Early in the middleweight fight, Brinson seemed to surprise Melendez with his power. Brinson’s body language showed control and relaxation while Melendez seemed uncomfortable and unsettled.
In the fourth round, a sure candidate for round of the year, Brinson hit Melendez with a two-punch combination, a right and quick left hook, which dropped Melendez to the canvas. Melendez recovered quickly and scored a knockdown of his own, knocking Brinson down against the ropes with a left hook of his own.
In the later rounds Brinson continued to put together combinations that visibly hurt Melendez. In the ninth round referee Charlie Fitch took a point away from Melendez after repeatedly warning him for landing shots to the back of Brinson’s head.
SHOWTIME® analyst Raul Marquez was impressed with Brinson. “Brinson was more aggressive,’’ Marquez said afterward. “He was intelligent. He kept the fight in the center of the ring. In boxing you take risks. He pulled out the upset and now he is a guy to look at.”
In the co-feature young prospect Jeffrey Fontanez (12-0, 9 KOs), of Caguas, P.R. scored an eight-round split decision win over Jose A. Rodriguez (18-11, 11 KOs), of Guadalajara Jalisco, Mexico in a lightweight bout. Fontanez, going a full eight rounds for the first time, won by the scores of 77-74, 78-73 and 75-76.
The Fontanez-Rodriguez bout was elevated to the telecast after a scheduled match between Jonathan Vidal and Mario Munoz was cancelled Thursday by the New York State Athletic Commission after Munoz could not make the weight.
The fight card was presented by Miguel Cotto Promotions and H2 Entertainment.
The ShoBox card included ring announcer Jimmy Lennon, Jr., who will be inducted into the International Boxing Hall Of Fame on Sunday.
From the center of the ring, Lennon spoke with SHOWTIME’s Steve Farhood, reflecting on his upcoming honor. "This is where I work and let me tell you there is no place I would rather be in the world than in the center of the ring," said Lennon during an interview between fights. "I am very fortunate because I have boxing in my genes. My father was a ring announcer and he was the greatest. I am very fortunate to be going into the Hall of Fame to be recognized as adding something to this sport. I am just very fortunate.”
Tomorrow night on SHOWTIME, boxing returns with a stellar SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING card featuring three world class matchups. In what is expected to be a non-stop action slugfest in the 12-round main event, hard-hitting Marcos "El Chino" Maidana (33-3, 30 KO’s), of Margarita, Argentina defends his WBA Intercontinental Welterweight Championship against "The Riverside Rocky’’ Josesito Lopez (30-5, 18 KO’s) of Riverside, Calif. In a classic puncher vs. boxer matchup, exciting Alfredo "El Perro" Angulo (22-2, 18 KO’s) of Los Angeles, meets classy Cuban Erislandy Lara (17-1-2, 11 KO’s) of Houston, Texas for the vacant WBA Interim Super Welterweight World Championship and Demetrius Hopkins (33-2-1, 13 KO’s) of Philadelphia, Penn. takes on undefeated Jermell Charlo (20-0, 10 KO’s) of Houston, Texas for Hopkins’ USBA Junior Middleweight Championship and Charlo’s WBC Continental Americas Super Welterweight Championship.
For information on SHOWTIME Sports, including exclusive behind-the-scenes video and photo galleries, complete telecast information and more, please visit the website at http://sports.SHO.com.