Pound4Pound, Boxing News

  Preliminary Fight Report
One and Done!

By Carlos Cordoba
Photos: William Trillo

Is the “The Nightmare” committed to the sport of boxing? Fans and boxing pundits alike ask the same question. Leading into tonight’s main event, the narrative seemed to mirror that of Cristobal Arreola’s previous bouts. Albeit, the Riverside native did everything in his power to dispel any concerns about his dedication to the sport – both in and out the ring.

There were two very vivid changes in Cristobal Arreola’s camp leading into tonight’s ESPN Friday Night Fights telecast. Even the most novice fight fan would be able to spot the pugilist slight physical transformation and the new addition to his corner - famed trainer Ronnie Shields. The changes proved to make a significant difference not only on his waistline but also in his attitude. Did the changes work?

With a virtual home crowd, Cristobal "The Nightmare" Arreola (30-2, 26 KO’s) was able to make quick work of Joey “Minnesota Ice” Abell (27-4, 26 KO’s) at the Pechanga Resort & Casino in Temecula, California. The heavyweight bout was scheduled for 10 rounds.

In the blink of an eye, “The Nightmare” was able to end the bout quick with a straight left that seemed to pierce through Abell’s jaw, sending his massive body against the ropes and his head out the ring. Arreola then proceeded to end the sparring session with a combo that forced referee Tony Krebs to stop the bout at 2:18 into the first round.

Arreola came in and did exactly what he had to do, destroy his less skilled opposition. Did tonight’s fireworks provide fans and boxing pundits the opportunity to truly see a more mature boxer in Arreola? No! But what the fight did was signal to improvement in the way he approaches the rest of his professional boxing career.

In the midst of his opening round knockout and the jubilation that it produced Arreola said “2011 is my Year.” In the same emotionally provoked rant Arreola stated that 2010 was his worst year ever, and that it was his entire fault. Some men live their entire life and never admit their faults. He did!

Michael Dallas KO’d , Lucky Number 7 for Josesitio

In the televised opener Riverside's own Josesito Lopez (29-3, 17 KOs), knocked out Michael “The Silent Assassin” Dallas Jr. (17-1, 7 KO's) to earn the vacant NABF light welterweight title.

Michael Dallas Jr. came in the slight favorite despite being matched against the hometown favorite and having a less impressive resume than his counterpart. His last two bouts have been against mediocre opposition and that should have been off some concern to his camp. While Dallas Jr. was raking in victories against the likes of Lenin Arroyo (20-13-1) and Devarise Crayton (6-10-2), Josesito Lopez Jr. fought and won two perilous bouts against Colorado amateur legend Marvin Cordova Jr. (21-1-1) and Sergio Rivera (25-5-2). Experience counts!

This fight was a throwback clash of two fighters with different styles and different strategies. Michael Dallas Jr. began the fight on the outside sticking his left jab with Josesito Lopez Jr. attempting to get inside. Consequently, both fighters ended up on the canvas in the opening seconds of the bout as Lopez Jr. attempted to work his way in Dallas’ Jr. guard. Michael Dallas Jr. then attempted to tie up his opponent but that scenario landed both fighters on the canvas. The rounds that followed were strikingly similar to a chess match.

Michael Dallas Jr, began to dictate the pace of the fight from the outside. He would throw his stiff left jab, and follow through with some quick and sharp combos. While Dallas worked the outside, Josesito attempted to force a fight in the middle of the ring and at times was really successful when he had Dallas Jr. against the ropes.

Eventually Josesito Lopez Jr. was able to checkmate Michael Dallas Jr. Although, he first had to endure several head bunts and a cut caused by one head bunt that figured to be precisely above his left eye brow. This is especially true in round three, a round that saw Dallas Jr. control the pace from the outside and skillfully outmaneuver his less athletic opponent. It seemed like Michael had figured out the hometown favorite. But, that stopped mid way into the fourth round. Josesito Lopez Jr. was able to get inside Dallas’ Jr. guard and land a straight right that hurt him in the latter part of the same round.

The fighters went on to split the 5th and sixth rounds, and then came the seventh round. The stalemate was broken when Josesito connected with a left hook that sent Dallas back against the ropes, forcing referee Raul Caiz Jr. to stop the bout at 1:47 of the seventh round.

In the post fight interview, Josesito Lopez Jr. said “it was a tough tactical fight, but we knew it was going to be that way.” Checkmate!

Estrada continues to flourish

Shawn Estrada (11-0, 10KOs) stepped up to better competition tonight, yet his opposition continues to get the same result. Jon Schmidt’s (10-2, 6KOs) night ended just like Estrada’s first nine opponents – he was knocked out in the first round. The super middleweight bout was originally scheduled for six rounds.

Having been almost three months removed from his only unanimous decision victory, the East Los Angeles native was able to do what he does best. At the 1:48 mark of the opening round, Estrada caught Schmidt with a vicious right that sent him to the canvas. THE END!

Matt Villanueva remains unbeaten

Matt Villanueva (5-0,5KOs) dominated Jose Luis Cardenas (5-12, 3KOs) by utilizing a left hook to score his first knock down, then a right hook to score his second knockdown in the first round. Villanueva was then able to connect with a crisp right hook followed by a left uppercut that forced a stoppage :47 into the second round.

Kevin Hoskins escapes with a victory

In the only truely bad decision of the night, Kevin Hoskins (4-0,2KOs) was gifted a split decision victory against the game Ramon Flores (3-10-3KO). Two judges scored the bout 39-37 in favor of Hoskins, while one judge scored the bout 39-37 in favor of Ramon Flores.

Joseph Elegele’s proves to be a hot prospect.

Joseph Elegele (10-0, 8 Kos) completely outclasses fellow undefeated prospect Manuel Aguilar (5-1, 4 KOs). Joseph worked behind his stiff left jab, eventually ending the bout with a right hook at 2:18 mark of the first round.


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