The first 10-round affair for Frankie Gomez wasn’t always pretty, but it wasn’t particularly difficult, either.
“Pitbull” soundly outpointed Lanard Lane in the main event of Golden Boy Live from the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas. Scores were 100-90 across the board.
Though it was the longest scheduled bout of his career, the junior welterweight prospect came charging out of the gate, sending Lane off balance with a double left hook toward the end of the first round. Lane tried to match the intensity, but when he did commit to punches, Gomez would flurry and outshine him.
It was a pattern that would play itself out the remainder of the fight.
Gomez (15-0, 11 knockouts) seemed to tire after the fourth round, but Lane was very infrequent in his attempts to attack. As a result, the former U.S. amateur champion was able to pace himself and simply produce more spots than his opponent.
“I’ve never been past eight rounds, so I was saving some of my energy for the later rounds, but he never did,” said Gomez. “He gave me a good fight and I was happy to get some rounds in.”
There was an odd sequence in the fifth round, when Lane turned his back to Gomez out of a clinch. Gomez stepped around and hit him with a right hand in the side of the head. The referee didn’t admonish him, so he continued the attack and it appeared he might knock Lane down. Lane (13-3, 8 KOs) regained his composure quickly, though, and made it to the end of the round unscathed.
There were very few standout moments aside from that, but Gomez’s trainer Freddie Roach felt it was a solid, controlled outing.
“I was really happy with Frankie,” said Roach. “He got some rounds in, which he needed, and he fought a smart fight.”
The televised co-feature of the evening saw Mickey Bey Jr. return to the ring after a fifteen-month layoff against Robert Rodriguez. Bey announced that return in a big way, scoring a nasty knockout victory in the third round.
Bey, 30, of Cleveland, has always been considered a slick, enigmatic boxer, however he came out committed to throwing hard shots from the opening bell. His punch of choice in the opening frame was a sweeping right hand to the body, which landed with effect audible to the live audience.
Throughout the second round, trainer Floyd Mayweather Sr. could be heard telling Bey that Rodriguez would run into that right hand all night long. Perhaps Rodriguez (7-3, 3 KOs) overhead him and forgot about the left hand, as Bey walked in and loaded up a left hook without much disguise whatsoever. The shot sent Rodriguez spiralling to the canvas, and the fight appeared to be over.
Miraculously, the Greenley, Colo., native made it to his feet, but the very next punch was the same one, and produced the same result.
“Every time I jabbed, he feinted. When I jabbed, he feinted and that’s when I caught him. He fell hard though, so I hope he’s okay,” said Bey (19-0, 10 KOs).
Bey recently signed with Mayweather Promotions after years of contract disputes with Top Rank that stunted a promising career.
Now at an advanced age and fighting at lightweight, he claims he’s in the right position to realize his potential.
“I feel great. It’s awesome to be back in the ring with Mayweather Promotions. I’m going to get sharper with every fight, but I stay in the gym so there wasn’t any ring rust,” said Bey. “I’m ready for anyone. But I like the Ricky Burns fight. I’m ready for a world title.”
The first bout of the evening ended just as conclusively, lasting only until 1:47 of the first round, as notable super middleweight prospect Badou Jack stopped overmatched Jonuel Tapia. Jack used his left hand almost exclusively, mixing hard jabs with hooks to the body, one of which buckled Tapia within the first 30 seconds of the contest.
Soon after, Tapia hit the canvas following another hook, but made the count. Unfortunately, the lefts kept coming, and the Puerto Rican remained kneeling for the count of 10.
Jack, 29, of Stockholm, Sweden, was fighting for the first time since May of 2012. He was previously promoted by Lou DiBella and Warriors Boxing, but is now under the Mayweather Promotions banner.
Follow Corey Erdman on Twitter @corey_erdman