We’ll Call it a Draw: John Dodson Retains BKFC Title

April 1, 2024
4 months

John Dodson had the opportunity to do something people in combat sports seldom get to do late in their careers. Dodson, 39, was set up to defend his Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship featherweight title Friday night in his hometown of Albuquerque, New Mexico. While Dodson had a long, successful career in MMA, online boxing news shows that even at the regional level, Dodson never made a successful championship defense.

Beating Dagoberto Aguero at Tingley Center would have been a storybook moment for Dodson. It didn’t turn out that way. While Dodson didn’t earn a win that could have been the pinnacle of his career, he didn’t take a soul-sucking defeat either. 

Dodson fought to a 46-46 draw with Aguero. It was a hotly-contested fight that saw both men send each other to the canvas at one point. Dodson was open to the idea of another fight, saying it could even take place outside of New Mexico.

“My hat’s off to Aguero,” Dodson said in an in-ring interview following the fight. “He came out here and performed. He hit harder than I expected, so I’m going to go back to the drawing board so I can come away with the victory instead of the draw.”

Aguero felt like he may not have gotten the best scoring from the judges. He did score two knockdowns, one in the second and third rounds. While Aguero was upset he didn’t get his hand raised after five rounds, he is hoping the rematch could take place in front of a friendlier crowd for him.

“I want to do it again, but in Miami,” Aguero said.

Sanchez Calls out Champion

Donald Sanchez doesn’t want to stand in line much longer for a shot at the middleweight crown. He has found his rhythm and proper flow in the BKFC ring. The latest boxing news online shows that Sanchez was dominant in the co-main event, improving to 3-1 as a bare-knuckle boxer.

Sanchez’s performance Friday night may have been his finest with the promotion. He picked up his second straight win by stoppage with a third-round knockout over Dallas Davison. While Sanchez only has four bare-knuckle fights under his belt, that relative lack of experience didn’t prevent him from calling out middleweight champion David Mundell.

BKFC President David Feldman said in a press conference after the fight that nothing further is planned for Dodson or Sanchez at the moment.

“We’ll talk about it,” Feldman said. “I’ve got a lot of traveling to do this week… Hopefully, I’ll come back with great news for everybody. But first, we’ve got two huge shows coming up, KnuckleMania and one at Mohegan Sun, so we’re focusing on those now.”

Kohring Finds Home in BKFC

Nick Kohring was a solid professional MMA fighter. However, the latest boxing news online shows Kohring was never able to earn a spot in a major promotion despite holding a 13-2 record. So the light heavyweight fighter decided to try his hand at bare-knuckle boxing.

BKFC may be glad he decided to make the switch. Kohring beat Kyle McElroy in a quick fight. During the first 30 seconds, Kohring scored two quick knockdowns. The second one was enough to get the fight waived off.

Coca Finds He Isn’t Suited for Warr

No matter what a fighter’s background is, leaving traditional boxing or MMA for bare-knuckle boxing may require an adjustment period. Ruben Warr proved he was ready for the BKFC spotlight, while his opponent, Lorenzo Coca, showed he needed more seasoning.

In the case of Coca, he may need wholesale changes. Warr scored two knockdowns in the first 14 seconds of the fight to pick up a knockout victory. Both men were making their BKFC debuts, and Warr proved he may be a dangerous fighter in the lightweight division.

Home Field Can be Overrated

Former UFC fighter Frank Lester was likely happy to be fighting in Albuquerque. Lester lives in the area and was glad to be in front of a friendly crowd. It’s a shame his Hollywood-based opponent didn’t feel the same way that he did.

Keith Richardson was in control throughout their cruiserweight bout. Richardson was able to pick up a TKO with three seconds left in the first round. It was a brutal introduction to BKFC for Lester.

Put the Judges to Work

Besides the main event, there were plenty of highlight reel knockouts produced by other fighters. However, some fights needed the judges’ intervention to figure out who would get their hand raised. Justin Street would end up getting the better of Anthony Sanchez in a close fight.

Two judges scored the bout 48-47, while another scored in 49-46. All three judges agreed, however, that it was Street who had performed better and deserved the victory on his record.

Marc Entenberg, another Albuquerque-based fighter, also needed to pick up a win on the scorecards. However, not everyone was sure that Entenberg had done enough to beat Van Vo in a close featherweight scrap.

Two of the three judges scored the fight in favor of Entenberg, 48-46. However, the third judge didn’t see any separation between the two men. He scored the fight 46-46, creating a majority decision.

Best of the Rest

The big question coming out of this card will be when Dodson and Aguero will meet again to settle their differences. However, as with many combat sports cards, many of the future stars of the sport have to lock horns on the prelims to build their reputation.

Here are other fights that occurred on the card that aren’t mentioned above:

  • Welterweight, Felipe Chavez win by TKO over Leandro Torres, Round 1 :58
  • Heavyweight, Manuel Otero win by KO over Michael Furnier, Round 2 :42
  • Flyweight, Austin Lewis win by decision over Joshua Richey, 48-47 (x2), 49-46

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By Dean McHugh.

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