O'Brien used a more disciplined approach to take down Velez.
New Jersey Native Decisions Carlos Velez in Welterweight Pairing
A new and improved Vinny O’Brien (3-1, 2 KOs) was on display at the Robert Treat Hotel on Wednesday night, with the young welterweight taking a very disciplined approach to a bout against Carlos Velez (0-1) that resulted in a four round unanimous decision victory. The win was the third in the professional career for the East Hanover native, who won the 2010 New Jersey Golden Gloves Championship as an amateur.
“I want to box when I want to box, and I’m going to brawl when I have to brawl. It’s as simple as that,” the scrappy O’Brien said of applying his new strategy in the ring. “It felt great to go out there – being tactical, being disciplined – and to do the things we worked on in camp. I went back to some bad habits for a second, but I pulled myself out of it, kept on working and kept going hard.”
From the opening bell, O’Brien was determined to showcase the new game plan he developed in camp for this fight. He used his jab to establish distance between himself and his opposition, firing a flurry of combinations when Velez gave him an opening. The approach paid dividends at the end of the first frame when he found a crease between the hands of his opponent and jumped on the chance to exploit it. After rocking Velez to the ropes with a perfectly timed explosion, O’Brien sealed the delivery with an overhand right that sent his opposition crashing to the canvas. However, the bell saved Velez after an eight count, and the two New Jersey residents headed to their respective corners to prepare for the second round.
“I knew he was coming in making his pro debut, so I knew he was coming in hungry,” O’Brien stated when asked about the knockdown. “In his head, he had me, so I was going to just let him get a little bit of confidence, and I saw that right hand kind of just floating there. I just waited, waited, waited, and he overcommitted and I threw it. I landed it. I think if it had been 10 seconds earlier, it probably would have been called.”
O’Brien continued to show impressive composure over the final three rounds of the bout, doing a nice job of jumping in and out of exchanges and rolling off his jab to find chances for combinations. He also picked his spots well against a very game Velez, landing a series of well delivered hooks to the head and body of his opposition. The action was much to the pleasure of the faithful O’Brien following, who began to heavily chant “Vinny, Vinny” during the fourth frame. Those fans would erupt when the judges were needed after the final bell, proclaiming O’Brien the winner by unanimous decision. The final ringside tallies read 39-36 with a pair of 40-35 counts, all in favor of the scrappy East Hanover native.
ResVideo: Post-Fight Interview with Vinny O'Brien
Complete Fight Card Recap