In front of a star-studded crowd at Los Angeles’ Crypto.com Arena, boxing phenom Ryan Garcia (23 to 0, 19 KOs) gave a dominant performance against former two-time world champion Javier “El Abejon” Fortuna (37 to 4 to 1, 26 KOs). The major event of the evening featured non-stop action and celebrity cameos from actors Michael B. Jordan and Danny Trejo, as well as Mario Lopez from television and Sean McVay and Aron Donald from the LA Rams. The fight began with Ryan using his jab and long blows while Fortuna took the initiative and pursued him. In the fourth round, Garcia caught Fortuna with a body shot that knocked him out. Fortuna was knocked out in the sixth round with a time of 0:27 after being dropped once more in the fifth round.
“I want to thank God first and foremost,” said Ryan Garcia. “I know that I performed well for myself. I was crisp and sharp and I stayed in my truth. I didn’t do anything crazy. I know how good of a fighter I am, I just had to put it all together, just like tonight. Fortuna hit hard, he has a hard fist. Like I said when I fight stronger opponents, I box better. Yes, I caught him with a body shot. He thought I was going for the head but I switched it on him. I felt he was going to throw the Luke Campbell shot [the shot that dropped Ryan against Campbell]. I feel like everyone is going to try to hit me with that shot. I hit hard so it doesn’t take much to hurt someone.”
“It felt like [I made] a statement to come back to the timeline I was at. Mental health is a time to reflect on yourself and get better for the future. That’s not weakness, that’s strength! That’s courage! You saw me today when I stepped in the ring. That’s nothing but courage and skill.”
“I felt way better at this weight. I’m [not] going down to 135 for nothing. But I will fight Tank next if he wants it at 140. I’ll make sure to record all the negotiations so you can’t say I was ducking. I want that fight because it’s going to give me the respect I deserve. I’m never afraid. I have a spirit of competition in me and you’re going to see that come out when I fight Tank and whoop his ass.”
Alexis “Lex” Rocha of Santa Ana, California, who is a fan favorite in Orange County, defeated Luis Veron of Buenos Aires, Argentina (19 to 5 to 2, 9 KOs) in the evenings co-main event. to win a 10-round battle and the NABO Welterweight Title. As they attempted to deliver powerful punches, both combatants were prepared to make intelligent decisions. Rocha won by a unanimous vote after making the more accurate strokes that led to scores of 100 to 90, 100 to 90, and 99 to 91.
“My strategy for this fight was to go in there and break him down,” said Alexis Rocha. “I knew he was going to be a durable fighter; he gets hit and stays there. Once that happened in the fight I knew he was just going to survive. Training is always great with my team, they’re always pushing me. I went there with a game plan and I followed it the best I could. It feels good fighting in front of a big crowd here at the Crypto Arena. Having my Santa Ana crowd behind me, [it] made me feel good. Onto the next level now.”
In a 12-round WBA Super Featherweight Title Eliminator, Lamont Roach Jr. (23 to 1 to 1, 9 KOs) of Washington, DC, outlasted challenging opponent Angel “Humildad” Rodriguez (20 to 2, 10 KOs) of Barranquilla, Colombia. Roach Jr. advanced the battle by engaging in intelligent, defensive combat. With scores of 116 to 112, 116 to 112, and 117 to 111, Roach Jr. won without a tie.
“My strategy was to stay tight and keep the pressure on him,” said Lamont Roach Jr. “We knew it would break him down. He was a tall and lanky fighter so we were watching out for the looping shots. He had a nice 1 to 2, the ones that landed I let him. He was really good defensively, but if we would’ve kept the punch output higher I would have stopped him. He was very evasive.”
“He’s an amazing fighter, extremely intelligent,” said Angel Rodriguez. “He knows how to work his rival and always keeps his composure even when getting hit. In these events, it’s them who decide who wins and as an athlete, I’d fight him again. We tried to win but he simply came with better preparation and strategy, that’s why he took the victory.”
Ricardo “El Nino” Sandoval of Rialto, California (20 to 2, 15 knockouts), took on unbeaten boxer David “Medallita” Jimenez of Cartago, Costa Rica (12 to 0, 9 KOs), in a 12-round contest for the WBA Flyweight Title Eliminator. In the eleventh round, Sandoval was unsettled and knocked to the ground. When he stood back up, Jimenez attempted to finish the fight but was literally stopped by the bell. The judges awarded David Jimenez the victory by majority decision after the fighters participated in a thrilling final round, with scores of 112 to 114, 112 to 114, and 113 to 113.
“I’m happy and grateful for this new victory,” said David Jimenez. “We executed our game plan perfectly. In the first 6 rounds, it was a lot of movement and aiming. After the 6th round, I started to take advantage. My rival was very tough and stubborn. He has a lot ahead of him. I’m going to go home after this victory and spend time with my family then get back into the gym.”
“I felt like I was boxing him correctly so I feel very good,” said Ricardo Sandoval. “I was also countering him downstairs and upstairs. But you know these things happen. I felt like I won the fight. The people won tonight and got one hell of a fight.”
Oscar Collazo (5 to 0, 3 KOs), of Villalba, Puerto Rico, and Victorio Saludar (21 to 6, 11 KOs), fought in a 12-round eliminator for the WBA Minimumweight Title on the Golden Boy Fight Night: Garcia vs. Fortuna Prelims section of the evening. Both competitors suffered knockdowns in the seventh round, making it a close bout, but Collazo prevailed by applying pressure and moving forward. Collazo triumphed after receiving unanimous votes of 118 to112, 116 to 110, and 116 to 110.
“It was a tough fight. I had to use my whole toolbox,” said Oscar Collazo. “My opponent was powerful and experienced; he’s a veteran in the sport. But, thanks to my corner, I got in the ring and fought round by round. A world championship is next. I want to be a champion.”
Then, in a 10-round featherweight fight that was set, Diego De La Hoya (23 to 1, 11 KOs) of Mexicali, Mexico, overcame Enrique Bernache (24 to 14, 12 KOs) of Guadalajara, Mexico, early on. Although Bernache slipped frequently throughout the fight, Diego managed to keep him at a distance and knock him out at 2:51 in the fourth round.
“I felt thrilled to be back, said Diego De La Hoya. “I haven’t fought in two years, so I felt great. My opponent was tough. I’ll probably fight again in September. Hopefully, I will fight for a championship soon.”
In the first round of a scheduled 4-round super lightweight fight, Los Angeles’ Miguel Gaona (3 to 0, 2 KOs) decisively overcomes Caguas, PR’s Abdiel Padilla (1 to 3, 1 KO) via KO. The fight is the evening’s first bout. Gaona began the round cautiously and slowly, only to finish his opponent with a body shot at the conclusion of the round.
Golden Boy and Sampson Boxing jointly promoted the 12-round super lightweight fight between Garcia and Fortuna. Hennessy sponsored the event. “Never Stop. Never Settle,” “BetOnline – Your Online Sportsbook Experts, Uncle Bud’s Hemp & CBD – Relax, Recover, Reset, Masculen “It’s a Mentality. Don’t be a man, be the man,” and Gym Shark. The match will take place on Saturday, July 16 at Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles and will be broadcast live across the world on DAZN.