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HBO Boxing After Dark Main Event Orlando Salido vs. Mikey Garcia
Orlando Salido vs. Mikey Garcia
On Saturday evening January 19, 2013, HBO Boxing After Dark presented three championship bouts from Madison Square Garden in New York City.
The first fight was a clash between WBO Junior Lightweight champion twenty-nine year old Roman Rocky Martinez (26-1-1, 16 KO’s) and twenty-five year old challenger Juan Carlos Burgos (30-1, 20 KO’s). Martinez hails from Vega Baja, Puerto Rico while Burgos hometown is Tijuana, Mexico.
There was a controversial decision for the Martinez/Burgos fight. The judges called the bout a draw. Judge number one had the bout nine rounds to three for Juan Carlos Burgos. A second judge scored the bout eight rounds to four for the champion Rocky Martinez. Judge number three called the fight dead even. Thus the fight was scored a draw and Rocky Martinez retained his WBO title belt. However the HBO analysts clearly scored Juan Carlos Burgos the victor.
Because this decision was so controversial, I decided to view a HBO replay of the Martinez/Burgos fight. I watched the entire twelve rounds of the fight with the sound turned off and saw a different fight. Although Burgos landed heavy body shots to the belt of Martinez, most of the upper body shots were caught by Martinez on his arms and elbows. Martinez blocked Burgos punches to the head with his gloves. Rocky Martinez landed many more shots to the face of Burgos. These punches thrown by Martinez to the face of Burgos were not as powerful as Burgos’s punches to the body of Martinez.
Martinez had quicker hands than Burgos and avoided the head shots thrown by Burgos by backing away. Martinez was also the aggressor throughout many rounds of the fight. The decision of a draw was a fair recording of the contest.
The second bout was a WBO and IBO Middleweight Championship fight between the undefeated thirty year old champion Gennady Golovkin (25-0, 22 KO's) from Kazakhstan and Philadelphia’s twenty-seven year old challenger Gabriel Rosado (21-5, 13 KO’s).
Golovkin opened a cut over the left eye of Rosado in the second round of the fight. Although Rosado was a game competitor Golovkin pounded him every round. Rosado's corner threw in the towel at 2:46 of the seventh round. The cut over Rosado’s eye was bleeding profusely. Golovkin won by TKO and retained his title.
The main event was a twelve round WBO Featherweight Championship fight between thirty-two year old WBO champion Orlando Salido ( 39-11-2, 27 KO’s) from Mexico and the undefeated challenger twenty-five year old Mikey Garcia (30-0, 26 KO’s) from Ventura, California.
Mikey Garcia knocked down the champion Salido twice in the first round. Garcia controlled the fight by using a stiff, hard left jab and left right combinations to keep Salido from getting inside. Salido went down again in the third round when Garcia hit him with a right uppercut to the chin. Salido also went to the canvas for a brief second in the fourth round. A game Salido finally won the sixth round by constantly attacking the body and head of Garcia.
In the eighth round Salido threw a round house right to the back of Garcia's head. He charged forward and broke Mikey Garcia's nose with an accidental head butt. The fight was stopped and went to the score cards. Mikey Garcia the younger, bigger, stronger, faster fighter won a unanimous decision and became the new WBO featherweight champion.
As always the HBO commentary team of Bob Papa, Max Kellerman, Andre Ward and Harold Letterman did an excellent job.