Championship Boxing returned to Reno, Nevada for the first time since 2005 as Bob Arum’s Top Rank in association with Tommy and Terry Lane’s Let’s Get It On Promotions brought ESPN boxing to town! The packed house of 2,122 at the first ever boxing event at The Grand Sierra Resort’s renovated showroom got a glimpse of boxing’s future along with the title winning efforts of a longtime warrior finally capturing a world title!
In the opening televised bout Featherweight and U.S. Olympic Silver Medalist Shakur Stevenson continued his rise up the pro ladder with a unanimous decision over game Texan Juan Tapia. Stevenson controlled the pace throughout his first scheduled 8 rounder. Dominating each round as he pitched a shutout 80-72 on all three cards. Shakur is now 5-0 (2), Tapia falls to 8-2 (3). With the victory, Stevenson is now unbeaten in Reno, having won 3 Junior National Amatuer tournaments hosted by the city along with the U.S. Olympic Trials and Box offs that took place here as well.
In a battle of unbeaten Super Featherweights, Olympic Gold medalist Robson Conceicao of Bahia, Brazil improved to 6-0 (4) with a unanimous 6 round decision over San Antonio, TX’s Ignacio Holguin. No knockdowns where scored but the wild swinging Conceicao dominated the action and a 10-8 round could’ve been scored in any number of the rounds of the affair? Scorecards where 60-52 (twice) and 60-54. Holguin falls to 4-1-1 (4).
The 2nd of 3 Oxnard training camp fighters on the card Sagadat Rakhmankul made a successful pro debut with a stoppage victory at 1:51 of round 5 against the game Noel Equeda of Wichita, KS in a scheduled 6 round Super Welterweight bout. Rakhmankul controlled the first 4 rounds and in the 5th round picked up the pace. A series of unanswered blows forced a halt to the action. Esqueda falls to 8-5-2 (6).
I first saw Philadelphia Heavyweight Bryant “By-By” Jennings fight in his 9th professional fight on the undercard of Amir Khan versus Zab Judah. I wrote back then that his lack of size and power may be a shortcoming? I will now admit to be eating those words as the 2 time world title challenger has now developed and is looking ready to possibly win a belt? With trainer John David Jackson wanting him to realize how hard of a hitter Jennings is, Bryant displayed his confidence dropping Houston, TX’s via Uzbekistan’s Akhror Muralimov 5 times in route to a TKO victory at 1:12 of round 3. Jennings found a home for his right hand and a series of rights dropped Muralimov twice in round 1. The right hand continued to find it’s mark in round 2 for 1 more knockdown. Two more right hand ending combos dropped Muralimov in round 3 forcing referee Jay Nady to stop the bout. With the win, Jennings improves to 22-2 (13) while Muralimov drops to 14-4 (11). Jennings plans to next be in action on April 28th.
About the Editor
Army Veteran and former Professional Boxer Simon Ruvalcaba started boxing at the age of ten and Had a 71 fight amateur career which featured a 139 lbs. 1998 8th U.S. Army Boxing Championship out of Camp Casey, Korea and a spot on the prestigious Army Boxing Team at Fort Hood, TX. After a journeyman pro career of 18 fights, which included sparring sessions with many champions and contenders including Julio Cesar Chavez and Pernell “Sweat Pea” Whitaker, Simon started writing and has contributed to many publications and websites including fighthype.com, pound4pound.com, Tahoe Daily Tribune (South Lake Tahoe, CA), Nevada Appeal (Carson City, NV) and also writes a monthly boxing column for Tahoeonstage.com. He has also been the Boxing Instructor for Ken Shamrock and The Lions Den and was UFC star Paige VanZant’s first boxing coach!
Born and Raised in South Lake Tahoe, California he now resides in Sun Valley, Nevada and spends as much time as possible with his Son Gabriel! Beyond boxing, Simon is an all around sports fanatic and is passionate about the teams that he roots for!