Ruslan Provodnikov always puts on a good show when he’s booked on ESPN, but his appearances are getting shorter and shorter.
The Russian slugger dispatched of Jose Reynoso in the second round of this week’s Friday Night Fights offering from Corona, Calif. Optimists suggested that the tricky southpaw Reynoso would be able to evade his hard-charging foe, but such was just not the case.
Late in the first round, Provodnikov (22-1, 15 knockouts) ate a pair of left hands while backing up, but it only seemed to annoy him, as he picked up the tempo for the second round.
Reynoso (16-4-1, 3 KOs) voluntarily gave ground to his opponent, as if he wanted no part of his power. Against his wishes he felt it anyway, as Provodnikov doubled up with a right hand to the body and then upstairs, which put him in full-on retreat mode. Ultimately, he found himself along the ropes, where Provodnikov landed an overhand right that put him on the canvas for good.
The knockout victory makes it three in a row for the 28-year old junior welterweight on Friday Night Fights, following an eighth round stoppage of Ivan Popoca, and a sixth round starching of David Torres.
In the night’s co-feature, junior featherweight Christopher Martin scored a surprising sixth-round TKO over Roberto Castaneda. Martin (24-2-3, 7 KOs), not known for tremendous power, showed that proper technique and well-placed punches can compensate for a lack of brute strength, particularly when thrown to the body.
Martin wounded his prey for the first time in the fifth round. With Castaneda backing him into the ropes, Martin simply took a step to his left, which opened a lane to turn his shoulder and load up a right uppercut that sent Castaneda, 21, of Mexicali, Mexico, crumpling to the canvas.
Castaneda (25-2, 15 KOs) made it out of the round, but was breathing heavily in his corner. As it turned out, he was tenderized, and a Martin left hook to the body on the inside finished the job. The Mexican did rise to his feet before the count of 10, however the referee waved the bout off nonetheless.
With the win, Martin, 25, San Diego, Calif. surely keeps his name in the hat for future television appearances, of which he has made several lately on ESPN and Showtime.
Novice super featherweights Aaron Acevedo and Danny Martinez fought to a majority draw to open the television broadcast. Scores were 38-38, 38-38 and 39-27 for Martinez. The fight was originally slated as a swing bout, but due to an early start to the telecast, was bumped ahead of the two advertised contests.
Martinez, making his professional debut, withstood constant flurries from Acevedo along the ropes, and landed enough power shots in the time the action spilled to the middle of the ring to remain in the fight on the judge’s scorecards.
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