Featuring on Top Rank Boxing’s Mayer vs Han card in California, brothers Jason (23-2, 18 KOs) and Andrew Moloney (23-2, 15 KOs) turned in impressive performances on Sunday afternoon to continue their trek back to the World title picture.
The duo have fallen short in four collective World title attempts across their tenured careers, but have made no secret of their ambition to challenge once again.
For Andrew, the star-spangled shores had not been a happy hunting ground. The 31-year-old lost two of his three bouts in the USA against Joshua Franco (18-1-2, 8 KOs), in an all-time trilogy that saw the him both defend and challenge for the WBA Super Flyweight belt between 2020-2021.
Bantamweight Jason Moloney, on the other hand, was pitted against pound for pound great, Nayoue Inoue (22-0, 19 KOs) in late 2020 and was defeated by a brutal knockout.
But with the George Kambosos Jr (20-0, 10 KOs) vs Devin Haney (27-0, 15 KOs) mega-fight set for June 5th in Australia, the twins looked to kick 2022 off with dominant performances in an overall effort to fight on the card.
Coming into the event, it was clear that both men were the more accomplished fighters against their respective opponents, Francisco Pedroza Portillo (17-11-2, 10 KO’s) and Gilberto Mendoza (19-12-3, 10 KO’s).
It was Jason who got things underway at The Hangar in Costa Mesa, picking up a comfortable ten-round decision victory over Pedroza Portillo.
Throughout the fight, Moloney looked a class above his 27-year-old foe, brutally beating down his opponent with heavy and hard-hitting body shots. Time and again, he also found a home for his right hand, which stunned Pedroza Portillo on multiple occasions.
The question now is whether Jason can finally pick up a World title in the Bantamweight division after two attempts, or will the Victorian fall short of an elusive title for a third time?
Much like his twin brother, Andrew Moloney dominated proceedings against Mendoza. Overall, his stiff and strong jab, followed by heavy bodywork, allowed the former World champion to eventually work his way to an eighth round stoppage victory.
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Moloney struck early and managed to deal out a harsh cut above the right of Mendoza. The gash was ruled to have come from a headbutt, despite a punch clearly landing above the eye in round two. Having been subject to previous instances of headbutt misrulings, he was spurred on as a result.
One of the most impressive things that Moloney was able to do was showcase and ability to consistently find hard-hitting shots to the lower body of Mendoza throughout the fight. Ultimately, it was a body shot followed by right and left hooks to the head that forced Jerry Cantu to bring a halt in the final round.
Brotherly body work
If these two didn’t already look identical, both worked the body of their opponents in the same extremely aggressive fashion.
Making Pedroza Portillo and Mendoza wince in pain each time a shot landed on the body, both the Moloney brothers used the tactic to create less active rivals in the later rounds of their bouts.
Strong combos with lighting quick hands frazzled Pedroza Portillo for 10 long rounds, while harsh uppercuts broke down Mendoza.
On two occasions, Andrew very nearly dropped Mendoza with 49% of his punches to the body landing. For all of the eight rounds, it was evident that there was only one thing Moloney wanted – to punish the body hard.
After picking up wins on foreign soil, both Moloney brothers are targeting home bouts on the Kambosos Jr vs Haney card on June 5th, which is being co-promoted by Top Rank.
The victory puts the two in good positions and they should now look for respective World title eliminators, given that various titles are available within the Super Flyweight and Bantamweight divisions.
One prospective opponent for Jason Moloney could be the experienced Vincent Astrolabio (17-3, 12 KOs), who currently holds the WBC International championship and may be the key that unlocks another shot at a World-Title this year.
For Andrew, all eyes turn to Kazuto Ioka (28-2, 15 KOs) who holds the WBO Super Flyweight belt.
For all of the results from Top Rank Boxing’s Mayer vs Han card, click here.
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