It was 80 degrees in New York City on Wednesday, but the real heat was at the B.B. King Blues Club & Grill, where a sold out crowd watched DiBella Entertainment showcase some of the best young talent in boxing. In the main event, 2004 Dominican Republic Olympian Argenis Mendez scored a fifth round knockout over hardnosed veteran Anthony Napunyi in a super featherweight contest. Mendez (14-1, 9 KOs) systematically broke down Napunyi (14-7, 7 KOs) with impressive hand speed and impeccable accuracy until referee Michael Ortega was forced to step in and halt the proceedings. It was a wildly successful first outing under the DiBella Entertainment promotional banner for Mendez.
“Argenis Mendez showed all the skills necessary to become one of the best super featherweights in the world,” said Lou DiBella, president of DiBella Entertainment. “He has all the tools you would expect out of a former Olympian and all the polish of a 15-fight veteran. The sky is the limit for his future.”
The undercard was filled with other young prospects doing their best to impress the New York crowd. Joelo Torres (11-0-1, 7 KOs), originally scheduled to be in the main event before his opponent fell out, scored a first round stoppage over Washington Hago (5-4, 3 KOs). Unbeaten heavyweight Tor Hamer (8-0, 6 KOs) suffered the first knockdown of his career, but impressed the rest of the way to win a six round decision vs. Theron Johnson (3-2). One of the newest members of the DBE stable, featherweight Luis Del Valle (6-0, 4 KOs) impressively stopped Robert Guillen(4-4-2) in the fifth round. Welterweight Gabriel Bracero(6-0), trained by Tommy Gallagher won the sixth straight decision to begin his career by dominating Melchor Guillen (1-3). Featherweight Eddie Irizarry (7-1, 2 KOs) dropped Felix Flores (14-11-1, 11 KOs) twice en route to winning a six round decision. In the night’s opening bout, exciting young heavyweight Ahmed Samir (7-0, 1 KO) outworked Clarence Tillman (2-3, 2 KOs) to win a four round decision.
For all the fighters who came out on top, the real winners last night were the nearly 600 fans who packed the B.B. King Blues Club for the event, selling out the venue, and making for a tremendous atmosphere. From a crowd perspective, it was one of the most exciting events in the history of the Broadway Boxing series.
“The crowd is what made this night so special,” said DiBella. “To see all these people come out, pack this great venue, and enjoy a night at the fights is what Broadway Boxing is all about.”
Argenis Mendez TKO5 Anthony Napunyi
Tor Hamer UD6 Theron Johnson
Joelo Torres TKO1 Washington Hago
Gabriel Bracero UD4 Melchor Guillen
Eddie Irizarry UD6 Felix Flores
Ahmed Samir UD4 Clarence Tillman