Results from Fight Night in America at San Manuel Casino

With Angel Estrada (5-0-0, 2 KO’s) of San Diego scheduled to fight Alfredo Rivera (0-7) of Los Angeles up north in the San Bernardino area, a contingent of the Angel Estrada fan club hired a bus to travel the 98.7 miles to see their local hero fight live at the San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino in Highland, CA. Even though Estrada has had only five professional bouts, his remarkable accomplishments in the USA Amateur competitions are widely known.

Both Angel Estrada (left) and Alfredo Rivera (right) are getting ready to unload on each other.

On paper the fight was supposed to be just another mismatch – the undefeated


fighter, Estrada, in the red corner going up against a journeyman fighter, Rivera, assigned to the blue corner. As the directors often bellyache in Hollywood, “Didn’t anyone give Mr. Rivera a copy of the script!”

The super-lightweight bout featuring nonstop action went the full four rounds. In the first round Rivera came on like gangbusters and landed more of the cleaner shots. As the round closed you could see Estrada was agitated by Rivera’s performance and he had a cut over his right eye from an accidental clash of the heads.

Estrada came back strong in the second to even things up. While both fighters were quite wild with their punches, they continued to connect with devastating blows. It was one of those fights that had the fans going, Ooh! and Aah! throughout.

As one colleague pointed out, these gentleman left it all in the ring. At the end of this slugfest the judges scored the very close bout 38-38, and 39-37 twice for the winner by majority decision, Alfredo Rivera.

The James Toney of old

In the main event of the evening, the promoter, Empire Sports and Entertainment, was hoping to resurrect the career of James “Lights Out” Toney who is now 42 years of age. Toney (72-6-3, 44 KO’s) faced Damon “Dangerous” Reed (45-14-0, 32 KO’s) in a fight for the IBA Heavyweight title. When hearing the announcer say, “IBA heavyweight title” I wondered if the IBA had anything to do with the casino and could the initials stand for Indian Bingo for the Aged. Anyway, Toney, who looks like he could use a large championship girdle to hide his girth, dominated his opponent in every round to win the IBA belt with scores of 100-90, 100-90, and 100-90.

The James "Lights Out" Toney of 2011

You would think on the long, three hour bus ride back to San Diego, that things would be subdued, but they weren’t. The packed bus with Angel Estrada, his pop, and plenty of beer on board was as loud and boisterous as the buses you see of school kids on their way to Disneyland.

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