It was a far cry from a title bout at Caesars Palace, but some of Washington's better young professional boxers fought at the Armory last night and the result was a modest but satisfying show for the 347 who turned out to watch.
Lloyd (Honeyboy) Taylor, 20, a welterweight from the Southeast, won his 10th straight as a professional by knocking out Danny Harold, a muscleman from New Jersey, in the second round of their scheduled eight-round cofeature. It was Taylor's ninth victory by knockout.
In the feature event, veteran Washington middleweight Irish Mike Baker scored a technical knockout over a stand-in opponent from Florida named Costello King.
Baker, 30, upped his record to 47-13-1 when he staggered King with an uppercut in the seventh round and followed with a right hook that momentarily blinded King, who called for his trainer to throw in the towel.
Earlier, World Boxing Association light-heavyweight champion Dwight Braxton put on a four-round exhibition with sparring partner Richie Kates that was uneventful.
Promoter Rock Newman said the aim of his first venture into local fight promoting was to offer quality boxing to Washington, which produces many good fighters. Taylor's performance and two others by rising young boxers proved that there is fistic talent in the city.
In one preliminary, Darryl Smith of the Northeast won his first pro fight with a four-round unanimous decision over fellow junior middleweight Darlton Swift. Smith, a muscular left-hander, bored in tenaciously against the taller Swift, whose record fell to 7-5-1.
Bob Moore, 21, of the Northeast, a welterweight, showed determination in a four-round decision over Mike James of Hillcrest, Md.
It was James' first pro loss and came after he stunned Moore with a left hook in the third round. But Moore shook off the blow and came back to pursue James and lock up the decision.
Moore said that when he was hit, "I said to myself, 'Oh, he hit me. He's not supposed to do that.' "
It was that sort of homey evening.
Taylor, who was unyielding in his pursuit of Harold in the cofeature, later hoisted his 2-year-old son onto his shoulder and carried him through the crowd, introducing him.
Taylor is a product of trainer Dave Jacobs, who said the fighter came to him five years ago and "at that time I don't think he could have knocked a chicken off a barn."
"I knew it was just a matter of time before my body shots got to him," Taylor said after his victory.
Jacobs said he plans to move Taylor up to 10-round bouts. "Just like in school. We're moving up a grade."
Newman said he was pleased with the turnout in his initial venture and hopes to have another fight card lined up at the Armory in late June. Within a year, he said, "We'll have a title fight here."
In other bouts, junior welterweight Thomas Baker of Washington defeated George Burton of Baltimore in an eight-round split decision; junior welterweight Tyrone Crawley of Philadelphia defeated Tony Stern of Miami in six rounds by unanimous decision and middleweight Dexter Mason of Palmer Park knocked out Ronald Dominique of Washington in the first round of a scheduled four-rounder.