John ‘Bang Bang’ Delperdang Pre-Fight 7-29-16

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Unfazed By First Loss, John Delperdang Looks Forward

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By Raymundo Dioses

This past Memorial Day weekend lightweight prospect John Delperdang packed his bags and traveled to the Cowboys Dancehall in San Antonio, Texas to fight on the undercard of the Premier Boxing Champions fight-card which was broadcast live by Fox Sports.

Delperdang was pitting his undefeated record up against Ricky Edwards, a PBC affiliate who was also undefeated heading into the bout.  It was a drag out affair that saw plenty of holding and clinching by Edwards, (who was docked in rounds two and four for his efforts) Delperdang controlling the tempo and looking to trade, and ultimately a majority decision in Edwards favor with two judges scoring it Edwards way despite multiple deductions in the six round fight and one judge seeing it a draw.

“I noticed he clinched, even from the first round.  It went like that the whole time.   It wasn’t a good fight.  It wasn’t a bad fight.  It was a clinch fight,” said Delperdang, who was nonetheless excited to make his Premier Boxing Champions debut and hopped on the opportunity even while serving as sparring partner for John Molina in advance of Molina’s bout against Ruslan Provodnikov next weekend.

Delperdang fought through clinches and even suffered a cut above his right eye midway through the bout as a result of repeated head clashes with the clinching Edwards (11-0).

The Eastvale, California resident consistently charged towards his opponent and was willing to exchange, but did not find a willing dance partner.  “Not too many fighters want a war nowadays.   I wanted to have my PBC debut to be with a banger.  Unfortunately I didn’t get that.”

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The lightweight prospect fell to 6-1 yet was grateful to be showcased on a PBC card.  Delperdang soaked it all in, even grabbing some primetime television time by walking in and hanging around Erik Bone, who fought in the night’s main event against Miguel Vasquez.

Delperdang also enjoyed watching fellow professional Brandon Figueroa (brother of Omar Figueroa) as well as taking in the night’s main event while awaiting his own bout. Delperdang was also professionally photographed by the PBC staff for the event.

“The whole experience was cool.  To be in a different state, and on Memorial Day… some people’s jobs are to protect our country, and some have died doing that.  It’s an honor and I privilege that I have the opportunity to fight for a living, and that’s because of them.”

“I need another chance for a PBC fight… I got into boxing to fight.  I’m not worried about a win or a loss, I want to be in good fights.”

IMG_1674Delperdang with John Molina

Delperdang’s manager Bernie Valenzuela gave his opinions on the fight, making note of the judges scorecards even after two points were deducted, gave thanks to Premier Boxing Champions and is now looking to move forward with his fighter.

“Even before the fight, we knew he (Edwards) was weak and had no punching power,”  said Valenzuela, a Southern California based manager/gym owner who helped prepare the game-plan with Team Delperdang and studied Edwards’ previous bout against Azriel Paez in which Edwards ended up with a split decision win. “Our plan was to go inside.”

“The first round, it could have gone either way.  The second round, I knew we had that won after the first point deduction (for excessive holding).  The third round, we won it, and the fourth round, another point was taken.  After the second point deduction, I thought we had the fight won.  I thought the only way they could screw us was with a draw.”

Edwards received two point deductions for excessive holding during the six round bout, and the Paterson, New Jersey native seemed to be withdrawn and not seeking to execute a strategy to victory other than landing one shot and grasping hold of his opponent. The fifth and sixth frames ended in the same fashion of the rest of the bout, with Edwards holding even until the last 30 clicks of the final round.

Following the decision announcement with judge Ursolo Perez having it 57-55 Edwards, judge Reynaldo Campos scoring the fight a 56-56 draw and a deplorable scorecard of 58-54 from judge Anthony Townsend, (which would indicate Edwards won all rounds even with spending large amounts of time holding and clinching) Edwards trainer, the much respected Ronnie Shields, walked over and offered his opinion on the fight to Valenzuela.

“He (Shields) told me we didn’t win anything.  Your kid clearly won, your fighter (Delperdang) won.  I’m embarrassed, and I have no clue what the judges were looking at,” stated Valenzuela, who was disappointed in the decision of the bout, but nonetheless showered praise on Shields and the PBC for giving his fighter a shot and hopes that once again he will receive a call and another opportunity for his fighter.

“I’m glad that there are still world class trainers who honor their sport like Shields and I respect his thoughts on the decision.  I know Premier Boxing Champions is a stand up company, I know the sport is in good hands with the PBC, and I hope they give us another opportunity soon.”

Valenzuela and Team Delperdang are taking the loss in stride and still have high hopes for Delperdang, a strong and compact lightweight who began his career in July 2015 and turned 24 years of age the day following the bout.

“We aren’t crying.  We’re from the streets.  It was unjust for my young fighter to get a decision loss like that, but it does not derail our game plan.  We will move forward… The loss may even give us more of an opportunity if future opponents see the one loss on our record.  Don’t underestimate John ‘Bang Bang’ Delperdang.  We’ll be back.”

Bernie Valenzuela: The ‘Fighter First’ Manager

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At times in the boxing game, as a fighter is on the rise opportunities come up that are appealing as an offer may come to sub in as a late opponent on a fight card with little time to prepare yet a check with a zero or two on the end of it for your efforts.

A boxing promotional company at times may call upon a rook’ fist thrower with promises of that fast money on short notice to step in as a late opponent for their own fighters benefit.

While these scenarios are short term lucrative, (hey, we all got bills right, fighters not excluded!) in the long term, taking an L in the squared circle hurts the fighters brand and could also begin the stages of being branded a B-side from there on out.

More often than not, fighters not of the same ilk of John Molina or Gabriel Rosado, fighters who win even in losing due to their strong showings in defeat, can fall off the competitor radar and ultimately land in the much dreaded ‘journeyman land’.

Gym owner/manager Bernie Valenzuela of Crossroads Boxing has a mindset to change the way of things for the benefit of the fighter, and the Southern California resident has thus far put his money where his mouth is, starting with his own stable of rising contenders.

“Managers think that they need to take all the fights offered for their fighter. They (managers) need to know there are options. You don’t always have to take every fight that’s offered. I would recommend taking your time (with a fighter)… Money will come later down the line.”

Boxing is filled with stories of fighters hard on their luck, as well as fighters turning to the sport at a young age, and more often than not, both of those characteristics apply and Valenzuela is no stranger to helping the youth.

His gym has regularly hosted Junior Olympic Championship fight cards, with the next scheduled event to take place in April. Valenzuela has also hosted silver, blue and gold glove tournaments.

Valenzuela, who himself grew up on the rough streets of South Central and sports a martial arts background prior to entering the boxing game, represents several pro fighters at present, with his most prominent fist thrower at this point being welterweight Joshua Conley.

The 23-year old fighter with 13 wins against just one loss at one time was represented by the notoriously reclusive boxing figure Al Haymon. ‘Young Gun’ began punching for pay in 2011 and had amassed eight wins with one draw by the time he signed on for Haymon representation.

Three wins later Conley found himself matched against fellow Haymon-ee Daquan Arnett in August last year. The fight was set in Arnett’s hometown of Winter Park Florida and the split decision went in the east coast fighter’s favor.

Conley then decided to make a change following his first career loss and met Valenzuela through a mutual friend. After a few meetings, Conley made the move to have Valenzuela represent him.

Two fights into his career with Valenzuela at the helm have led to two wins and a more personal rapport with the person elected to Valenzuela his best interests in the fight game.

“I feel like I have a relationship with Bernie…” said the San Bernardino, California native who has sparred with the likes of veteran fighters Julio Diaz and Josesito Lopez. “I feel very much supported. I feel that I could trust him.”

Through Valenzuela, Conley almost got a gig to enter the training camp of Canelo Alvarez and serve as a sparring partner for Alvarez’s upcoming middleweight bout against England’s Amir Khan, and is now looking at a possible title shot in the works for late March.

IMG_1043Another boxer in Valenzuela’s stable is lightweight prospect John ‘Bang Bang’ Delperdang, a lightweight who sports a 4-0 record who was developed at the Crossroads Boxing gym who was a former product of the streets prior to stepping into the gym in November 2014 and meeting Valenzuela.

“I had a friend that got killed. I sat at the funeral and told my friend that I did not want to live like this anymore. I asked him to tell God that I wanted a better life, and in a few days I met Bernie,” said Delperdang, who turned pro with the guidance of Valenzuela.

Delperdang turned pro in July 2015 and notched three more bouts to end the year, and has thus far logged a win in 2016, a January 30 TKO, and the determined 23 year old is looking forward to being featured on his managers fight cards set in the coming months.

Also recently signed to the ever growing stable is 9-0 lightweight Jaime Ocegueda, heavyweight Paulus Ritter, welterweight prospect Stewart Quincy Flores and #1 ranked amateur female Karina Saravia, who made it to the USA Boxing Olympic squad.

Valenzuela hosted a fight card in Chino, California last year and is now taking his show on the road in 2016, staging fight cards South of the Border in Aguas Calientes, Mexico on a near monthly basis, with dates set for March 5, April 16/30, June 4, August 20, October 1 and November 27.

There will also be a pro fight card put on my Valenzuela in the States, slated for September 2016 in Southern California.

Knowing fight dates are set can bring assurance to a boxer that he will remain active throughout his career, and Valenzuela is careful to pit his stable against challenging opponents in order to advance their rankings and provide ample experience.

Along with partner Ernesto Torres and a slew of investors and sponsors, which also includes Zendejas Restaurant owner Eddie Zendejas, Valenzuela is looking to make an important and positive impact on the sport of boxing.

“When you sign with Crossroads Boxing it’s a management TEAM, not just a manager,” said Valenzuela.

Crossroads Boxing Gym is located at 1335 E 4th St, Ontario, CA 91764.

Valenzuela can be reached at (909) 851-3765 and Bernie@thevrg.com

Remax Finest Ontario. Bernie, Rocio