Aaron Pryor, Jr. Stops Willis Lockett in 6 in Philly
By Ken Hissner (June 14, 2010) Doghouse Boxing  
Aaron Pryor, Jr., 13-2 (11), of Cincinnati, at 6:04 used a rapid fire jab that kept 5:09 Willis Lockett, 12-10-5 (5), of Tacoma Park, MD, at bay throughout six rounds of the scheduled eight super middleweight match Sunday afternoon in Philly. Lockett’s wild overhand rights would glance off the side of Pryor’s head on occasion to keep it interesting. Lockett’s corner decided not to allow their fighter to come out for the 7th round.

Boxing returned to the state of Pennsylvania on a Sunday for the first time in this writer’s memory since May of 1976 when Roberto Duran defended his WBA lightweight title against Lou Bizzarro in Erie. Joey Eye Boxing Promotions in Cooperation with Gulfstream Group, Sports and Entertainment Promotions presented “Fight Day on the Delaware” with four bouts. Matchmaker Don Elbaum proclaimed “this will be one of the shortest but best cards”. He was right for when it was over the fans were looking for more action. The show was held at the Hyatt Regency Penns Landing on Delaware Avenue.

With his Hall of Fame father in the corner, Pryor, Jr. was able to use his reach to keep Lockett from coming inside most of the way. At the end of the 2nd round there was a clash of heads but neither boxer were cut. Referee Benji Esteves, Jr. checked each corner between rounds. In the 3rd round Lockett landed an overhand right that stunned Pryor who recovered quickly. Pryor rocked Lockett just before the bell ending the round. In the 5th round Pryor landed uppercuts as Lockett was trying to bore his way in rocking the much shorter boxer having him holding on at the bell. “I knew it was just a matter of time at that point,” said Pryor, Jr.

In the 6th round a chopping right from Pryor, Jr. almost put Lockett to the canvas. The referee took a point away from Lockett for excessive holding in that round. At the bell the referee followed Lockett to his corner and was told by his cornermen the fight was over.

The ring itself was on the small side due to the size of the room. It definitely favored the puncher. In the opening 4 rounder between cruiserweights Patrick “Paddy” Farrell, 5-1 (3), of Jersey City would rush Kamarah Pasley, 5-4 (2), of nearby Ridley Park, and walked right into a straight left from the southpaw and took an 8 count from referee Eddie Claudio. Farrell seemed to have an edge up until that point. Pasley was a mover and didn’t have a lot of room to stay away from Farrell but made the most of it. In the 2nd round Pasley’s jab’s and straight left’s had Farrell’s nose bleeding but he still seemed to get the best of the infighting as Pasley would try to tie him up. The 3rd round was close with Pasley landing uppercuts as Farrell got inside and worked the body. The 4th round was similar but Pasley would win this round showing more offense than in the middle rounds. The decision went to Pasley by scores from Rich Hopkins, Jr. at 39-36 while Steve Weisfeld and Bernard Bruni agreed with this writer at 38-37.

Sweden’s Andreas Gustafsson, 5-0 (3), made his second appearance this year in Philadelphia while his opponent Pedro Martinez, 5-3 (3), was returning to the ring after a one year absence. Martinez was noticeably heavy at 233 while normally a cruiserweight. Gustafsson only a pound heavier would switch to southpaw in the 1st round in this all offensive slugfest. Martinez landed his share of punches which seemed to have little effect on Gustafsson. It was said the Swede had a win over current WBA champion David Haye in the amateurs. In the 2nd round coming off the ropes Gustafsson landed a right hand that dropped Martinez. Referee Esteves administered the 8 count and Martinez did not look steady when he got to his feet. Gustafsson rushed in and landed a combination that dropped Martinez again as the referee waved it off at 1:05 of the round. It was the first time Martinez had been stopped.

In the fight of the day southpaw Julio Cesar Matthews, 10-0 (5), of Reading, went to war with Garrett Wilson, 7-5 (2), of Philadelphia in a cruiserweight 6 rounder. A straight left stunned Wilson while a follow up right hook and uppercut dropped him. Referee Claudio administered the 8 count and Wilson went right back into the thick of things mixing it up before the bell. In the 2nd round Wilson seemed to come back strong before catching several right hooks from Matthews prior to the bell. Seemed Wilson did enough to win the round.

In the 3rd round a short right from Matthews seemed to hurt Wilson who didn’t seem to have the answer for that punch. In the 4th round with blood coming from his nose Wilson would land overhand rights to keep Matthews aware of his power but Matthews out landed Wilson. The 5th round had the fans on their feet as both fighters went on the attack. Matthews seemed to be winning the 6th and final round before Wilson rocked him with right hands just prior to the bell. The fans seemed mixed on the result. Hopkins scored it 58-55 as did this writer while Weisfeld and Bruni scored it 57-56 all for Matthews. “I wanted to go to the body more but I had to be careful with his overhand rights. I haven’t fought in 6 months so I had to pace myself,” said Matthews. It was Wilson’s third fight of the year. His last 6 fights have been on the road for this road warrior who comes to fight. Matthews at 40 had a 10 year period of inactivity before returning to action in 2008 and has a nice fan base. It was a very entertaining show.

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