Boxing


Demetrius Hopkins Outclasses Mighty Mike Arnaoutis

By John G. Thompson: Demetrius Hopkins 30-1-1 (11 KO’s), the Philadelphian nephew of future hall of famer Bernard Hopkins, squared off against “Mighty” Mike Arnaoutis 22-6-2 (10 KO’s) of Atlantic City, New Jersey by way of Athens, Greece. This fight from Ontario, California was not among the best of the ESPN2’s Friday Night Fights series, with Hopkins dominating the fight by moving away, being cautious, and working behind the jab. There were times in the fight when Arnaoutis was more aggressive and times when Hopkins was the aggressor, unfortunately these times rarely coincided. One judge called the bout a shutout for Hopkins, while the other two only gave Arnaoutis one round.

Former light welterweight champion Arnaoutis has now lost four of his last five, including a horrible second round knockout loss to “Vicious” Victor Ortiz, and decision losses to Tim Coleman and Delvin Rodriguez . With no disrespect to what Arnaoutis has accomplished, being the only Greek to have won a contemporary boxing championship, his last fight on ESPN2’s Friday Night Fights brought boos from the crowd and this fight did little to improve his reputation.

Francisco Contreras 15-0 (13 KO’s) defeated Eric Cruz 7-4-3 (7 KO’s) in a highly disappointing bout, especially for two competitors with high knockout percentages. Mid-way through the third round Contreras buckled the legs of Cruz with a serious straight right, though that moment was the only highlight of the fight. The only exception might have been when Teddy Atlas gave Cruz the fourth for a solid right which landed when Contreras allowed himself to be caught against the ropes. Otherwise Contreras dominated the fight without making any statement to his division. Teddy constantly spoke of the importance of impressing the fans so that they would demand his return. Contreras has a lot of technical tools, but not yet the ones which could make him a star. Two of the judges did not give Cruz a single round.

William Walton 4-2 (3 KO’s) took on Joseph Elegele 9-0 (7 KO’s) despite long lay-offs from boxing, four days’ notice, and a five inch height disadvantage. The taller Elegele has had no layoffs, having only turned professional approximately eight months ago (fighting every month or sometimes twice a month). Elegele staggered Walton with a straight left in the first and Walton landed a great straight left of his own (both men being southpaws) with forty seconds left in the round which noticeably hurt Elegele. Walton came in for the kill, but Elegele held and moved away, only getting his legs and aggression back in the final seconds of the round.

Walton came on strong early in the second, though Elegele controlled the latter part of the round, and actually put Walton down in the last second with an unintentional blow to the back of the head. Elegele put in some serious offence in the third round, and referee Wayne Hedgepeth jumped in to stop the bout ridiculously early. The first couple rounds were entertaining, and despite a one sided third, Walton was at no point in any danger. Walton’s disgust was reflected by boos from the crowd. It’s a shame the referee’s actions took away from the efforts of Elegele and what might have turned out to be a good match.

Hopefully next Friday will bode better for ESPN boxing as Philly’s exciting “Hammerin’” Hank Lundy 18-0 (10 KO’s) takes on the hard punching John Molina 20-1 (16 KO’s) for the vacant WBO NABO Lightweight Title.

Questions or comments? BoxingWriterJohn@gmail.com

Article posted on 03.07.2010



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