Guerrero defeats Kamegai, but fails to impress
CARSON, Calif. (June 22, 2014) – Former four-division world champion Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero (32-2-1, 18 KOs), of Gilroy, Calif., capped a spectacularly exciting night of ferocious non-stop action where each fight was better than the last with a Fight Of The Year candidate 12-round unanimous decision over Yoshihiro Kamegai (24-2-1, 21 KOs), of Sapporo, Japan, Saturday on SHOWTIME®.
In a collision of two highly-skilled, exciting southpaw featherweights in the co-feature on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING, international amateur standout Vasyl Lomachenko (2-1, 1 KO), of Ukraine, won a hard-fought 12-round majority decision over previously undefeated yet untested Gary Russell Jr. (24-1, 14 KOs), of Capitol Heights, Md., to capture the vacant WBO world 126-pound crown.
The telecast opened with former two-division world champion Devon Alexander (26-2, 14 KOs), of St. Louis, winning a hard-fought unanimous 10-round decision in a terrific, fast-paced scrap over determined Jesus Soto Karass (28-10-3, 18 KOs), of Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico
“Golden Boy Promotions is accustomed to putting on tremendous fights at the StubHub Center, and tonight was no exception,’’ Golden Boy President Oscar De La Hoya said afterward. “Each and every fight was fast-paced and action-packed, and all the fans who turned out to watch boxing at its best went home fully entertained. We look forward to the July 12 (SHOWTIME PPV) and Aug. 9 fights on SHOWTIME and to many more in the future.”
Guerrero, making his first start in 13 months, won by the scores 117-111 twice and 116-112. There were no knockdowns but both warriors pounded on each other and were battered and bruised at the finish at which time they were given a standing ovation by the 5,711 in attendance.
“It was a rough fight,’’ Guerrero, whose left eye was cut and swollen shut, said. “I didn’t want to get caught into his style, but right out of the gate I did. I’m not a runner, I will fight. He is a tough, great fighter. I want to give the fans what they want. I was in great shape. I took the shots very well because of the shape I am in because of CrossFit.”
“I wanted to get on my toes but I fell right back into banging with him. I have been out for a year and it’s time to get back to work again. I am getting back in the gym right away. He hit me with a great shot to the left eye and I had to get right back up and keep fighting. There’s no backing down.
“There are a lot of fighters out there. We will enjoy this win and then get back to seeing who is out there. My opponent came in 110 percent better than what you see on TV because it was his opportunity to shine in the SHOWTIME main event. This was his opportunity and he came to fight.”
The gamest of the game, Kamegai, said his motivation was propelled by the fact that he flew all the way from Japan for this chance.
“I’m OK with the decision,’’ Kamegai said. “My fighting spirit stems from the fact I flew all this way to win. All through the fight I kept thinking I am here to win, I felt he shook me a couple of times and weakened my legs, but I hurt him a few times, too. But he recovered quickly.’’