Lateef Kayode Caps Off Exciting Night Of Boxing With Dominant Win

June 11, 2011

Lateef Kayode throws a left jab at Matt Godfrey / Daily Sports Herald

Chumash Nation -- Relying on a powerful right hand and superior athleticism, rising cruiserweight contender Lateef "Power" Kayode earned a unanimous decision victory Friday night over Matt "Too Smooth" Godfrey in the main event of a thrilling night of boxing at the Chumash Casino.

Kayode, known for his one-punch knockout power, did not waste any time putting that power on display, as he dropped Godfrey at the end of Round One with a thunderous right hand.

In fact, Kayode would floor his opponent on two other occasions during the fight -- first from another big right in Round Five that hurt Godfrey, and then later with a left hook to the body in Round Nine.

However, the veteran Godfrey did have his moments.  In Round Four he stalled the Kayode onslaught by connecting with a big left that had Kayode retreating for the first time in the fight.

Later in Round Six, Godfrey landed some nice lefts and combinations, after Kayode essentially took the round off to recuperate from his extensive flurries in the prior round.

With the exception of those two rounds, Kayode essentially controlled the remainder of the action.  He calmly stalked Godfrey throughout the fight, landing jabs and big rights, while throwing everything with conviction. He also was the busier guy in the ring, as Godfrey's punch volume decreased as the fight continued.

Trainer Freddie Roach noted that Kayode "in his last fight, was following his opponent and not cutting the ring off. Tonight he cut the ring off."

Although Kayode was unable to knockout his opponent, he dominated on the scorecards, winning by scores of 98-90, 97-90, and 98-89.  The Daily Sports Herald also scored the fight 98-89.

Overall, it was another important step forward in the growing career of the Kayode (17-0, 14 KOs).  Not only did he bag another ten rounds under his belt, but he also did it against an experienced southpaw with good defensive skills.

Matt Godfrey lands a left on Lateef Kayode / Daily Sports Herald

Roach stated that Godfrey's southpaw stance did "throw a wrench" into his fighter's performance, but that they planned to counter that stance with the "right hand to the body and it worked very well."

He went on to state that Kayode would have been more effective had he also implemented more "left hooks" and "three-punch combinations rather than two-punch combinations."

When asked where Kayode needs to improve, Roach offered this:
When he has guys on the ropes, he stands up a little bit tall when he reaches for a body shot and keeps himself a little bit too open for too long a period.  Where if he crouches down and bends his knees and digs that shot a bit, it makes it more of a hard body shot than just an arm punch.

Super Bantamweight Co-Feature: Chris Avalos Defeats Khabir Suleymanov

In an electrifying bout, Chris Avalos (19-1, 15 KOs) handed Russia's Khabir Suleymanov (11-1, 5 KOs) his first loss by unanimous decision thanks to a solid jab and better boxing skills.

Although Suleymanov appeared to be the faster man in the ring, he also was the more inexperienced fighter, despite being 9 years older than Avalos. Suleymanov, 30, has virtually no amateur background, and did not start boxing regularly until age 24.

That inexperience showed up immediately in Round One, as Suleymanov failed to follow the "protect yourself at all  times" rule, and got nailed with a left hook after the clinch.  The punch put an off-balance Suleymanov on the canvas, landing him in an early hole on the scorecards.

Suleymanov would later get tagged in this identical manner on at least two other occasions during the fight.

"From your first pro fight to now, if the ref says 'Break', you go out with your hands up, you don't put your hands down," Avalos said.  "That's just boxing. On the break, he would put his hands down, so I would catch him going out."

In a bizarre third round, Suleymanov again was dropped, but then immediately got up and continued to fight.  This prompted Avalos to respond and punch back, as referee Lou Moret desperately attempted to get Avalos to a neutral corner following the knockdown.  When Moret finally restored order, he deducted one point from Avalos for continuing to fight.

"I had seen him go down, but I didn't notice he fell," Avalos said.  "I thought he was just going under a punch. So I just kept fighting, like what a boxer normally would do.  I didn't know I dropped him."

Suleymanov was game and did have his moments -- darting in and out of range, and catching Avalos with clean left hooks and right hand leads at varying times during the bout.

However, Suleymanov's lack of experience also proved to be a detriment to his offense. Rather than set up his power shots with a consistent jab, Suleymanov often relied exclusively on potshots.  Thus, even on those occasions when he landed cleanly, there were no other punches in combination to follow up those lone shots.

That one-punch approach worked to Avalos' benefit, as he was able to jab and hook his way to a win.  Avalos would eventually prevail on all three judges scorecards, with scores of 95-92, 97-90, and 96-91.

Avalos stated that he won by sticking to his gameplan of doing "more boxing than brawling," and by "jabbing and keeping him on the outside."

Lightweight Co-Feature: Art Hovhannisyan Drops Archie Ray Marquez 

In the most exciting fight of the evening, undefeated prospects Archie Ray Marquez (12-1, 8 KOs) and Art Hovhannisyan (14-0, 8 KOs) clashed in an all-action brawl in which Hovhannisyan won behind his better handspeed and well-timed counterpunching.

Marquez confidently pressured Hovhannisyan throughout the fight, as he appeared willing to take a punch in order to get in a shot of his own.  This approach left Marquez vulnerable to a variety of punches, and sure enough, he was dropped to the canvas in the first and third rounds.

Later in Round Five, Hovhannisyan landed a beautiful right hand lead on Marquez's chin that flattened him once more and nearly ended the fight.

Marquez bravely continued to fight after each knockdown, and he landed numerous clean shots of his own on Hovhannisyan. Unfortunately for Marquez, Hovhannisyan more or less was able to walk through his shots.

More importantly, Hovhannisyan was able to use Marquez's aggressiveness against him, luring him into striking distance and then catching him with fast, crisp power shots.

In Round Six, Hovhannisyan landed a powerful right-left combination that put Marquez flat on his back, prompting referee Dan Stell to immediately stop the bout.

By Mike Elliott
Staff Editor for

Photographs by Stella Gutierrez
Contributing Photographer for

No comments:

Post a Comment

We encourage all intelligent, passionate comments. Please refrain from any ignorant, racist, or offensive rants.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...