You could say the San Diego boxing community will have their reputation on the line come Saturday, August 16. With only one of the pro bouts not having a local fighter in it, the show has turned into a matter of pride. The representatives from our local gyms must prove once and for all San Diego and it’s sister city Tijuana are in fact major players on the world stage.
That's the date Thompson Boxing Promotions of Orange, CA plans to promote their first show in San Diego with their action-packed "Path to Glory San Diego Style" line up highlighted by two of San Diego's most popular fighters: junior welterweight Giovani Santillan (13-0, 7 KOs) and super bantamweight Christopher Martin (27-3-3, 9 KOs).
Their show, with it’s seven-bout fight card, will take place at the San Diego Harley Davidson Store on Morena Boulevard, the largest Harley Davidson dealership in the U. S. as it pertains to square footage. The planning and construction of this huge facility with it's parking for 400 cars, took over two years to complete. With all it's memorabilia, motorcycle enthusiasts will be in seventh heaven.
"We are thrilled to promote our first show in San Diego at the iconic Harley Davidson dealership," said Ken Thompson, president of Thompson Boxing Promotions. "We have a loaded fight card featuring some of the brightest talents in Southern California, and fans will get to experience all the action from one of the most unique backdrops in the sport."
Santillan, in his first main event, fifth straight 8-round fight, will battle Osenohan Vazquez (7-1-1, 2 KOs) of Jersey City, N. J. by way of Puerto Rico for the vacant Junior Welterweight NABF Jr. Title. Santillan, who many believe is headed for super stardom, will be fighting for the first time in front of his hometown fans.
"To headline my first fight as a Thompson Boxing fighter and have it in my own backyard is extremely special," said the 22-year-old southpaw. "Then you add the NABF title to the mix and this easily becomes the most challenging fight of my career. I'll have a big crowd supporting me and I plan on putting on a tremendous performance."
Martin, who was scheduled to face Efrain Esquivias on July 25th before Esquivias pulled out due to an illness (high fever) just days before the fight, is fighting the experienced and hard-punching 31 year-old, 5’11½" Giovanni “El Ruso” Caro of Mexico City in the 8-round co-main event.
Caro, who has been knocked out seven times, hasn’t faired well recently. He’s only won two of his last eight contests albeit his opponents in those contests were top people like Fernando Montiel, people who had a combined record of 192-23-4.
The 28 year-old Martin, who is coming off a rare unanimous decision loss at the hands of Enrique Quevedo in October, has redemption on his mind.
"I'm coming into this fight in incredible shape," said Martin who trains locally with Joe Vargas at the Undisputed Fitness & Training Center in Downtown. "I was ready to fight in July and now it's all about fine tuning and staying sharp. My friends and family were excited to find out that I'll be fighting in San Diego for the first time in four years."
In other action, super bantamweight Danny Roman (9-2-1, 4 KOs) of Los Angeles will bring his brand of exciting boxing to face Pedro Melo (9-5-2, 2 KOs) of Tijuana, B. C., Mexico in an 8-round bout.
Since this will be Melo’s first fight since November 9, 2012, the rust, after 21 months of inactivity, should make him an easy target for the hard charging and relentless Mr. Roman.
San Diego junior welterweight Adrian Vargas (9-0-1, 6 KOs) will put his undefeated record on the line against Miguel Rico (2-6-1) of Mexicali, B. C., Mexico in a four rounder. In his last fight, on May 2, 2014, Rico was knocked out in the first round by Javonte Clark (1-0) who weighed in at the same 148 pounds. While Vargas usually fights as a super lightweight, it appears the 21 year-old Rico might have an issue making weight.
Undefeated super bantamweight Heriberto “Tremendo” Delgado (11-0, 6 KOs), one of Tijuana's more popular and exciting prospects, is facing a veteran boxer-puncher in 26 year-old Jonathan Alcantara (6-11-2, 1 KO) of Novato, California by way of Sonsonate, El Salvador, in a scheduled 6-round bout.
After racking up seven wins last year, most of which came against boxers making their pro debut, Delgado may find himself in the toughest fight of his young career.
Even though Alcantara hasn’t faired that well, winning only twice in his last 13 fights, his opponents have been a lot tougher than the competition Delgado has faced. While Alcantara fought guys with a combined record of 116-17, Delgado’s opponents had a combined record of 2-15-3.
San Diego super middleweight Ulises Sierra (6-0-1, 4 KOs) will look to add to his win streak when he goes up against 26 year-old Jas Phipps (4-5, 1 KO) of Los Angeles, CA by way of Killeen, Texas in a 4-round bout. Phipps has lost his last five fights, two by TKO and three by an unanimous decision.
Opening the event is another San Diego-native, lightweight 5’8” Antonio Arellano (6-2-1, 2 KOs). Arellano will be taking on 5’5” Mario “Popeyin” Hermosillo (12-13-4, 2 KOs) of Tijuana by way of Mexico City in a bout scheduled for 4-rounds.
Arellano, also under contract with Thompson Boxing Promotions, hasn’t fought since September 27, 2013 when he lost by decision to Joaquin Chavez at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario, CA. That night he was dominating Chavez early, then mysteriously became victim to this blood disorder that had Arellano finishing the bout in slow motion.
Hermosillo, Arellano’s opponent on August 22, usually falls victim to boxers who go after his midsection. Before long, you’ll see Hermosillo, who has just one win in his last 10 fights, take a knee after getting hit by a body shot.
Doors open at 6:15 p.m. and the first bell rings at 6:45 p.m. The Harley Davidson store is located at 4645 Morena Blvd., San Diego, CA 92117 and can be reached at (858) 616-6999.
Tickets priced at $40, $60 and $100 are on sale now and can be purchased online at ThompsonBoxing.com or by calling 714-935-0900.