Hollywood Showdown: Could Jojo Diaz emerge victorious on a groundbreaking night?
August 12, 2018
Davon McLaughlin (13 articles)

Hollywood Showdown: Could Jojo Diaz emerge victorious on a groundbreaking night?

By Davon McLaughlin


August 11th, Hollywood California


The lights were bright, celebrities were out, the Dj was spinning and boxing fans were packed in, 684 strong in the historic Avalon theatre to support Golden boy promotions groundbreaking new concept, A card streamed in nearly its entirety and completely free on the most accessible social platform in the world. The whole card would be broadcast live through Facebook watch. The two giants had the stage set for a party except here everyone wanted to see a fight.


Anticipation was high and just like the records of the two main eventers, the card was almost perfect, as the broadcast would cut out for 5 rounds during the middle of the main event between Joseph Diaz Jr and Jesus Rojas making it hard for some fans to score the bout at home. Before we got to the main event Golden boy had some prospects to showcase for the thousands of fans watching all over the world.


In the nights first action, welterweight Aaron McKenna ( 5-0 3 KOs) squared off in a four round beating of Rolando Mendivil who entered the squared circle with three times the the in-ring experience as the 19 year old McKenna, an Irish prospect fighting out of Los Angeles who would claim a very one-sided win on all three scorecards (40-36) McKenna would executed a simple game plan primarily consisting of a cascade of right hands throughout all four rounds which would hand Medivil his second loss in a row. After the fight, Mckenna made the following statements about opening the historic broadcast. “Being a part of the Golden Boy Fight Night on Facebook Watch was amazing. I’m glad that I get to be part of boxing history, and that my family from back home can watch” “ I learned a lot from those four full rounds, I’m looking forward to going back into the ring with an opponent Golden Boy Promotions and my team think would be a good fit for me”

By the time of the next bout the broadcast already boasted 15 thousand live viewers tuned in from across the globe. With Celebrity broadcaster Mario Lopez at the helm, it was time for the next contest. A very one-sided affair that saw Ferdinand Kerobyan who didn’t need to travel far, as the 10-0 Armenian fighting out of North Hollywood dished out a thorough body attack in route to a 60-54 unanimous decision on all three judges’ cards. His opponent was Jose Rivera (6-4 4 KOs) it is worth noting that Kerobyan is managed by none other than “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey. Kerobyan looks more than ready to step up in the card and start competing in longer contests.


The crowd in the Avalon was loving the action, Including Los Angeles fight fanatic and boxing aficionado Danny Trejo. Other notables in the crowd included hall of famer “Sugar” Ray Leonard.


Our next showdown was between two of Golden Boys undefeated fighters in Jonathan ”Thunder” Navarro (14-0 7 KOs) fighting at home in Los Angeles he was faced with his toughest fight yet in also undefeated Damon “ No Smiling” Allen (14-0). By opening bell the broadcast had already doubled its viewers, 60 thousand eyes were eager to watch the clash of the unbeaten as Oscar De La Hoya would say himself “Someones 0 has to go” As the action began both men exchanged blows evenly for 3 rds to a very split group of voters who had the fighters almost even (49/51% Navarro) according to twitter polls used throughout the contest. In the third round a headbutt would open a nasty cut on Navaro’s right eye, but it didn’t seem to deter him as he seemed to take control of the action. By the fifth round he went on an all-out offensive leaving Allen shaken and wobbly but he would make it out of the round. This would continue into the sixth where a punch right at the bell sent Allen to the mat, despite Allen looking very hurt he did not fall to the mat until the bell had sounded the end of the round. As such no knockdown was scored. This wouldn’t prove to be much factor as the fight would never go to the scorecards. Still badly shaken leaving his corner for round 7 Allen would succumb to a brutal combination including a punch taken as Allen looked to the ref to stop the fight, Zac Young would end the contest at 1 minute 33 seconds of the seventh round. Adding another KO, and a high visibility win to the record of Jonathan Navarro.


The party in the Avalon had reached a fever pitch, but this party didn’t need the cops to come turn down the music. Fans were ready for the featured contest of the night. Though the bout would no longer be for a piece of the 126lb title as Diaz would fail to make weight at the 126 lb limit. (He would officially weigh in at 126.6 lb) With the title no longer on the line. Diaz was still under tremendous pressure to succeed and had much to prove to the hometown fans he promised to come out strong for. Well he started almost immediately, from the first sound of the timekeepers bell both men came out and instead of setting up chess pieces went right at it. Putting their heads down and stepping into the proverbial “Phonebooth” where it looked like Diaz was not only able but willing to go blow for blow with the bigger puncher in Rojas. The pace never really slowed as both men settled in for a spartan like battle of wills that took place right in the center of the ring. The first four rounds seemed to be almost even with some fans giving Diaz a slight edge in points by rounds 5 and 6. Rojas never truly lost any round and just about any of them could have gone either way, Rojas would opt to use the uppercut as his primary means of attack, While Diaz was dropping coins in a piggy bank all night going downstairs and attacking the body all night. The barrage of uppercuts proved to be effective for Rojas as Jojo would say in post-fight “It was hard to breathe through my nose” it was at the start of rd 5 that I say the broadcast was “almost perfect” the Facebook live feed would go offline for the next 5 rounds taking a massive toll on the live viewer count which I wouldn’t see climb past 12 thousand viewers even into the championship rounds. The fight was an action-packed, Hollywood style gun fight all the way through. When the dust settled it was Diaz who ended up on the good side of the judges’ cards. [117-111 116-112 and 115-113]. Despite the broadcast issues, the night truly did feel special from the second we were welcomed to the broadcast Golden Boy and Facebook agreed to do at least four more of these events and the sky is the limit for what Golden Boy may have in store for the fans! Thank you to all of the fans that viewed the card live on SupremeBoxing!




Davon McLaughlin