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Arnaoutis survives a war!

June 27, 2009

By:Kurt Wolfheimer
Photography by Tom Casino


A big question was answered this past Thursday as former junior welterweight contender “Mighty” Mike Arnaoutis (22-3-2, 10 KOs) rebounded from a second round knockout at the hands of “Vicious” Victor Ortiz back in March with a hard fought ten round unanimous decision victory over hard hitting Doel Carrasquillo in the main event of “Summer Rumble” at Schuetzen Park in North Bergen New Jersey.

It looked to be a mismatch on paper as Carrasquillo, born in Puerto Rico and now fighting out Lancaster, PA, entered the ring with a record of 12 wins against 11 losses with 10 knockouts, but “the opponent” fought like a man possessed as he connected with big bombs that had Arnaoutis, originally from Greece and now fighting out of Atlantic City, on the retreat throughout much of the contest.

It was clear in the opening two rounds that “Mighty Mike” was the better boxer as he methodically weaved his way in and out of punching range with pinpoint counters. Carrasquillo pressed forward and found spots for his heavy hooks whenever he caught Arnaoutis against the ropes.

It became a battle of wills as each fighter tried to enforce their will on the other. Carrasquillo continued to plow through the combinations of Arnaoutis’ in order to swing wild right hands and uppercuts. Several of those hooks landed and appeared to stun Arnaoutis, but he continued to fight back valiantly.

Carrasquillo sent the pro-Arnaoutis crowd into an uproar by pulling throat slashing signs between rounds, but seemed to get the crowd more on his side by dropping his hands in several rounds, imploring “Mighty Mike” to trade with him.

An accidental head-butt in round four put a nice welt on the left eye of Arnaoutis, who had trouble seeing throughout the rest of the fight. 

However Arnaoutis answered the question of what it takes to be a world champion as he adapted to the adversity moving on his feet and finding spots for his swift combinations, which forced Carrasquillo to slow his attack.

Carrasquillo gave it his all, but appeared to slow just enough down the stretch allowing Arnaoutis to capture the final two rounds and squeak out the unanimous decision victory.

All three judges scored the bout in favor of Arnaoutis by scores of 96-94 twice and 98-92.

“I hurt my left shoulder in training and it affected my shots, so I had to box,” said Arnaoutis. “Carrasquillo was a much heavier fighter then me and it showed, but I was able to peck away at his tight defense and capture the victory,” said a satisfied Arnaoutis afterward. The head-butt in the fourth round made it so I had trouble seeing throughout the rest of the fight. I hope to be right back in the ring soon fighting some of the top fighters in my division soon.”

Carrasquillo sounded very satisfied with his performance afterward. “This was the third Olympic boxer I have fought in a row and it was my first ten round fight,” said Carrasquillo.
“I gave the crowd everything I had and a very good fight. The crowd was satisfied and so was I. This was the biggest
fight of my career and I am proud of my effort. He was hurt several times, but I would have had to knock him out to win the fight.”

 

ROONEY KNOCKOUTS BERNARD IN ONE!

In the eight-round light heavyweight semi-final of the evening, local fan favorite Bobby Rooney Jr. sent his fans home happy with a near perfect first round knockout of Brian Bernard of Saint Joseph, Missouri.

Rooney, from Bayonne, NJ, looked poised connecting with sharp shots right from the opening bell, which had Bernard constantly on the retreat. The surprised Bernard tried to return with some counters, but Rooney stepped in and out of the pocket like a poised veteran, while landing pinpoint combinations of his own.

Bernard had no choice but to try and trade with Rooney. It was a big mistake, as Rooney seized the opportunity and dug a deep left hook into the exposed ribcage, which sent the badly hurt Bernard to the ropes. Rooney jumped on him unleashing yet another pinpoint hook under the ribcage, sending Park crumbling to the canvas. Park looked like he had his senses about him, but just did not reach his feet in time to beat the ten count, resulting in the KO at 2:40 of the opening round.

 

It was the third straight stoppage in a row for the always exciting Rooney who raised his record to 10-2-1 with 6 knockouts. Bernard will have to regroup as his record slides to 8-5-2, with 4 knockouts.

 

 

 

 

ESCALERA DOWNS PARK!

Local cruiserweight prospect Jason Escalera kept his perfect knockout streak intact, moving to 6-0, with 6 knockouts, by scoring a third round stoppage of Joe Park (8-5, 6 KOs) of Florence, South Carolina.

With each fight, Escalera, from nearby Union City, New Jersey seems to gain confidence and become more polished as he stretches the knockout streak. This time Escalera, who is normally a slow starter, shocked Park early in the opening round by depositing southpaw on his back with a right on the button.

Escalera pressed the attack early in the second round, but Park kept him honest with a couple quick counters.

It was to no avail though as Escalera stepped up the pace in round three with heavy combinations.  Park tried his best to trade with the heavy handed Escalera, but was constantly beaten to the punch. Escalera saw an opening and unleashed a beautiful left upper cut which rocked Park. Badly hurt, Park staggered to the ropes and covered up, hoping to survive the oncoming storm. Escalera was precise and accurate with his heavy hooks to the body and head with nothing coming back in return. Finally after a big right hand turned Park away from the barrage, referee David Fields had seen enough and called a halt to the bout at 1:53 of round three.

 

FARRELL PUMMELS FARR!

Unbeaten cruiserweight prospect Patrick Farrell of nearby Jersey City, New Jersey, put together what looked like the most polished performance of his young career, scoring a lopsided four round unanimous decision victory over Kenneth Farr of Rocky Mountain, North Carolina.

Farrell looked to end it as he bombed away with heavy shots throughout the opening stanza. “I knew when I hit him flush on the jaw with a right hand and he just stood there, it was going to be a long night,” said Farrell. Farr even tried to retaliate with a few counters, but to no avail as Farrell just kept pressing forward with several heavy combinations.

By round three Farrell was using the slower Farr like a punching bag, landing countless two and three punch combinations to the head and the body. Even defense of Farrell was superb as he backed out, while avoiding any return volleys from Farr.

The damage from the constant pounding was taking its toll on Farr, who was sporting a huge welt around the left eye by round three.  The beating wouldn’t stop there as Farrell caught Farr in the corner with a big right hand, and followed up with four unanswered shots, which sent his raucous fans into an uproar. Surprisingly, Farr ducked down and was able to escape the corner.

Farrell continued the barrage in the fourth and final round, buckling the knees of Farr with left hook and straight right hand up top. Farr retreated to the ropes and brought his guard up tight. Patrick continued the pressure as he wailed away at the body. Unbelievably, Farr was able to withstand the damage and stay on his feet until the final bell sounded

All three judges gave every round to Farrell by scores of 40-34 and 40-35 twice.

Farrell, taken the distance for the first time in his professional career, looked far more experienced than a fighter who just upped his record to 3-0, with 2 knockouts.

POPE SHOCKS GREEN!

Formerly undefeated Newark, New Jersey lightweight Chris Green hoped to put on a show for his local fans, but had the wind knocked out of his sails, as Mondre Pope of Norfolk, Virginia dropped him twice, en-route to a four round unanimous decision upset victory.

Green, normally known for his constant pressure and fast hands, started the bout with some nice combinations which forced Pope to go on the retreat. As the round progressed, Green opened up more and more. Pope saw an opening and stood his ground, uncorking a counter right, which dropped a shocked Green to the canvas. 

Green recovered and mounted a nice comeback in round two with constant pressure. Pope looked more confident though as he shoeshined Green with flashy combinations a couple of times to make the round close.

The confidence grew in round three for Pope as he pushed Green to the ropes where the fighters traded in back and forth action. Green made a slight mistake in mid-round as he tried to trade with his back against the ropes, which led to his undoing. As the fighters were swinging away, Green caught his left hand behind the vertical chord on the ropes, which left him wide open. Pope found his mark and put him on the canvas for the second time. Though Green was caught more off balance then hurt, the trip to the canvas was ruled a knockdown.

Green look to be behind going into the fourth and final round and did his best to mount an attack, but Pope countered well and stayed out of trouble until the final bell.

All three judges scored the bout in favor of Pope by scores of 38-37 twice and 39-35 respectively.

“I felt great in there,” said Pope afterward. “I have fought several amateur bouts in my opponent’s backyards, so I was at home in there. I will fight anybody anywhere, if given the opportunity. This is just the first step of a great career for me.”

Pope ups his record to a respectable 1-0-1, while Green slips to 2-1, with 1 knockout.

MURPHY BANGS OUT WILLIAMS!

Sparta, New Jersey junior middleweight Chris Murphy moved to a perfect 3-0, with 3 knockouts, with a dominant third round stoppage of winless La-Take Williams (0-1-1) of Newark, New Jersey in the opening bout of the evening.

Dressed in white with a green four leaf clover on his trunks, Murphy would not need the luck of the clover as he used his superior hand speed to wear down the game but outgunned southpaw.

By round two, Williams was spending more time on the ropes as Murphy began to set down on his punches. Williams only defense was to grab Murphy’s right hand and to constantly clinch. Referee Randy Neumann warned Williams for the constant holding. Now without the weapon of the clinch, Williams was forced to trade and was immediately caught with a fierce right hand on the button while against the ropes. Temporarily buzzed, Williams covered as Murphy banged away at his exposed midsection with five unanswered shots. Williams was game though and even fought his way off the ropes as the second round came to a close.

Murphy stepped up the attack in round three, unloading with several combinations while Williams punch output dwindled. Murphy hurt Williams as he leaned against the ropes and followed it up with an overhand right. The referee had seen enough and called a halt to the fight at 2:13 of round three.

Murphy explained the difficulty of his first fight against a southpaw as a pro afterwards. “It was a little different against a southpaw. I kept thinking, what punches do I throw? It was definitely mental. You know, but I relaxed and everything came natural,” said Murphy.

RINGSIDE NOTES:

“Summer Rumble” was presented by Pound for Pound Promotions and promoter John Lynch.

At ringside was New York Giants running back Brandon Jacobs.  Jacobs and longtime boxing manager Pat Lynch have entered into a partnership agreement to guide some of professional boxing’s hottest prospects.  “Brandon and I will be working together to manage some of the best prospects in boxing, said Lynch, who successfully managed former world champion Arturo Gatti’s career from his pro debut until his last bout.
 Jacobs has long been a boxing fan, utilizing boxing training methods in the off-season as he prepared to be amongst the finest running backs in the National Football League over the last few years, playing a major role in the Giants 2008 Super Bowl Championship Season.

 



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