Eddie Hearn agrees with Wood being pulled out by Ben Davison in seventh

By Boxing News - 02/19/2023 - Comments

By Craig Daly: Eddie Hearn agrees with the decision trainer Ben Davison made in throwing in the towel to pull WBA featherweight champion Leah Wood (26-3, 16 KOs) out of the fight after he’d been knocked down hard by a left hook from knockout artist Mauricio Lara (26-2-1, 19 KOs) on Saturday night at the Motorpoint Arena in Nottingham, England.

Hearn notes that Wood was out on his feet after he got back to his feet from the knockdown in the seventh, and he feels that Lara would have had enough time in the nine seconds remaining in the round to land a dozen punches, and it only would have taken one with the condition Leah was in at the time to finish him.

Wood looked like he was on unsteady legs after he got back to his feet from the devasting left hook that he took from Lara. Hearn was surprised that the referee allowed the fight to continue because Wood looked gone.

Davison was watching closely, and he saw the condition that Wood was in when he beat the count. He knew that if he’d allowed the fight to continue, Wood would have been knocked out in the same manner that Emilio Sanchez was by Lara in their fight last year.

Sanchez was in the same condition Wood was in after he’d been dropped by Lara, and he was immediately knocked out and badly hurt by a powerful left hook.

Sanchez looked like an accordion with the way he was bent backward with his legs under him in a painful-looking manner. When a fighter is that hurt against Lara, there’s little chance of recovering.

The rematch clause that Wood has allows him to get a second chance against Lara, and he can start from scratch and make sure he doesn’t get overly aggressive as hie did tonight.

Wood got a little greedy

“It was an unbelievable fight. Lara started very well, hurt Leigh early in the fight, and then Leigh boxed the perfect fight from the third round. I gave him every single round after that. He just boxed beautifully,” said Eddie Hearn to Matchroom Boxing in the post-fight interview after Mauricio Lara knocked out Leigh Wood on Saturday night in Nottingham, England.

“He hurt Lara repeatedly, wore him down to the body. Lara looked like he was on the verge of sulking because he couldn’t seem to get a hold of Leigh Wood, and just when Leigh Wood seemed to gain confidence and sense, Mauricio Lara was hurt, and he just tried to step on the gas a little bit too much.

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“He got a little bit too greedy, and he traded up left hooks [in the seventh]. Mauricio Lara said in the build-up to this fight, ‘If you switch off against me, the fight will be over,’ and that’s exactly what happened,” said Hearn.

Ben Davison made the correct decision

“I think sometimes it’s easy to say after the fact,” said Hearn when asked about his thoughts on Ben Davison throwing in the towel to pull Wood out in the seventh. “What was left was eight or nine seconds in the round. That’s more than enough time for Mauricio Lara to land a dozen hurtful shots, and he only would have needed one.

“Leigh was completely out on his feet. He managed to leave the ring on his feet with a rematch clause, and if the fight had continued, there’s every chance that he didn’t leave on his feet. It’s all very well people being brave, ‘Let it go, let it go,’ but ultimately, Ben Davison has the hardest job in the world to protect his fighter, and Leigh Wood was in no position to continue in that fight.

“In fact,  I was surprised the referee allowed the fight to go on because he was out on his feet, and that was a tough decision, and it was probably a 50-50 for the ref. Ben Davison would have looked at Mauricio Lara and been ready to pounce, and one shot is all it would take to end his career, so I’m happy to see him safe and in the changing room,” said Hearn