On April 16th, 1968, Curtis Cokes defended his undisputed Welterweight championship with a 5th round stoppage of Willie Ludick. Held at the Memorial Auditorium in Dallas, TX, this marked the last time a prizefighter from Dallas defended his world title in Dallas. This Saturday, June 16th, a mere fifty years and two months removed from that date, Errol Spence, Jr. will end his cities pugilistic drought, defending his IBF 147-pound crown against mandatory challenger, Carlos Ocampo.
This long awaited, highly anticipated homecoming will be held inside the Ford Center, on the campus of the Dallas Cowboys World Headquarters and practice facility in Frisco, Texas. Premier Boxing Champions will present the affair, televised live on SHOWTIME (8PM CST).
Born in Long Island, NY, Errol Spence’s (23-0, 20 KO’s) earliest childhood memories consist of life on the Southern tip of Dallas, TX; it’s his home. It’s also where he first developed an interest in the sport, watching Lennox Lewis fights at the local barbershop. It’s where Spence learned how to box and discerned he was pretty good at it, garnered his nickname “The Truth”, where he was based as he became the best amateur in the country at 152 pounds, a 2012 United States Olympian and just the third man from “Big D” to ever win a world championship, joining Cokes and Quincy Taylor.
Spence seems to be well on his way to fistic superstardom, which couldn’t be emphasized more than by association with the Dallas Cowboys. He’s rubbed shoulders with Dak Prescott, Sean Lee, Ezekiel Elliott, Jaylon Smith and other assorted athletes who adorn the star on their helmets. Many of them will be in attendance on fight night. This will be the first combative sporting event ever held at the Cowboys new training facility and Spence’s ultimate goal is to one day throw down in the house that Jerry Jones built, AT&T Stadium.
By his own admission, Spence had never heard of Carlos Ocampo (22-0, 13 KO’s) until discovering he was the top contender for the IBF title. Ocampo, from Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico, is tall, prefers distance, yet he's eager to land. He reaches a bit while throwing power punches and tends to leave his chin exposed, as if on a virtual platter. Also known as “Chema”, Ocampo wings quite a bit when punching in combination and offers little to no head movement; available for return fire in other words. Keeps his guard a bit low also and appears to be open for lead left crosses or hooks at any time. Ocampo possesses a wide range of shots in his arsenal and seems to land hardest with right or left hooks to the body. He has average hand speed, but very deliberate footwork. Long story short, he’s not going to beat Errol Spence, especially on a night of this magnitude.
In fact, Ocampo will do nothing to prevent Spence’s streak of knockouts from increasing to 11 straight. Don’t blink, because this shouldn’t last long. Spence in 4 or less, much to the delight of Dallas. TX.