Dibella Entertainment's "Broadway Boxing" series returned to Manhattan's Roseland Ballroom Wednesday night, raising money for the victims of Hurricane Sandy. All proceeds from the show were donated to the American Red Cross. It was a thrilling card with many rising prospects and contenders showcasing their skills.
The main event featured light heavyweight contender Will Rosinsky (17-2, 9 KO's) versus Otis Griffin (24-11-2, 10 KO's). Rosinsky, 27, outpointed Griffin, 35, in a close affair via ten-round unanimous decision by official scores of 97-93 and 96-94 twice on the three ringside judges' scorecards. The bout was Rosinsky's first since dropping a ten-round unanimous decision to Kelly Pavlik earlier this year. The defeat was Griffin's fifth in his last six bouts.
Rosinsky used superior lateral movement to stay away from the taller and stronger Griffin for most of the fight, although he failed to put many combinations together in succession.
In the co-main event, Brooklyn's Gabriel "Tito" Bracero (21-1, 4 KO's) stopped Johnnie Edwards (15-6-1, 8 KO's) in the fourth round of a junior welterweight contest. Official time of the stoppage was 2:48.
Bracero, 31, sustained a minor cut alongside his left eye in round one, but managed to send Edwards, 33, into the ropes with a sharp left hook shortly thereafter. Referee Eddie Cotton halted the action in the fourth round after Bracero scored with a left jab to Edwards' face. The body language of Edwards suggested he took a thumb to his right eye.
The most exhilarating bout of the evening featured rising lightweight prospect Ivan Redkach (13-0, 11 KO's) squaring off against Brooklyn's Edward Valdez (11-9-2, 8 KO's). Redkach, a 26-year-old southpaw from the Ukraine now making his home in Los Angeles, CA, won an eight-round unanimous decision by scores of 79-73 and 78-74 twice. Entering the fight with Redkach, Valdez, 34, had won eight of nine bouts, including six straight.
Valdez easily proved to be Redkach's toughest opponent to date. Redkach held a tremendous edge in power and hand speed, although he could not faze Valdez. In the opening round, Redkach struck Valdez with many blistering shots. Yet, Valdez found a home for his overhand right, striking Redkach frequently after he finished his combinations.
In the second round, Valdez ate numerous crisp left crosses and right hooks to the body from Redkach. Valdez remained undeterred, continuing to seek openings in Redkach's defensive guard.
After an explosive round two, Redkach took a small step back in round three. Valdez momentarily stunned Redkach in the corner with flush right-hand shot. Redkach absorbed the punch and survived the onslaught that followed.
Redkach opened the fourth round as the aggressor, relentlessly stalking Valdez. Despite getting peppered with a multitude of punches from different angles by Redkach, Valdez was still connecting with his overhand right. No matter what Redkach did, he could not shake Valdez. Yet, Valdez displayed some swelling under his right eye toward the end of the round.
Valdez briefly stunned Redkach again in close quarters during round five near the corner.
In a highly-competitive sixth round, Redkach began to beat Valdez to the punch. At this time, Valdez sported a slight abrasion above his right eyebrow.
While Valdez demonstrated a sturdy chin, Redkach tattooed him with sweltering punches in round seven, leaving him with massive swelling below his left eye.
Redkach got a little wreckless in the eighth round, winging shots from a variety of angles and leaving himself open for sharp counter-punches. Instead of attempting to systematically break Valdez down, Redkach tried too hard for the knockout against a seasoned journeyman.
Redkach exhibited a ton of talent, and should be able to benefit in other future bouts from his ring experience against Valdez.
Welterweight contender Ionut Ion (30-2, 17 KO's) stopped Franklin Gonzalez (15-12, 10 KO's) at :11 of the fifth round with a left cross to the body. Ion, a 31-year-old southpaw, got his punches off first, repeatedly hitting Gonzalez with a series of right hooks and left crosses to the body during the course of the fight.
Travis "The Notorious" Peterkin (6-0, 3 KO's) captured a four-round unanimous decision versus Eddie Tigs (1-5-2, 1 KO) in light heavyweight match-up. Peterkin received scores of 40-35 on all scorecards. Peterkin, a southpaw from Brooklyn, NY, sent Tigs sprawling into the ropes with a counter left cross to the jaw in round three.
In a scintillating junior welterweight showdown, Mikkel Lespierre (1-0-1, 1 KO) and Cornelius Whitlock (0-0-1) battled to a four-round, unanimous draw. All three ringside judges scored the bout 37-37.
Lespierre, a tall southpaw fighting out of Brooklyn, NY, walked Whitlock down in round one.
A right hook-left cross combination snapped Whitlock's head back in the second round, as Lespierre's fans erupted in the audience.
After visibly dropping two rounds to the hometown fighter, Whitlock stormed back into the fight, catching Lespierre off guard with a clean right-hand shot. Lespierre recovered from the flash knockdown, but Whitlock caught him again with another vicious right-hand punch near the end of the round that sent Lespierre swiftly to the canvas.
Following the consecutive knockdowns in round three, Lespierre had enough energy left to stay away from Whitlock in round four. Whitlock did not capitalize on his opportunity from the previous round, appearing gassed himself.
Junior middleweight Akima Stocks improved her record to 5-0, 3 KO's, defeating Marva Dash (0-2) 40-36 on all scorecards in the only female bout of the evening.
Heavyweight Jarrell "Big Baby" Miller (4-0, 4 KO's) kept his perfect record intact, stopping Tyrone Gibson (1-4, 1 KO) with a savage right uppercut at 1:25 of the second round.
Junior lightweight Danny Calzada (5-6-2, 1 KO) upset Allan Benitez (7-2, 1 KO) via six-round unanimous decision. Official score totals read 60-54 and 59-55 twice. Calzada, 22-years-old from New Mexico, landed countless, well-timed right hands off the left jab. Calzada moved efficiently around the ring, while Benitez, a 21-year-old from Texas, seemingly took too much time looking for counter-punches, especially his left hook.
Junior welterweight prospect Maurice Hooker upped his record to 7-0-1, 5 KO's, winning a four-round unanimous decision against Cameron Kreal (2-4-2). Official scores were tallied at 40-34 twice and 39-35.
Hooker, 23, who is very rangy and statuesque, threw whipping punches off a timely left jab and floored Kreal with a concrete right cross in the third round.