This summer has been a slow one as far as boxing shows in the Rio Grande Valley.
While the amateurs have had a few South Texas tournaments, it’s a little unusual that the most recent Valley show of note featuring pro boxers took place way back in April.
Valley fighters such as Brownsville featherweight Johnny Tapia (7-1, two knockouts) have been trying to stay in boxing shape and be ready when an opportunity to get back into the ring presents itself.
Other Valley boxers who have been seeking fights recently include Harlingen cruiserweight Raphael “Machine Gun” Murphy, Brownsville lightweight Eleazar “El Muneco” Hinojosa, Weslaco super flyweight Pablo “El Finito” Ramirez and Mercedes super featherweight Josette “No Joke” Rodriguez. Actually, pretty much all of the Valley’s pro boxers have been waiting for their next fight to happen. They can only hope something comes through before too long.
Just a few of them have fought recently or are scheduled to fight soon.
Weslaco super welterweight Roberto “La Amenaza” Garcia (40-3, 24 KOs) won an eight-round unanimous decision May 13 in Cancun, Mexico, and may fight there again on July 29. It was Garcia’s 12th straight victory.
Also, Weslaco brothers Omar “Panterita” Figueroa Jr. (26-0-1, 19 KOs) and Brandon Lee “Heartbreaker” Figueroa (12-0, nine KOs) are lined up to fight July 15 on the Premier Boxing Champions show in Uniondale, New York. “Panterita’s” main-event bout is scheduled to be televised live on Fox Sports and Fox Deportes. Brandon’s bout might be televised, too.
Yet another fighter, super lightweight Ricardo “Tato” Lamas (10-1-1, nine KOs) of Brownsville/Matamoros, is taking some time off because his wife just had a baby girl.
“He’s not in training right now for boxing, he’s in training to be a daddy,” said Jose Reyes, Lamas’ manager.
Tapia said it’s much easier to focus on training when a boxer has a scheduled fight coming up.
“It’s kind of like having an imaginary finish line (to strive for when there’s no specific fight ahead of you),” Tapia said. “It’s very important and it’s a must for any fighter who wants to succeed (to always be training at some level).”
Robert Campos, Tapia’s trainer, said, “You’ve got to keep ‘em busy (and ready for that next bout).”
Tapia last fought Nov. 12, 2016, in Pharr when he won a four-rounder on a unanimous decision.
There appears to be one or two pro fight shows in the works for the Valley, possibly in August. Tapia said he hopes to return to the ring at that time.
“I want to promise everybody that I’ll be more active (in the coming months) and have a strong finish to the year,” Tapia said. “I look forward to fighting again soon and resetting my career.”
Triple A Promotions is set to present a combined boxing/mixed martial arts show on July 28 in Laredo.
The STFC 43 mixed martial arts cage fighting show is scheduled Aug. 25 at McAllen Convention Center. Pro fighters weighing 155, 140 and 135 pounds, preferably from Texas, are sought for the show. For more information, call (956) 414-8698 or (956) 562-2622.