Star studded, action packed, world class event is how this writer would objectively describe the February 23, 2014 version of Route 30 Promotions' Sunday Night Fights. This is the first time this writer has covered this series. Two words, highly impressed.
The card, scheduled to start at 7:00 pm local time, commenced closer to 8:00 pm. No big deal, this writer has been to fights promoted by Golden Boy that got off to late starts. Plus, there was plenty of good music playing, eye candy walking around and important people to meet that would cause the best of us to lose track of time.
Surveying the crowd, there's no question Route 30 Promotions is seeking long term gain instead of short term profits. From the fighters to the ring card girls, they partnered with all the right people to give this card an international flare you would actually see in Las Vegas, L.A. or New York.
My credentials were easy to get, security detail was very pleasant, the crowd was supportive and most of all, the matchmaking was on point. Oh, did this writer forget to mention, the ring card girls were hot too! Shout out to the beautiful bartenders and waitresses in the building.
For any boxing enthusiast, or casual boxing fan, this event was a little bit of heaven. Boxing legends Evander Holyfield, Riddick Bowe and Antonio Tarver were in the building. Former welterweight titlist Adrien Broner was in attendance, as well as other big names in the sport including heavyweight prospect Deontay Wilder.
This is an exciting time to be a boxing writer in the City of Atlanta. This city is so talent rich, it will not be long before you start to hear comparisons between Atlanta's future of boxing, and the most recent greats of Atlanta boxing like Evander Holyfield and the late Vernon Forrest.
Nick Taylor def. Jessi Sanchez - This was an all action affair between two eight year old, 60lb amateurs. Nick Taylor started off the contest boxing more, while Sanchez wanted to trade blows. Eventually, Taylor gained control of the bout, forcing the referee to enforce a standing eight count on Sanchez twice.
Tra-kwon Pettis def. Benjamin Gravite - All action to start. Pettis begins to pop his jab at will. This kid is technically sound. Makes Gravite take an 8 count from the referee. Tra-kwon catches Benjamin, Benjamin stumbles backward. Gravite takes another 8 count. Fight over. RSC, Pettis over Gravite.
Frankie Bolton def. Bobby Parker - Bolton established jabs and great footwork early. Superb combinations by Frankie. Walking through Parker's jabs, Bolton forces 8 count. Parker attempts to use his weight to lean on Bolton. Bobby's face is bloody. Looks like Dr. Cheeks is stopping the fight. Referee waiving fight off. RSC, Frankie Bolton wins.
Joel Djeko def. Brad Austin - Not much action in the first round. If scoring it, this writer would've scored the round for Austin. Seemed to press issue more. Djeko beginning to put some combinations together. Catches Austin cleanly right before the bell to end the second round. The two exchange punches for the next two rounds, Djeko is clearly outpointing Austin. UD, Djeko wins.
Jelani Bitoy def. Lance Campbell - Seems like this fight should have been easy for Bitoy. He looked to be in better physical condition than Campbell, and in the beginning Campbell seemed to be slapping more than punching. Appeared to be a shutout until the fourth round. UD, Bitoy. 40-36 (2x) and 39-37 win for the Chicago native. This writer scored the fight 39-37 in favor of Bitoy.
Impressed. Mexican National Anthem being performed. Classy.
William Farley def. Jesus Tavera - Looks like a Luchador in the ring with Tavera. Classic. This fight seems to be even amongst fans in attendance. Farley rolling and catching punches, landing more meaningful shots early. Have it even after two and four. Farley wins last two in very close rounds. Landed heavier shots, boxed and maintained his defense throughout the contest.
Quatavious Cash def. Leo Laudat (Main Event of the Evening) - Cash starting fast. Jabs followed by lead rights. Cash going to body early. Laudat still standing in the pocket taking some massive shots. Laudat wobbled severely. Thought he should have received an 8 count. Cash firing away. Finally, the referee steps in. Quatavious Cash all the way. Laudat claiming bad stoppage. Stoppage was legit.
Great night of boxing in Atlanta, GA brought to you by Route 30 Promotions.