The last time Joshuah “The Windy City Kid” Hernandez and Gavino “Huesitos” Guaman were in the squared circle together, Hernandez suffered the first loss of his professional boxing career in controversial fashion. Hernandez’s camp was stunned when referee Celestino Ruiz called the fight after J. Hernandez was knocked down for the second time in the opening round of the main event at the UIC Pavilion in his hometown of Chicago.
With a blemish on his once perfect record, Hernandez will step into the ring with Gavino once more on Saturday, July 29, looking for redemption. But before he steps into the ring to avenge his only loss, Hernandez had to put the controversial loss behind him and learn from the mistakes he made in the first fight in order to move forward.
The confusion and miscommunication between Ruiz’s pre-fight instructions and what manifested in the ring were contradictory according to Team Hernandez. Hardwood Features sat down with J. Hernandez’s camp to discuss their thoughts on the fight.
“To be honest with you a lot of people there felt like the fight shouldn’t have been stopped”, said J. Hernandez. Some people do, some people don’t. It’s opinions. I felt like I could continue. I was actually more hurt after the first knockdown than the second. But after that, they offered him the rematch and as a fighter he probably thinks it’s going to be a lot easier this fight. Credit to him, I’m grateful he’s a true fighter and that he’s going to fight me again. This is what it’s all about. I just love to fight.”
J. Hernandez wasn’t the only one that felt like the fight was prematurely stopped. Head trainer Miguel “Macho” Hernandez, who is also J. Hernandez’s father, was not pleased with how Ruiz officiated and how he eventually called the fight via TKO in favor of Guaman.
M. Hernandez felt that J. Hernandez could continue and was unhappy with how Ruiz failed to follow through with the instructions that were given to his camp in the locker room prior to the fight. This was not the first time Ruiz has been involved in a controversial decision.
“That’s his job. He probably saw something that I didn’t see. What I can say is that the instructions that were given to us in the locker room weren’t followed in the fight, said M. Hernandez. My job as a trainer is to sit in the corner, watch what my son does, and when he comes to the corner give him instructions to go into the next round. The ref’s job is to make sure it’s a clean fight.”
M. Hernandez, a former professional boxer, continued to elaborate and give his thoughts from a boxer’s perspective. M. Hernandez was unpleased with how Ruiz made J. Hernandez walk from one corner of the ring and back after each knockdown.
“First and foremost, I fought many fights, never was I asked to do the cha-cha slide in the middle of the fight. That’s something new, okay. They didn’t address that. Follow instructions. That’s up to Josh. Josh is in there. That’s fine. If he saw something in Josh’s eyes, like I said, and decided to stop the fight, then that’s okay too. He’s the ref.”
Team Hernandez looks to avenge their loss to Guaman as they will step into the ring a second time on Saturday, July 29, 2017, at the UIC Pavilion in Chicago. If J. Hernandez walks away victorious it would most likely set up a third bout between the fighters. A lot is at stake for both fighters come Saturday night.