The welterweight match in between Alexis Rocha and Giovani Santillan at the Kia Forum in Inglewood, California had a classic feel similar to the old-school slugfests at the Olympic Auditorium. Both fighters, representing Santa Ana and San Diego respectively, were contending for supremacy in Southern California and intending to make their mark in the glamour department presently controlled by Terence Crawford.
In an uncommon cooperation in between Golden Boy and Top Rank, the centerpiece provided an amazing contest that thrilled the crowd. Santillan showed to be the standout entertainer as he dropped Rocha 3 times, eventually protecting a sixth-round knockout triumph. Rocha never ever recuperated from the 2 knockdowns in the 5th round, and it was Santillan who closed the program with a flurry of effective punches, triggering the referee to end the fight at the 1:13 mark in the 6th round.
Santillan revealed his complete satisfaction with the result, acknowledging Rocha’s strength and stating his objective to continue climbing the ranks. The data shown Santillan’s supremacy, as he outlanded Rocha with both punches tossed and punches linked.
From the start of the fight, it was clear that both fighters were figured out to stand their ground and offer it their all. Rocha began strong however quickly suffered a damaged nose, which sustained Santillan’s aggressiveness. By the 5th round, Rocha’s face was covered in blood, and Santillan scored his very first knockdown with a well-executed mix.
Despite Rocha’s durability and a couple of minutes of retaliation, Santillan stayed unrelenting. After a caution from the referee for an unlawful blow, Santillan returned more powerful and dropped Rocha for a 2nd time with a series of 6 successive hooks. The fight concluded with Santillan plainly developing his supremacy, leaving no doubt about the deserving winner in between these 2 unbeaten potential customers.
Santillan’s triumph substantially enhances his possibilities of protecting a title shot in the welterweight department as soon as Crawford’s reign pertains to an end. Although Crawford is set up for a rematch with Errol Spence Jr., his days at welterweight are numbered. Rocha held the No. 1 ranking by the WBO heading into the fight, and Santillan’s excellent efficiency is most likely to enhance his position in the upgraded rankings.
Reflecting on the fight, Santillan stressed the value of such matches for boxing fans and revealed his desire to face Mario Barrios next. He sees this fight as a stepping stone towards a world title chance.
Manouk Akopyan, a sports reporter and member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and the MMA Journalists Association, covered the occasion. He can be reached through different social networks platforms or his main site.