By Ken Hissner: At the Resorts World Las Vegas, Las Vegas, Nevada, Saturday over ESPN with the undercard on ESPN+. In the Main Event 2016, Olympian and WBC Continental Americas Middleweight champion Zhanibek “Qazaq Style” Alimkhanuly and European champ Danny Digum for the WBO Interim World Middleweight title.
In the Main Event 2016 Olympian WBC Continental Americas Middle champ and No. 2 ranked southpaw Zhanibek “Qazaq Style” Alimkhanuly, 11-0 (7), #160, of Zhilandy, KAZ, and Oxnard, CA, Euro champ and No. 3 ranked Danny Digum, 14-0-1 (8), #159, of Essex, UK, 12 rounds, for the vacant WBO Interim World Middleweight title.
In the first round, Alimkhanuly dropped Digum with a 5-punch combination on the chin for an 8-count from Referee Tony Weeks.
Former 2012 Olympian and WBO Super Featherweight champ coming off losing his title southpaw Jamel “Semper Fi” Herring, 23-4 (11), #135, of Cincinnati, OH, lost again, this time to NABF lightweight champ Jamaine “The Technician” Ortiz, 16-0-1 (8), #135, or Worcester, MASS, over 10 rounds, for the NABF and vacant USBA lightweight titles.
In the first round, Ortiz came out southpaw for most of the round, but it didn’t help him trying to confuse Herring to no avail. In the second round, Ortiz twice, in the final minute of the round, rocked the chin of Herring from southpaw and orthodox. In the fifth round, Herring didn’t do enough allowing Ortiz to take the round.
In the sixth round, at the halfway point, the older Herring, at 36, got his second wind and landed a solid left uppercut on the chin of the younger at 26 Ortiz. In the seventh and eighth rounds, Ortiz started bouncing around the ring trying to land a big punch and did in the final seconds but let the round go to Herring.
In the ninth round, both were going to the body, with the younger Ortiz quicker and getting away with pushing and them using his forearm to put Herring into the ropes without warning from Referee Robert Hoyle.
In the tenth and final round, on the verge of his biggest career win, Ortiz stayed in the middle of the ring for a change outworking the older Herring, what looked like enough to take the win.
Scores were 96-94, 97-93 twice, as did this writer.
Welterweight Olympian Delante “Tiger” Johnson, 4-0 (3), #142.4, of Cleveland, OH, scored a pair of knockdowns to stop Agustin Kucharski, 8-5-1 (3), #143.2, of Bueno Aires, ARG, at 0:54 of the third round of a scheduled six rounds.
In the first round, Johnson landed a right causing a cut under the right eye of Kucharski. In the third round, both throwing punches, with Johnson’s getting there first from a right and down, went Kucharski for an 8-count.
Shortly later, again, a right from Johnson as Kucharski was throwing a wide left and down he went as his corner threw in the towel. Johnson is managed by multi-fighter manager David McWater.
In the ESPN+ part of the event were the following five fights.
Featherweight No. 2 WBA ranked Adam “Blunose” Lopez, 16-3 (6), #126.8, of Glendale, CA, came off the canvas twice to come back and defeat 2012 Olympian William “El Gago” Encarnacion, 19-3 (15), #126.2, of San Juan de la Maguana, DR, over eight action-packed rounds.
Lopez was throwing an uppercut in the first round when a chopping right from Encarnacion on the chin dropped Lopez for an 8-count from Referee Raul Caiz, Jr. early in the round. In the second round, hardly a punch was landed due to Lopez running when both unloaded on one another to the bell at the halfway point.
In the fourth round, a three-punch combination from Encarnacion landed as Lopez was trying to counter, and down went Lopez from a right on the chin for an 8-count for the second time. Lopez boxed his way to the bell.
In the fifth and sixth rounds, it was all Lopez turning southpaw, giving Encarnacion a boxing lesson. In the seventh round, it was all action, with Encarnacion forcing the action and Lopez countering well. In the eighth and final round, a war broke out with Lopez taking the first half with a good body attack when Encarnacion got a second wind taking over with both throwing at the bell.
Scores were 76-74, 77-74 twice, with this writer 75-75.
Lightweight Carlos “Karlos” Balderas, 13-1 (11), #132, of Santa Maria, CA, defeated Ruben “El Tigrillo” Cervera, 13-3 (11), #130.8, of Santa Marta, COL, over six rounds.
In the first round, a Balderas left hook on the chin dropped Cervera at the midway point for an 8-count by referee Tony Weeks. In the next three rounds, Balderas was looking for the big punch that never came though he won the rounds.
In the eighth and final round, Balderas finished well enough to earn the win though after a first-round knockdown expected to finish his opponent. The referee was Alan Huggins.
Scores were 57-55, 58-54 twice, as did this writer.
In a Super Featherweight match coming back after two years, former WBO Super Bantamweight champ southpaw Jessie Magdaleno, 29-1 (18), #127.2, of Las Vegas, NV, easily defeated southpaw Edy “Dinamita” Valencia, 19-7-6 (7), #126.8, of Culiacan, Sinaloa, MEX, over eight rounds.
In the first four rounds, Valencia was the aggressor as Magdaleno countered well enough to take three of the rounds. In the fifth through the seventh, Magdaleno continued being more offense using chopping right hands to the head of Valencia. In the eighth and final round, Magdaleno tried for the stoppage to no avail, taking an easy win.
Scores were 80-72, as was this writers.
Super Featherweight Olympian Duke Ragan, 6-0 (1), #127.6, of Cincinnati, OH, defeated Victorino Gonzalez, 5-2 (2), #127, of Pawley’s Island, SC, over four rounds.
In the first three rounds, Ragan controlled with his jab. In the fourth and final round, Ragan easily won the round with a solid body attack.
Lightweight southpaw Giovanni “GIO” Cabrera, 20-0 (7), #135.4, of Chicago, IL, defeated Elias “El Macho” Damian Araujo, 21-5 (8), #135.4, of Rufino, Santa Fe, ARG and Fresno, CA, over eight rounds.
In the first four rounds, Cabrera fought with hands to his side, picking his shots, while Araujo had an edge outworking him for the most part. In the fifth and sixth rounds, Cabrera used effective left uppercuts as Araujo came in low, walking into them. In the eighth and final round, it was all Cabrera.
Welter southpaw Kasir Goldston, 4-0 (1), #141.6, of Albany, NY, Yaniel Alvarez Telemaco, 2-1 (1), #141.8, of Ciego de Avila, Cuba, and Hutto, TX, 6/4 rounds.
Lightweight Charlie Sheehy, 2-0 (2), #134.8, of Brisbane, CA, southpaw Bernell Jenkins, 2-1 (1), #133.6, of New Orleans, LA, four rounds.