After testing positive twice for COVID-19, Jamel Herring will finally get in the ring to face Jonathan Oquendo in the main event of a Top Rank card at the MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas on Saturday.
Herring (21-2, 10 KOs) will defend his WBO junior lightweight title against Oquendo (31-6, 19 KOs), and a victory will set up a much bigger fight against former two-time world titleholder Carl Frampton later this year.
In the co-main event, DeAndre Ware will take on Steven Nelson in a 10-round super middleweight battle. Ware, an EMT and firefighter from Ohio, performed emergency CPR on Pete Susens, a Top Rank official, before the weigh-in on Friday after Susens suffered a heart attack. Susens is now recovering at a Las Vegas hospital.
Ware (13-2-2, 8 KOs) scored an upset victory over Ronald Ellis in February 2019 but lost an eighth-round TKO to Vladimir Shishkin seven months later and hasn’t fought since.
Nelson (16-0, 13 KOs) is on an incredible streak. He has won eight of his past 10 fights by stoppage, including an eighth-round TKO victory over Cem Kilic in January.
Also on the card, unbeaten junior flyweight Jesse Rodriguez (11-0, 7 KOs) will face Janiel Rivera (18-6-3, 11 KOs) in an eight-round bout, and heavyweight sensation Jared Anderson (5-0, 5 KOs) will return to the Top Rank bubble for the third time looking to extend his consecutive KO victories streak to six in an eight-round fight against Rodney Hernandez (13-9-2, 4 KOs).
Stay here for live undercard results and analysis.
Ruben Cervera def. Rennard Oliver by second-round KO
Fight recap coming up …
Vazquez wins, stays unbeaten
Edward Vazquez (8-0, 1 KOs) overcame a second round trip to the canvas to score a hard-earned decision over Adan Ochoa (11-2, 4 KOs). After six well-contested rounds all three judges scored the fight for Vazquez 57-56, 58-55 and 58-55.
Every round seemed very close, outside of the second when an overhand right hand from Ochoa sent Vazquez to the canvas. But other than that, there wasn’t much that separated Vazquez and Ochoa, who took turns landing good punches on each other consistently.
At times it was Vazquez backing up at other moments he was the one coming forward and pressing the action against Ochoa. But at no point did either man ever completely take control of the action for long stretches.
Jefferson dominates Martinez, wins decision
Rashiem Jefferson scored a four-round decision over Jose Martinez by the scores of 39-37, 40-36 and 40-36.
Jefferson, 19, of Philadelphia, boxed deftly from the outside out of his southpaw stance for much of this bout. Martinez (2-2, 1 KOs) ramped up the aggression and pressure in Rounds 3-4, but it was Jefferson (2-0, 1 KOs) who landed the more precise and accurate punches.
For Martinez, it was another loss inside “the bubble,” as he dropped a four-round decision to Frevian Robles on June 18. Jefferson, with his smooth boxing style, is a young prospect to keep an eye on.
Still to come:
Title fight: Jamel Herring vs. Jonathan Oquendo, 12 rounds, for Herring’s WBO junior lightweight title
Steven Nelson vs. DeAndre Ware, 10 rounds, super middleweights
Janiel Rivera vs. Jesse Rodriguez, 8 rounds, junior flyweights
Jared Anderson vs. Rodney Hernandez, 8 rounds, heavyweights
D’Andre Smith vs. Benjamin Whitaker, 6 rounds, welterweights
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