ESPN July 7th Early Undercard Recap

Gabriel Muratalla Remains Undefeated in Decision Win

Bout: 118 Pounds1234Final
Lopez 4-5-3 (0)999936
Muratalla 3-0 (4)1010101040

Muratalla a 26 year old preschool teacher from Fontana California made the final bell for the first time in his career and did so in impressive fashion. He showed incredible stamina throwing a high volume of punches with the first three rounds going over the 80 thrown mark. Muratalla fought on June 11 when he scored a first round TKO over Fernando Robles and was rewarded with another televised match up. Much like all the other ESPN cards in the Covid Era, fighters are coming out rapidly like in the old days and fighting weeks apart. This was a good feature performance for Muratalla.

Round 1: Busy first round as Lopez came out aggressively. Muratalla remained calm and continued to work combinations in three punch series. Normally jab, cross, left hook or uppercut. Lopez threw 59 punches to Muratalla’s 82 making the opening round a very active one for both guys.

Round 2: Muratalla fought at distance in this round as the exchanges seemed to wane a little. Muratalla used his height advantage effectively and gave Lopez fewer chances to land his shorter, more compact punches. Muratalla also began to drive a straight right hand to the mid section and attempted some lead left hooks to the body. He also does a very effective job of pivoting around Lopez’s guard and can throw and move to the side and throw again.

Round 3: This round began with some exchanges and a solid left hook from Lopez. Muratalla stepped it up and poured it on with combinations and footwork on display and continued to negate Lopez’s offense. Muratalla displayed adept use of shifts with his feet to generate power and surprise with his right hand. He finished the round in the southpaw stance and landed several uppercuts to the head. He dominated this round.

Round 4: Muratalla was feeling the wear and tear of the high pace and slowed in the final round. Lopez continued to press and will himself on but Muratalla still remained in control of the fight.

This is one bad teacher.

Tim Bradley ESPN Commentator Round 4

Andre Cortes climbs off the deck to win a decision over Alejandro Salinas

Bout: 135 Pounds12345678Final
Salinas 10-3 (9)99910999973
Cortes 12-0 (7)10101081010101078

Andres Cortes won a hard fought decision over tough Alejandro Salinas. Cortes over came a share of adversity as he experienced a cut, a knockdown and was frequently on the ropes. Judges Jarman and Byrd had the fight 77-74 while Moretti had it 79-73. Moretti was identical to me on this one minus the fact he had the 4th 10-9 instead of the usual 10-8 with a knockdown. This is a sentiment that I disagree with. Jarman and Byrd agreed with my card except for the first round which they both scored to Salinas. I don’t have much of an issue with that scoring. Cortes was the superior boxer here but made this fight a lot harder on himself by electing to go to the ropes frequently over the course of the 8 rounds and give Salinas chances to unload.

Round 1: Salinas brought the fight right to Cortes with fast hands that carry power given his KO record. Salinas was sweeping in quick right hands and caught Cortes’s attention early in round 1 with a hard right hand in the first minute of the fight. In the second minute Cortes got the pace to a slower track and countered Salinas stepping in with a right hand of his own. Solid left hook for Cortes to close the round as he sent back Salinas’s head.

Round 2: Salinas started off on the front foot and controlling the center of the ring. Cortes tried to create angles with back and forth foot movement to set up punches and avoid Salinas’s aggressive style. Accidental headbutt mid round. A cut began to form above the left eye and slightly to the side in way that looked bad but did not appear fight threatening. Cortes finished the round strong with a few rallies of combinations.

Round 3: Cortes opened the round with a nice lunging left hook to the head. The round was pretty tactical over the first minute and a half with both men jabbing from the outside. Cortes showed skillful foot work as he moved side to side and Salinas displayed impressive head movement as he timed and slipped jabs. Salinas eventually got Cortes to the ropes like he had in the earlier rounds and put his punches together nicely. Cortes did a nice move that he had done at another point earlier in the fight where he got into a clinch but shifted to the right and got enough free space to free his right hand and sneak an overhand to the side of Salinas’s head. The round finished with a nice exchange with Cortes’s back to the ropes.

Round 4: Fight continued along the same pattern as Cortes scored with his jab and moved on the outside but would have lapses along the ropes. Salinas would press in these moments though he was mostly missing with his punches. Just after the two minute mark Salinas missed closed with a left hook that could have had Cortes on the canvas. Salinas continued to press with more torque on his punches in pursuit of a momentum shift. Cortes again languished on the ropes and a heavy overhand right just missed but was followed up quickly with a right cross that surprised Cortes and dropped him to a knee. He shot back up to his feet but referee Celestino Ruiz was not fooled and stepped in to call the knockdown. Salinas jumped on Cortes to try and capitalize but the round was nearly over and the bell rang as they were in close along the ropes.

Round 5: Cortes stayed in close range with Salinas but appeared fully recovered. Cortes started to get near the ropes but drove forward and tried to score with combinations. Cortes snapped back the head of Salinas but Salinas responded well with a hard overhand right and a straight right hand near the mid point of the round. Cortes found his range at the end of the round with a lead left hook and later on a right cross from the outside.

Round 6: Cortes lined up Salinas for a hard right hand to start the round. He worked his way in and scored with a left hook. Moments later he went jab, cross and left hook and fell into a clinch. Cortes came out very aggressive in this round and Salinas seemed to have no answer on the back foot. Cortes began to use his right with venom on the inside as Salinas gets close and lets his guard down just a little. Cortes just started exploiting his faster hands inside and began to land combinations. Dominant round for Cortes though Salinas had one very hard left hand at about the 2:20 mark of the round.

Round 8: Cortes begins to mix in a single right hook to the body. Salinas is tired and not really throwing despite Cortes standing his ground and provided ppportunities. Cortes is pushing his way out of clinches while Salinas remained content to stay tied up. Cortes took the round.

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