Unbeaten bantamweight Randy Caballero, (16-0, 8 KOs), successfully defended his NABO title Friday night with a unanimous decision over Manuel Roman, (15-2-3, 6 KOs), in the main event on ShoBox: The Next Generation before a partisan crowd at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California. Scores were 97-92, 96-93, and 96-93 in a mostly tactical affair that served as a solid test for the 21-year old prospect from nearby Coachella, California. Caballero, fighting for the 10th time at Fantasy Springs Casino Resort in his 16 pro fights, acknowledged the step up in competition before the fight, but did not seem overly concerned. “Roman’s a tough fighter, I’m not taking anything away from him,” explained Caballero. “But he’s never been 10 rounds. I’ll probably just break him down and hopefully finish him off in the early rounds.”

Although Caballero did not score the early knockout he predicted, he did put Roman on the canvas in the early going. Both fighters started cautiously, trading jabs and jab, straight right combinations. However in round two Caballero landed a right hook followed by a left hook that dropped Roman back onto the seat of his pants. Roman was unhurt and rose quickly, but the knockdown reflected the fact that Caballero was in control from the get go.

The middle rounds continued to be fought at a measured pace, with little offensive diversity by either fighter beyond the jab and one-two, sapping some of the energy from the crowd which had started the fight enthusiastically cheering on Caballero.

Round six started to see some sustained two-way action by the fighters as Roman cornered Caballero and landed a left hook to the body, right hook to the head combination that forced Caballero to fight his way out of danger, resulting in an exchange of blows as Caballero fought his way back towards the center of the ring. The action heated up further in round eight as Roman began to consistently land lead left hooks to the head and body of Caballero, forcing Cabellero out of the cruise control he had been on since the early knockdown.

With the pressure mounting, Caballero was equal to the task, effectively putting an end to Roman’s attempted rally shortly after the start of round nine with an impressive double jab, straight right combination that stopped Roman in his tracks, punctuated shortly after by a left uppercut. That seemed to signal the end of any drama from the fight, as Roman was unable to generate any further momentum as the fighters mixed grappling and clinching with brief spurts of activity over the remaining round and a half.

By: David Robinett



INDIO, Calif. (Aug. 23, 2012) – The four talented fighters competing on a terrific doubleheader on ShoBox: The New Generation tomorrow/Friday, Aug. 24, live on SHOWTIME® (11:00 p.m. ET) made weight Thursday at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, Calif.

In the 10-round main event, talented, unbeaten, world-rated hometown favorite Randy Caballero (15-0, 8 KOs), of Coachella, Calif., will defend his NABO Bantamweight Championship against Manny Roman (15-1-3, 6 KOs), of Paramount, Calif.

The ShoBox co-feature at Fantasy Springs will match once-beaten lightweights Michael “The Artist’’ Perez (16-1-1, 10 KOs), of Newark, N.J., against hard-hitting southpaw Fidel Maldonado (13-1, 11 KOs), of Albuquerque, N.M., in a 10-round bout.

Caballero vs. Roman and Perez vs. Maldonado are presented by Golden Boy Promotions and sponsored by Corona. Doors open at 5:00 p.m. PT. The first fight begins at 5:30 p.m. PT.

Tickets for the event, priced at $25, $35 and $45, are available at the Fantasy Springs Box Office, by calling (800) 827-2946 or online at www.fantasyspringsresort.com.

Future Hall of Famer, the legendary Bernard Hopkins, will host a meet and greet before the televised card, including signing autographs and taking pictures with fans, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. inside the Fantasy Springs Special Events Center. The meet and greet is open to the public with the purchase of a ticket to the fight card.

Barry Tompkins will call the blow-by-blow action on ShoBox with expert analyst Steve Farhood and special guest analyst, former Unified Lightweight World Champion Juan “The Baby Bull” Diaz. Gordon Hall is the executive producer of ShoBox with Richard Gaughan producing and Rick Phillips directing.

WEIGHTS: Caballero weighed 117.6 pounds, Roman 117.8. Perez tipped scale at 134.8, Maldonado 134.4.

What the fighters said Thursday:


“It’s always a good thing to fight in your hometown and it is really a big thing to be fighting on SHOWTIME again. I feel my career is going in the right direction.

“I really learned a lot from my first fight on ShoBox and have been training hard on not making the same type of mistakes again in this fight as I did in that one.

“Roman is a tough fighter no doubt about it, and he comes to fight, but no one is going to come into my backyard and take my belt away from me. Winning the NABO belt was a really big deal for me and I’m not just going to let it slip away.

“I’m very excited about two of my brothers fighting on this card (one off TV as a professional, one in an amateur fight). Tomorrow will be a big night for our family.”


“I’ve had a lot of stops and starts in my career, but I am definitely ready for this fight and feel more motivated than ever. I plan to make the most of this opportunity.

“I definitely feel they are making a mistake by fighting me. I’ve had more years as a pro than he has. I just haven’t had the chance to show what I can do on television.

“This is by far my biggest fight and I am treating it like a world title fight. The fact I’m fighting on SHOWTIME against an undefeated fighter that’s ranked and fighting him in his hometown is huge, but mentally and physically I am totally prepared and totally confident.

“I’ve been working on trying to be more aggressive and I think you’ll see a difference tomorrow. I’m ready.”


“The huge changes I made before my last fight have really made a positive difference. Physically, I feel stronger. My training camp lasted eight weeks. There were no distractions. I stayed totally focused. There was a lot less stress.

“I fought this guy in the amateurs and I totally out-boxed him. He says I ran from him, but I beat him 5-0 so what does that tell you? I know it was only three rounds and now we are fighting with eight-ounce gloves and no headgear, but I’ll be ready for whatever he brings.

“I’m looking forward to getting in the ring Friday night.”


“I lost a decision to Perez in the semifinals of the Golden Gloves finals when we were amateurs, but he ran the whole time and wouldn’t exchange. I don’t think he threw too much. I’m looking at this as my chance for some major payback.

“So many good fighters have fought on ShoBox, so for me to get my chance is exciting. This is a great opportunity for me. I plan to put on a good show. I’m excited, but not nervous.

“I feel I am really getting underestimated just because I lost my last fight and went the distance with Erick Cruz and Perez knocked Cruz out, but I came in weak for the Cruz fight; there was a misunderstanding with the contract weight.

“Everything is a go for me this time. I’m confident and ready.”


Coachella Boxing Club’s Randy Caballero (left) poses during the weigh-in Thursday against  Manuel Roman at  Fantasy Springs Casino. Caballero, along with  younger brother Ryan, will fight on ShoBox  today.
Coachella Boxing Club’s Randy Caballero (left) poses during the weigh-in Thursday against Manuel Roman at Fantasy Springs Casino. Caballero, along with younger brother Ryan, will fight on ShoBox today. / Omar Ornelas/The Desert Sun

INDIO — Randy Caballero is on the brink of some big things and getting closer to fulfilling his dream, but the Coachella boxer wants to keep his focus and not look too far ahead.

Tonight, Caballero will defend his WBO NABO bantamweight title against Manuel Roman (15-1-3) in the main event that will be televised by Showtime.

A lot will be at stake for Caballero.

Currently, Caballero is ranked No. 6 in the WBO. Also the WBO’s bantamweight division doesn’t have a champion right now after many of the top stars moved up in weight class.

Earlier this year, Caballero was named by ESPN.com as one of the 25 prospects to watch.

Caballero will get a tough challenger in Roman, which should make an interesting fight for television.

“We have a prototypical ShoBox prospect in Caballero, who’s young, unbeaten and had a strong amateur career facing a fighter, Roman, who has had a lot of starts and stops in his career, but has only one loss, and it came on a split decision, so he could be easily undefeated, too,” said Showtime boxing analyst Steve Farhood, who will call the fight for ShoBox. “This is definitely a step up for Caballero.”

It is the second time Caballero will fight on ShoBox, a showcase for top prospects.

Caballero fought on ShoBox in March and Farhood said the performance left something to be desired.

“Early in the fight, he looked like everything you would hope to look like for three rounds,” Farhood said. “Then he slumped and he was not all that impressive. But I saw his last fight, and I thought he looked great, but it was mediocre competition.

“The one thing I learned on ShoBox is don’t judge a person from one fight. So we’ll give Randy another chance to wow us.”

If Caballero can come away with the victory and wow the national audience, it could open some key doors — maybe even a title fight, or elimination bout, very soon.

But trainer and father Marcos Caballero said he got some good advice from a renown trainer that still sticks with him.

“One thing Robert Garcia said was ‘Remember the more you take care of your fighter, the longer his career will last,’” Marcos said. “Whatever they give us, Golden Boy, they know what’s good for Randy. We just have to go in and perform.”

But with four divisions and some unknown champions, Farhood said it’s never too early for a title fight, depending on who holds the title.

“Depending on who he fights, a title fight in the next 12 months or sooner could be within reason,” Farhood said.

Like Caballero’s last fight, tonight will be a 10-round fight, and how Caballero performs throughout could be a key.

It will be Caballero’s 10th fight at Fantasy Springs, where he continually draws boisterous fans. Tonight will be special in that younger brother Ryan will make his professional debut and youngest brother Rommell will be part of an amateur exhibition.

But by fighting so much at home, Caballero’s exposure is limited.

But Randy said he enjoys fighting at home and doesn’t pay attention to the concerns.

“I love fighting in front of my fans,” Randy said. “If I fight somewhere else, it’s harder for them to make it. But a ring is a ring. The people outside won’t be in the ring with you. You’ll be the one taking the punishment.”

Coming into the fight, Caballero said he’s in the best shape he’s ever been. During training camp, he’s felt fresh and sharp. He hasn’t been dogged by injuries or soreness.

“I don’t know what it is, but I feel this is my best training camp,” Randy said. “My father said it, my brother said it, people who have seen me train, they’ve seen the difference in my body in how it recovers and how I fight in the ring.”

Roman will be a rugged opponent for Caballero. His only loss was by split decision.

“He’s a tough guy and his record is the way it is for a reason. I’m not taking anything away from him,” Caballero said. “I know he’s going to come to fight, he wants to win, knowing it’s my hometown. I know he’s training hard, but I don’t think there’s anyone training harder than me now. I’m more than 110 percent.”

By: Leighton Ginn


PALM SPRINGS – Undefeated North American Boxing Organization (NABO) bantamweight champion Randy Caballero will defend his title on the August 24 Golden Boy Promotions card at Fantasy Springs Casino out in the Southern California desert community just east of Palm Springs.

Caballero (15-0, 8 KOs) will be joined on the card by his younger brother Ryan Caballero. It will be Ryan’s professional debut.

Eventually Randy and Ryan may fight on a card that will feature the star of the family, Rommel Caballero. But that is years in the making.

Randy Caballero is scheduled to face Manuel Roman (15-1-3, 6 KOs) in a 10 rounder. Ryan’s opponent has yet to be named.

In the co-main event, Michael Perez (16-1, 10 KOs) will face Fidel Maldonado (13-1, 11 KOs) in a 10 round lightweight bout.

By: Edward Castro


NDIO, CALIF. (August 10, 2012) – The much anticipated double header featuring unbeaten bantamweight rising star Randy Caballero, will mark his 10th appearance at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio. Caballero will defend his NABO title against Mexico’s Manuel Roman in the main event of the hit SHOWTIME Sports® series ShoBox: The New Generation. In the 10-round ShoBox co-feature, talented lightweight prospects collide when Michael Perez squares off against Fidel Maldonado Jr.

Fantasy Springs Resort Casino is also introducing an all new attraction to its fight night line-up. The Mighty Mites, featuring local amateur fighters from 7 to 17 years old, will face off in the ring in-between the eight scheduled fights. “The audience will go crazy for the little guys, they will probably love it more than watching the pros,” says Lee Espinoza, Director of the Coachella Valley Boxing Club, where many successful fighters have started out. Espinoza currently trains about 30 kids in his gym, ages 8 on up. He says, “For the kids this is so special, to be up in the same ring with the professionals that they look up to, they will see their future.”

Meet the Mighty Mites, Thursday, August 23rd at 1pm, at the pre-fight press conference & weigh-in, in LIT Lounge, inside Fantasy Springs. The Live Boxing event is Friday, August 24th, first fight at 5:30pm. The doubleheader will be televised live on SHOWTIME at 11 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast). Tickets, priced at $25, $35 and $45, are on sale now and available for purchase at the Fantasy Springs Box Office, by calling (800) 827-2946 or online at www.fantasyspringsresort.com.


Next card a Caballero family affair

Fantasy Springs and Golden Boy already announced its next fight card, which will feature fan favorite Randy Caballero in the main event.

Caballero (15-0, 8 knockouts) will defend his WBO NABO bantamweight title against Manuel Roman (15-1-3) on Aug. 24 at Fantasy Springs. It will be Caballero’s 10th fight at Fantasy Springs.

What will make the night especially memorable is that younger brotherRyan Caballero will make his professional debut on the card.

By: Leighton Ginn


Coachella’s Randy Caballero toughed it out to win the NABO bantamweight title against Mexico’s Jose Luis Araiza and Indio’s Omar Figueroa beat Ramon Ayala Friday in a lightweight bout that should have won him a regional title had he made weight.

Caballero (14-0, 7 KOs) expected a tough night, but was surprised by Araiza’s (32-6-1, 23 KOs) experience during the main event of the card at Fantasy Springs Casino before a crowd of more than 1,200 people that included Oscar De La Hoya and James “Buster” Douglas.

Coachella’s Caballero won the fight by unanimous decision but was not satisfied with the victory.

“I wasn’t myself,” said Caballero, 21. “I kept getting caught with those overhand rights.”

A counter right hand followed by a left hook stunned Araiza a bit in round two as the action began to heat up. Caballero seemed more comfortable with his distance and timing.

Araiza landed a few clean shots on the fast approaching Caballero in round three. A left-right combination landed squarely, followed by a short crisp left hook to the jaw in a rather slow round.

The fourth round saw a few good exchanges with a right uppercut sneaking in for Caballero and a four punch combination for Araiza to the body. A long counter right by Caballero was the last clean scoring blow of the round.

Araiza turned things around in rounds six and seven by landing big shots and mixing in blows to the body. Caballero stopped the rally by resorting to the jab in round seven. He also used more distance forcing Araiza to walk in to more punches.

Caballero became slicker with his punches and began to sharpshoot the Araiza. But the last two rounds saw both engage with Araiza landing the overhand rights and Caballero the shorter uppercuts inside.

All three judges scored it for Caballero 97-93 and 98-92 twice, giving the Coachella fighter the vacant NABO bantamweight title.

“It feels good my name is right there now,” Caballero said about winning the title. “But I got to make sure I never make those mistakes again.”