Joel Castillo continues his quest at Newark Main Events ESPN2 Fight Card • Latino Sports

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Joel Castillo continues his quest at Newark Main Events ESPN2 Fight Card

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Newark, N.J. – Main Events the longtime boxing promotion that once had annual shows at an ice rink in a small community of Totowa New Jersey is back in business. Not that they ever left the business of fight promotions. When it comes to big time boxing they have been there, however they always had an old school theory of the club show that now has the advantage of national television exposure. 

They had a champion Arturo Gatti who fought and defended his title at an always sold out Convention Hall on the boardwalk in Atlantic City New Jersey. When Gatti retired it was time to move on. There was talk that Kathy Duva and Main Events were out of the fight business.

But Zab Judah the current IBF welterweight champion needed a promoter. He is Main Events property and a potential opponent for Manny Pacquiao. And on September 10th their heavyweight Tomasz Adamek will challenge Vitali Klitschko for his WBC heavyweight title.

So with a revival of sorts at an ice rink, the more modern Prudential Center’s AmeriHealth Pavillion in Newark New Jersey, the opportunity to showcase some new talent is ideal. The promotion, headed by Duva began their new Brick City Boxing Series Friday evening at the Pavillion televised on ESPN2 Friday Night Fights.

One historical perspective of Main Events has always been the ability to headline new talent. When they were a regular feature at the Totowa Ice World, a small ice rink down the block from the Main Event offices, fighters such as super featherweight Rocky Lockridge and light heavyweight Bobby Czyz developed into world class contenders and champions.

And they may have another future champion, Joel Castillo the undefeated 26-year old light heavyweight from the Dominican Republic and now residing in the Bronx, New York. He had been text messaging friends the past month about his fight Friday evening at the Pavilion, an adjacent arena that is situated by the Prudential Center, where Adamek has appeared often with a strong contingent of Polish fight fans.

He sells tickets and is one of the reasons why Main Events had Castillo as a part of the undercard that featured former junior welterweight champion Joel Julio facing Anges Adjaho.  The other reason, Castillo can fight and has a good track record. He had an outstanding amateur career going to the quarterfinals in the Pan American Games for the Dominican Republic.

But it has been a challenge since then. The professional boxing business is different, as Castillo quickly learned. His management team was not going according to plan and the result was inactivity. He now represents himself from booking fights to the ticket sales, but after his fourth round TKO over Jesse Orta (7-16-2), that kept Castillo undefeated at 9-0, there is every reason to believe Castillo may have the proper situation with Main Events as he had a successful start fighting as a light heavyweight.

“Good hand movement, good foot movement, good defense that is what you will see,” he said prior to his fight against the 29-year old Orta of Dallas Texas. The six-round fight did not go the distance because Castillo followed his game plan. He is an improved fighter after sustaining some setbacks that are obviously now in the past.

After a four-round majority decision in January of 2007 at the Paradise Theatre in the Bronx, there was that gap. Last year Castillo was victorious in his three fights, one by disqualification when his opponent Rashwan Myers was stopped because of roughhousing in the first round. 

“I put a lot of work in, 90 miles,” said Castillo about the running and training for his debut fight with Main Events. In the second round he floored Orta with a body shot and uppercut. Apparently it was not enough as Castillo wanted to do more work and impress the fans he convinced to come and see him fight.

Over $7,000 thousand dollars in tickets is what Castillo sold. They came from parts of the Bronx, Brooklyn and even New Jersey. Dominican friends and family who chanted his name and cheered every punch were satisfied when Castillo finally stopped Orta at 2:33 of the fourth round. “He took a few punches and I let loose,” said Castillo about the ending.

“It’s a travel to go from the Bronx to get to New Jersey to get another victory,” he said. “I felt comfortable fighting here and I like what they are doing here.” He sounds like a confident fighter that may have a new promoter and Duva may have another star on the horizon.

In the main event, televised on ESPN, Julio (37-4, 31 KO’s) once again fighting at 147 looked impressive and got an easy 10-round unanimous decision win over Adjaho (17-6,9 KO’s), a replacement for Antwone Smith who was pulled because of an elbow injury.

And former Olympic standout, welterweight Sadam Ali (13-0) of Brooklyn remained undefeated after a brief struggle in the eighth and final round scoring a unanimous decision.

e-mail Rich Mancuso: [email protected]

WGR

About William Gerena-Rochet

William Gerena Rochet, is the former Latino Sports baseball editor. He is a retired NYC teacher who divides his time living between New York City and San Juan, Puerto Rico. He started writing for Latino Sports during the inaugural World Baseball Classic when a series was played in Puerto Rico in 2006. On of his favorite moments was covering the 2006 MLB All-Star Game in Pittsburgh. During his time with Latino Sports, he covered several divisional and League championship series games and the 2009 World Series. He also covered the last game at the old Yankee stadium and the first game of the current one. In closing, William has covered multiples Latino Sports MVP Awards ceremonies and Spanish Language Press Conferences including the Jorge Posada retirement one. Now a contributor, Willie will occasionally cover the Yankees.