Dmitriy Salita steps up with decisive victory!
24.03.07 - By Mike Indri - Retired Boxers Foundation - While promoter Lou DiBella's latest rendition of his Broadway Boxing Series failed to yield any real surprises, those that crammed their way into Manhattan's Hammerstein Ballroom this past Thursday night quite possibly witnessed the turning point in the promising career of twenty-four-year-old Dmitriy Salita.
Article posted on 24.03.2007
Highly touted, highly skilled and beloved by his immense throng of devoted supporters, the undefeated Jewish fighter has not been able to truly gain the respect from the majority of boxing fans or shed his image as a "protected" fighter.
Salita's resounding ten round unanimous decision victory over formidable veteran Grover Wiley proved to be the former NY Golden Gloves champion's biggest win to date, and most definitely will change the unfair perception of the likeable Brooklyn boxer.
Wiley, now 30-9-1 (14 KO's) is a rugged, battle-tested fighter who proudly stands in the company of world champions Kostya Tszyu and Oscar De La Hoya, as one of only five fighters ever to defeat Mexico's greatest fighter and living legend, Julio Cesar Chavez. A native of Omaha, Nebraska, Wiley was seen as a legitimate challenge and came to fight.
While Salita opened the main event bout with a display of faster hands and crisper, cleaner punches, Wiley's aggressive fighting style enabled the thirty-two-year-old brawler to make it a competitive fight through the first five rounds; hurting Salita more than once, with a solid body attack and several big left hands to the head.
Round six proved to be crucial for Salita. Although now finding the range and landing the more telling punches, the local favorite was still being bullied, until a bomb of a left hand crashed atop Wiley's head and sent the game fighter back into his corner dazed and hurt. This was the beginning of the end.
Sensing that his foe wasn't the same, Salita scorched the now damaged fighter with several unanswered overhand blows, which forced Wiley to cover up, hold on and eventually back away. With the partisan crowd now whistling, clapping and on their feet, Salita impressively banged away to the body and fought the best three minutes of the fight.
The effective aggression that the ring savvy Wiley had shown was now a mix of panic and desperation. Fighting with a right eye that was nearly closed by Salita's stinging jabs, Wiley was stymied and totally out boxed over rounds 8 and 9.
With the Star of David banners displayed throughout the arena and proudly stitched into the Ukrainian born Salita's boxing trunks, the "Dmitriy Faithful" were treated to a boxing clinic by their hero over the fight's last three minutes. Later saying he was going for the knockout, Salita and his legion of fans were thrilled with the performance.
Judges Robin Taylor and Oscar Perez both scored it 99-90, and Matt Ruggero's sheet read 99-91, giving Salita, who improved to 27-0-1 (15 KO's), the win in commanding fashion. A big win that Dmitriy Salita should be very proud of!
Also featured on the Broadway Boxing fightcard were the increasingly popular pair of New York super middleweights: Curtis Stevens and Jaidon Codrington, fighting in separate bouts.
Stevens, who fights out of Brooklyn, improved to 17-1 (12 KO's) with a commanding workman-like ten round unanimous decision win over tireless Darnell Boone, 14-9-2 (5 KO's). Boone, who fought on twelve occasions in 2006, traveled up from Atlanta, GA. Although Stevens nailed Boone in round seven with a vicious uppercut, which sent the stubborn fighter to the canvas. More bodywork may have given Stevens KO number thirteen. All three judges saw the one-sided saw the bout 100-89 for Stevens.
Stevens' "Chin Checker" partner, Jaidon Codrington, had an even easier time with his overmatched opponent, Marlon Hayes, 35, out of Newark, NJ.
Hayes looked, and fought, older than his listed age and, aside from a few haymakers, never really mounted any significant offensive threat. After quickly sending Hayes to the canvas in round one with a grazing shot, Codrington proved to be a true "Chin Checked" and went for the homerun with every loaded punch. While the judge's scores of 99-89, 97-91 and 98-90 proclaimed Codrington the obvious ten round unanimous decision winner, Hayes was proud that he was still standing at fight's end. Codrington batters his pro record to 15-1 (11 KO's), while Marion Hayes falls to 23-6 (11 KO's).
Wowing the crowd with a brutal display of knockout power, NY State jr. welterweight king Francisco Figueroa made short work of Antonio Ramirez, from Irvington, NJ. Too many nasty head shots stunned Ramirez (24-15-6, 17 KO's) who was dropped to the canvas in round two and twice more in round three, before referee Gary Rosato had seen enough and waved off the carnage at 42 seconds of the third round. Figuero improved to 15-2, with Ramirez being "El Gato's" 11th KO victim.
Also seeing actionů..In a six round light heavyweight contest, Ronson Frank remained perfect (8-0, with 5 KO's) with his unanimous decision win over Don Mouton, from Houston, Texas.
New York heavyweight Sean McClain made his pro debut a night to remember with his first round TKO win over Clifton Adams, now 0-3, from Houston, TX.
Rochester's Harvey Murray, also made his pro debut, having to settle for a draw against a still winless Francisco Palacious (0-1-3) in a four round featherweight bout.
Credit goes to promoter Lou DiBella, who practically single handedly is keeping boxing going in New York with his Broadway Boxing Series.
Also congratulations, to Dmitriy Salita for seeing his stock rise with a determined effort and skilled display in a pressure packed fight, which had major implications on the classy young fighter's future - and Salita responded like a champion!
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