In the supporting bouts on the Benavidez vs. Plant card, young guns drew their weapons and faced their futures. The two winners came to their victories via different paths. One is facing the wrath of his opponent and fans who didn't believe he deserved the win.
Message Sent By Jesus Ramos With Spencer Stoppage
In the co-main event, junior middleweights Jesus Ramos of Casa Grande, Arizona, and Joey Spencer of Linden, Michigan, faced serious pressure to prove their skills worthy of their undefeated records. Only a win would allow either man to be taken seriously as a threat to the top talent in the division.
With his uncle Abel cheering him on after his own fight earlier on the card, the 22-year-old Ramos (20-0, 16 KOs) will wake up Sunday on his 23rd birthday with many options. Ramos delivered a dominant shutout performance, bullying Spencer (16-1, 10 KOs) through seven rough rounds until Spencer's corner asked the fight be stopped.
“I feel like I delivered good,” said Ramos. “I showed some angles. After the first round knockdown, I got carried away with my power a little bit until I showed what we'd been working on,” admitted Ramos, who said his father and trainer Abel Sr. told him to “box behind the jab and use your angles. I starting landing more shots and looking better.”
Ramos got the early edge with a first-round knockdown, and never let off the pressure. Ramos chopped at Spencer's body, following up with headshots. Spencer couldn't get away even in the 22-square-foot ring. He had no jab to hold Ramos off. He only survived through sheer toughness. By the halfway mark in the fight, the corner had to seriously consider calling off the fight to save their young prospect.
It was no surprise then to see the white towel at 1:25 of round seven, ending Spencer's difficult night. Spencer's trainer and father, James Spencer, did the right thing on his son's behalf.
Another first-round knockdown 😱
— SHOWTIME Boxing (@ShowtimeBoxing) March 26, 2023
In an active 154-pound division, Ramos has multiple avenues to the top. He said he'd keep facing undefeated fighters like Spencer.” He's a great fighter with a lot of heart. I hope we get another entertaining fight like that,” said Ramos.
The E word (as in exposed) will get thrown at Spencer. It's an unfair characterization. Don't hate the player, hate the game.
Spencer suffered as prospects sometimes do with a little too much attention on them during their development stage. Getting a lot of airtime in front of fans means the work product reflects the desire to rack up wins over the desire to learn and make progress. The prospect builds an excited fan base who feel let down when their favorite young fighter gets schooled.
They gave Spenser prospect of the year when I was fighting all these undefeated prospects, crazy how things turn. Stay humble and hungry
— 100 Billion (@coolboysteph) March 26, 2023
Chris Colbert Squeaks Out Win Over Jose Valenzuela
Spoiler alert: Don't let the fight go to the scorecards.
After a seemingly dominant performance, including a knockdown in the first minute of the ten-round fight, a win seemed secure for Jose “Rayo” Valenzuela of Reston, Washington.
But the decision went to Chris Colbert of Brooklyn in a stunner. Colbert (17-1, 6 KOs) won by scores of 95-94 on all three cards (Feldman, Giampa, and Trella) over Valenzuela (12-2, 8 KOs), his second defeat in a row.
As boos rained down on Colbert, the two let loose with harsh words at each other over the results no one saw coming. “Listen, I love boos. Someone has to be the bad guy,” said Colbert.
“He put up a hell of a fight. I knew I had to bite down and box,” said Colbert after being knocked down early. “I knew what I had to do to get the victory. If I'd lost, I would have taken it like a man. He's a sore loser.”
Valenzuela is a pure power puncher in the Los Mochis, Sinaloa scorched earth style. Valenzuela got off to a fast start, catching Colbert with a perfect left hook to the jaw 30 seconds into the bout. Valenzuela popped Colbert again before the end of the round, but Colbert made it to the bell.
— SHOWTIME Boxing (@ShowtimeBoxing) March 26, 2023
Battling Back For The Win
Credit to Colbert on a excellent recovery. Doing what he could to slow down Valenzuela's attack, he began to methodically chip away at his scorecard deficit round by round, fighting well through the middle rounds.
Valenzuela rocked Colbert again in the sixth round, going upstairs and downstairs until Colbert finally grabbed to hold. Colbert's left eye showed some damage, wincing. Colbert had to shell up to protect his face when Valenzuela targeted the injury. A big right hook landed. The fight was quickly becoming a nightmare situation.
Valenzuela showcased his offensive versatility to get at Colbert from multiple angles. Colbert managed to slip punches, and at the end of the ninth round, fired off a few shots to make a point he wasn't out of things yet.
“This is the last round, we've got to come with everything,” trainer Jose Benavidez Sr. told Valenzuela. He turned out to be right. The judges gave Colbert the final round due to a last push to give him the victory.
Colbert felt Valenzuela fought too much in spurts while he performed with consistency.
“I jab and I jab and I jab. He caught me, but it was a 10-round fight,” said Colbert. Colbert dismissed Valenzuela's power. “It wasn't like I couldn't take the power and had to run.” Colbert said he'd be willing to give Valenzuela a rematch. “If he wants to, let's get it.”
An irate Valenzuela told Showtime Boxing's Jim Gray, “I beat him fair and square, man. I beat him. Who do you think won?” Gray declined to answer.
“I landed all the shots. I dropped him. I dominated. It's boxing,” said the dismayed Valenzuela.
“He didn't hurt me ever once in this fight. I did want I wanted in this fight. I won. I was having fun and I wanted to show the world what I could do. But this is what happens when you don't get them out of there. I felt I put it on him. I never felt threatened. I was in control the whole time. I went through a lot, four months hard. To come out like this, it sucks.” Valenzuela said he’d entertain a rematch. As he concluded his interview, Jim Gray offered his personal assessment. “To answer your question, it was a terrible decision.”
Jim gray with the mic drop 🔥🔥
— RYAN GARCIA (@RyanGarcia) March 26, 2023