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  Lopez Picks Lamptey Apart In Last
Thompson Boxing Promotions Event

By Barbara Pinnella
Photos: Chris Suchánek


In this Path to Glory series finale called One Last Time, we witnessed the last show of Thompson Boxing Promotions. Founded by the late Ken Thompson, this evenings’ show put the cap on 23 years of putting on fights and promoting fighters. It was a bittersweet and emotional night for many. More about that later, first the fights.

Welterweights were featured in the main event of the evening as Louie Lopez (14-2-1, 5 KOs) stood across the ring from Benjamin Lamptey (13-12, 9, 2 KOs). This fight was scheduled for eight rounds. Lopez came out lightning fast for the opening round, demonstrating his quick hands and good use of the jab. He showed a bit of body work as well. Good first round for Louie.

Talk about punches in bunches, in the second round Lopez was landing six, seven, and eight shots in a row. Head, body, uppercuts; he was showing everything he had. The attack continued in the third, and body shots put Lamptey down very early in the third. He made it up at the eight count, but Louie went right back to work and more body shots finished Benjamin off. The fight ended at 1:22 of round three.

The co-main event was scheduled for eight rounds and saw super featherweights George Acosta (16-1, 3 KOs) taking on Edy Valencia Mercado (20-12-6, 7 KOs). We saw a decent first round, with. Acosta definitely landed more punches. Mercado would wind up and throw, but more often than not he would miss and throw himself off balance. Acosta was displaying a lot of skill. He showed quick hands that found their target often, had good body work, and was able to avoid most of what Mercado tried to send his way.

Just before the bell to end the fourth round, Acosta landed a hard right hand, dropping Mercado. Because of that timing, Edy made it out of the round. George continued to have the upper hand in the fifth round. His jab was working well, as were his power shots. But Mercado had taken a beating along the way. He could not continue, and the fight was stopped before the start of round six.

Unfortunately, we were informed today that Mercado was in an Ontario hospital fighting for his life after the fight with Acosta. The danger is always there; you don’t play boxing. As of this writing there is no further update, but a prayer couldn’t hurt.

Super middleweights were next, as Nelson Oliva (8-0, 7 KOs) faced off against Jeremaine Whittington (2-2, 1 KO). This bout was scheduled for four rounds. The first round produced a very slow start, especially when you consider the fight is only four rounds. All that changed in the opening seconds of round two, as Oliva dropped Whittington with a body shot.

Jeremaine got up at the eight count and tried to soldier on, but was dropped again. When he went down a third time, thanks to both body and head blows, referee Ray Corona stopped the bout at 1:57 of that second round. Oliva remained undefeated.

In a four round welterweight fight, Kevin Salgado (3-1, 1 KO) took on Izaiah Vargas (1-7, 1 KO). The fight was over quickly, as Salgado first dropped Vargas with a slick body shot, and when Izaiah elected to continue, he just pummeled Vargas with a barrage of head and body shots. The referee put an end to the fight at 2:08 of the first round.

The opener saw Esteban Munoz (7-3, 4 KOs) going up against Nelson Morales (4-8, 1 KO). This fight was to go a scheduled six rounds in the welterweight division. The first round didn’t produce much until the 10 second warning, when Munoz landed a couple of shots. But he came out firing in the second, and got the attention of Morales with some good body shots. Nelson was showboating a lot, but not really displaying much effective punching.

Morales came out swinging in the fourth, and was able to score some points through most of the round. The fifth appeared to be a pretty even round. In the final round Nelson got in his best shot of the fight that sent Munoz reeling backwards. But Munoz had been strong throughout, and we went to the scorecards. The judges saw the fight 60-54 once and 59-55 twice, all for Munoz.

Many of the fighters who had fought under the Thompson banner were in attendance, and were called to the ring to be introduced One Last Time for Thompson. They included Josesito Lopez, Mauricio Herrera, Chris Arreola, Sindy Amador, the former World Champion Paul Banke, Oscar Torres and Artemio Reyes.

Trainers were also brought forward, including Joel Diaz, Willy Silva, Timothy Bradley’s father Ray, and Carlos Bojorquez. Finally, matchmaker and Operations Manager for Thompson, Alex Camponovo, was brought forward and said a few words of thanks to everyone.

On a personal note, I met so many great people through Thompson events, with Ken Thompson at the top of that list. He was always so gracious and friendly, and his passion and love for the sport was always evident. The boxing world lost a great one this year, and I was thrilled to feel a part of the Thompson family.


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