Kholmatov-Ford, Lopez-Abe Live Undercard Results

Boxing Scene

Floyd Diaz Surges Late to Top Edwin Rodriguez

Bantamweight Floyd Diaz (11-0, 3 KOs) won an eight-round unanimous decision over Edwin Rodriguez (12-8-2, 5 KOs) in Saturday’s undercard at Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York.

The fight was pushed back when Diaz was late to the arena (and subsequently fined by the commission). Diaz had also been late to sparring under his new trainer, Brian “BoMac” McIntyre, according to ESPN+ commentators. This was Diaz’s first fight without his father, Mike Diaz, in his corner.

Rodriguez came forward with pressure as Diaz looked to box from the outside. Diaz landed a big left uppercut to end the first round, and he looked fluid moving into the second round. Rodriguez continued to come forward, but Diaz was forcing the fight toward his terms.

Diaz was able to control distance and throw a lot of punches to keep Rodriguez’s hands occupied. Rodriguez, who rarely used a jab, needed an opponent willing to come to him, but Diaz never let him find his rhythm.

Diaz appeared in control in the middle rounds, but he wasn’t separating himself from Rodriguez. That began to change in the sixth, when Diaz sent Rodriguez back to his corner with bruises on his face.

Rodriguez ended the seventh round with his best punch of the night, an overhand right – but it wouldn’t be enough. Diaz landed his best punches of the fight in the late rounds and coasted to a win (78-74, 79-73 and 80-72).

Rohan Polanco Shines in Wide Decision Over Tarik Zaina

Junior welterweight Rohan Polanco (12-0, 7 KOs) won a wide eight-round unanimous decision over Tarik Zaina (13-1-1, 8 KOs) in Saturday’s undercard at Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York.

The story of the fight was pretty simple: Zaina tried to be busier and outpoint Polanco with an active jab, while Polanco attempted to counter and land a game-changing punch.

With 30 seconds left in the second round, Polanco landed a huge right hand that rocked Zaina, who avoided the knockdown and answered with his own right hand before the bell.

In the third, Polanco’s jab fired like a piston – stronger and faster than in previous rounds. Zaina’s output began to dip, and Polanco walked him down, doing more damage with a greater volume of punches. By the fifth round, Polanco’s systematic body attack had slowed Zaina.

While Polanco didn’t sit down between rounds, Zaina seemed to have his energy sapped as the fight wore on. Zaina was simply outgunned by Polanco, who looked like a future world title contender.

The lights in the venue went out at 2:18 in the seventh round, causing a delay in the action. A minute or so later, Zaina found himself on the canvas. Polanco began unloading big shots after his opponent got back to his feet, but Zaina hung on. (He even bloodied Polanco’s nose in the final round.)

But an uppercut from Polanco dropped Zaina with less than 15 seconds left, leaving no doubt about the outcome. The judges scored it 78-72, 79-71 and 79-71 for Polanco.

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