Leo Santa Cruz vs Kiko Martinez & Hugo Ruiz vs Julio Ceja II
BY KID HERSH
Showtime regular boxing card on later from Anaheim, California. First up was the highly anticipated rematch of one of the best fights of last year Hugo Ruiz (35-3, 30ko's) vs Julio Ceja (30-1, 27ko's). It didn't take long for a right hand to land (actually the second right hand he threw) and Ceja was toppling down. He fell backwards, very awkwardly, and rose while both hurt from the punch and hurt from what looked like an injured ankle. The referee let him go on and he was clearly hobbling on the injured right ankle. He was a sitting suck and Ruiz took him out to fulfill his first round knockout prediction. Shocker there and a third rubber match is something I can't wait for despite the quick nature of this fight.
Leo Santa Cruz (31-0-1, 17kos') vs Kiko Martinez (35-6, 26ko's). In the first round Kiko came out pressing hard as usual and took a right hand that sent him to the canvas only thirty seconds into the round that was behind the head but a series led to it. He got up and was hurt and trying to cover up but having a very hard time of it as everything Santa Crez threw landed flush. Kiko went down again midway through the round from another right hand after he stood him straight up with a left hook. Kiko rose, like the warrior he is, and continued coming forward like a kamikazi pilot dead set on his mission. For the remainder of the round he somehow managed to stay on his feet and take barrages of blows from every angle. It could possibly be the most punches I have ever seen someone take. In the second round Kiko continued onward into the heat of battle while under mortar fire. He is getting blasted around the ring but somehow managing to stay on his feet and actually recovering a bit while looking energetic. The coming rounds were more of the same with Santa Cruz teeing off on Kiko while Kiko had a second wind and it getting his mans backs to the ropes occasionally but he is not having a lot of success with his shots - he should be targeting the body in my opinion. He did get a lucky break with a head clash drawing blood from Santa Cruz's eye. The following round again saw Kiko pushing forward into a barrage of shots but God bless Kiko and his warrior mentality; it's a helluva show! These guys are throwing nonstop an. d everyone watching including myself cannot believe the amount of leather thrown. Seemingly impossible but they are just continuing nonstop. Onward with more amazing action into the fifth round and finally Santa Cruz denting the iron armor of Martinez when we reached over the midway Mark. Santa Cruz went on another blitz - this one lasting over 50 punches straight until the referee had to stop in because Kiko was indeed hurt but just not answering back. Amazing fight (although technically one-sided) with the punch stats showing over 1000 punches thrown between the two fighters in less than 5 rounds! Everyone loved the fight, some are saying fight of the year despite how short and one-sided it was. Kiko is a warrior, Santa Cruz reiterated after the fight that he wants to set records for punches thrown and entertain the fans. Love it!