Valley resident, and bantamweight fighter Alexis "Beaver" Santiago (15-3-1, 7 KOs), will defend his WBC USNBC bantamweight title on Saturday, Feb. 22 at the Celebrity Theater in Phoenix. Santiago will face Hanzel Martinez (20-1, 16 KOs) of Tijuana, Mexico. Presented by Iron Boy Promotions, Santiago-Martinez will be featured as the main event.
Santiago, a solid fighter with good all around skill captured glory last year by defeating a tough Alex Rangel. The win, earned Santiago the vacant WBC USNBC title and validated him as legitimate fighter.
Rangel, a tough Mexican fighter could never find his range with Santiago. The tempo of the fight was set early, a patient Santiago landed his punches with precision. The steady flow of blows would slowly take it's toll on the crafty Rangel.
Santiago would drop Rangel twice in round nine, with the second knock down ending the fight and handing Rangel the second loss of his career.
For Santiago, he learned from his three losses that are on his record and improved as a fighter. He is trained by Rafael Ramos, a great trainer who has the vision to make quick and effective adjustments in a fight. Ramos has managed to bring out the best in Santiago.
Santiago will face a tough opponent in Hanzel Martinez who suffered his first loss last year against Alejandro Gonzalez. Martinez is the brother-in-law of former world champion Antonio Margarito.