By Derek Bonnett
On Saturday, August 9, the Barclay Center in Brooklyn, New York continued further established itself as one of the big fight venues of today with a three bout televised card on Showtime. The Golden Boy promotion pitted Danny Garcia, Lamont Peterson, and Danny Jacobs against far less heralded foes in bouts to showcase their talent and build their popularity.
The Showtime card opened with Danny Jacobs vying for his first world title in his second attempt as a middleweight. Jacobs was previous stopped in five rounds by Dmitry Pirog in a bid for the vacant WBO strap. In between title shots, Jacobs won a huge battle against cancer and miraculously rebuilt himself as a contender against a steady flow of safe opponents. The vacant WBA title was on the line with Australia’s Jarrod Fletcher standing in his way.
Jacobs started the bout quickly and hurt Fletcher with the left hook, dropping him in the first round. Fletcher was again rocked with the left hook and was sent reeling all over the ring. His glove seemingly touched the canvas, but a second knockdown was not ruled. Jacobs began the second round out of the southpaw stance and drastically dropped the pace, later commenting he did not want to tire himself out going for the KO. Both men boxed more carefully and Fletcher was allowed back into the fight. Fletcher’s resurgence was even stronger in the third round as he managed to back Jacobs up and land some respectable right hands.
The fourth round saw Jacobs landing again with the left hook and putting Fletcher once again on unsteady legs. Jacobs continued to land the bigger shots, but Fletcher appeared to be digesting them better than he had in the first. That all changed in the fifth round. Fletcher actually boxed his best in the opening minutes and was establishing a consistent offensive when he was again dropped by Jacobs. Fletcher rose, but was soon overwhelmed and stopped at 2:58 of the fifth.
Jacobs, the first cancer survivor to win a world championship, raised his ledger to 28-1 (25). Fletcher, one of numerous Australian’s to fail on a big stage in recent weeks, crashed to 18-2 (10).
Lamont Peterson defended his IBF junior welterweight title for the third time with a dominant tenth round TKO over Edgar Santana. Peterson controlled the bout throughout and did his best work to the body, which likely produced the stoppage. Santana was befuddled by Peterson’s speed and, as each round progressed, could not produce a formidable punch output to threaten Peterson.
The fight was stopped at the 2:48 mark as a ringside official prompted the referee to end the one-sided drubbing. Peterson’s dossier grew to 33-2-1 (17). Santana fell to 29-5 (20). Peterson expressed his interest in meeting Danny Garcia next.
Danny Garcia scored a non-title bout second round KO of the badly overmatched Rod Salka. Before the bout, Garcia stated that any man with two arms could make a tough fight for him. Salka appeared a few dozen arms short of competitive. Garcia patiently countered as Salka came forward throwing punches. Garcia walked through the light punches produced by Salka and did some nice work to the body. The fight was essentially over after a right hand rocked Salka and a follow up barrage produced the first knockdown of the bout early in round two. Never fully recovered, Salka was again wobbled and then put down by an overhand right. The fight continued and Salka absorbed about two shots too many as a nice right hand to the body set up a huge left hook which put him flat on his back.
The time of the stoppage was 2:31 of round two. Garcia jumped to 29-0 (17) and evaded Jim Grey’s questions about his willingness to meet Peterson in a unification bout. The decision was deferred to Al Haymon. Salka, a pleasant young man, made 120K for the exhibition, and likely got his only taste of world championship caliber boxing. He fell to 19-4 (3).
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