I found out about the Saturday Night Fights event at Nationwide Arena early in the month and was immediately excited about it. I am a huge sports fan and can watch (almost) any sport. Boxing is one of those sports that have always intrigued me but I had the chance to get into it. The one thing I do know was that no matter the sport, seeing it live brings about more excitement. Ask any hockey or baseball fan and they will say that most sports are far more enjoyable to see it live.
However, since my wife and I had never been to a live boxing event, we were not sure what to expect. It was amazing to see the way that the folks at Nationwide Arena had transformed the area into a venue that was perfect for Saturday Night Fights. I have been to an NHL game, an Arena football game and a career fair at Nationwide Arena and every time the staff at Arena have done a great job of setting it up specifically for the event that they are hosting.
The event itself was a well-run event. Sometimes when watching boxing on TV, you feel like there is a lot of time between fights but they had the fighters ready to go almost immediately. The undercard (the fights before the main event, don’t worry I had to look it up, too!) was filled with some fun fights. For the most part, the fighters were all relatively new to the sport on a professional level and were out to prove themselves to their opponents and fans. One of the best fights in the undercard was a fight between a Columbus native, Brian Holstein, and a Michigan native, Tyler Perrault. Needless to say, the Perrault was not a fan favorite. They both came out throwing a ton of hard punches with lots of trash talking as they both spent some time dazed and on the canvas. Holstein went on to win with a huge knockout, which brought a huge ovation from the crowd.
The intensity of the fighters was incredible to see. As my wife pointed out (she is a closet boxing fan), seeing the way that the fighter reacted to each punch was awesome. On TV, you just think of the Rocky movies and just assume that it is all a little fake but when you are there live you see every muscle of each fighter react to a punch thrown and taken.
After the aforementioned fight, the next two fights went live on Univision, a Spanish TV station out of Florida. The first live fight was good but not as intense as both of the fighters were veterans and were picking and choosing their spots to attack. The second fight, however, was a title fight so the power was automatically turned up to high! Both fighters throughout the all the rounds made so many great moves. We could really see how much it meant to both fighters to have the opportunity to hold a title belt. The fight went all 10 rounds and was decided by the judges and was won by Marc Salser, Jr. by unanimous decision to move his record to 14-0 and gave him the International Boxing Association Intercontinental light welterweight title.
If you ever get a chance to go to any type of an event at Nationwide Arena, GO! They do a fantastic job of hosting events no matter the size of the event. I have been to variety of events held there and have been incredibly impressed each and every time!
An avid sports fan, Troy blogs about his favorite teams and events at Current Athletics. Troy works as an admissions counselor for Mount Vernon Nazarene University, and he lives in Gahanna, Ohio.