FOX Devon Alexander vs Victor Ortiz, Caleb Plant vs Rogelio "Porky" Medina, and Carlos Balderas vs Jorge Rojas
BY KID HERSH
PBC on FOX from the Don Haskins Convention Center in El Paso, Texas, featured an awesome card on free television.
Caleb "Sweethands" Plant (16-0, 10KO's) vs Rogelio "Porky" Medina (38-8, 32KO's). The referee was Mark Calo-oy. Porky missed weight (pun intended). In the first round Plant was sticking his jab in the face of Porky, who was plodding forward and not getting chances to throw punches on Plant who was slowly moving, as needed, around his target and picking it off. In the coming rounds Medina was very trigger shy to throw punches, despite being inches away from being in perfect range of his target. Plant was picking Medina apart so easily that he was dropping his hands to his waist and shrugging as if to say "Did you come to fight at all?" Plant was putting on a helluva boxing exhibition in the coming rounds as he was easily hitting Medina and not getting touched himself, constantly positioning himself in the perfect range on offense and defense. Medina pressed a bit harder starting in about the sixth round and was having a bit more success but this was only because he was letting his hands go more but likely still landing at an abysmal percentage as Plant slipped and blocked and parried Medina's punches. Medina had his best round in the eleventh when he was pressing heavily and paying no attention to Plants punches. Plants punches seemed to lack a bit of steam due to the effective body punching of Porky in this round. Plant may have been coasting in the eleventh, however, because in the twelfth round he closed the show via being the ring general and going back to his double jab while landing overhand rights to the head of Medina. The shots were not phasing the tough veteran but Plants footwork, combined with the effective punching, was once again dominating. Medina only landed 65 punches via punch stats, so obviously Plant won the clear (and what should have been shutout) decision. Helluva showcase fight. The one thing I have to add, however, is that Medina appeared to perhaps have a bum knee because he had a brace on his lead left knee and that could have massively hampered him in this fight - perhaps. Nonetheless it was a masterclass for Plant and a beautiful boxing exhibition to watch.
Next up was Carlos Balderas (3-0, 3KO's) vs Jorge Rojas (4-2-1, 2KO's). It did not take Balderas long to hurt Rojas as he landed a short right hand that nearly dropped him. Rojas caught himself and surprisingly lasted the round despite taking more heavy shots from the young prospect. Rojas would manage to not get buckled again for the remainder of the four round fight, showing that he really came to fight, but was unable to really have much success against the more talented and gifted Balderas.
The main event featured Devon Alexander (27-4, 14KO's) vs Victor Ortiz (32-6-2, 25KO's). The referee was Jon Shorle. In the first round both men looked pretty sharp considering a lot of fight fans would say to stick a fork in these guys reaching the top level again. In the coming rounds Alexander was catching Ortiz coming inside as Ortiz was trying to press forward and the aggressor while looking for openings for his power shots. Alexander was judging the distance beautifully though and fighting the fight where he wanted it and when he wanted it. By the end of the third round Ortiz's face was starting to show the signs of getting outpointed by the sharper fighter. Alexander continued outpointing Ortiz and really shook off the ring rust, throwing more powerful punches in the second half of the fight. He landed a beautiful lead right uppercut early in the seventh round that nearly lifted Ortiz off the canvas - showing shades of the amazing uppercut he landed on Juan Urango years ago. Going down the stretch Ortiz was still trying his damndest but Alexander seemed to shake off more rust and get more in rhythm while getting stronger as Ortiz was getting more tired and a bit beat up. Great performance for Alexander - who looked the best that he has in many, many years. The cards came in as a shocker: 115-113 Ortiz, 114-114 X2 for a MD. Wow - this is going on the list for worst decisions of the year.