“King” Callum Walsh of Cork, Ireland (8-0, 7 KOs) sent fans to the bars in the Commerce Casino early on Saturday night, including many of his admirers from the UFC world. Walsh’s evening ended just as it seemed an action fight was underway when opponent Juan Jose Valasco of Buenos Aires (24-5, 15 KOs) abruptly called it a night after going to his corner after the fourth round.
Famous faces from the UFC world and the fans at Commerce Casino in Southern California Saturday, including Jorge Masvidal, Tabitha Ricci, and announcer Bruce Buffer, didn’t seem to mind the method of the win by rising super welterweight Walsh as part of the Hollywood Fight Nights series from 360 Promotions aired on UFC Fight Pass.
— UFC FIGHT PASS (@UFCFightPass) August 27, 2023
“I want to apologize to all the fans who showed up,” said Walsh. “I wanted to give you a fight, I wanted to give you more. But that was out of my control. I was just getting going when he quit. I look forward to putting on a better show next time.”
Walsh focused on body punching, but the durable Velasco who has faced opponents including Regis Prograis and Mario Barrios, seemed to weather the offense well and trading shots back with Walsh. But after four rounds, Valasco told his team he was “out of gas” and done.
A disappointed Walsh said, “It felt like we were just getting into it, it was turning into a good fight. I was winning easily. I liked the way he tried to bring it to me. If you want me to get in the mix, I’ll do it. But he quit.
“It was getting good, and I would have stopped him in the next round. Every round Freddie (trainer Freddie Roach) kept saying, ‘Last round, last round.’ But we got him out of there, Freddie.”
Callum Walsh Returns November 9
Promoter said Walsh will return on the next 360 Promotions card on UFC Fight Pass on November 9, which will take place somewhere at an East Coast venue. Roach said Walsh is ready for stiffer competition. “Bring whoever you want, we’re ready. We’re looking for contenders in that weight class, bring it on.”
Walsh promised he’d be back in the gym on Monday.
On the undercard, it was an early night for promoter Tom Loeffler’s top young talents.
Veritson Blasts Doliguez, Dzambekov Does Same to Zegarra
In the co-main event, welterweight Gor Veritson of Armenia (16-0, 14 KOs) only needed two rounds to shut down opponent Rogelio Doliguez (25-5-2, 19 KOs) of the Philippines. Veritson landed a body shot 24 seconds into the round, dropping Doliguez. He tried to get off the canvas, but could not will his body to move, pounding his gloves in frustration.
Light heavyweight Umar Dzambekov of Russia (7-0, 5 KOs) took a similar approach against David Zegarra of Lima, Peru (35-11-1, 22 KOs). Zegarra came in overweight, so the fight was technically a cruiserweight fight at 190 pounds.
Dzambekov wasted no time drilling Zegarra, who took a knee after feeling the effects of the left hook to the liver. He got up, but then Dzambekov made it stick with referee Jack Reiss counting Zegarra out at 2:01 of round one.
SoCal Favorites Go One and One
Talented flyweight prospect Daniel “Chucky” Barrera of Riverside (4-0-1, 3 KOs) put in four rounds of work showing off his improved footwork and handspeed against veteran Gilberto Mendoza of Modesto (19-16-4, 10 KOs). Barrera is a frequent sparring partner of Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez and the influence of his mentor shows. We're keeping our eye on Chucky.
Fan favorite featherweight Adan Ochoa of Downey, California (12-4, 5 KOs) found himself up against a tough and determined Arnold Alejandro of Dallas (12-1-1, 10 KOs). Alejandro outworked and outmuscled Ochoa for a solid victory with scores of 80-72 on two cards, and an odd 77-75 card for Ochoa.