Hardly a week passes without an announcement of another San Diego area Boxer, Muay Thai fighter or Mixed Martial Artist signing a contract with a big time promoter. With the plethora of gyms, talent and top coaching locally, is it any wonder why all these promoters have San Diego in their sites?
As an example, look at the Thompson Boxing Promotions’ fight card "Path to Glory" scheduled for Friday, September 27th at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario, CA. They have four of the six hot prospects they signed out of San Diego featured on this fight card which is headlined by junior welterweights Mauricio Herrera (19-3, 7 KOs) of Riverside, CA going up against former title holder Miguel Angel Huerta (27-10-1, 18 KOs) of Mexico City, Mexico.
In January, 2011, Herrera defeated Ruslan Provodnikov in one on the most memorable bouts ever. For the upcoming contest, he’s been sparring with some of the sport's biggest names, among them, Argentine Lucas “La Máquina” Matthysse and current WBO welterweight champ Timothy Bradley.
San Diego fighter #1
In the co-feature they have undefeated welterweight Giovanni “Gallo de Oro” Santillan (9-0, 5 KOs) of the Undisputed Fitness & Training Center in downtown San Diego. He’ll be facing Angel “Arcangel” Martinez (13-4-1, 9 KOs) from Empalme, Sonora, Mexico in an 8-rounder.
After going undefeated with nine KOs in his first 13 fights, Martinez hit a rough patch when facing two of the hardest hitting boxers in the game - Lucas Matthysse (29-2) who just got done battling the world champ Danny Garcia and then in his last fight, he got rocked by the formidable Marcos “El Chino” Maidana (34-3-0, 31 KOs).
"Our training camp will be more intense this time around because this is my first 8-rounder," said Santillan, 21, a southpaw. "My strategy will be slightly different than previous fights, but it won't effect the product. Fans will no doubt be entertained."
Also from San Diego is the recently signed Thompson Boxing Promotions' junior welterweight Antonio Arellano (6-1-1, 2 KOs) of South San Diego. You can be certain he’ll be looking to impress in his debut under the new banner. He’ll be facing an all-action brawler by the name of Joaquin Sanchez (5-10-2, 2 KOs) from Los Angeles in a six rounder. Arellano's defense and counter punching will surely be tested against the forward attack of Sanchez.
Number three is super bantamweight Jorge “Tito” Ruiz (3-0, 1 KO) from the Alliance Training Center in Chula Vista. Ruiz shares a similar background to Arellano in that he too is from San Diego and also one of the latest editions to the Thompson Boxing roster. Ruiz, who has already fought once at the DoubleTree Hotel, a mixed decision victory over Alex Reyes on July 26, 2013, will be in a four rounder.
The fourth boxer is Carlos “Memin” Carlson (11-0-0, 8 KOs) who lives in Tijuana but trains locally in San Diego. In his last fight on August 30, 2013, Carlson, in dramatic fashion, knocked out Pablo Cupul in the second round of a scheduled six rounder at the Four Points By Sheraton Hotel.
The balance of this loaded fight card includes: hard-hitting junior welterweight Jonathan Garcia (11-0, 9 KOs) of Watsonville, CA putting his unblemished record on the line in a six rounder against the more experienced Miguel Angel Munguia (30-27-1, 26 KOs) of Mexico City, Mexico. Locals should be familiar with Garcia. He’s competed numerous times, either at the Four Points by Sheraton Hotel in San Diego or at Las Pulgas in Tijuana.
Also making their pro debuts against each other are junior middleweights Nico Macias of Tehachipi, CA and Francisco Ramirez of Riverside in a 4-round bout.
Opening the show is another recent signee to Thompson Boxing, Colombian Cesar Villarraga. He too is making his pro debut against fellow novice, Sopaun Rin of Chino, CA.
Villarraga starred for Colombia at the 2010 South American Games going through Hector Manzanilla (Venezuela) and Erick Banguera (Ecuador) to advance to the gold medal match against Everton Lopes of Brazil. Villarraga would bring home the gold in the 57 kg event and later qualified for the 2012 London Olympics.
"Cesar's Olympic experience will serve him well early in his career," said Alex Camponovo, General Manager and matchmaker for Thompson Boxing. "We will be able to move him along quicker than most other boxers, but first, he has to get through his first professional fight. We look forward to watching him open our show on September 27."
Now, as a matter of coaxing local boxing fans to go see this show, the Alliance Training Center has arranged for at least one if not two party buses to depart from their gym on September 27th and head up to the show in Ontario, CA. They promise to provide a Show ticket, multiple victories, the trouble free round trip bus ride, all for only $80.
Your contact person for this sortie is Eddie Amaya at the Alliance Training Center 795 3rd Avenue. Chula Vista, CA 91910. Tel: (619) 245-9666 or (619) 273-4415. They’d like to have everyone present at the gym at 4:30 p.m. so the bus or buses can depart by 5 p.m.