BoxingFight Recaps

Jamel Herring Looks Bad In Second Title Defense, Questions Arise On Stoppage

Jamel “Semper Fi” Herring finally fought after two positive COVID-19 tests in previously scheduled contests as Herring struggled to defend his WBO junior lightweight world title as a confusing end to the bout in which question once arose about the Herring quitting in a fight arose, as Herring was awarded an eighth-round disqualification over Puerto Rican challenger Jonathan Oquendo at the MGM Grand Conference Center.

Herring did his usual, boxed did some good stuff, and then made a bout far too hard than it needed to be, which has been a theme of his career. Herring who got hit with headbutts, punches and anything else Oquendo threw, was cut and was despondent at times late in the fight.

In between rounds, Herring commented that he couldn’t see out of his eye, which usually means the bout would be stopped due to verbal submission or technical knockout, but it was ruled that the impairment was caused by a headbutt, thus making the result a win for Herring. So yeah, the right guy won, but the ending was lame, and it sort of sums up how anticlimatic, Herring’s title run has been thus far, as the 2012 Olympian has gained little steam to catch on with the general public as emerging fighter Shakur Stevenson and Gabe Flores Jr. have had hometown fights with lots of fans in attendance a feat Herring has yet to do as a champ.

Herring (22-2, 10 KOs) knocked down Oquendo (31-7, 19 KOs) in the second round, and then had a hard fight after filled with headbutts, and such.

Commentator Tim Bradley questioned Herring’s heart and toughness as former champions looked on.

Herring will eventually return to defend his title against Carl Frampton, but being an older guy, it will take a while, and essentially slow down the division.

Steven “So Cold” Nelson (17-0, 14 KOs) retained his NABO super middleweight belt with a TKO victory over Toledo firefighter DeAndre Ware (13-3-2, 8 KOs). Nelson, from Omaha, Neb., has now won four in a row via stoppage.  

Nelson suffered a pair of cuts in the bout, but finished the show promptly with a standing TKO. Nelson after the bout called for an world title eliminator bout, and Edgar Berlanga stated that he would love to face Nelson next.

Light flyweight Jesse “Bam” Rodriguez, the brother of Joshua Franco, The San Antonio native knocked out former world title challenger Janiel Rivera (18-7-3, 11 KOs) in the opening round, the first time Rivera had been knocked out since 2014. Rodriguez is trained by Robert Garcia, and his brother, Joshua Franco, recently won a super flyweight world title inside the “Bubble.”

— Six opponents, six knockouts. Heavyweight sensation Jared “The Real Big Baby” Anderson (6-0, 6 KOs) knocked out veteran Rodney Hernandez (13-10-2, 4 KOs) in four rounds, the first time Anderson has been pushed past the third round. Anderson, from Toledo, Ohio, has won three fights inside the “Bubble” since June. Hernandez had beaten a slew of undefeated fighters in the past year and was a solid test.

Anderson said, “We’re ready for everybody. We’re building up. Bob {Arum} is moving me perfectly. It was about getting those rounds in and showing I can really box. I’m not just a puncher. I know how to box, and I know how to stay on my back foot.

“I’m listening to the commentators more, getting a lot of learning experiences. It’s helping a lot {with me} taking my time and slowing down.”

—Welterweight Benjamin Whitaker (14-4, 3 KOs) upset the previously undefeated D’Andre Smith (8-1, 5 KOs) via six-round unanimous decision by scores of 60-54 2x and 59-55. Whitaker previously fought in the “Bubble” on June 25, when he dropped a majority decision to Vlad Panin.

— Colombian knockout artist Ruben Cervera (13-2, 11 KOs) picked up his second “Bubble” victory, knocking out New Orleans native Rennard Oliver (7-3-3) in the second round of a scheduled six-round junior lightweight bout. A right hand froze Oliver against the ropes, prompting referee Russell Mora to stop the fight.

— Edward Vazquez (8-0, 1 KO) survived the stiffest test of his career, outlasting Adan Ochoa (11-2, 4 KOs) via unanimous decision (58-55 2x and 57-56) in a six-rounder at featherweight. Ochoa knocked down Vazquez in the second round, but Vazquez won the last four rounds on two of the judges’ cards to pull away.

— In a competitive four-round featherweight tilt, Philadelphia-born prospect Rashiem Jefferson improved to 2-0 with a unanimous decision over Jose Martinez (2-2, 1 KO) by scores of 40-36 2x and 39-37. 

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Lukie Ketelle

Lukie Ketelle