Undefeated Perrella looks to power past upset-minded Ugas

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Bryant Perrella carries a perfect record into his 147-pound clash with Yordenis Ugas. So did the last boxer to face the Cuban veteran, but it didn’t remain unblemished.

Bryant Perrella and Yordenis Ugas

Bryant Perrella (left) has earned 13 of his 14 career wins by KO, while Yordenis Ugas has never been stopped in 19 fights heading into their 147-pound showdown Tuesday night in Santa Fe, New Mexico. (Jane Phillips/Premier Boxing Champions)

Perrella was scheduled to fight Ugas in August but withdrew less than a week before the bout with a left thumb injury. In stepped rising contender Jamal James, who was unbeaten in 20 fights and coming off a 10-round split decision over hammer-fisted Wale Omotoso just a month earlier.

Ugas, a 2008 Olympic bronze medalist, dominated James over 10 rounds and earned a unanimous decision. It was the 30-year-old Cuban’s first fight in more than two years, and his first victory in three years after back-to-back losses.

Now Yordenis Ugas (16-3, 7 KOs) gets another shot at an unbeaten fighter Tuesday when he takes on southpaw Bryant Perrella (14-0, 13 KOs) in a 10-round main event at Buffalo Thunder Resort and Casino in Santa Fe, New Mexico (Fox Sports 1, 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT).

At Monday’s weigh-in, Perrella hit the scale at 146.4 pounds, while Ugas came in at 147.1.

Perrella, a 27-year-old native of Fort Myers, Florida, is looking to continue his ascent up the 147-pound ladder after scoring a second-round TKO of David Grayton, who entered their fight at 14-0 with 10 KOs.

“It was prospect versus prospect,” Perrella said of the June 4 victory in Montreal. “I was like, ‘This fight will separate me from other prospects.’ I was motivated more than ever, and everything was perfect. I feel like I performed flawlessly.”

Perrella knocked Grayton down with a straight left in Round 2, then landed a right hook to begin a flurry of punches that caused referee Michael Griffin to stop the fight.

“I don’t consider myself a power puncher who is going to knock everyone out, but there’s an advantage being a southpaw,” Perrella said. “I see myself as a pure boxer who does a lot of subtle things, but I'm blessed to have the strength to hit somebody and send shock waves through them.”

He may not see himself as a knockout artist, but the 6-foot Perrella has KO’d his last 11 opponents. Now, though, he faces an opponent in Ugas who has never been stopped in 19 career bouts.

One of Ugas’ three career losses came against another southpaw, Emmanuel Robles, who eked out a 10-round split decision in February 2014. The five-time Cuban national champion lost an eight-round unanimous decision to Amir Iman less than three months later, which was his last fight before defeating James.

With the 5-foot-10 Ugas now fighting for the second time in six weeks following a 27-month layoff, Perrella is anticipating the toughest test of his career thus far.

“Ugas lost to a left-hander with Robles years ago, but he’s durable and has gotten a lot better,” Perrella said. “Stylistically, he has a slick boxing ability and good timing and distance, and he showed improvement in his last fight against Jamal James.”

Perrella has been taken into the sixth round just once in his career, and has finished off nine of his 14 opponents within two rounds. By contrast, Ugas has gone the distance in five of his last six bouts (finishing 3-2 in those contests), including three 10-rounders.

Despite Perrella’s propensity for disposing his opponents quickly, trainer Mike Nowling said his fighter is ready to go deep into the bout if need be.

“You'll see Bryant’s intelligent, fast, sharp boxing and laser-like power against Ugas' challenging boxing intellect," Nowling said. “Bryant’s a break-down fighter who slick-boxes and peppers guys with power off his jab.

“We feel Ugas comes forward with pressure, so we’re looking to run him into some good shots and hopefully stop him within six. But if Ugas is durable enough to make it 10 rounds, we’re prepared.”

For a complete look at Perrella vs Ugas, visit our fight page.

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