Juan Dominguez stopped Manuel de los Reyes Herrera in three rounds. Yenifel Vicente stopped Herrera in three rounds. Dominguez knocked out his last two opponents. Vicente knocked out his last two opponents. Dominguez is a 29-year-old right-hander. Vicente is a 29-year-old right-hander.
Tomorrow night at the Sun National Bank Center in Trenton, New Jersey (FS1, 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT), one of the two Dominican Republic natives is coming away with a clear career advantage over the other after they spend 10 rounds in each other’s company.
“I want to give him his credit,” said Dominguez, who will be fighting for the fourth time in a year. “He’s a great fighter. He likes to battle, go to war. It’s an exciting fight for me.
"Whoever wins is going to take it to the next level in their career. I’m going to go do my job.”
Dominguez (19-0, 13 KOs) has one significant mark in his favor: that unbeaten record. Vicente (27-3-2, 19 KOs) had lost three of five prior to his current two-fight win streak, alhough one of those losses—to Juan Antonio Rodriguez in January—was a narrow majority decision over eight rounds.
Dominguez, in contrast, has cruised in his eight-year pro career, rolling up a string of six stoppages in his last eight fights dating back to his first scheduled 10-rounder in 2012. It’s been a good run for a fighter who didn’t find the sport until he was 14, when his father started training him, sometimes pushing him so hard Dominguez would cry in anger and frustration.
Nicknamed “Baby Tito” because of a resemblance to former champ Felix Trinidad, Dominguez hopes he can carve out a career similar to that legend of the game.
“In the DR who didn’t want to be Felix Trinidad?” Dominguez asked. “When I came to New York looking a little like Trinidad, people automatically started calling me ‘Baby Tito.’
"He’s a tremendous fighter. All you’ve got to do is work hard and follow the footsteps, and hopefully I can be just like him.”
What happens after the Vicente fight, though, remains up in the air. Dominguez is most comfortable at 118 pounds, even though he hasn’t fought in that division since 2011. He’s campaigned as high as 126, though usually stays around 122.
“I feel strong at 122,” he said. “But I am more comfortable fighting at 118. This fight was offered to me, and I haven’t fought since May. So I took the fight.”
Even though his father isn’t there in the gym with him anymore, he’s remained a constant presence in Dominguez’s career.
He also hasn’t taken his foot off the gas.
“He supports me over the phone, always checking up, asking if things are going OK,” Dominguez said. “Every time I’m slipping on doing something I’m not supposed to, he’s always there reprimanding me.”
Swing by our Dominguez vs Vicente fight page for complete coverage.