Have news relating to Jewish boxers? Email the editor here!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Melson Tears Rotator Cuff

Junior middleweight Boyd Melson (14-1-1, 4 KOs) tore his left rotator cuff in sparring last Tuesday. The injury forces the cancellation of Melson's scheduled match with prospect Glen Tapia that was scheduled for July 26.

In his last fight, Melson suffered a self-described brachial plexus injury, which resulted in a heavy numb right arm. That bout resulted in a unanimous decision victory over Donald Ward in February. If surgery is required, this injury will likely put Melson on the shelf for the rest of the year.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Duer Retains Title

Carolina Duer retained her bantamweight belt with a unanimous decision victory over the tough Ana Lozano at Club Atletico Lanus in Buenos Aires, Argentina. After a rocky start, Duer landed more power punches at the end of her combinations.

The first round was as slow as Duer's entrance music (Diego Torres's Color Esperanza), but Lozano, a Venezuelan knockout artist, hit Duer with two hard counter rights in the round. By the end of the second round, it appeared as if Duer's reign as champion might be over. Lozano's straighter punches connected inside Duer's wild attempts. Duer boxed from the outside, but seemed unsure of herself. She was reluctant to use her normal strategy of rushing in and attacking.

In the third round, both women were willing to exchange, but neither could land much of anything. That was a positive development for Duer, because it halted Lozano's momentum. The fight then turned in the fourth. Duer used her customary bull rush with accompanying flying fists. Duer is always willing to throw two or three wasted punches to set up a big shot. She won the fourth through seventh rounds by doing just that. Her overhand right and left hooks came over the top of Lozano's straight, but gradually slowing, punches.

Carolina, who Ryan Bivins rates in the top 20 pound for pound, also used a combination where she threw a couple of body shots in order to lower Lozano's guard so that she could then punish her with a subsequent power punch. It was a combination that worked several times.

Duer often stormed in, threw combos, and gracefully exited before Lozano could mount an effective response. Duer's turn around was a testament to her championship determination and conditioning. Lozano, however, was no pushover. She boasted her best round of the fight in the eighth. Lozano continuously landed straight rights and left hooks. However, she didn't throw in combinations, so Duer was able to survive the assault without much damage inflicted.

The ninth was a solid comeback round for the champion. Duer has a habit, however, of coasting to the finish line in tenth rounds; Lozano's punching technique started to unravel by the end of the fight though, dispelling any chance of a late knockout. Duer briefly switched to the southpaw stance in virtually every round yet didn't find any success in doing so.

The judges saw the fight 98-92, 97-93 (twice) for the hometown fighter. Duer moves her record to 17-3-1 with five KOs, while Lozano falls to 8-2 with six KOs. The fight was held on the twentieth anniversary of the bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, nine miles from the site of the tragedy.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Seldin-Jargal Declared No Contest

Cletus "Da Hamma" Seldin controlled all three rounds against Bayan "The Mongolian Mongoose" Jargal until the fight was stopped and declared a no contest. Seldin's head smacked into Jargal's right eye in the opening moments of the second round. Jargal's eye quickly began to close and by the end of the third rest period, it was nearly shut.

Seldin (13-0, 10 KOs) applied instant pressure and relentlessly threw combinations. He launched a total of 89 punches in the first round alone. Seldin jabbed well early and landed a couple of thudding body shots with his right hand.

Jargal (17-5-3, 11 Kos) initially tried to punch with Seldin, but quickly decided to box. Seldin effectively cut off the ring, which neutralized Jargal's strategy. The headbutt in the second forced Jargal to cover up for about half of the round. Seldin wouldn't give the Mongoose time to collect himself.

Jargal did eventually land a solid uppercut, which led to Seldin using the cross-armed defensive tactic with good results. Seldin lost his mouthpiece in the round and was warned by referee Pete Santiago, but finished the second with hard uppercuts.

The doctor checked Jargal's right eye five seconds into the third round, but the fight was allowed to continue. Jargal started throwing hail mary shots, but failed to land. Seldin kept punching and was adept at taking any slight opening Jargal presented to him. Seldin snapped Jargal's head back with two powerful jabs in the round.

The fight was stopped before the start of the fourth round, rendering it a no contest. Seldin was disappointed with the outcome of the fight. But he had fared well against the toughest opponent of his career and exhibited more nuance in his game than he had before. He controlled the center of the ring, jabbed, defended well, and varied his punches. The bout was exciting and should lead to another television appearance for "Da Hamma."