Diaz, Gilbert top Caesars fight card | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Diaz, Gilbert top Caesars fight card

Jared Green

Boxing will return to the South Shore on Saturday with a six-fight card at Caesars Tahoe.

Headlining the card are welterweight Oscar Diaz, a former junior olympic champion who has just one loss in 18 professional fights, and Reno’s Joey Gilbert, who has racked up two first-round knockouts in previous appearances at Caesars.

Diaz will face Vallejo’s Juan Amezcua, who has compiled a 9-1 record with seven knockouts despite taking a three-year hiatus from boxing in the middle of his career.

Gilbert has picked up a new nickname (Diamond) and a high-fashion sponsor (Tommy Hilfiger) since his last fight at Caesars. He recently told the Nevada Appeal that he auditioned for the NBC reality series “The Contender,” which will feature 16 middleweights contending for a $1 million prize.

Gilbert will square off against Farid Shahid of Las Vegas.

A University of Nevada graduate, Gilbert needed only two minutes to take down Thomas Haines in March and even less than that for Tony Sanza in December.

Two undefeated welterweights, Curtis Meeks (8-0) and Larry Gonzalez (4-0), are on the undercard, as are middleweights James Kirkland (11-0) and Paulino Avitia (12-4).

In heavyweight action, T.J. Wilson (9-1) will face Jason Williams (9-3) and Mike Marrone (2-0) will make his first West Coast appearance as a professional against Michael Moncrief (1-2-1).

Marrone, 18, was an accomplished amateur under the management of legendary trainer Lou Duva and missed making the 2004 U.S. Olympic team by one loss. He has racked up knockouts in his first two professional fights, including a first-round KO of Rodney Collins at the International Boxing Hall of Fame’s “Fight Night” in New York last month.

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