On Thursday night in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, cruiserweights Steve Bujaj and Junior Wright engaged in a ten-round battle on a Star of David Promotions card which thrilled the fans in attendance.
After anticipation waiting as the scorecards were tabulated after the back and forth rumble between the New Yorker Bujaj and the Chicago-based Wright, he judges called it a split draw, but more importantly, it was a classic scrap.
Neither man deserved to be tagged with their first loss, promoter Salita said afterwards.
“Both Junior Wright and Steve Bujaj are champions,” Salita stated. “The fight lived up to expectations and more. Both guys showed world class skill and world class heart. They fought their heart out for the fans and for an opportunity to be recognized as among the best in the world… and now they are. These two cruiserweights are for sure the best in their weight in the US and in the mix with best cruisers in the world.”
One man who saw the battle up close at the venue was manager Ivan Edwards, who made the 2011 Fight of the Year, a draw between his boxer, Pawel Wolak, and Delvin Rodriguez.
“I was ringside for both fights,” Edwards said. “Bujaj versus Wright was much better. They went to war, both hurt each other. Two true warriors. Neither cared if they lived or died. This sort of fight is what fans want to see.”
Michael Woods, the editor of TheSweetScience.com, who called the feature, along with analyst Nirmal Lorick, took to Twitter post-fight, and opined that a rematch should land on ESPN, or perhaps “ShoBox.”
“The volume was incredible, the swings in momentum between Bujaj and Wright were intense, and each man had their fair share of moments,” Woods said. “Absolutely, a rematch makes infinite sense, and I can state with certainty that these two boxers deserve an even larger audience next time.”
Bujaj (12-0-1), who shrugged off a fractured jaw in round four, said he’d welcome another crack at Wright (10-0-1). He had surgery to repair the jaw days after the bout, but is keen to meet Wright again, for revenge. “I would love a rematch if TV buys it,” he said. “I’d do better next time, because I’d have a real mouthpiece made for me, and I won’t have to fight with a broken jaw.”
Several other fighters also stood out on the superb card. Heavyweight Jarrell Miller was mobbed after his TKO2 win over Joshua Harris, and many in the crowd were buzzing about the 9-0 hitter, wondering if he can bring some heavyweight buzz back to NYC, in the manner of Riddick Bowe, a fellow Brooklyner.
Steve Martinez (15-1), a junior middleweight slugger, scored a TKO5 win over Antonio Chaves Fernandez, turning in another one of his fan-friendly performances. Martinez is a power puncher who looks to hurt his foe with every shot, and Salita is looking to insert him in a title fight in the not too distant future.
Classy prospect Dimash Niyazov, from Kazakhstan, and living in Staten Island, NY, rose to 6-0, with a UD4 over Jose Del Valle. Salita is high on Niyazov’s longterm prospects.