Boxing


Mike Oliver Wins USBO Super Bantamweight Title

19.02.06 - By KIRK LANG: Mike Oliver, of Hartford, gave the crowd at Mohegan Sun Casino their money’s worth Saturday night in registering an exciting ninth round stoppage of Castulo Gonzalez, of Wilimington, MA. Oliver, now 12-0 (6 KOs), picked up the USBO super bantamweight title with his effort..

Oliver and Gonzalez, 7-2 (3 KOs), both gave a great showing and upstaged the main event that took place afterward, a middleweight attraction between Darnell Boone and Rasheem Brown. It was unfortunate for Boone and Brown their bout (won by Boone) took place after Oliver-Gonzalez. Oliver wowed the crowd with his blazing hand speed and dozen-punch combinations so when Boone and Brown appeared in the ring, it was like they were fighting in slow motion. And it didn’t help that the first round of Boone-Brown was a “feeling out” round and the second stanza was a sloppy hug-fest.

A significant portion of the fight crowd left the arena in the early going of Boone-Brown so for all intents and purposes, Oliver emerged the victor in what was the real main event. Oliver, who has on occasion displayed somewhat of an amateur style in the pro game, sat down on his punches more in this fight.

“I’m not my old self, going out there and throwing a million punches and then getting tired,” said Oliver, who has been making adjustments under the tutelage of head trainer and close friend John Scully. Oliver dedicated the win to former amateur coach Johnny Duke, as well as Greg Cuyler and Pepe Vasquez, two boxing buddies from the Hartford area whose lives were recently cut short too early.

Oliver, after hurting Gonzalez at the end of the eighth round, ending things in the ninth with a four punch combination to the head.

In the dressing room after the fight, Oliver promised Scully their partnership will never end, no matter what trainers or promoters try to come between them in the future. Scully has known Oliver since Oliver was about four years old.

“We’re going to stay together forever, until I retire,” said Oliver. Scully was impressed with his pupil’s USBO title win.

“I thought he fought a beautiful, well-schooled professional fight,” he said. “I mean his amateur experience really came through in this fight because he didn’t look like a guy that just had eleven fights. He fought a world-class performance and I couldn’t ask for anything more than what he did.”

Questions/Comments: kirklang@yahoo.com

Article posted on 20.02.2006



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