BY: Rich Quiñones
Friday night Boxing is back in the first state and in a huge way, as two titles will be on the line in what should be an exciting night of action at the Rollins Center inside Dover Downs Hotel and Casino in Dover, Delaware. The five card bout promises to entertain.
The main event will pit Edgar “El Chamaco” Santana against Michael “Cold Blood” Clark in a scheduled 10 round affair for the vacant NABA light welterweight title.
Santana has been a tough luck boxer over the last several years, but possess great skill in the ring.
The 34-year-old from Spanish Harlem comes in with a very impressive mark of 28-4 with 19 Ko’s. His last outing was a disappointing one when he suffered two broken hands against Manuel Perez during his NABA junior welterweight clash back in February. He broke his right hand in the 3rd round, and then broke his other hand in the 6th en route to loss.
But he finished out the fight and show his true grit and heart in the ring.
He has bounced back nicely, though, winning his last two fights against Eddie Soto and Luis Hernandez respectively, and now he is looking to regain a belt he once held.
At 40-years-old Clark (44-8, 18 Ko’s) is comfortable with the fact that he can fight another five or so years. “Look at Bernard Hopkins, and what he is doing, hey if I can still whoop this kid’s asses out there, then I am going to keep fighting,” said Clark.
Santana is a banger and his height might pose a threat for Clark, who was able to get in some serious sparring with taller opponents. None the less Clark is ready for the task at hand.
“I feel good about this fight and I am ready to fight. I can bang and box, and I know how to counter a counterpuncher. I got some good sparring in and was able to spar with taller guys and see how they react to me, and how I react to them. He (Santana) boxes tall, but there is nothing there that I have not seen before from anyone.”
In the 10-round co-main event, Omar “Super O” Douglas will tangle against Jean Javier Sotelo for the vacant NABA USA super featherweight title.
The title will be limited to the U.S.
Douglas, 22, comes into the contest with a perfect 10-0 mark. He started boxing at the age of eight, and is a two-time Olympic Junior Champion.
A native of Wilmington, DE, Douglas is a very aggressive and skilled fighter, who loves to press the action with his hard charging style. Sotelo (18-11, 2 Ko’s) will look to slow him down, use his jab to keep him off balance and try to pull off the shocker.
In other action, teen sensation Dusty Hernandez-Harrison fresh off his WBC Youth World Welterweight title against Josh Torres less than 20 days ago, takes on upset-minded Marlon Lewis in an eight-round affair.
Harrison (18-0, 10 Ko’s) is looking to close out his highly successful 2013 campaign with a bang.
He turned pro at the age of 17 and is currently ranked No. 21 in the WBC rankings.
However, that does not phase Lewis (6-2, 2 Ko’s), who called out Harrison on twitter to get the fight on short notice.
“Yeah I called him out, there is a lot of hype with him, so I called him out,” said Lewis. “Why not? Like I said, there is a lot of hype around him, and he has some flaws.”
Harrison’s camp contends that Lewis has known about the fight since October.
The 30-year-old Lewis has not had much action inside the ring since turning pro in 2007 but it does not stop him from explaining himself and the reasons behind that.
“I was just not able to get fights, there were some missed opportunities and I needed some fights to prove myself, to get a chance to go up against good boxers, good cards and shows. So this is a huge opportunity for me,” added the native of Memphis, TN.
A win would be more than just an upset for Lewis.
“I got a full training camp in; even though I took this fight on short notice, trust me I am in shape. I have been sparring 15 rounds and I am ready to go. I question the level of his competition and that is why I called him out. He is an excellent counterpuncher, but if I can use my jab and come with that lead right it could be a home run.”
A win would jump start his career.
“I think I can beat this guy and if I do it will open up doors for me. I am ready to come in and win,” he added.
Also on the card will be veteran Galen Brown taking on Alex Guerrero in a six-round cruiserweight bout.
Guerrero, the older brother of Fernando Guerrero, was a late comer to the sport. He has just nine bouts under his belt, but maintains a perfect mark. The 32-year won a regional Golden Gloves title, and his most notable triumph came against Harvey Jolly in 2012. At the time, Jolly was a pretty durable gatekeeper but many believe this fight will give people an idea of where Guerrero stands.
As for Brown, that is a different story. He has fought for several titles and is fresh off a 10-round unanimous decision loss to unbeaten Jordan Shimmell for the vacant USBO Cruiserweight title in October.
The knock on Brown has always been his weight and his conditioning, but he enters this bout at the best shape in his career.
“I was as high as 267lbs in 2010, and now I am at 194lbs,” said Brown. “I am here to fight and I understand that the shots are limited for me, but I will fight anyone, any time and I will always give my best effort for the fans.”
Brown (41-23, 24 Ko’s) is considered a very awkward fighter and will use any veteran tactics in the ring to get the job done, but maintains he is a clean boxer.
“I do what I need to do, I can brawl and box and I know how to rattle boxers. I fight hard all the time and I will admit when a guy beats me. Hey look, Shimmell was just a better boxer then I was and if this guy beats me, I will admit that he is a better boxer then me.”
Local fan favorite Mike Tiberi (20-1, 7 Ko’s) will go up against Edgar Perez (5-6, 3 Ko’s) in an eight-round contest, while John Bowman (7-0) takes on Jess Noriega (2-7) in a four-round light heavyweight clash.
Rounded out the card will be Lamont “Problem Solver” Singletary (6-0, 3 Ko’s) against Travis Reeves (2-2) in a four-round cruiserweight bout.