Lara decisions Rodriguez; Beterbiev stops Johnson
By Jim Dower: In a dull mismatch, WBA World junior middleweight champion Erislandy Lara (21-2-2, 12 KOs) easly beat fringe contender Delvin Rodriguez (28-8-4, 16 KOs) by a one-sided 12 round unanimous decision on Friday night on Spike TV on Premier Boxing Champions from the UCI Pavilion in Chicago. The final judges’ scores were 120-107, 120-107 and 120-107.
Lara knocked the over-matched Rodriguez to the canvas in the 6th. But instead of trying to finish Rodriguez off in that round and in the following rounds, Lara continued to peck away at Rodriguez with mostly single shots. The crowd booed Lara constantly from the 5th round on. It was one of Lara’s better performances, but it was still very boring to watch.
#2 IBF, #4 WBA, #4 WBC, #5 WBO light heavyweight contender Artur Beterbiev (9-0, 9 KOs) put on a punching display in knocking a very defensive Alexander Johnson (16-3, 7 KOs) down four times en route to stopping him in the 7th round.
Beterbiev knocked the 33-year-old Johnson down twice in the 5th and two more times in the 7th before the fight was halted at 1:38 of the 7th. Beterbiev dropped Johnson with a short left hook for the first knockdown in the 7th. Moments later, Beterbiev finished off Johnson with a chopping right hand to the head that sent Johnson falling backwards on the canvas.
In the 5th, Beterbiev dropped Johnson with a left to the head. Later in the round, Beterbiev dropped Johnson hard with a right uppercut to the head. Johnson’s nose was bleeding as the round ended.
Johnson looked like he was just trying to survive most of the fight. He did a lot of holding and moving, and not a lot of actual fighting. It was all defensive stuff, and that forced Beterbiev to stalk Johnson around the ring and nail him with mostly single shots due to his movement. When Beterbiev would corner Johnson, he would end up getting held frequently by Johnson.
Johnson had a good plan in how to survive, but his plan was poor in trying to win the fight. I only had Johnson winning the 6th, and that was only because Beterbiev looked a little tired from all the punches he threw in the 5th while trying to finish Johnson off.
Other boxing results on the card:
Domonique Dolton TKO 6 Victor Fonseca
Eddie Ramirez TKO 3 Gerardo Cuevas
Ronald Hearns TKO 5 David Thomas
Ramiro Carrillo TKO 3 Dedrick Bell