This past Friday, was the premiere installment of the 2014 ShoBox: The New Generation series with an action-packed quadrupleheader from the Cook Convention Center in Memphis, Tenn., before a raucous crowd.
On paper, the card was a can’t-miss, featuring eight exciting and promising prospects with a combined 96-1-5 record. Thankfully, the fights not only lived up to the hype, but in many ways surpassed it, with boxing fans and experts alike still buzzing about the stacked card.
“Anyone who hasn’t seen this show, should watch it. If you have, it’s worth seeing again. We are proud to have been able to deliver an action-packed ShoBox. This card represents the best of what ShoBox is about and what its fans have grown to expect,” said promoter Lou DiBella.
Following the exciting four-bout card, ShoBox expert analyst Steve Farhood proclaimed, “Tonight was our first ShoBox telecast of the year and it was a smorgasbord. We got a little bit of everything. The fights we thought would go long went short and the fights we thought would go short went long. Redkach was legitimately tested for the first time and while he didn’t get the knockout, he showed the fans why he’s considered such an exciting fighter to watch. Galarza, who had limited credentials coming in, absolutely stole the show with a savage, stunning and sudden knockout.”
Headlining the card was promising, world-ranked southpaw Ivan Redkach (16-0, 13 KO’s), of Los Angeles, by way of Ukraine, as he passed the toughest challenge of his career, scoring one knockdown en route to a unanimous 10-round decision over Canada’s determined and tough-as-nails Tony Luis (17-2, 7 KO’s).
From the opening bell, Redkach and Luis went to war. Redkach landed the cleaner and hard shots throughout, but Luis had his moments, scoring with lightning-quick combinations with Redkach against the ropes.
CompuBox numbers tell the tail the best, calling the fight “trench warfare” as 312 of the combined 340 punches landed were registered as power shots. With the victory, Redkach picked up the USBA lightweight title, and moves one step closer to challenging for his first world title.
The co-feature bout on the card featured fellow undefeated junior middleweights “The Brooklyn Rocky” Frank “Notorious” Galarza (12-0-2, 8 KO’s), of Brooklyn, N.Y., who registered a scintillating and surprise second-round knockout over John “Apollo Kidd” Thompson (14-1, 5 KO’s), of Newark, N.J.
Thompson got off to a good start in the first round working behind his piston-like jab and keeping Galarza at bay for most of the round.
Galarza came out charging to start the second frame and immediately landed a huge right hand that visibly rocked Thompson. The follow-up pursuit saw Galarza land another big right hand, followed by a monstrous left hook that dropped Thompson face first to the canvas. Referee Keith Hughes began his count before officially calling a halt to the contest at the 0:16 mark of round number two.
It was a show-stealing performance for Galarza, who certainly showed that he is a fighter to watch in the loaded junior middleweight division.
Also on the card, fast-rising middleweight prospect Antoine Douglas (12-0, 7 KO’s), of Burke, Va., by way of Washington D.C., won a lopsided eight-round decision over Marquis Davis (8-1-2, 5 KO’s), of Tampa, Fla., in a matchup of unbeaten middleweights. Douglas won by the scores of 80-72 twice and 79-73, and even knocked Davis’ tooth clear out midway through the bout, adding some dramatics to the matchup.
The card opened up with a tremendous matchup of unbeaten junior welterweights between Maurice “Mighty Mo” Hooker (12-0-2, 9 KO’s), of Dallas, Texas, and Abel Ramos (8-0-1, 4 KO’s), of Casa Grande, Ariz., by way of Gettysburg, Pa. Hooker-Ramos saw great two-way action from start to finish in their excellent eight-round give-and-take fight. In the end, one judge had it for Hooker, 77-75, but the other two scored it 76-76, leaving the packed house in attendance in a standing ovation.
If you happened to miss the card, the ShoBox quadruple-header will re-air tonight/Tuesday, January 21, 2014 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME EXTREME. The card is also already available ON DEMAND.