SAN DIEGO, September 7, 2013 – Looking as lean and ready as he ever has in the ring, Mexican-American heavyweight Chris Arreola made it a short night against Seth Mitchell.
From the opening bell, Arreola (36-3, 31 KOs) connected with power punches against the former college linebacker Mitchell (26-2-1, 19 KOs). He did serious damage with a straight right that caused Mitchell to try and hold on, resulting in Arreola dragging him halfway across the ring.
Arreola then put Mitchell on the canvas with a series of punches. After referee Jack Reiss administered the count to Mitchell, he told him “If you can’t defend yourself, I’m going to stop this fight.”
A matter of seconds later, that’s exactly what happened. Reiss stopped the fight at 2:26 of round one. It was over before most fans finished their first drink.
An elated Arreola dropped to the canvas and busted out some pushups to demonstrate how fit he was.
Although the fans only got one round of action in the main event, they were also treated to the post-fight interview in the ring from the always entertaining and outspoken Arreola.
After Arreola thanked God, he then thanked himself “for working hard. I was the one in there … I worked out for this fight.”
With his daughter at his side, Arreola told Showtime’s Jim Gray he took Mitchell seriously as an opponent. “I respect Seth for his power. He hits hard. He hit me a few times, I was like Holy S***!”
Arreola admitted that his biggest challenge is himself. “I’m my only downfall man. I like doing everything the hard way. I came in here with a mission. My mission was to win. I want the world title. That’s what I’m looking for.”
Arreola said he’d return to Phoenix and continue to work hard, but said no one should give him a car key or he might leave. But for this fight, he maintained his discipline, put in the training and it paid off. “I wanted to do it for all my Mexican people, that I’m a real mother-effer,” said Arreola.
Mitchell said after the fight, “I got caught. I’m very disappointed right now. I was confident in my ability to win this fight … my heart just hurts right now. I have to go back to the drawing board.”
Mitchell told Showtime’s Jim Gray he was upset with the stoppage, but he isn’t the referee. “He did what he’s supposed to do, he did his job. I’m not mad at him, said Mitchell.
So what’s ahead for Arreola? Arreola said he’d like a rematch with Bermane Stiverne, who won a decision over Arreola and broke his nose in May. But many fans would like to see Arreola in the ring against American heavyweight knockout artist Deontay Wilder, the last American man to win an Olympic boxing medal. Why not both?
Mitchell gave fuel to the many doubters who aren’t sure he’s anything more than a good athlete who has come to boxing too late to fully develop his skills. He can punch but he can’t take a punch, and he wouldn’t be the first boxer whose career stalled because of it. Mitchell has to assess his future and be realistic about what he can achieve.
Still, Mitchell has nothing to be ashamed about for working hard enough after his original athletic ambitions got detailed to get this far. Mitchell brings class and a good attitude to boxing.
The co-main event may be the exit of a once great champion. Rafael Marquez (41-9- 37 KOs) had the will but not the skills at age 38, losing by TKO in the ninth round to Efrain Esquivias (17-2-1, 10 KOs).
It was an entertaining fight with a lot of action, but Marquez couldn’t do any damage to the younger, stronger fighter. Esquivias simply wore out the former champion, working to the body. He landed a clean right hand that knocked down Marquez in the ninth round. Although Marquez got up, referee Raul Caiz, Jr. stopped the fight and it was the right thing to do. There was no point to Marquez taking any more punishment.
After the fight, Esquivias told Marquez on Showtime how much he admired him and how honored he was to fight the great champion. Marquez should call it a career and enjoy his induction into the Boxing Hall of Fame in the near future.
Gayle Lynn Falkenthal, APR, is President/Owner of the Falcon Valley Group in San Diego, California. She covers the Sweet Science for Communities, along with other news in the sports world. Read Ringside Seat in Communities at Washington Times. Follow Gayle on Facebook and on Twitter @PRProSanDiego.
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Copyright © 2013 by Falcon Valley Group
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