Jose “Silver Boy” Rodriguez defeats Russell “Spiderman” Jordan at Dover Downs
By Ken Hissner at ringside (Aug 30, 2010) Doghouse Boxing  
Not always when you pair up southpaws does it work out the way Jose Angel “Silver Boy” Rodriguez, 16-2-1 (2), NYC, NY, and Russell “Spiderman Jordan, 15-8 (10), of Rochester, NY, performed Friday night at the Dover Downs Hotel & Casino, Dover, DE. This nine bout show entertained the near capacity Rollins Ballroom with the main event being for the vacant IBF North American Middleweight title.

Jordan came out hoping it would be an early night blasting the smaller Rodriguez who is one slick defensive boxer. He worked his was out of trouble and seemed ahead at the end of the round. In the fourth round Jordan rocked Rodriguez only to get out boxed in the fourth. Jordan had Rodriguez out on his feet in the fifth round, but from where it came this writer doesn’t know but Rodriguez came back against the arm weary Jordan. This carried over into the sixth round with Jordan taking the seventh in a close round. At this point this writer had Jordan slightly ahead. At the start of the eighth round Rodriguez got his second wind and took over. In spite of a cut by the side of his left eye, Rodriguez outfought Jordan. In the tenth round a right hook rocked Jordan. Rodriguez ended the round with four solid punches. Neither had gone beyond ten rounds in. Rodriguez looked the fresher of the two.

In the eleventh round it was all Rodriguez. The twelfth round was possibly the best round of the fight as both fighters let it all hang out to the delight of the fans. Referee Steve Smoger let the boxers fight their fight except for many loose tapes there were few interruptions. Ring announcer Larry Tournabe declared all three officials by scores of 117-111 (Kevin Morgan), 115-113 (Eugene Grant) and 118-110 (Robert Grasso) the new IBF North American champ was Jose “Silver Boy” Rodriguez! This writer had it 116-112 Rodriguez. His promoter Andre Kutt of KEA Boxing may have a diamond in the ruff. It wouldn’t hurt for the winner to drop to light middleweight. Only coming in two pounds over that division limit and not a big puncher he could fit in quite well. I asked him to compare his last fight with USBA Middleweight champion Lajuan Simon and this one. “Simon was a much better fighter and very humble,” said Rodriguez. He acknowledged the cut did not bother him and was taken care of well by his corner. Though both fighters are from New York Rodriguez had never seen his opponent fight before. A match for the USBA light middleweight title with Philly’s Derek “Pooh” Ennis would be interesting.

What was called the six round co-feature among heavyweights brought back southpaw Amir Mansour, 10-0 (7), of Penns Grove, NJ, after a nine year absence. His timing in the first round was noticeably off against Sgt. Samuel Brown, 4-7-2, of Ft. Campbell, KY, who was shorter and not in the condition that Mansour looked with muscles on top of muscles. In the second round after about a minute Mansour who was being much more aggressive landed a double right hook and down went Brown on a knee. It wasn’t long before Mansour was on him and landed a right hook that dropped Brown flat on his face. The crowd went wild! Referee Vic deWysocki didn’t bother counting as he wisely called a halt at 1:31 of the second round. There was a Philly connection in the corner as Mansour has been training in Philly. The fans were concerned about Brown who finally got to his feet with the aid of an EMT and smiled as he congratulated Mansour. At 38 Mansour has no time to waste and it will be interesting how his manager Keith Stouffer guides him.

Mike Tiberi, 14-1 (7), of nearby Smyrna took a couple of solid hooks from Ray Cunningham, 7-12 (5) of Topeka, KS, before settling down by using his superior reach. His jab was much too quick for Cunningham and Tiberi pinned him to the ropes landing three right hands to the left side and down he went. Tiberi jumped on him when he arouse and a flurry of punches dropped him again before referee deWysocki called a halt at 2:43 of the first round in a schedule six round middleweight match. Tiberi was very impressive to the delight of his many fans.

In what turned out to be one of the best fights of the night Mike Denby, 2-6-3 (2), of Felton, DE, and Gabriel Morris, 3-7-1 ()), of Toledo, OH, came in with similar records and when the bell ended the fourth and final round there was little to choose between them. In the first round Morris rocked Denby with a left hook and once with a right uppercut. In the second round Morris drove Denby into the ropes but Denby to his credit came back with overhand rights that hurt Morris. The third round was a good mix of punches with Morris using uppercuts on the shorter Denby who at times was off balance but always dangerous with that right hand. It was a wild fourth round and this writer hated to see a loser. deWysocki was the referee. The officials Steve Weisfeld, Bob Grasso and Joe Pasquale all agreed 39-37 to the winner Morris. He would be the only local to lose on the show. This writer had it 38-38.

In a dull six round light welterweight match Ryan Belasco, 13-4-3 (3), of Wilmington, DE, seemed content to win every round by mostly slapping Devarise Crayton, 6-10-2 (2), of Orlando, FL, in a clinch. Crayton probably hugged Belasco more than his wife. Referee deWysocki had his hands full in this one separating the boxers. All officials had it 60-54 as did this writer for Belasco. The fans were not pleased.

Anthony Smith, 6-0 (4), of Kennett Square, PA, took on a late sub in southpaw Khalil Farah, 6-6 (1), of Philadelphia by way of Jordan. By the third round top referee Smoger had seen enough and had given enough warnings to Farah for holding and waved it off. Farah seemed to be glad to see it end at 0:34 of the fourth round by disqualification. It was not an easy fight to watch. Smith brings in quite a few fans. This was a six round bout with Smith being outweighed by nearly ten pounds pitting light heavy against cruiser. Normally Farah is a super middleweight.

Dan “Badda Bing” Biddle, 4-1 (4), of Hockessin, DE, holds his head high inviting trouble, but Lonnie Mabin, 1-6-1 (0), of St. Joe, MO, was no match for the power of Biddle who dropped Mabin in the first round with a right uppercut. Then a right and a left dropped him a second time. In the second round a straight right dropped Mabin for a third time. A round house right landed and the corner of Mabin called to referee Smoger to halt it at 2:22 of the second round. This was a four round cruiser match.

Southpaw Gabriel Pham, 4-0 (2), of Atlantic City, NJ, seemed content to win by decision over Michael Glenn, 2-1 (1), of Hutchinson, KS, in a four round light heavyweight match. Pham rocked Glenn thirty seconds into the fight. In the second round a straight left did the same. In the third round it looked like Glenn was out on his feet as Pham was “shoe shining” him with punches and a possible 10-8 round. What looked like Pham was overwhelming Glenn wasn’t the way referee Smoger saw it. As the fourth round started it seemed he was right as it was Glenn coming back as Pham may have punched himself out. Switching from orthodox to southpaw Glenn seemed to take the round. Pham got the decision by 40-35 twice and 39-36.

In the lone female bout Southpaw Ashleigh Curry, 1-4-1 (0), of St. Joe, MO, seemed to lack the skills of the smaller Ronica Jeffrey, 4-0 (1), of Brooklyn over four rounds in a super feather weight bout. The decision was surprising when the words “split decision” was announced. Pasquale saw it 39-37 for Curry while Grasso had it 39-37 and Morgan 40-36 (as did this writer) for Jeffrey by split decision. Philly’s Brian Cohen was in the corner of Jeffrey.

Dover Downs Lisa Butler announced that they will return December 3rd. That’s good news for fight fans of DE. The show’s matchmaker Nick Tiberi put together what turned out to be a good show despite some bouts falling out. The fans seemed to enjoy themselves which is what the Casino is looking for.

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