Super welterweight reunites with Roach

In his quest to become one of the best, unbeaten super welterweight Vanes Martirosyan has reunited with one of the best.

After spending a year with Ronnie Shields as his trainer, the rising Martirosyan (23-0 with 14 knockouts) rehired Freddie Roach, who trained him for his first 17 fights.

Martirosyan, who will fight tonight on the Top Rank Azteca Television boxing card at Star of the Desert Arena in Primm against veteran Harrison Cuello, said he left Shields because he thought something was missing in his development.

“I was still winning, but I left Ronnie because I didn’t think our signals were connecting,” Martirosyan said. “I talked it over with my father and my uncle, and it was a hard decision. But at the end of the day, I have to do what’s best for me.”

Teaming with Roach, who trains the world’s best fighter in Manny Pacquiao, and assistant Michael Moorer, Martirosyan said he already notices a difference.

“I’m more explosive,” he said. “I feel like I have more power, better footwork. You’ll see Vanes at his best (tonight).”

Martirosyan, 23, is coming off an eight-round unanimous decision over Billy Lyell on Feb. 7 in Anaheim, Calif. Martirosyan was dominant but hurt his right hand midway through the fight.

The hand is fine, and in his eight-round bout tonight against Cuello (16-9-2, 13 KOs), he’ll be facing a left-hander from the Bronx who likes to attack. Martirosyan said he’ll be patient and not get into a slugfest.

“I know he’s a tough fighter who throws a lot of wild punches,” Martirosyan said. “I’ll wait for my opening and look to counter against him.”

The seven-bout card includes super featherweight Diego Magdaleno (9-0, three KOs) of Las Vegas and lightweight Sharif Bogere (7-0, four KOs) in six-round bouts. In the main event, Brandon Rios (19-0-1, 12 KOs) will face Oscar Meza (18-2, 16 KOs) in a 10-round lightweight fight.

The first bell is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.

Contact reporter Steve Carp at scarp@ or 702-387-2913.

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