Ringside Report By:
Photography By Emily Harney
This past Friday night at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey, the enigmatic junior welterweight Zab “Super” Judah (39-6, 27 KOs) once again proved that he is back and ready to take any of the world champions with a nearly flawless third round technical knockout of usually durable veteran Jose Armando Santa Cruz (28-5, 17 KOs) in the scheduled ten round main event. The seven bout card promoted by Main Events and Super Judah Promotions provided a quality undercard featuring some of the best regional talent in competitive bouts. The co-feature showcased Newark ’s own welterweight prospect Alex Perez (12-0, 7 KOs) as he gritted out an eight round unanimous decision over Edvan Dos Santos Barros (10-10-1, 7 KOs ).
If there were any questions as to the legitimacy of Judah ’s chances at another world title run, many were answered in his dominant third round stoppage of the veteran Santa Cruz .
Judah , from Brooklyn , NY , controlled the contest from the opening bell with his pinpoint jabs and straight lefts from the outside. Santa Cruz , born in Mexico and fighting out of Lincoln Heights , CA , seemed frustrated in the early going and could only fight. As the opening round came to a close, Judah seemed to be in complete control, circling to his right and timing his opponent’s advances while unleashing tight combinations.
Santa Cruz , who had lost a split decision to former champion Joel Casamayor (November 2007) and severely tested former champion David Diaz (August 2006), was a wily veteran and changed up his tactics in round two as he tried to lunge in and fight on the inside. In the middle of the second round Santa Cruz pushed Judah to the ropes and attempted to unleash a barrage of punches. The thirty two year former champion looked like the Judah of his younger years as he slipped to his right and easily avoided all three shots, before clinching and circling out of range. Judah then went back on the attack as he connected with three straight left hands up top.
Santa Cruz charged across the ring at the opening bell of round three and tried once again to land a combination, but Judah was on his a game and clinched before turning him around
with a couple sharp jabs from the southpaw stance. Santa Cruz ducked down in an attempt to avoid the increasing flurries. Judah saw his moment and sent the crafty Mexican to the canvas with a perfectly timed uppercut. Santa Cruz was badly hurt, yet rose to his feet. Judah immediately planted him on the ropes and unloaded four unanswered shots as Santa Cruz teetered to his left. Referee Benji Esteves Jr. had seen enough and stepped in to call a halt to the bout at 2:33 of the third round.
“The fight went pretty much how I thought it would go,” said Judah . “I let my jab set everything up. After I let that jab go and then the devastating uppercut landed, I knew it was over.
“I am now looking to fight the best: Devon Alexander, Timothy Bradley, and Amir Khan, the so called champions,” Judah continued. “I don’t care about the order. I am just going to pick them off. Don’t forget about me! I’m here and I am going to be like the ghost in the night. I am punching at God speed. When I am punching at God speed there is nothing that they can do.”
“The Zab Judah today is different. Number one, I gave my life to God,” said Judah . “With that being said, there is nothing that can follow that. You dedicate yourself and sacrifice everything. The old Zab, he was cool! You know what I am saying, but not like the Zab today. My children are the future. I have to make sure everything is set up for them. I am here to make sure that my time and legacy in this sport are done right.”
“ Judah is ready for a world title shot now,” said Main Events promoter Kathy Duva. “He’s got the speed, timing and all of the knowledge. He knows more than all of the young guys out there that the champions have been fighting. He can match them all for power, speed, timing, you name it, but he is smarter and more proficient.”
PEREZ WINS TOUGH!
In the co-feature of the evening Alex " Brick City ” Perez (12-0, 7 KOs ) scored a less than spectacular eight round unanimous decision victory over Edvan Dos Santos Barros (10-10-1, 7KOs).
Perez of Newark, NJ tried to fight on the outside in the early going as he shook off some ring rust, but Barros had different ideas. In round two, Barros of Miami, FL continually dove in and in an effort to negate Perez’s reach and height advantage. The fight got dirty as several of the lunges by Barros produced head butts. Perez tried to block Barros from leaping inside with his head, but was called for pushing his opponent's head down.
Each round was a microcosm of the other throughout the final six close rounds as Perez connected with a few clean shots on the outside, but spent most of the time trying to remove Barros from his chest. Once on the inside Barros was somewhat effective and busier with body work, but Perez more than held his own with a couple of heavy hooks, but many of his exchanges were glancing shots that were smothered.
In the end all three judges saw the fight in favor of Perez with scores of 77-75, 78-74 and a surprising 80-72.
(SADAM) ALI DESTROYS EDMONDS !
Former US Olympian Sadam “World Kid” Ali raised his record to 8-0 with 4 knockouts with a three round demolition of Philly welterweight Julius “Marvel” Edmonds (7-8).
Ali of Brooklyn, NY had Edmonds off balance right from the opening bell with movement and long combinations, behind stiff jabs. Edmonds tried desperately to get under the heavy blows from the outside, but was knocked to the canvas with a right hand upstairs. He rose to his feet and caught a break as Referee Eddie Cotton slowly walked across the ring before giving his corner the mouthpiece to put back in which had fallen out during the knockdown. Ali was right back at it though and caught Edmonds with an uppercut and forced him to cover in the corner during the closing seconds of the round.
Edmonds seemed desperate to get inside, but Ali continually popped the overhand rights and even worked the body, before stepping out of range. Ali fought effectively from distance as Edmonds seemed to wear down from the long quick and powerful combinations. Finally a flurry of punches that ended with an overhand right, put Edmonds on the canvas.
Ali continued his dominance in the early portion of the third with lightning quick combinations. Edmonds landed his best punch of the fight - a right hand upstairs - but Ali walked right through it. Moments later Ali hurt Edmonds with a right-left combination. The wobbled Edmonds covered up as Ali rained own four more unanswered punches before referee Eddie Cotton had seen enough and stepped in to call a halt to the bout at the 1:14 of the third round.
KOWNACKI KNOCKOUTS CLEMENT!
A heavy and raucous Polish contingent was on hand to cheer on one of their own as heavyweight Adam Kownacki, born in Poland but now fighting out of Brooklyn , NY , looked for his fourth straight knockout against Damian Clement of Dayton , OH .
Kownacki went right for it in the opening moments as he swung away with wide hooks. The heavily muscled Clement saw that the Polish heavyweight had dropped his hands to swing away and countered with a big left hand on the chin. Kownacki wobbled for a moment and one glove touched the canvas. Adam rose back up, but before referee Eddie Cotton could start the eight count, Clement hit him with two more right hands. The late shots spurred on Kownacki as he pushed Clement from rope-to-rope with solid combinations. Clement finally spun off the ropes, but Kownacki deposited him on the canvas with heavy four punch combination. Clement rose to his feet and covered in the corner as Kownacki rained down polish thunder with twenty unanswered shots before the bell sounded to end the opening round.
Clement tried to clear his head and fight back in round two. Kownacki would not give him time to recover as he unleashed a picture perfect right hand on the button, which sent Clement to the canvas like a ton of bricks for the ten count. The time of the knockout occurred at forty two seconds of the second round.
Kownacki keeps his perfect knockout streak intact at 4-0 with 4 knockouts, while Clement drops to 0-3.
DEMARCO DECISIONS GUZMAN
The walkout bout was quite possibly the most exciting fight of the night as New York lightweights, Nicky DeMarco and Jose Guzman blasted away at each other for four explosive rounds.
Guzman, of the Bronx , towered over Demarco and seemed at home in the opening round, bouncing long hooks off the head of his shorter opponent. DeMarco of Staten Island, hadn’t fought in over two years, but eventually shook off the ring rust and found his way underneath the long volleys of Guzman, and then banged away at the body and head of the taller man.
Both fighters fought tooth and nail in rounds two and three, with Demarco winning the inside and Guzman fighting well on the retreat.
Guzman tired in the fourth and final round from the constant pressure of DeMarco as his punches lost their steam. Demarco was definitely the stronger down the stretch and he deserved the hard earned victory. All three judges saw it unanimously in favor of Demarco by scores of 40-36 and 39-37 twice.
Nicky DeMarco jumps to 3-2 with 2 knockouts, while Jose Guzman drops to 5-8-1.
FARRELL VS KIDD WAGE A WAR!
Fan favorite, Jersey City cruiserweight “Patty Boy” Patrick Farrell and New York City’s Newton “The Butcher” Kidd waged a back and forth six round war that neither fighter deserved to lose and that is exactly what happened.
Farrell who looked to bounce back from his first loss against back in June, appeared in control in the opening round with jabs, as he pushed Kidd to the ropes and bounce a couple of hooks to the body and some glancing rights up top. Kidd was a veteran though and stayed low as many of Farrell’s punches swished by overhead.
The shorter Kidd caught Farrell with a nice uppercut on the inside and began to find the mark with his right hands up top. Farrell appeared to be the stronger fighter as he continued to land the hard single rights upstairs.
Kidd affectively known as “The Butcher” seemed to carve his way into the fight with heavy overhand rights which seemed to stun Farrell in the third round. Farrell was pushed to the ropes and both went at it, trading several hellacious shots in the closing moment of the round.
The shorter Kidd seemed to gain confidence in round four and then turned it on during round five as he consistently snapped back the head of tiring Farrell with several overhand rights on the inside. Farrell was wobbled by Kidd late from a big right hand, while against the ropes. Kidd jumped on him as Farrell spun out and tried to fight on the retreat while on unsteady legs.
Farrell regained his legs in the beginning of the sixth and final round and was back to his aggressive right hands. Kidd still had his moments with his hard overhand rights, but neither could put the other in any serious trouble in the closing moments, sending it to the scorecards.
One judge score it 58-56 for Kidd, but was overruled by the other two officials who saw it 57-57 even for the majority decision. Patrick Farrell slides to 5-1-1 with 3 knockouts while Newton Kidd moves to 7-7-2 with 4 knockouts.\
CONCEPCION LOOKS IMPRESSIVE!
Undefeated Newark , NJ light heavyweight prospect Angel Concepcion opened the show with a nearly flawless four round unanimous decision victory over Shannon Anderson from Coatesville PA.
Concepcion appeared to take the heart of Anderson right in the opening round with his piston like left jabs and quick combinations. Anderson may have landed only three punches in the opening round as Concepcion peppered him around the ring.
Round two was more and the same and he appeared to actually hurt Anderson with a right on the button, but the Coatesville pugilist survived.
From then on Concepcion easily boxed his way to the final bell from the outside with little coming back in return from his opponent.
All three judges saw the bout easily in favor of Concepcion by scores of 40-35 and 40-36 twice. Concepion ups his record to 2-0, while Anderson ’s record falls to 4-2 with 2 knockouts.