On Saturday night at the Staples Center in L.A., CA, WBC Lightweight champion Mikey Garcia, of Oxnard, CA, won the unification bout over IBF World Lightweight champion Robert Easter, Jr., of Toledo, OH, in a 12 round unification match promoted by Ringstar Sports, PCB and TGB (Tom Brown) over Showtime.
In a unification match WBC World Lightweight champion Mikey Garcia, 39-0 (30), of Oxnard, CA, defeated IBF World Lightweight champion Robert Easter, Jr. 21-1 (14), of Toledo, OH, over 12 rounds.
In the first round Easter used his jab and had a right blocked by Garcia. It was a full minute before Garcia threw a punch which was a solid jab to the chin of Easter. Garcia became the aggressor at the halfway point. Garcia seemed to be loading up primarily using an effective jab. Garcia seemed to show a lot of respect to Garcia’s power. In the second round Easter landed several rights to the body of Garcia. Garcia backed Easter up barely missing with a right to the head of Easter. Garcia backed Easter against the ropes as Easter grabbed Garcia behind the head while Garcia threw punches t othe body of Easter.
In the third round Easter continued to use his reach with his jab. After a minute of the round Garcia backed Easter against the ropes before getting tied up. In an exchange with a minute left in the round Garcia got a left hook in to the chin of Easter. With less than half a minute left Garcia dropped Easter with a vicious right hand followed by a left hook to the chin.
“I thought I won the fight against a great fighter. I look forward to moving up to welter facing the best in Errol Spence,” said Garcia. “I know Mikey was the better fighter tonight,” said Easter.
In the fourth round Easter was very reluctant to throw anything but a jab as Garcia out jabs him. Halfway through the round Garcia landed a good combination to the head of Easter. Easter landed a 3-punch combination that had no effect on Garcia. With half a minute left in the round Garcia backed Easter into the ropes landing a left hook to the body followed by a right hand to the body of Easter who was against the ropes. Easter came back pushing Garcia back with a jab while missing a combination.
In the fifth round Easter came out more aggressive but Garcia blocks most of his punches. Halfway through the round there was a clash of heads that had referee Jack Reiss check both fighters. Easter’s jab seemed to keep Garcia at bay for the most part.
In the sixth round Easter landed a long lead right to the head of Garcia. Garcia got inside and got caught by a Easter left hook to the head. Halfway through the round Garcia rocked Easter with a left hook to the head. Garcia landed a right to the chin causing Easter to cover up and try to tie Garcia up. Garcia seemed to be getting frustrated not getting past the jab of Easter for some clean punches.
In the seventh round Garcia became more aggressive having Easter covering up. Garcia got a jab through the defense of Easter and followed with a straight right to the head of Easter. Garcia landed a double left hook to the head of Easter. Garcia ended the round with a solid right to the head of Easter.
In the eighth round a Garcia jab knocked back the head of Easter who started to move around the ring to avoid anything Garcia may hit him with. Garcia landed a pair of rights followed by a left hook all to the head as Easter moved away on the run.
In the ninth round Garcia moved Easter against the ropes and landed five punches to the body and head of Easter. Easter was warned for holding by referee Reiss. Garcia landed a hard right to the head of Easter. Easter landed a pair of rights to the head of Garcia. Garcia landed a pair of rights to the head of Easter with a minute left in the round. Garcia landed a combination backing up Easter. Garcia landed a pair of left hooks followed by a right and left to the head of Easter who was against the ropes near the corner of Garcia. Good round for Garcia.
In the tenth round Garcia starts bouncing around trying to get Easter to open up but Easter is only interested in backing up and using his jab. Garcia landed a 3-punch combination to the body and head of Easter having him against the ropes. Under a minute left in the round Garcia pinned Easter against the ropes. Easter with hands held high against the ropes got caught with a straight right from Garcia to the chin. Garcia landed the last punch of the round a right to the head of Easter who was very defensive the entire round.
In the eleventh round Garcia landed a lead right to the head of a back pedaling Easter. Garcia landed a 3-punch combination to the head of Easter. Garcia pinned Easter against the ropes with a flurry before getting caught with a right by Easter to the head. Garcia landed a jab and right hand with half a minute left in the round. East landed a long right to the head of Garcia.
In the twelfth and final round Garcia landed a right cross to the chin of Easter as he was on the run. At the halfway point Garcia landed several punches to the head as East tried to tie up Garcia. Garcia landed a combination to the head of Easter. Garcia landed three punches as Easter was against the ropes. Garcia landed a double left hook to the head of Easter having him against the ropes.
Scores were Hernandez 116-111 Hazzard, Jr. 117-110 and Weisfeld 118-109 with this writer having it 115-111.
Heavyweight Cuban southpaw Luis “King Kong” Ortiz, 29-1 (25), of Miami, FL, in a mismatch stopped Romanian Razvan Cojanu, 16-4 (9), of Burbank, CA, at 2:08 of the second round.
In the first round Ortiz pressed the fight working the body of the larger Cojanu who is completely on the defense. Halfway through the round a right hook to the chin hurt Cojanu. Just under a minute Cojanu landed his first decent punch a right to the head of Ortiz. The crowd started to grow restless with the lack of action. Ortiz landed the final punch of the round with a right hook to the head of Cojanu.
In the second round Ortiz blocked a left hook from Cojanu but got caught with a right to the chin. Halfway through the round Cojanu stood his ground in the middle of the ring until a right hook from Ortiz to the left ear of Cojanu followed by a straight left to the chin dropped him in a complete mismatch. Cojanu was shaky trying to get up and fell down on his own causing referee Cantu wisely waved it off.
“First I want to say hi to my family who couldn’t be here. I want to thank God,” said Ortiz. (He started to get emotional and turned away from interviewer Jim Gray). It was mentioned they found a cure for his ill daughter.
Welterweight Mario “El Azteca” Barrios, 22-0 (14), of San Antonio, TX, had his way stopping Jose “El Gato” Roman, 24-3-1 (16), of Garden Grove, CA, at the end of the 8th round winning the WBA Inter-continental welterweight title.
In the first round both fighters mixed it up well. Barrios was cut on the outside of his left eyebrow from a overhand per referee Gerard White a right by Roman halfway through the round. It looked more like a clash of heads. In the second round Barrios continued to press the action. He used a good left hook against Roman who kept it close.
In the third round Barrios kept landing the left hook to the body and ad on the shorter Roman. Barrios landed a right to the chin of Roman with about half a minute left. Roman used a jab and landed a combination but was usually on the receiving end. In the fourth round Roman landed a 3-punch combination to the body and head of Barrios at the beginning of the round. Barrios landed a left hook followed by a right to the chin of Roman knocking him backwards as Barrios jumped on him with a flurry and dropped him with a left hook on top of the head. Referee White administered the 8 count. Barrios went right after Roman but the latter fought back while moving back faster than before. In the final ten seconds Roman was rocked by a right hand on the chin from Barrios.
In the fifth round at the midway point Barrios landed a left hook followed by a right to the chin of Roman rocking him. Roman is completely on the defense. Barrios ended the round with a right to the head of Roman. In the sixth round the first clinch of the fight happened in a very clean fight. Roman landed his best combination to the head of Barrios at the midway point of the round. It was a much better round for Roman but not enough to take the round.
In round seven Barrios continued with a right cross to the chin of Roman. Roman has spent the first two minutes of the round on the defense and hardly returning any punches. Barrios walks Roman to the ropes doing all the punching as Roman tries ducking under the punches but was caught by a good right to the chin. At the end of the round Barrios landed a solid right to the head of Roman.
In round eight Barrios backed Roman into a corner landing a flurry of punches until Roman landed a left hook to the chin and moved away. Barrios landed four punches to the body of Roman. Shortly afterwards at the halfway point a flurry of punches from Barrios dropped Roman who looked like he was giving up. He spit out his mouthpiece as he beat the count so referee White had the corner replace it. It’s been a very lopsided fight. Roman landed a right to the chin but was countered by a Barrios left hook to the chin. The fight should be stopped. The corner stopped the fight between rounds. Barrios won every round.
“I want to keep fighting and feel I am ready for bigger fights but that is up to my trainer and manager. I feel he was there for my right hand,” said Barrios. All three judges had it 80-70 as did this writer. The corner of Barrios is looking for a title fight at the end of 2019.