After defeating Nick Casal back in early ’09 on ShoBox: The Next Generation, the future looked bright for Tijuana super featherweight Marvin Quintero (21-3, 17KOs). Once he got through Wes Ferguson some months later, it was only a matter of time for Quintero to follow in the footsteps of stable mate Antonio DeMarco and challenge for a title sooner than later but faced Tyrone Harris and the train got derailed via an eight round TKO and Quintero has been trying to get it back on course ever since. He gets his next opportunity this Friday night on the semi-main event of ESPN’s “Friday Night Fights” from the Pechanga Resort and Casino when he faces late sub Juan Santiago (13-6-1, 8KOs) in a scheduled ten rounder. Quintero originally of Culiacan, MX, was supposed to face hard hitting former title challenger Ji Hoon Kim (22-7, 18KOs) but that face off was scratched after Kim was diagnosed with a detached retina earlier this week.
Quintero is a quick and tricky southpaw with an intelligent come-forward style coupled with relentless pressure. A seven year pro, Quintero amassed superb amateur career under the tutelage of Romulo Quirarte at the CREA gym in the heart of Tijuana where Quintero is sought after as a tough sparring partner by the likes of stable mate Antonio DeMarco as well as WBC lightweight champ Humberto “Zorrita” Soto, title contender Mercito Gesta and up and coming prospect Antonio Orozco among others.
Despite the downgrade on paper of his next opponent, Quintero is charging full steam ahead with his training as he knows that his next performance can be the deciding factor of in which direction his career continues.
“To train with everything. We were supposed to fight before hand with a very tough undefeated fighter but they postponed it a month,” Quintero said of the opportunity to fight on a nationally televised event. “That wasn’t a problem since we were training hard for that fight. Now they offered us this fight and we must take advantage of them because opportunities are few and far between.”
Quintero was slated to face New Mexico up and coming prospect Archie Ray Marquez earlier this year but the fight fell through because of Marquez’s legal issues. After the Harris loss, bounced back with a second round KO of journey man Walter Estrada and Tyler Ziolkowski met the similar fate in the same round to close out ’09. Quintero quietly kept winning in ’10 when he stopped Luis Gonzalez and Jean Javier Sotelo in two and five rounds, respectively, en route to his next test, tough African Daniel Attah in November of last year. Unfortunately, the Mexican amateur stand out succumbed to the heavy handed Attah in two rounds on the undercard of Juan Manuel Lopez-Rafael Marquez bout, “I don’t really remember much from that fight, he completely disconnected me. The last thing I remember was telling my trainer after the first round, ‘don’t worry, we are going to win’ because I felt very strong. I felt I had the tools to win the fight. In the second round, I didn’t see the punch. I woke up on the canvas. He disconnected me completely. He is a very tough fighter, very strong. It was a bad night for us.”
Despite the devastating loss on such a large stage, the twenty-four year old Quintero never questioned his career or its trajectory since as he states, he will know when it will be time to re-think his career choice, “I have a dream and when I set out to do something, I achieve it and to this point it has been like that. I think I have enough reasoning to know until when I need to keep going or to retire and it’s not time yet.”
To come back from the Attah loss, Quintero was sent up to the frigid weather of Grand Island, Nebraska, last February where he easily defeated Lowell Brownfield in three on the undercard of the DeMarco-Sanchez WBC Silver title fight, a break that he is grateful for.
“It was an easy fight but I enjoyed the trip to go fight there because I had the opportunity to go support DeMarco so I was grateful to be given the chance to fight on the undercard of a championship fight and more so since it was DeMarco and we are from the same gym,” Quintero said.
Now what might have been a showcase fight for the Korean Ji Hoon Kim on American television has turned into an opportunity for Quintero to show why he deserves to get back in the mix. With out much fan fare, the introspective Quintero is frugal with what viewers can expect from him in his next outing, “They can expect a great fight. I have prepared myself very well and I hope the fans and ESPN like the fight.”
After several appearances on ShoBox and performances on major fight under cards, Quintero is certain that he has the full backing of not only his team which consists of well respected trainer Romulo Quirarte and manager Antonio “Cañas” Lozada but his promoter, Gary Shaw.
“I think that they trust me. They know that the defeat against Attah wasn’t me getting beat for ten rounds and then get knocked out, it was only one punch,” Quintero said of why he thinks is the reason for his pending TV appearance. “Like I said before, I got disconnected. We weren’t able to do anything. That is why I think they believe in me and I want that to continue and that is why I am doing everything I can to come out with the win.”
With a spectacular win, it would be only fair for Quintero to ask for bigger and better things but as he says, that not his style, “I don’t ask for those type of promises. I feel that first I have to win this fight and then God will choose what is next for me.”