Words: Denzil Stone – Atlantic City
Photos: Esther Lin/Showtime
Wildcard Boxing Club middleweight Peter Quillin, an emerging 28-year-old contender from Grand Rapids by way of Brooklyn, overcame former 154lb world champion Winky Wright on Saturday, June 2 at Home Depot Center in Carson, California. Wright relied on lead shots and defence, while Quillin bombarded the experienced 40-year-old southpaw with bruising power shots.
Official verdict: Quillin by way of unanimous decision (98-91, 98-91, 97-92).
“I prepared for a 21-year-old Winky Wright and at times he fought like that,” Quillin (27-0-0, 20ko) said, noting Wright’s early (but overall limited) success). “You can see from my face that I didn’t take a lot of punishment tonight.”
Quillin had a more positive approach to the fight in round one but in the second and third rounds, the veteran Wright (51-6-1, 25ko) was able to take on the role of ring general, making a point of occupying the positions of the ring that he wanted to whilst jabbing effectively and employing a decent defence. These signs, of course, showed the contest was being fought on his terms, despite the 12-year age gap between he and Kid Chocolate.
There will, no doubt, be dissimilarities on scorecards due to the two fighters relying on completely different fistic material. After three rounds of boxing, Quillin had landed just two jabs – a paltry amount, especially compared to Wright’s far greater success rate of one landed for every five thrown. Quillin, though, owned Winky when it came to firing shots with bigger bullets.
Any competitiveness Wright hoped to sought disintegrated prior to the midway stage as Quillin, by round five, had established a good fluidity to his style. There was finer action from Wright who had begun to put punches together but Quillin stood up to anything Winky threw and this proved decisive. Quillin was never in discomfort when it came to taking a punch from Wright whereas Kid Chocolate’s shots had a strong pop and even put Winky on his seat in the session’s final minute with a right hand over a low left that shook up Winky’s core before buckling his legs completely.
Quillin’s power was audible in the sixth as his shots thudded into Wright’s frame and could be heard inside the Home Depot Center despite a noticeably loud Californian crowd. Wright responded well, checking Quillin’s chin at the beginning of the seventh but, Winky never being a heavy hitter, struggled to make Peter think twice about throwing as often as he was and Quillin insisted with a more pressing style.
Quillin inflicted a shellacking onto Wright in the eighth round, roughing his opponent up and bloodying his nose. An uppercut initiated the physical abuse as Winky was once again rattled and there was no let-up from what followed. Wright kept a guard high and, for the rest of the round, kept his arms there without following a single shot as Quillin went on a rampage with cross shots, straights and wide hooks.
Overall, it was another win for Quillin but the manner in which Wright is now expected to slip into retirement, having interrupted a three-year hiatus to box Kid Chocolate, one can’t help but think Winky was served up to provide the middleweight with a sweet win on his way to a title shot at 160lbs.