Dark card boxing matches at The Forum
Two men entered the ring at The Fabulous Form on Saturday night, carrying with them the weight of their countries.
Viktor Postol brought with him the turmoil of his native Ukraine that forced the WBC Super Welterweight eliminator to be moved from his hometown of Kiev to the corner of Manchester and Prairie.
Selcuk Aydin, who hails from Trazbon, Turkey, brought with him a ring card bearing a black ribbon, the crescent and star, and the word Soma, representing the hopes and sorrow of a country thrown into chaos after a mine explosion in Soma, Turkey.
By the end of the eleventh round, Postol (26-0, 11KO) left the ring with a shot at the Super Lightweight title and Aydin (26-3, 19KO) was left on the canvas.
Aydin’s night did not start out terribly; in the first round he landed a looping left hook that staggered Postol into the ropes.
He then proceeded to waste the next two rounds searching for a repeat performance while Postol proceeded to use his eight and a half inch reach advantage to keep Aydin to the outside.
By the fourth round, Postol had control of the fight, landing the same number of punches, 39, that Aydin threw, according to CompuBox.
As Aydin attempted to protect himself and outbox the Ukrainian in the middle rounds, the match became more of a posing contest than a fight.
The finale was foreshadowed in the seventh round, when a left hook to the head wobbled Aydin. Seconds before the knockout, Aydin was reprimanded by referee Raul Caiz Jr. and docked a point for repeated rabbit punches.
Out of the break Postol threw three punches.
First came the left hook, landing in nearly the same spot that it did in the seventh. Then a momentary reprieve when a right hook merely grazed Aydin. Finally, the 1,105 punch thrown by Postil, a right uppercut, connected. Caiz did not even give Aydin a count.
For Postol, his second win on American soil sets in motion an uncertain future. The victory forces a match against current titleholder Danny Garcia for the WBC Super Lightweight title. However, if Garcia moves up in weight, as most in boxing circles believe he will, Postol will become the interim champion.
But for one night, even if it was thousands of miles away, Ukraine won.
Someone forgot to tell Oscar Valdez that professional boxing is hard.
By the time referee Jerry Cantu received instructions from the ringside doctor to stop the fight between Valdez and Noel Echevarria, it had become clear that it was not a question of if Valdez would win but when.
The good doctor decided that it would be the end of the sixth round.
With win number 11 as a professional and tenth by way of knockout, Valdez remained undefeated and retained his NABF Junior Super Featherweight title.
Valdez (11-0, 10 KO), the two-time Olympian, caught Echevarria (11-3 6 KO) on the ropes and in the corners from the beginning and refused to let him move the fight to the center of the ring.
Echevarria swung wildly throughout the fight, only connecting one meaningful power punch, hitting an uppercut in the fourth round that Valdez wore well.
By the time the fifth round rolled around, the crowd, squarely in Valdez’s corner, all but begged for a knockout and two right hooks went a long way towards giving it to them.
Echevarria pushed Valdez to the sixth round for the first time in the blue chip prospect’s professional career on pure heart. However, Echevarria’s heart did not convince the ringside doctor to allow him to continue into the seventh round after taking, “too many hard blows.”
The fight was Valdez’s first title defense after winning the vacant Junior Super Featherweight title April 12 by knocking out Adrian Perez on the undercard of the Bradley vs. Pacquiao pay-per-view.
Diego Magdaleno (26-1, 10 KO) handily defeated Oscar Bravo (21-4, 9 KO) by unanimous decision in ten rounds.
After feeling each other out in the first three rounds, Magdaleno dropped Bravo with a punishing left hook to the body with 55 seconds remaining in the fourth.
The 27-year-old southpaw then proceeded to use his inch and a half reach advantage to keep Bravo at bay.
This is Magdaleno’s third win in a row after an unsuccessful attempt at the WBO Super Middleweight title against then titleholder Roman Martinez.
For Bravo, this is his fourth loss away from his native Chile, where he is undefeated.