Bantamweight prospect Emanuel Moreno (1-0) made his second outing as a professional this past Saturday night at the Oklahoma City Convention Center, Oklahoma City, OK.
Sporting a simple black t-shirt and a Bass Pro Shops ball cap, Moreno was all smiles as he talked to NYFights about his career and aspirations to become a world champion one day. Born and raised in Wichita Falls, Texas, Moreno has been boxing since he was six years old, when he was introduced to the sport by his father, a former boxer.
Football is the king of sports in Texas, but not for Moreno. The Texan instantly fell in love with boxing and knew that the gym was where he belonged. “I just wanted to do something different than everybody else. Football is a big thing here. Everyone wants to play football here in Texas. I wanted to be different from everybody else. When my dad first took me to the gym, I started getting the hang of it, and it clicked. So, it became something I wanted to do. So, I just stuck to it ever since,” Moreno told NYFights.
Coached by Mike Zapata out of Rival Boxing gym, the young Texan native “El Trompo” would amass an amateur record of 141-15.
As an amateur, the former soccer player turned boxer became a six-time national champion, four-time golden glove regional champion, and a five-time junior Olympic state champion. “I've been around the top national ranks with the top amateurs,” said Emanuel as he summarized his accomplishments as an amateur boxer.
After 156 amateur fights, Emanuel Moreno concluded it was time to take his talent to the professional ranks. “My coaches always taught me to fight a pro-style from the beginning. But, after my last amateur fight at the Nationals, I fell short in the semifinals. So, I came back to the gym and talked to my coaches. I asked them, ‘do you think it's time for me to move to the next level and take that big step?’ And they told me they thought I had been ready for a while. So, I made up my mind and said, ‘OK, I’m ready for it,” said Moreno.
Moreno, only 18 years old, signed with boxing manager Triffon Petrov of Imperial Boxing and made his professional debut on November 19th, 2022, against 32-year-old Christian Alejandro Silva, a veteran of seventeen professional fights. Moreno defeated Silva by a unanimous decision.
Moreno fights from the orthodox stance and describes himself as a boxer who can do everything.
“I do it all. I can box, and I can bang. I know how to adjust to whatever my opponent brings to the table. If I feel like I have to box in a fight, I'll box. If I feel like I can bang them out, I’ll bang. As I said, I can do it all, man,” said Emanuel Moreno confidently.
On Saturday, Moreno's opponent was Christopher Nelson out of Louisville, Kentucky. Moreno was again fighting a veteran fighter, this one who had 28 professional fights on his ledger.
Although Nelson has only four wins as a professional, there is a significant disparity in-ring experience between them.
Originally Moreno was supposed to fight Ira Terry. Terry is a veteran of 53 fights and has fought top opposition like Jorge Linares and Josue Vargas. Unexpectedly, Terry pulled out of the fight for unknown reasons. When I asked Moreno why he thought Ira pulled out of the contest, the Texan smiled and boasted, “He didn’t want any of the smoke.”
Although not unheard of, it's usually standard practice to match first-year fighters with opponents with the same experience level. In his first two fights as a professional, Moreno has been matched with veterans with more than a dozen fights to their credit. Although his opponents have a combined winning record of nine contests, they have years of professional experience over Moreno. However, Moreno's team has the utmost confidence in his talent. Despite his opponents’ losing records, Moreno doesn't underestimate them and took nothing for granted when he stepped into the ring Saturday night. The Texas native won a convincing unanimous decision against the more experienced professional.
For the remainder of 2023, Emanuel would like to fight at least three more times. So where does Emanuel Moreno see himself in the three to five years?
“My goal is to win a title in two years. It's too quick to say; anything can happen, but my goal is to win titles. It's every fighter’s dream to have a title in their arms. In the future, I want to win multiple world championships. So, that's the goal,” Moreno told NYFights.
Moreno closed out our interview with this message to potential opponents. “I am coming for everything. They ain't going to want the smoke- they don't want to smoke now! They don't wanna take a chance with me. But, hey, it's all good. They can't run forever. I'm coming for my division-I'm taking over the division. I'm coming with all the smoke. I want all the smoke- anybody-anytime,” concluded Moreno.
My Take: Emanuel “El Trompo” Moreno is an excellent fighter with an extensive amateur background. Usually, fighters with that kind of amateur experience develop into great professional fighters. Moreno has a great support system consisting of his lifelong coaches and family.
Emanuel is charismatic and personable, and the camera lays easy on him. Additionally, Moreno can fight.
Emanuel Moreno has all the tools for an exciting and successful boxing career. The future looks bright for the young Texas pugilist.