Boxing


Randall Bailey Scores Stunning One Punch Knockout of Francisco Figueroa

Frankie FigueroaBy Paul Strauss: The Knockout King didn't even give Elvis a chance to pick up his ticket at the Pepsi Pavilion in Memphis, Tennessee. He brought an abrupt halt to the festivities when he landed his patented big right hand. El Gato fell straight back, and hit the canvas hard. There was no need sto start a count. Everyone in the building knew Figueroa wasn't going to get up.

Surprisingly there was a little seesaw to the battle up to that dramatic finish. In the first round, it was obvious Bailey wanted to distract El Gato into making a mistake, so he could land his Sunday punch. Initially, he tried to draw him into range, so he could throw a straight counter right. He managed to execute it a couple of times but missed. However, only about forty-five seconds into the round, he got the timing down, and landed a glancing right hand that put El Gato down. Fortunately for Francisco, the punch didn't land flush..

It was also obvious in the first round that Figueroa moved in too close without jabbing, but at least he did start slipping the right hand to his left.......that is when he saw it. But, he remained within range, and The King landed another big punch. This time it was a good left to the body, which caused Figueroa to grimace and complain to the referee of an illegal kidney punch. There was no caution or warning.

In the second round, it was obvious neither fighter possessed a very good jab. Figueroa badly needed one to get behind on his way in close. Bailey was satisfied with using his left to temporarily blind his opponent, so he wouldn't see the right coming. However, in this round it was Bailey who didn't see the punch. In this case, it was a looping right hook that hurt him. As he attempted to retreat, he got caught with a glancing right across the top of his head. He was already off balance, so the punch was sufficient to cause him to stumble to the canvas.

Bailey didn't appear hurt, but he did get on his bicycle, and held or clinched when Figueroa got in close. But, he did not appear to be in any real danger. So, the two fighters traded ten/eight rounds.

The third round started with both fighters coming out swinging wild, which made them appear clumsy. They were falling all over each other. Overall, it appeared Figueroa might have edged the round by a slight edge in pressure.

The fourth round started out with the same scenario. Figueroa kept pressuring Bailey, but he wasn't managing distance very well. He didnít keep Bailey off balance at all. Consequently, Bailey sized him up, and first distracted him with a pawing jab, and then "crack" on the chin with a huge right hand. It looked like a VW getting creamed by a Humvee........i.e. crushing!

The fight was an IBF Light Welterweight Title Eliminator, so there's life in the 34 yr old bones of veteran Bailey. It's interesting to note that Bailey is from Opa Locka, Florida, a place that was developed by a man named Glenn Curtiss. He based it on The Tales of the Arabian Nights. Even the streets have names such as Ali Baba and Sultan Avenues. Tonight, it was Bailey who resembled Scheherazade, and forced any thought of postponement or conclusion of his boxing career. Maybe he's got his own Aladdin's Lamp stashed somewhere to use for another wish or two.

The undercard showcased the talents of Mark Davis. He's another recently touted pro, who has had a stellar amateur career. He also is another fighter with good credentials, who is being fed easy opponents.

The fight was scheduled for eight, and because both fighters are light punchers, the fight went the distance. Davis apparently has been calling out Yuriorkis Gamboa. He had better hope Gamboa doesn't hear him, because if he gets thrown in there with the little Cuban terror, he will most definitely suffer his first defeat and undoubtedly be stopped.

Even though Davis has had a lot of amateur fights, he still manages to square up too much, and gets his feet too far apart. He also tends to rear up with his chin when throwing his left hook. To make matters worse, he carries his right hand low. If he made that mistake against Gamboa, itís lights out from a counter left hook.

The fight was not very exciting, because neither man carries much of a punch. Davis scored often, but never had Gonzalez in trouble. Both fighters tried to work the body, but again neither could cause much damage. Davis even managed to land some lead rights; however, Gonzalez was more upset than hurt by any of the punches. The scoring was one-sided, with two judges scoring a shut out for Davis. The third judge gave Gonzalez two rounds, which seemed to be a gift. The bottom line is Gamboa won't be losing much sleep worrying about Davis.

Article posted on 05.04.2009



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