Top American heavyweight prospect Mitchell remains undefeated

May 16, 2011 6:46 AM

In what was billed as a night of the unbeaten stars on Showtime’s series, Shobox :The Next Generation, the crowd at Primm’s Buffalo Bill’s Hotel and Casino and viewers who tuned in witnessed both undefeated prospects stay that way.

In the first of two televised fights, former Michigan State linebacker and one of the top American heavyweight prospects at 21-0-1 (15 KO’s), Seth "Mayhem" Mitchell got his 22nd professional victory with a 1st round KO of Evans Quinn.

The scheduled 10 round fight was expected to be a step up in competition for Mitchell who had very limited amateur career. He’s 28 years old and didn’t start boxing until the age of 25, but at 245 lb, he’s physically strong and has very good athletic ability.

Unfortunately, we didn’t get the chance to see much in terms of technical skills and movement because Mitchell went right at the Nicaraguan fighter, Quinn (20-5-1 / 18 KO’s) and landed a couple of big shots against the ropes

Quinn dropped down to one knee and didn’t want to continue fighting, instead opting to be counted out.

Then in the main-event, "Sugar" Raymundo Beltran (24-4 / 16 KO’s) and Sharif "The Lion" Bogere (19-0 / 12 KO’s) battled it out for the vacant NABO lightweight title.

Beltran is trained by former US Olympian Pepe Reilly and fights out of Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Gym, who was also on hand as the chief second. Beltran came in as the USBA lightweight champion but the 11 year pro has been relatively inactive of late. He helped Manny Pacquiao prepare for Marquez, Barrera, Hatton, Margarito, Clottey, just to name a few and definitely came prepared to fight.

Bogere was born in Uganda and is a three year pro who is only 22 years of age. His trainer Kenny Adams claims to have had trouble finding opponents who are willing to step in against his fighter.

Oddsmakers installed Shariff a -600 favorite to win the title and set the over/under at only 6½ rounds.

It didn’t take long for the excitement to mount as Bogere has one of the most interesting "ring walks" in boxing. He is carried to the ring while sitting inside of a cage wearing a real lion’s head and skin. A live flamingo dancer sings and leads the entourage as the sound of lions roaring fills the arena.

Once the bell rang, it became obvious that fans were in for a fight. Bogere initiated the exchanges early on and Beltran suffered a cut over his left eye by the end of the 2nd round. But by the end of the 3rd, the underdog was forcing Bogere backwards and kept him up against the ropes and also suffered a cut.

The middle rounds showcased some excellent exchanges by both fighters and some high energy boxing to the delight of the fans who were beginning to cheer for Freddie Roach’s fighter, Beltran. It was his ability to counter and apply pressure to Bogere’s body that made him a live dog.

Both guys came to fight and they boxed, brawled, and even wrestled. Then in the 8th round, what appeared to be a body shot against the ropes that dropped Bogere was ruled a slip and the favorite realized he needed to keep it in the middle of the ring.

That’s exactly what he was able to do over the final 2 rounds and that’s where he was definitely at his best. Beltan’s cut reopened in the 9th round and he had trouble working his jab in an attempt to keep Bogere off him.

In the end, two judges scored the bout 96-94 and the third judge scored it 97-93...all three for Shariff Bogere who won a unanimous decision and was crowned the NABO lightweight champion. Many ringside observers agreed it was a very tough fight to score and that was evident by the crowd who booed when the decision was read.

Personally, I felt a draw would have been fair as neither fighter dominated and an argument could have been made for both. But the undefeated Bogere stayed perfect as did Mitchell and it was a great night of boxing, live from Buffalo Bill’s in Primm, where there wasn’t a bad seat in the house.

(Vegas-Runner is a professional sports bettor and handicapper in Las Vegas. Featured on CNBC and ESPN you can follow VR on Twitter (@Vegasrunner) and Pregame.com.)