IOWA CITY, IOWA–(BASN)–Showtime featured the final of their bantamweight championship series featuring Abner Mares fighting Joseph Agbeko for the Showtime championship but before the main event, the raging bull Vic Darchinyan taking on the boxer Anselmo Moreno. In the opening round, Darchinyan took the attack to Moreno, trying to get Moreno to open up. At the 1:30 mark, Darchinyan connected on a left that forced Moreno to retreat. Moreno managed to slip a few of Darchinyan’s powerful left and while Darchinyan managed to connect on a couple of lefts, most of his big shots missed their targets.
Abner Mares and Joseph Agbeko
In the second round, Moreno excellent boxing allowed him to connect on big left hands to counter the left’s coming from Darchinyan and Moreno jab allowed him to control the early rounds but at the 1:30 seconds of the fourth round, Darchinyan finally connected on a heavy handed left for the first time in a couple of rounds . Frustration of Darchinyan showed up as he wrestle and threw Moreno to the ground, which cost him a point.
Darchinyan pressed Moreno in the fifth round and finally trapped Moreno in the corner at the end of the round including a straight left that connected. Moreno continued to box effectively as he nailed Darchinyan with some solid lefts after right hand jabs while Darchinyan best punches in the round were left to the body.
Moreno played matador in the seventh round as Darchinyan bull rushes simply went pass Moreno and in the middle of the round, Moreno nailed Darchinyan with brutal body shots. By the end of the round Moreno showed a variety of punches including body punches followed quick head shots.
Moreno picked Darchinyan apart as he started to throw power shots that slowed Darchinyan, who looked like a fighter with no answers for the slick boxing Moreno. This continued in the ninth round and through most of the tenth round even though Darchinyan managed to connect on some hard lefts but Moreno showed mastery of the ring.
In the final stanza, Darchinyan attacked Moreno with the idea of knocking him out but other than pushing Moreno down, Moreno slick boxing simply avoided Darchinyan attacks and wild left; thus producing an easy decision. Darchinyan suffered a major setback while Moreno sent a message to the rest of Bantamweight division; he was for real.
Abner Mares and Joseph Agbeko both started fast as Agbeko used his jab to set up his combination as he started a sustained body shots to slow Mares down. In the second rounds, both fighters jabbed effectively and Agbeko seemed willing to trade left hooks as Mares connected on a solid hook in between Agbeko left hooks as he trapped Agbeko on the rope to unleashed some additional hooks. Mares returned to the corner with cut over his right eye and he started aggressively in the third round.
Mares showed boxing skills as he was able to connect on solid body shots as follow up as Agbeko continued to throw body shots. By the end of the fourth round, Mares started to garner a little edge despite the cut caused by a hard Agbeko jab.
In the fifth round, both fighters exchanged sharp blows as Agbeko connected on a solid left hook and Mares with a counter right in a fight in which each round is close. Mares began the sixth round by boxing and connected on solid combinations as his right proved accurate. Mares appeared to have the edge going into the eighth round as he had connected on more power punches but Agbeko jab appeared to come back as he aimed that jab at Mares eyes, opening up the cut. Mares ended the round by digging into the body against Agbeko. In the ninth round, Agbeko started the round by jabbing but in the middle of the round, a left hook stopped Agbeko for a brief moment. Agbeko jab returned over the last thirty seconds.
In the tenth round saw both men delivered blows in a close round that may been determined by a Mares straight left and right near the end of the round. This was a round featured Agbeko jab and Mares body shots. The eleventh round saw another tight round until the last twenty seconds as Mares connected with a solid right followed by a series of power punches including three rights punctuated by a left hook. Mares pressed the action in the last round and ended the fight with a flurry as a wild exchanged ended the fight with Mares getting the better of it.
Mares won the fight by 118-110 by a convincing margin even though the fight may have been in the ring but there was no doubt that he won. For Mares, he became the king of Bantamweight.
Cotto Gets his Revenge
The big event in New York was Miguel Cotto seeking revenge against Antonio Margarito but before the big event there were three undercard fights to whet the fans appetite. Michael Jones began the early rounds against Sebastian Lujan by easily out boxing his opponent. Over the first three rounds, Lujan had a hard time connecting as Jones connected on some sweet combinations.
In the fifth, Lujan managed to connect on a few more shots but after the sixth round, Jones returned to controlling bout with his boxing skills as he simply started to wear Lujan down with his blistering combinations. Each round started to look same as Mike Jones simply used Lujan as a punching bag and this fight started look like a sparring session as he won an easy unanimous decision.
The second bout was a rematch for one of the best fights of 2011 as Pawel Wolek challenged Delvin Rodriguez. The first three rounds appeared to leave off from their last fight as they pounded each other. Rodriguez used left upper cuts and right hand to score big whereas Wolek connected on right hands which scored on Rodriguez’s head.
Delvin Rodriguez opened up on Wolak in the fourth round as he bloodied Wolak nose while stunning him with left hooks and uppercuts. In the sixth and seventh round, Wolak landed the harder punches as Rodriguez slowed down but after appeared to be hurt in the seventh round, Rodriguez recovered enough to throw quick combinations and Wolak eyes were bleeding at the end of the round.
The ninth round saw two tied fighters who continued to grind it out.
Rodriguez used his hand speed to throw in combinations as Wolak right hand landed to the temple of Rodriguez but in the tenth, Rodriguez had Wolak in trouble as Rodriguez landed combinations to Wolak head. Wolak struggled to stay on his feet over the last minute as Rodriguez tried for the knock out his opponent by throwing punches in bunches but had to be satisfied with a decision victory. In a round in which many rounds were competitive; Rodriguez quick combinations gave him the edge as he won the easy decision on the scorecard.
Brandon Rios defended his lightweight championship against John Murray. The fight started with each fighter pounding each other in the pits as they traded hooks and uppercuts. Murray started the third round by going after Rios, who attempted to establish a jab while trading uppercuts to the body. Both men exchanged power shots and Murray’s eye started to swell but he continued to fire back with several uppercuts and throughout the round, Murray ended up with a bloody nose but he landed several punches of his own.
Murray settle on the inside of Rios, who attempted to jab but Murray countered with body shots but Rios connected two hooks and a left uppercut, which opened up Murray bloody nose and the challenger looked like he was slowing down as he started to eat Rios’ power shots.
Over the next two rounds, Rio continued to pound Murray to the body and in a fight that was close, a low blow by Murray cost him a point at the end of the seventh round. Blood flowed out of Murray’smouth and nose from Rios shots. This continued over the ninth and tenth round as Rios continued to pound Murray. Going into the eleventh round, Rios took advantage of a tired Murray as he connected on uppercuts after uppercuts but Murray would not go down despite taking punishment. The referee stopped the fight as Rios won a tough battle
Miguel Cotto started the fight by moving and popping his jab, landing the classic one-two to Margarito’s face. Cotton pounded Margarito with a right hand to the face followed by a quick left to the body. Cotto had a strong opening round as he punctuate it with a left to Margarito’s face.
Cotto continued his domination by using his boxing skills to hit Margarito at will and his right hands snapped Margarito’s head back. Margarito continued to move forward but he is just getting hit with shots after shots as he taken a lot of punches over the first two rounds. Margarito closes the distance in the third round but he is still getting stung by Cotto’s punches. Cotto punches opened a cut underneath Margarito right eye.
Margarito forced Cotto into a firefight as he pounds Cotto head and they start fighting toe to toe. Margarito appeared not to be bothered by Cotto punches but a left hook momentarily staggers Margarito. Cotto and Margarito exchanged hooks but so far, Cotto held most of the cards.
Over the next three rounds, Cotto appeared to be holding up to Margarito pressure as he connected with left hooks, targeting Margarito’s eyes even though in the round five, Margarito landed left hooks to Cotto and the round was the most competitive at this point and Margarito even talked to Cotto. Going into the second half, Cotto boxing proved decisive but the question that remained, could Cotto hold up?
Margarito right eye started to swell close at the beginning of seventh round but it didn’t stop him from moving forward and even lands a right uppercut. Cotto counter with two punches to Margarito bad eye and this continued into the eight round, as Margarito is having problems finding Cotto while Cotto continues to pop solid shots, left hooks or right cross into Margarito’s face.
Margarito started to look like a beaten fighter even though he continued his quest to win. In a career of wars, Margarito looked like that those previous fights have taken their mark on his body. Cotto kept ripping shots and Margartio couldn’t seem to get any consistent offense off. Unlike their first fight, Margarito was the fighter being worn down. In between rounds, the doctor looked at Margarito eyes and stopped the fight, allowing Cotto to win by TKO. For Cotto, this was a sweet revenge and for Margarito, the end of a career that has ended in doubt about how good he was or if he was simply the hand of plaster.