Last night in the "ShoBox" main event on Showtime, WBO No-1 ranked junior welterweight contender Kendall Holt out boxed WBO No. 2 Mike Arnaoutis, at Bally's Atlantic City. Holt won a unanimous 12-round decision. Two judges scored the WBO title elimination bout 118-109. The other had it 117-110.
In the co-feature, unbeaten heavyweight Mike Marrone registered a majority eight-round decision over previously unbeaten Malachy Farrell. Marrone won by the scores of 78 -74-twice and 78-78.
Holt (22-1, 12 KOs), of Paterson, N.J., boxed and moved effectively in the one-sided bout. He demonstrated, albeit briefly, his superior speed and ability to take power shots from Arnaoutis (17-2-1, nine KOs). In the latter rounds, a desperate Arnaoutis stepped up his attack but it was too little too late. In the end, Arnaoutis simply did not attack enough.
In the twelfth, Holt unleashed a powerful right hand counter that knocked Arnaoutis to the canvas for the first time in his career.
"Credit Holt for fighting a very smart and tactical fight," said blow-by-blow announcer Nick Charles after the telecast. "He neutralized a talented southpaw and forced the typically aggressive Arnaoutis to be defensive for the majority of this fight. I would have liked to see, however, more of Holt's hand speed, power and movement because he has all of them. We didn't see all of Kendall Holt tonight.
"If he ends up facing [Ricardo] Torres [WBO junior welterweight champ], Holt has a very good shot. Torres will press the action and Holt has the speed and power to counter effectively. He could be our next "ShoBox" alum to win a world title."
If he is successful against Torres, Holt will become the sixteenth "ShoBox" fighter to have garnered a world title, joining a list that includes current champions Chad Dawson (light heavyweight), Juan Diaz (lightweight) and Ruslan Chagaev (heavyweight).
Marrone (18-0, 13 KOs), of Vero Beach, Fla., showed heart and determination to outpoint Farrell, of Chicago. Marrone is trained by the legendary Lou Duva and Gus Curren.
Charles and Steve Farhood called the action from ringside. The executive producer of "ShoBox" is Gordon Hall with Richard Gaughan producing.