Salita (left) looked impressive in the TKO win.
Salita Picks Up Vacant New York State Welterweight Title
Credit has to go to James Wayka (16-10, 8 KOs) for taking a fight with Dmitriy Salita (32-1-1, 17 KOs) on just four days notice after Mike Anchondo had to pull out due to injury this week. However, he was not awarded with much on Thursday night at the Roseland Ballroom after Salita put on a dominating performance to score a TKO win and claim the previously vacant New York State Welterweight Championship.
Salita was greeted by an expected roar from his hometown fans, and the Brooklyn native made sure all of his fans left satisfied. He needed just one frame of a planned 10-rounder to feel out Wayka, and he began to pounce when the bell rang for the second stanza.
A skillful tactician, Salita hurt Wayka early in the second frame and quickly dropped him with a sharp left hand. The strike would not count, though, as it was deemed a low blow by the referee controlling the bout. That decision did not frustrate Salita, who left no doubt when he sent his opponent to the canvas for sure with a left hook as soon as the action resumed. Once Wayka got back to his feet, Salita continued to apply pressure and scored another knockdown in the final minute of the round when he landed a heavy right cross. Although he was clearly feeling the effects, Wayka was able to rise again and finish out the frame.
In the third round of this bout, Salita truly displayed a powerful combo game. He began delivering some devastating body blows, and he relentlessly stayed with that plan while Wayka was showing some serious signs of discomfort. It did not take long until Wayka was again on the floor due to a vicious body shot. However, the Minnesota displayed some impressive grit and returned to his feet yet again. Salita was more than happy to reward him for his persistence, quickly sending Wayka skidding across the canvas and into the ropes with a sharp right hand. When that happened, the referee was finally forced to wave off the fight and give the TKO victory to Salita.
Salita may not have to wait long to find out who his next opponent will be, with many signs pointing towards a bout with fellow Brooklyn native and former IBF Junior Welterweight Champion Paulie “Magic Man” Malignaggi (27-4, 5 KOs). The Magic Man makes his welterweight debut this Saturday on the Hopkins-Pascal card when he battles Michael Lozada (36-6-1, 29 KOs), and he is expected to overcome the crafty veteran. If that happens, it looks like Malignaggi-Salita would likely be next on each boxer’s docket.