Tonight’s Fox Sports 1 at the Hollywood Palladium in Hollywood, California featured Austin Trout against Joey Hernandez in a 10 round junior middleweight bout.
Trout started off in a somewhat predictable manner. He made it a point to gain control without expending a ton of energy or working more than necessary. Trout was certainly not intending to take Hernandez out early in the fight, but he was doing great things with his jab and quickly found a workable range.
The performance was starting to look well-planned and meticulous. It was a systematic breakdown on the part of Trout, although it did appear uninspiring at times. Still, Trout was clearly the superior fighter and it was an impressive performance for the pace of the action.
Hernandez was finding it difficult to establish any real offense. He was desperate for Trout to give him an opening, but the Las Cruces, New Mexico born fighter refused to do anything undisciplined.
In the 4th round, Hernandez’s frustrations reached a new level as he picked up Trout and slammed him in a manner similar to that of an MMA fighter with a wrestling background. Sadly, the slam was the most impressive offensive maneuver Hernandez had displayed to that point – too bad he was utilizing the wrong discipline. Referee Jack Reiss, who refereed the co-feature of the night that ended in a technical draw after several head-butts caused an early halt to the bout, took a point away from Hernandez and gave him another warning.
When the action resumed, it was clear that Trout would retaliate in an intellectual manner as he used his boxing skills to outwork and outclass his opponent. He started mixing up the attack to the body. Trout even turned up the aggression from that point on, which is what Hernandez wanted all along.
Then, in the 6th, Trout finished the fight with a brutal attack to the body. He landed a hard right hand to the body from his southpaw stance, and then followed that up with two lefts to the body. Hernandez fell on the delayed reaction typical to body shots. He would not make it to his feet before the 10 count.
Trout earned the 6th round KO and made the statement he was hoping to make. There were those that criticized this fight and felt like Trout should’ve faced better competition. However, looking at Trout’s resume and realizing how tough he’s been matched over the past several years, you have to admit that he deserves a softer touch, at least as much as anyone else.
Still, it was an incredible performance because of the manner in which he stopped Hernandez. If Trout would’ve out muscled or out hustled his opponent then it would’ve seemed typical, but he did it in a very intellectual manner.
In the post-fight interview, Trout called out Julian “J-Rock” Williams, who has been calling Trout out for quite some time now. Hernandez represents a similar opponent between Trout and Williams. However, Williams won a 10 round unanimous decision against Hernandez.
After the fight, Trout made it a point to bring that to everyone’s attention and sent a message to J-Rock, claiming that he showed the young fighter how to beat Hernandez in an impressive fashion – accusing Williams of “playing” with Hernandez in their matchup.