Daly City's Julaton defends belt against Alcanter

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Daly City's Julaton defends belt against Alcanter

Feb. 25, 2011Ryan MaquianaCSNBayArea.com
Neither a questionable scale nor the absence of her world renowned trainer could deter WBO super bantamweight champion Ana Julaton from enjoying her Bay Area homecoming party, as the Daly City native earned a unanimous decision over Franchesca Alcanter on Friday night.A boisterous crowd packed Richmonds Craneway Pavilion to capacity as The Hurricane, normally a speedster by trade, surprisingly pressured the bigger Alcanter into the ropes and unleashed combinations that scored frequently.With four-time Trainer of the Year Freddie Roach stuck in Hollywood due to scheduling conflicts and a scale that peculiarly determined that Julaton weighed 116.5 poundsa staggering 5.5 under the 122-pound limitThe Hurricane was forced to adapt to the situation.Displaying the guile and heart that made her a champion, Julaton passed the test with flying colors.Some things may happen unexpectedly, said Julaton (8-2-1, 1 KO), whose black and orange trunks matched the Giants baseball jersey she donned in her ring entrance. Sometimes you just have to stick to the basics, put your head down, and go to work.We were prepared for the event that Freddie wouldnt be able to make it, added her advisor, Angelo Reyes, who assumed chief second duties in Roachs place. It even happened in the past with Manny Pacquiao when Freddie had prior commitments with other fighters. Ana was working with Freddie as late as Wednesday, and he gave us the right gameplan. We just had to execute it, and we did.Alcanter (18-10-1, 9 KOs), a former world title challenger at featherweight and junior lightweight, seemed to enjoy a natural size advantage, having weighed in a full two pounds heavier at 118.5. However, she was unable to utilize it as Julaton called on her superior speed and defense to avoid Alcanters vaunted right hand throughout the first six rounds.In the seventh round, a looping left from Julaton followed by a right cross down the pipe found Alcanters chin and elicited the crowds approval. By then, Julaton sensed her foe weakening and began to stalk Alcanter behind her signature stiff left jab.However, to Alcanters credit, the game fighter refused to fall. The challenger returned fire until the final bell, but it was not enough to take the belt away from a resolute Julaton.Scores were 96-94, 98-92, and 97-93 in favor of the defending champion.Were going to the Philippines for our next fight, said promoter Allan Tremblay. After that, well be back in North America for the summer.To give an idea of the treatment Julaton will receive for her next fight in the Asian archipelago, almost six million Filipinos tuned in to watch her two previous bouts. For this fight, estimates ran as high as 11 million viewers worldwide.Im looking forward to having a title fight in the Philippines in April, added the champ, who will enjoy yet another ticker-tape parade through the streets of Manila in the next few days. I just wanted to thank the fans in the Bay Area for coming out and supporting me.In the boxing undercard, San Carlos resident Mighty Bruno Escalante (2-0-1, 1 KO), notched a second round stoppage of Martin Sandoval, (0-1-0), an MMA veteran who was making his pugilistic debut. A short counter left hand from the southpaw Escalante floored Sandoval at the end of the first round. In the following frame, another left cross put Sandoval on the canvas a second time, prompting referee Ray Balewicz to call a halt to the bout at 1:05.I was just trying to set him up with the jab, said Escalante. I was able to hit him with a perfect shot both times.He only had ten minutes to glove up and get ready, but he executed the plan perfectly, added his trainer, Brian Schwartz. The show also featured three kickboxing bouts.Dee Al-Hadi outworked Marc Toledo en route to a 30-27 unanimous decision on all three scorecards.Gaston Bolanos stopped Ike Spears at 0:32 of the third round with a series of punishing kicks to the legs and body.Xavier Vigney knocked out Gary Grant at 1:40 of the first round to cap the fight portion of the evening, which was followed by musical performances from American Idol semifinalist Sway Peala, singer AJ Rafael, and rapper Nump Trump among others.

Aldon Smith shows off athleticism, strength in workout videos

Aldon Smith shows off athleticism, strength in workout videos

Raiders linebacker Aldon Smith is awaiting word from the league regarding his possible reinstatement.

In the meantime, the 2012 First-Team All-Pro is preparing his body for the physical grind that is playing in the NFL.

Personal trainer Steven Fotion posted multiple videos to social media of Smith's recent workouts:

https://twitter.com/fotion_steven/status/804330227191181312
 

GM McKenzie: Raiders can sustain success, ‘we’ve built this thing to last’

GM McKenzie: Raiders can sustain success, ‘we’ve built this thing to last’

ALAMEDA – Reggie McKenzie doesn’t talk to the media often, maybe a handful of times per year. That’s been the case since he became Raiders general manager in early 2012 and, throughout that time, those interactions come with a common line of questioning.

Everyone wanted to know about his grand plan to return the Raiders to greatness, or a progress report on it. It was a tall order, and McKenzie never said it was going to happen fast.

He had to get right with the salary cap and completely overhaul the roster, actions nearly impossible to do in tandem. He radically deconstructed, then reconstructed in a method that would set the team up for long-term success.

This was not a steady ascent. Poor play was expected early on, though mistakes intensified tough times and muddled his vision to the short sighted.

McKenzie never wavered, trusted his internal compass and steered this pirate ship through a storm. The skies have finally cleared. His Raiders are 9-2 heading into Sunday’s game against Buffalo, armed with a franchise quarterback, elite pass rusher and a respected head coach.

There’s a hulking offensive line, a pair of top receivers and quality cornerbacks secured for the long term.

Those old questions aren't valid anymore. 

Deconstruction is long done. Reconstruction is clearly complete. Now it’s on to the next phase: Sustaining success.

“The key is that your drafted players become your core,” McKenzie said on Thursday in a meeting with local press. “As far as (what's next), you need to know you can sign them and keep them and continue that process.

“That’s where we are right now, and we feel good about where we are. We think we’ve built this thing to last.”

McKenzie has done so with a three-pronged attack.

1. He has drafted extremely well, over the last three years especially, building a young core headlined by Derek Carr, Khalil Mack, Amari Cooper, Gabe Jackson and Karl Joseph.

2. McKenzie found a respected head coach in Jack Del Rio guys want to play for, with a staff focused on development.

3. McKenzie has supplemented well in free agency – importing Kelechi Osemele, Rodney Hudson Michael Crabtree and Donald Penn, to name a few -- generally without saddling himself with burdensome contracts.

The Raiders were so flush with cap space a few years ago they were able to fork out huge amounts up front on contracts that become pay-as-you-go deals without dead money later on.

They often use roster bonuses over signing bonuses -- roster bonuses hit the cap all at once; salary bonuses impact the cap over the life of the contract – to help mitigate long-term impact. In short, that gives the Raiders financial flexibility and cap space to play with each year. 

They’ll need it soon. Raiders premier players have come cheap, but the taxman is coming. Carr and Mack are still on rookie deals, but big contract extensions are a fait accompli. The same goes for Cooper when the time comes.

“The premier players will get paid, and we’ll try and keep everything intact as much as we can,” McKenzie said. “But what happens when your talented players play well? Contracts come up at times where they can benefit from it.”

Some teams -- New Orleans, for example -- suffer with a few players consuming significant cap space. Other teams, like New England and Seattle, keep on trucking with a good quarterback, defensive cornerstones and cheaper replacements through the draft or free agency.

“You have to continue to function with some young players,” McKenzie said, “and you have to find some mid-tier veterans who can step in and play well.”

The Raiders have been good mining undrafted free agents – McKenzie takes particular pride in those – to help keep the cupboard stocked.

While the Raiders rise may seem concentrated, from 3-13 in 2014 to 9-2 nearly two completed seasons later, it wasn’t quite so quick. McKenzie’s first two seasons were extremely lean while disposing of bad contracts, with a few hiccups that led many to question his vision.

Owner Mark Davis wasn't one of them. He stuck with McKenzie, a decision that looks pretty darn smart. His GM is certainly thankful for that.

“We were in constant communication the four years leading up to this year,” McKenzie said. “Nobody’s excited about losing seasons, but he did see the promise, and he believed in me. That was enough said. I told him my process, and he knew it wasn’t going to be a quick fix. We could try, but that wasn’t my style. That says a lot, because he was probably getting it from a whole lot of people to hurry up.”