action from the fighters throughout, but Valle was clearly the sharper of the two. In the end two judges saw it 60-54, while the third had it 59-55, all in favor of Valle, who stayed undefeated, improving to 5-0, 3KO’s. With the loss, Torres dropped to 2-6-2, 1KO, but had nothing to be ashamed of as he put forth a great effort.
OWUSU WINS BATTLE OF THE BRONX
In a battle for Bronx bragging rights, Stephon Owusu used his superior boxing ability to shut-out Angel Rios in their six round welterweight match-up.
Owusu worked behind a piston-like jab to score with crisp combinations throughout much of the bout. While Rios couldn’t match Owusu offensively, he made the fight exciting, as he continuously pressed forward looking to trade on the inside, which Owusu at times welcomed, landing hard right uppercuts and left hooks that would snap Rios’ head back.
In the end all three judges gave the fight to Owusu, 60-53, 60-53, 60-54. It was the second win in a row for Owusu (8-6, 4KO’s), who returned in May after being out of the ring for nearly 11 years. Rios record drops to (9-5, 6 KO’s).
OCASIO ANNIHILATES SMITH
Mike Ocasio may have had a very limited amateur career, but he does have something that some people are just born with and some aren’t, and that’s natural power. That power was on display as he knocked out Abdellah Smith at one minute fifty seven seconds of the very first round of their scheduled four round light heavyweight contest.
Smith came out throwing wild, hard shots in the first but Ocasio stayed calm, and began measuring his opponent with his jab. With Smith charging in, Ocasio landed a beautiful timed three-punch combination that stunned his opponent. Ocasio moved in for the kill and landed a monstrous right uppercut that sent Smith down hard and in really bad shape. Smith tried to get to his feet, but was in no condition to continue as he stumbled back to the canvas, earning Ocasio (2-0, 2KO’s) the second knockout in as many fights as a pro. Smith drops to 1-3, 1KO.
PEREZ GETS OFF CANVAS TO DECISION JONES
In the opening pro bout of the night, Juan Perez got off the canvas in the first to go on to outwork and out muscle Andrew Jones over four rounds.
A uppercut to the body forced Perez to take a knee midway through the first. From the second round on though Perez was the busier of the two, stalking his opponent and landing hard combinations to both the body and head of Jones for the remainder of the four round contest. In the end all three judges scored the bout 38-37 in favor of Perez (1-1), who picked up his first win as a professional. Jones drops to 1-7-1.
The amateur portion of the card saw NYPD members, Jamal Spence and Mark Sinatra both come out victorious with Spence scoring a 2nd round TKO over Shaka Davidson, and Sinatra winning a decision over Jonathan Jenkins. In the other two bouts, Bryant Cruz won an exciting decision, and in a battle of jr. Olympians the Bronx’s Josue Vargas decisioned Brandon Idrogo.