3 More Rounds

Frampton wins U.S. debut over Gonzalez

Photos: Esther Lin / CBS

Photos: Esther Lin / CBS

Undefeated junior featherweight titlist Carl Frampton (21-0, 14 KOs) not only successfully defended his title on Saturday afternoon, but won his U.S. debut via unanimous decision against Alejandro Gonzalez Jr. (25-2-1, 15 KOs) in the main event of Premier Boxing Champions on CBS.

Frampton however, had to deal with some unexpected moments as he was floored by a stiff jab by Gonzalez early in the first round – mostly for being off balance – and then ate a flush right hand to the jaw before the end of the round.

The Irish star showed poise though, as he shook off the two knockdowns to outbox and out-will Gonzalez, who wore down as the fight got deeper and deeper.

Carl Frampton vs Alejandro Gonzalez jr

Gonzalez did has some good moments sprinkled in throughout the fight, as he continuously dug to the body but Frampton found his rhythm and despite being the shorter fighter, forced Gonzalez to have to lean in with his punches, diminishing his power in the process. Final scores were 116-108 twice and 115-109.

“I didn’t feel great in the first round. I got up from two flash knockdowns though and recovered well. The kid could punch very well,” said Frampton. “The ring canvas was very soft. I couldn’t get up on my toes and that’s my best attribute. I got up and showed courage. I came back and won most of the rounds and gave excitement.”

Frampton continued, “I wanted to win by knockout. It didn’t happen. I’m disappointed, but I’ll re-evaluate and move on; onwards and upwards. He hit me low so many times, but you’ve got to deal with that and carry on and that’s what I did.”

In the televised opener, Chris Arreola (36-4-1, 31 KOs) had to settle for a majority draw against Fred Kassi (18-3-1, 10 KOs) after 10 rounds.

Chris Arreola vs Fred Kassi

Arreola started off well by landing hard combinations on the inside, particularly with his left hooks to the body.  Kassi however, weathered some of the early storms and boxed well, behind a snappy jab and one-two combos from the outside.

Final scores were 96-94 and 95-95 twice.

“It was a good decision. It was just a tough fight,” said Arreola. “Fred came to fight and he’s a survivor. He held right, he moved right. He came here with a good strategy and he got a draw out of it.”

Arreola continued, “I know if I get Deontay (Wilder), I’d be in much better shape and a lot better prepared. Not that I wasn’t prepared for Kassi, but he came here with a good fight and was prepared.”

“I’m not happy with the decision,” said Kassi afterward. “I feel that I won every round of the fight. I showed tonight I was the better fighter. I take nothing away from Chris. I’ve been his friend for years. People don’t know me, so I just wanted to show the world I could do it. I proved that I belong in the heavyweight division. I showed my heart. I’ve been training hard for many years and I showed it tonight.”

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