Boxing Results: Mauricio Lara destroys Josh Warrington in 9th round knockout
By Charles Brun: Mexican warrior Mauricio Lara (22-2, 15 KOs) pulled off a big upset in coming in and knocking out the heavy favorite Josh Warrington (30-1, 7 KOs) in the ninth round in a fight that will send shockwaves through the boxing world.
The former IBF featherweight champion Warrington made a big mistake of choosing to trade with the heavy-handed Lara, who dropped him in the fourth and ninth rounds with left hooks.
In the first round, Warrington was already hurt from a monstrous left hook from the 22-year-old Lara that caught him on the button. In what is rare for Warrington, he actually backed off and played it coy for the remainder of the round.
But in the second round, Warrington abandoned his cautious approach and traded with Lara with a flurry of shots. Warrington looked good up until the last 20 seconds when he backed off after tasting another big left hook from Lara.
“Josh got reckless, and he’s too brave for his own good,” said Warrington’s promoter Eddie Hearn. “He almost got back into the fight but Lara hurt him too bad. It’s a huge shock. It doesn’t always go your way.”
In the third round, Warrington fought well, landing nice combinations and body shots. Going into the fourth round, Warrington looked like he was able to win the fight based on his combination punching.
He looked like he had more boxing ability than Lara, who didn’t possess the same talent. The difference in ability between the two was quite evident, but Lara had the power, size, and youth on his side.
Most boxing fans would agree the contest should have been stopped in the fourth round after Lara knocked Warrington down for the first time. Warrington barely beat the count, and he was all over the place for the remainder of the round. At the bell, Warrington could hardly stand as he walked drunkenly back to his corner.
At that point, Warrington’s corner should have considered pulling him out of the fight to save him from taking unnecessary punishment. It was clear that Warrington was hurt enough to where he wasn’t going to recover during the short break between the fourth and fifth rounds.
Warrington’s corner decided to leave him out there, and he took a beating in rounds 5, 6, 7, and 8 before the fateful 9th round.
In the 9th, Lara knocked Warrington, 30, flat with a peach of a left hook, and referee Howard Foster subsequently stopped the fight. It’s unclear whether Warrington could have gotten back up or not because Foster pulled the plug.
Warrington looked decent in the fifth round, and although he was clearly still hurt, he was fighting smart by moving instead of engaging. Unfortunately for Warrington, he chose to resume brawling with Lara in the sixth round, and he was once again hurt by a big shot.
After the sixth, one could tell that Warrington wasn’t going to be able to make it through the fight without getting knocked out. He was getting hurt too frequently, and he didn’t have the ability to keep away from Lara. Even when Warrington was on the outside, Lara was able to touch him with long left hooks.
In hindsight, Warrington should have grabbed and held Lara after he was hurt in the ninth, but he chose to retreat in a straight line. Lara went for the coup de grace and caught Warrington with a vicious left hook that sent him down flat on his back on the canvas.
The loss for Warrington potentially ruins his plans on fighting for a world title. With Warrington’s popularity, he can probably still challenge for a title against one of the champions at 126, but it wouldn’t be a good situation.
Lara’s form when throwing shots looked incredibly awkward and uncoordinated at times. He threw hooks from a long-range that frequently missed and didn’t have a lot of power due to the distance they were launched at. It didn’t matter.
Lara’s unorthodox fighting style was all wrong for Warrington, who looked uncomfortable from the start with how he threw his punches.
Interestingly, the left hook that hurt Warrington in the fourth round came when Lara threw it as he was falling away. Warrington was throwing his own left hook simultaneously, and he wasn’t really for the punch.
“I didn’t think he would beat the #1 featherweight in the world, but he did,” said promoter Eddie Hearn about Warrington getting stopped. “He got caught with a shot [in the fourth], but he never recovered.
For Josh Warrington, it’s a crushing board. It’s back to the drawing board. No excuses, he got beat by a hungry Mexican fighter who changed his life tonight. We’ll look; he’s going to want to take this man on again after tonight; he’s going to want a long, long rest.
We do have the opportunity to rematch this young man if Warrington wants to. We need to let him come to terms with a brutal defeat.
Tonight showed why we love boxing so much because one punch can change everything. It changed the career of Josh Warrington, but he’ll be back. Once he recovers, he’ll be back again,” said Hearn.
Warrington was badly hurt moments before the knockout in the ninth round, and he retreated to the ropes, where Lara then caught him with a perfect left hook on the jab that put him down hard.
If Warrington does choose to use his rematch clause in his contract that Hearn was talking about, he needs to wait a while before meeting up with Lara again.
If Warrington faces Lara too soon, he’s likely to get knocked out again. He needs a long rest after the punishment he took tonight. Warrington had already been out of the ring for over a year, so he may need another long break before he returns. Knowing Warrington, he’ll push to fight Lara as soon as possible, and we could see the same thing happen to him.
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