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Boxing / Editorial

'Bad Boy' Steals Show at Hershey Centre

Lou Eisen / December 5, 2012 - 12:19pm

The weekend of Dec. 1 featured the weakest fight card seen at the Hershey Centre in Mississauga in the past several years. It also featured one of the best fights seen in these parts for quite some time. It seems that the level of opposition for the supposedly marquee Canadian fighters usually featured on these cards has tailed off considerably to the point where some of the fights were really nothing more than glorified sparring sessions.  Also, some of Canada's elite fighters and huge crowd favorites, such as Logan Cotton McGuinness, Ibrahim "Firearm" Kamal, Samuel Vargas and Tyler Asselstine have been absent from these cards, depriving Canadian boxing fans from seeing in action some of the best talent this country has to offer.

In what was mistakenly billed as the marquee match of the evening, cruiserweight "Dangerous" Denton Daley faced off against an Argentinean fighter who threw two half-hearted jabs in the one and a half rounds this farce of a fight lasted. The Argentinean fighter, Mauro Adrian Ordiales sported a record of 28-10 with supposedly 26 KOs to his credit.  Unless his previous opponents were on life support, it is unlikely that this feather-fisted import has any legitimate knockouts on his ledger, let alone 26!

Ordiales went down seven seconds into the first round from a wicked right hand thrown by Daley that landed flush on the side of his head.  He never attempted to throw a single punch for the remainder of the opening round.  After being dropped again in the second round, he arose to take more unanswered shots before he took a knee, spit out his mouthpiece and called it a night.

Another huge mismatch on the card featured a pair of young lightweights from Hamilton facing off against each other in a thoroughly one-sided affair. Steve Wilcox (W5 KO3 L0) dominated a woefully overmatched Harrison McBain (W4 L5 D1) on his way to winning a 6 round unanimous decision victory. Wilcox is being trained in part by former world title contender Billy "The Kid" Irwin. Wilcox is a work in progress but he has a tremendous upside to him. Wilcox is very tall and has yet to fully grow into his body. He is very young and still learning his craft but he has the talent and the brains to go far in the sport if he is brought along correctly.

Wilcox has long, gangly arms and tends to slap with his punches rather than throwing them from his body, which would give his shots much more power.  Wilcox has tremendous speed and good power and a very impressive boxing pedigree. Wilcox stands a very good chance of one day becoming a top flight pro fighter.

As is usually the case, huge fan favorite Dillon Carman put on a show for his enthusiastic and vociferous supporters. Carman has steadily improved with each successive fight in his young career.  He is beginning to take his boxing career more seriously than he has in the past. Carman looked impressive but, once again, it was against a man with virtually no boxing skills to speak of. His opponent was Peter Erdos from Hungary. Erdos displayed an impressive musculature but was devoid of even basic boxing skills. Erdos did not know how to hold his hands properly in order to protect his face. He was also at a loss as to how to punch too. He was there to take a beating and that he did very well.  Carman played with him for a bit before dropping him to the mat in the third round.

When Erdos nodded that he was okay to continue, Carman's eyes became big as saucers as he charged forward to finish off his hapless and hopeless Hungarian opponent in the third round. Referee Mark Simmons wisely stopped the fight with Erdos sinking to the canvas once again after enduring a vicious two-fisted assault from Carman. Carman is more of an entertainer than he is a prizefighter and he is keenly aware that he is there to entertain the fans that packed the Hershey Centre to come see him.

Chris Johnson's wife Natalie Brown notched her 6th professional win along with her 4th career kayo by overpowering and demolishing tiny 41 year-old Tammie Johnson (4-4-2) from Lynnwood, Washington in two one-sided rounds. The 33 year-old Brown had absolutely no problem walking right through Johnson's punches to deliver her own punishing blows. She dropped Johnson to the canvas repeatedly throughout the 2 rounds the fight lasted. Mercifully, referee Mark Simmons stopped the fight in the second round after Johnson hit the canvas hard from a fusillade of crushing punches thrown with bad intentions by Brown. Johnson took a terrible beating for the 2 rounds the fight lasted.

The best fight of the entire card featured local favorite Brandon "Bad Boy" Cook (W8 KO4 L0) against relative newcomer Junmar Emon (W2 L1 KO0) in an entertaining 4 round battle that had the entire Hershey Centre on it's feet from the opening bell to the final ten seconds and beyond of the 4th and final round. This scrap featured toe-to-toe action for 12 furious minutes. Each fighter had been scheduled to face another opponent on the card. Cook's scheduled opponent from Mexico, Juan Jesus Rivera, was apparently unable to make it through Canada Customs in time to make the bout.

This fight was strictly a phone booth war fought at very close quarters with both men landing their heavy artillery throughout the fight. The first two rounds of the fight clearly belonged to Cook as he used his vastly superior technical skills to outpoint Emon in each round while sticking to his game plan of working Emon's body relentlessly.

Emon was often trapped on the ropes with his arms pinned tightly to his sides. Once in a while he would manage to get one arm loose to try and throw an uppercut in an attempt to catch Cook coming in.

As the second round progressed Emon was beginning to find the range for his stinging uppercuts but was unable to follow up these big shots with any other punishing blows. Cook also drove home some fierce blows to the head but mainly concentrated his attack on the smaller man's body. Cook attacked Emon's body with a feral intensity. Cook was relentless in using his two-fisted attack to savage Emon's body in the hopes of taking away his mobility and stamina.

Everything was going Cook's way. Then the third round happened. As the bell rang, Cook once again bulled Emon against the ropes. Emon stopped for a brief second, planted his feet and put his entire body into a Hail Mary uppercut that stopped and staggered Cook. The force of the blow sent Cook reeling around the ring like a drunken beggar on New Year's. The audience rose as one, waiting for the inevitable; for Cook to hit the canvas but somehow, someway, the inevitable never materialized. Cook summoned all of his strength and Arturo Gatti-like grit to stubbornly remain on his feet.

Emon followed up his sudden advantage with countless hard headshots and Cook was ready to go down once again. It was only because of his superior conditioning and Chuvalo-like chin that Cook somehow managed to stay on his feet and ultimately fire back at Emon, more out of reflex than by prior design.

Cook was simply fighting to survive at that point. The longer he could keep Emon on the defensive the less chance he had of catching another ferocious uppercut and visiting queer-street once again. Emon was gunning for a knockout. This was his chance to win the fight in one feel swoop. Emon let it all hang out, landing a barrage of bone-rattling uppercuts and left and right hooks right on the button. Cook's head was turning violently with the force of each concussive blow he was taking from Emon's furious fists. Yet, Cook refused to go down.

Emon's shots did more damage in the third round because Cook's head was out too far over his front foot. Therefore he was taking each successive shot directly on the chin without bracing for it and thereby allowing his legs to absorb the brunt of each hellacious blow. Cook was in danger of going down several times, but each time he was hurt, he managed to stubbornly hang on to Emon for dear life.

Emon began to tire out in the fourth round and thus was only able to fight in spurts. Cook fought a smart fourth round, using his superior jab and straight right cross to keep scoring points on his shorter foe. When it was over, Cook was awarded a well-deserved unanimous decision. Hopefully they'll do it again in a year's time. Maybe by then they will have recovered from the ferocity of this past weekend's thrilling brawl.

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