This Saturday night, boxing returns to San Antonio, TX, as Golden Boy Promotions ends the year with a stacked card that will be streamed live on DAZN. Light Heavyweight Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez (42-0) will be putting his undefeated record against Yunieski “The Monster” Gonzalez (21-3) from Cuba.
The Co-Main event slot belongs to the ladies as WBA Minimumweight Champion Seniesa “Super Bad” Estrada (21-0) defends her title against Maria “La Imparable” Santizo (9-0). This fight looks to steal the show on Saturday night, so I recently checked in with “Super Bad” as she approached the end of her training camp.
Seniesa Estrada is a 29-year-old fighter out of East Los Angeles, CA, who has captured the attention of an ever growing boxing audience as of late. Whether it was her record-setting knockout last summer against Miranda Adkins or her ringside reporting and commentating, Estrada has gained some real momentum. Her promoter certainly thinks so as they have placed her in the co-main event slot for this card in Texas.
It's been somewhat of a ride for Seniesa, and I happened to see it from the beginning when she was fighting in club shows at the Belasco Theater in downtown L.A. She had something about her that made you watch when she walked into the ring, and after seeing that first punch combination, I knew she had the potential of being special.
After mentioning to Seniesa the Belasco Theater story, she smiled and paused for a second, almost as if my comments took her back to that exact moment in her career. I asked Seniesa how life has changed in and out of the ring from that day to now. Seniesa told NYF, “Oh wow, it has changed so much. The Belasco, yeah, that was my first fight with Golden Boy. I've come a long way since then (laughs).”
Seniesa continued, “It's changed a lot personally and financially. It's just really cool to see that all of the hard work and sacrifice that I have put in since I was eight years old is paying off financially so I can change my life in different ways. My career changed tremendously as I signed with the biggest promoter in boxing. I'm fighting on DAZN and have been given the platform I have always wanted. It feels great to be one of the main faces in women's boxing.”
One of those opportunities came with Ring City earlier this year, and she was such a hit with the audience that the company brought her back for a second show. DAZN noticed the value Seniesa brings, whether ringside reporting or commentating, so they started to book the fighter out of L.A for work on their events. What did Seniesa think of the experience? Estrada said, “It's great, and I love it because I can give my insight as a fighter and provide another side of things those normal commentators aren't used to giving. As a fighter, it's really cool to have the opportunity to explain a fighter's mentality, style, and what they are going through.”
The boxer has been involved in Breast Cancer Awareness, Estrada teamed up with Fierce Flex for a unique Cobra Bag. I asked Seniesa if she was participating in the campaign because of the cause or knew someone close to her who had Breast Cancer. “It was something I wanted to support but also close to me as my trainer's mother was battling breast cancer for many years before she passed away from COVID. It was definitely close to me because of my trainer's mom.” It's essential to shed light on things like this as we have to credit fighters who support causes as important as Breast Cancer Awareness.
We quickly moved on to the heart of the conversation, which was preparing for her next fight. Head Trainer Dean Campos and Joe Estrada, Seniesa’s dad, are in charge of that preparation. How did the prep go for this fight? “I'm at a private gym (K.O. Company) that isn't open to the public. I get to work out on my own, which is great anytime I want to. I've been training there for about two years. ”
Estrada continued, “It was a good thing that we opened the gym right before the pandemic, which gave me a place to train during that was private. Training camp has been going great, and I feel great physically and mentally. I'm feeling and looking sharp during sparring. I've had local amateur fighters and professionals from the Los Angeles area help me out during this training camp. I'm ready to fight tomorrow!”
It sounds like Seniesa is locked in and ready to go. What are her thoughts on Maria Santizo?
The WBA Champ said, “She is an undefeated fighter with five knockouts. Maria had a really good amateur career as well. I'm going in there expecting her to try to take my belt. She is very confident that she will beat me, and I'm very confident that I'm going to beat her. It's going to be a good fight, but the way I'm feeling, this fight will not go the distance.”
When hearing that last part, it reminds you how competitive she is and how she still has that nastiness to her which forces people to tune in.
Part of that sharp edge is that Estrada feels like she isn't getting the respect she deserves from those covering the sport. Seniesa said, “I feel like I'm gaining some respect by winning these world titles. I'm taking these world titles from the champions. I'm not fighting for a vacant title or fighting one fight for all of the belts. Every fighter in my division 105,108, and 112 has a world champion who is active.”
Estrada continued, “It's even more difficult for me as I have to face each of these champions and take the belt from them. That's what I've been doing and what I want to continue to do as the best are the ones with the world titles. So, I want to go for a world title or unification in every fight. I think that alone should have the respect of my name a lot higher than what it is. Hopefully, these boxing experts and so-called experts start recognizing that.”
Towards the end of the call, we discussed what is in store for Seniesa in and out of the ring next year. Seniesa told NYF, “It's great to be able to do things outside of the ring and gain sponsorships with different brands. It's another way to make money, and I enjoy doing those things, just like commentating and modeling. I am working on a life story movie that is in the works, so I'm excited about that!”
Seniesa continued, “I'm excited about next year. I will be having my first fight of the year against IBF Minimumweight Champion Yokasta Valle (22-2), which will be a unification. I'm excited that next year will kick off with a good start. I'm trying to rack up as many world titles as I can in 2022!”
Speaking of Seniesa, I asked Golden Boy Promotions Vice President & Matchmaker Roberto Diaz about the WBA Champ. Roberto told NYF, “With Seniesa, it's been very easy and entertaining matchmaking. This young lady not only says she wants the best but actually means it. All she wants to do is fight world champions and hold three divisions.
Roberto continued, “Unfortunately, it's been difficult because organizations make you pick which division you want to stay in. I understand having to pick as some champions want to hold on to the title and not defend it. We couldn't get the fight she wanted: a unification bout against (IBF Champion) Yokasta Valle (22-2). We were already in talks with her side, but we ended up doing the title defense due to the last-minute show and budget reasons. Next year we will do unifications and more divisions which is her goal and something that makes my life a lot easier. “
My Three Cents
Seniesa Estrada is a firecracker and has this mean streak when she steps into the ring that you love to see from your champions. She has some big plans for next year, but some of those are contingent on her beating Maria Santizo on Saturday night.
Will we see another outstanding performance from “Super Bad,” or will the undefeated Santizo ruin those plans? You'll have to tune into DAZN on Saturday night to see how this one plays out.