Chris Martin loses his first pro fight

At one point, Chris Martin (R) had Jose Angel Beranza in his sites and landed this big overhand right. Photo: Chris Cozzone

On Sunday, Philip Riversthrew for 307 yards and one touchdown, Mike Tolbert ran for another score as the San Diego Chargers went on to beat the winless Miami Dolphins 26-16.

Does any of that matter if one of our top local boxing talents loses? No, it doesn’t, when you’re a boxing fan.


Saturday evening in Las Vegas, in a 10 rounder, as part of the Toshiaki Nishioka vs. Rafael Marquez under card in which Nishioka ably defended his WBC super bantamweight title, Christopher “The San Diego Kid” Martin (23-1-2, 6 KOs) of Chula Vista, CA, lost his first professional fight.

Despite his age, Jose Angel Beranza looked good, especially when unloading his two and three punch combinations.                   Photo: Cris Cozzone

Jose Angel Beranza has his arm raised in victory by referee Tony Weeks after earning his split-decision victory.  Photo: Cris Cozzone

The always tough Jose Angel Beranza (34-21-2, with 26 KOs) of Mexico City, Mexico, took our hometown favorite the distance and after ten grueling rounds, Martin’s technique of slipping punches and countering did not bode well with two of the three judges. The scoring of 98-92 and 96-94 for Beranza and 97-93 for Martin proves that point. A good boxer will always get the decision locally but not on the national stage where they give more credence to ring generalship and the power behind each punch.

After becoming a considerable draw locally and achieving his world rankings with the major sanctioning bodies, Martin had recently signed with Bob Arum’s Top Rank Promotions, one of the most prestigious promoters in boxing. Now all of a sudden this result casts a shadow over Martin’s future. How could Martin lose to a 35 year-old boxer who had lost 12 of his last 15 fights? We could envision Beranza going the distance but we could not see him winning the contest. A contest where Martin had an advantage not only with his hand speed but his greater accuracy.

Top Rank had mentioned plans to feature Martin on the under card of the Margarito-Cotto II match up at Madison Square Garden in New York City in December. A victory at the Garden, with its international exposure, would boost Martin even higher in the rankings so there would be talk about a title shot. To be blunt, the powers to be rarely give second chances; those earlier plans must be scraped until Martin has proven he can beat some more of the Barranza level fighters.

Below are the best photos taken at last night’s boxing show at the Marquee Ballroom inside the MGM Grand Conference Center, October 1, 2011 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

After his victory over Rafael Marquez, Toshiaki Nishioka celebrates.

Toshiaki Nishioka had many fans in attendance and they cheered wildly for their hero. Photo: Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

Rafael Marquez (L) did his damage with the straight right. Photo: Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

At first, Toshiaki Nishioka (L) kept Rafael Marquez (R) at bay with his stiff jab. Photo: Jeff Bottari/Getty Images.

Rafael Marquez (L) is shown getting hit squarely by Toshiaki Nishioka’s left. Photo: Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

In the fifth round, Toshiaki Nishioka (R) is shown getting set to launch a straight left at Rafael Marquez. Photo: Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

With all matter of pomp and circumstance, Toshiaki Nishioka is shown being introduced to the crowd prior to fighting Rafael Marquez for the WBC super bantamweight title at the Marquee Ballroom in the MGM Grand Conference Center, October 1, 2011, in Las Vegas. Photo: Jeff Bottari/Getty Images

Carlos Linares (L) stopped Kevin Riding-In (R) in the first round of their bout. The onslaught came early after Riding-In was caught by a big left hook. From that point on, Linares was all over his case. Referee Russell Mora soon stepped in to call a halt to the bout.                                        Photo: Cris Cozzone

After just one round of action, Issac Hidalgo’s (R) corner had thrown in the towel. Jesse Magdaleno’s (L) rapid fire left and right power shots to the midsection were just too much. Photo credit: Chris Cozzone

Roman Gonzalez, the undefeated boxer from Nicaragua, introduced himself to American fight fans by leveling Omar Soto at just 36 seconds in the second round to win the WBA World Light Flyweight title. Photo credit: Chris Cozzone

Roman Gonzalez is shown celebrating after being lifted off his feet. Photo: Cris Cozzone

Undefeated Japanese welterweight Yoshihiro Kamegai (19-0) made his U.S. debut, scoring his 17th knockout over Hector Munoz. In his defense, Munoz (19-5-1) took the fight on just four days notice. The end came at 1:39 of the sixth round, when Kamegai started landing these big shots to Munoz’s head until the referee called a halt to the bout. Photo credit: Chris Cozzone

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