Denzil Stone – Atlantic City
A fight anticipated to be solid, competitive and filed with notable action was spoiled by relentless clinching as Dyah Davis and Alfonso Lopez produced a dire stylistic match-up in the first main event of ESPN Friday Night Fights’ new season. Davis won a one-sided unanimous decision over Lopez at the Mallory Square in Key West, Florida on Friday, January 6 and the sole interesting moment occurred in the seventh round, when an uppercut was landed.
Official verdict: 100-90, 100-90, 99-91 a unanimous decision to Davis.
While the undercard featured a mother-son story with trainer Saphya coaching son Denis Douglin to success over Steve Martinez, the main event fight showcased a feather-son plot-line that focused on Dyah Davis’ gold bloodline. Dyah is the son of Howard Davis Jr, who won the ultimate amateur prize at the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal, Canada.
This, on top of obtaining gold at the World Amateur Championships in Cuba two years before, however, both father and son hope that Dyah can do something that Howard never did – win the ultimate professional prize; a world championship.
That journey could not come in a more exciting time as the division Dyah competes in – super middleweight – is one of the deepest in boxing. Looking to spoil his journey through 168lbs was Alfonso Lopez who has tasted defeat just once, versus Kelly Pavlik last summer in a fight that made the latter look poor.
At the beginning of the contest it was obvious that Davis was the ring general, a startling achievement considering his complete lack of any amateur fighting pedigree. The first round, though, displayed little precision as neither man landed many blows – with not one of them notable.
Davis became more aggressive with the jab in the third round, however, as was shown in the preceding stanzas, any action became near instantly spoiled by both prizefighters’ propensity to spoil.
Such was the inclination to hug, that those that came to see a fight in Florida may feel rightfully disappointed and, even up to the fifth round, there were points where the referee would implore the two combatants to box by pleading: “come on guys!”
As the bout headed into it’s second half, whoever maintained control of the ring, took a step back from close-range and boxed, would easily take the decision.
In what could have been an ironic cheer or one out of pure rejoice, the crowd erupted midway through the seventh round as a right handed uppercut was landed, by Davis, landing cleanly on Lopez who followed with a left. In the next round, it was Lopez who got his revenge by powering a right hand into Davis’ skull.
In the final round, there was too little singular punching. For Davis, he was able to counter effectively, but he would admire his work rather than capitalise on it. If he was more active in letting his fists go, then he would have been able to put in a performance that was more convincing of the win. With the victory, however, he moved to 21-2-1, 9ko while Lopez dropped to 22-2-0, 17ko.