Friday, March 24, 2023  |


Arreola out-points Quezada on FNF


Chris Arreola got back on the winning track with a lopsided decision victory over Manuel Quezada in the 12-round main event of an ESPN2-televised card from Ontario, Calif., on Friday, but he didn’t do much to change his image as an underachieving heavyweight contender.

Arreola (29-2, 26 knockouts) beat Quezada by scores of 118-107 (twice) and 117-108, dropping the fringe contender three times en route, but he looked like the loser after the brisk and busy 12 rounder.

The 29-year-old L.A. native’s face was almost as bloody and lumpy as it was following his losses to Vitali Klitschko and Tomasz Adamek, who out pointed him in April. Arreola admits to skipping out on at least half of his training camp for the Adamek fight.

He told the media that he’s finally getting serious about his career prior to Friday’s fight but he weighed in six pounds heavier (256 pounds) for Quezada than he had for Adamek.

For five rounds he used his weight to his advantage, shoving the 28-pounds lighter Quezada (29-6, 18 KOs) into the ropes behind a busy jab, hooks and overhand rights. However, Arreola slowed down in rounds six, seven and eight. And though Quezada, a 32-year-old former kick boxer from Wasco, Calif., fought like he was sleep walking he still managed to bust up Arreola’s face.

In the ninth round, Arreola finally shifted gears, landing hard combinations from angles. A right to the temple and a left uppercut put Quezada down midway through the round. Three short, swatting hooks put Quezada down again before the bell. It appeared that Arreola was going to score a late stoppage, probably in the 10th round, but he either consciously took his foot off the gas pedal (perhaps to spare his sore hands, which were hurt in his fight with Adamek and apparently re-injured during this fight) or simply punched himself out.

Whatever the case, Arreola let his opponent back into the fight. Quezada landed quality punches in rounds 10 and 11. In the 12th, Arreola proved once again that he has heart regardless of his weight or conditioning by swarming all over Quezada until he put him down for the third time in the bout, but it was still an underwhelming performance.

Arreola acknowledged this during his post-fight interview with ESPN’s Jaime Mota.

“It was about a C-,” Arreola said when asked to evaluate his performance.

The potential is still there. Arreola threw 988 punches, the third highest output from a heavyweight over 12 rounds ever recorded by CompuBox. He exhibited a nice jab in the early rounds and solid combinations late in the fight.

Only Arreola knows how good he could be if he put in the work to fight in the 240-pound range.

In the co-featured bout of the Friday Night Fights broadcast, Riverside, California’s Josesito Lopez outworked and Colorado’s Marvin Cordova to a unanimous eight-round decision in fast-paced, competitive junior welterweight fight.

Lopez (27-3, 15 KOs), who won by scores of 78-73 (twice) and 77-74, pressed the action with a consistent jab and body attack in the first four rounds of the bout, while Cordova (21-2-1, 11 KOs) was content to wait for counter-punch opportunities. However, Cordova stepped up his activity late in the fifth round. Fighting with a battered face, Cordova landed a left to the body that doubled Lopez over in the sixth and took over the final two rounds of the bout by landing the harder, more accurate punches.

Cordova doubled Lopez over with another body shot in the eighth round but it was below the belt, prompting referee Pat Russell to dock the Coloradan a point.