Jesse Hart is back to the ring on Friday, Dec 8, atop the Kings Promotions event at Wind Creek, in Bethlehem, PA.
Indeed, you know as a hardcore fight fan that Hart has had lots of time on larger stages, he fought on ESPN regularly as part of the Top Rank ensemble.
Hart is 34 now, holding a 29-3 record.
He’s on the ascent again, it looks like, after his split decision loss to Joe Smith on Jan 11, 2020.
Hart took 18 months off, and beat 12-6-1 Mike Guy, then 10-2-1 David Murray, both times on club shows at 2300 Arena.
Friday, it’s another club show, this time with 14-7-1 Jeyson Minda to be across the ring for the Philly fighter.
Hart is fairly well known, he lost to Gilberto Ramirez twice while attempting to take his WBO world 168 crown.
And this Jeyson Minda?
Minda has not been getting reason to exult too terribly much.
Boxrec tells us that Minda, from Ecuador, has been in crazy tough.
Losses to Tyrone Spong, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, Kanat Islam, Junior Younan, Sean Hemphill, and Vladimir Shishkin are not necessarily condemnations of his skills.
It can be argued that the streak of bouts is testament to his toughness, too.
I reached out to Minda, part of the reason, frankly, was to hear from a guy who could use a W, how he was handling that.
He started at the beginning: “I was born in Quito. I am a person who has been boxing since I was 6 years old,” said the 30 year old. “I am a person with limited economic resources and I have always tried to get ahead through boxing and thank God I am here waiting for the opportunity to show what I am made of.”
He shares the goal that helped motivate him when he turned pro, in 2014, with a bout in Quito: “My goal has always been to be a world champion,” Minda continued. “I was third in the world, a Pan American champion. So I felt that it was the right time to become a professional and make myself known in the professional world.”
And many of us don’t comprehend at all the allure of the United States, still, to folks looking to better themselves financially, lift their station in life.
Our culture is clogged up by bickering and intramural beefing between citizens belonging to political poles.
So badly that it’s a feat to own a measured take on “our” station on the world stage, as a destination, where one can advance with a dream, ambition, skills, smarts and grit.
In other words, very often “outsiders” have a better handle on the concept of “the American Dream” than we inside the bubble do.
Jeyson Minda Moved From Ecuador to US
Minda moved from Ecuador to America in 2021. He resides in Salem, Mass and says he enjoys the locale and the culture.
“When I moved here to the United States it was for one goal: I wanted to become a great boxer. To do a positive turn in my life I knew that there are many good boxers here and the coaches, like Michael Reyes, so what I focused on was to learn and have more knowledge and be on par with boxers of this level from the United States.
Minda spoke on Hart, a pro since 2012, what sort of challenge he foresees that being: “I was able to see is that he is a very strong boxer who likes to move a lot, he has a lot of experience, he has fought with world champions, he has a good track record, but I am focused on putting a lot of pressure on him from the first round and making him feel the work that I am going to do.”
Michael Reyes spoke on the attributes of Minda. “This is a proud athlete, one with skills not advertised on his BoxRec.,” the promoter told NYF. “There are more of these guys than people know, and bless em. They keep the show moving, without their courage, in taking fights they are not the favorite to win, we have no pro boxing scene! Fighters from South America, Central America, engaging in fan friendly fights, not always winning, but always competing hard usually to earn money to help family back home. So much heart!
“There’s a Tom Petty song, called ‘Even the Losers,’ Reyes continued. “The lyrics go…
Baby, even the losers
Get lucky sometimes
Even the losers
Keep a little bit of pride
They get lucky sometimes
“Tom Petty was talking about a brief love in his life,” said Reyes. “But it applies here. Minda has a big upset in him, he’s a good fighter, lots of heart, and soul. “ (Below, 36 year old Tom Petty doing ‘Even the Losers' at Farm Aid in Austin, Texas:)
(Writer/Editor Note: About that tag, “loser.” I identify more so with that than I do the converse, and most of us regular folks do, too, so there is no negative connotation attached for me. Petty's legacy is so sturdy because so much of his work came from that POV, the “other side.” People identify with not being on top of the world, eh?)
Minda: “I know that here there are many fighters from all over the world who come here to increase their performance, to learn and make them better. So I am one of one of them, trying to do many things. I am very focused, very motivated and I am am very focused, very motivated and I am happy for this opportunity. I know that I can surprise Jesse Hart. I think they made a mistake in choosing me. I'm always going to fight hard and I know I'm going to do a great job and I'm going to pressure him from the first round. So he's going to have no idea and I'm not going to let him do his job. I'm going to put pressure on Jesse Hart!”
Yes, he said he’s learned from losing.
“The last fights I've had have given me a lot of experience, knowing how to push and knowing how not to give my rivals a chance. And we have a lot of pressure I know I'm going as a visitor to Bethlehem, PA,” Minda continued. “And so my job has to be double so that there is no doubt and they can give me the triumph! From the last fights, I learned that I have to be more forceful, so that there is no doubt with the judges and that they can easily give me the victory.”
Prediction for Friday night in PA? “I am going to go out and put a lot of pressure,” says Jeyson Minda. “My prediction is going I’m to make people happy with my performance and I am going to leave everything in the ring until the last round!”