At the Forum in Inglewood, CA, Saturday night No. 3 WBC Light heavyweight Joe Smith, Jr. of Long Island, NY, lost to No. 3 WBA Cuban Sullivan Barrera, of Miami, FL, for the WBA International title which was broadcasted over HBO by Golden Boy Promotions Saturday night along with two World Super Featherweight title bouts successfully defended by the champions.
Light heavyweight Joe Smith, Jr., 23-2 (19), of Long Island, NY, lost a lopsided decision to Cuban Sullivan Barrera, 20-1 (14), of Miami, FL, over ten rounds for the WBA Continental title.
In the opening round a Smith left hook to the forehead dropped Barrera. Barrera bounced back up until the bell. In the second round Barrera rocked Smith with a short right to the head. Barrera used a good jab and was out working Smith throughout the round. In the third round Barrera landed five punches without return from Smith. Smith continued to cover up while Barrera was much busier. In the fourth round a right upper cut from Barrera on the chin of Smith hurt him. It was another good round by Barrera. In the fifth round a right from Barrera to the head rocked Smith. Smith momentarily switched to southpaw returning to orthodox. Barrera continued to out work Smith.
In the sixth round a lead right from Barrera to the chin of Smith made him hold. A straight right from Barrera followed by a right uppercut rocked Smith who came right back forcing Barrera to the ropes at the bell. In the seventh round Smith landed a lead right to the chin of Barrera. Barrera continued to push Smith backwards using both hands to score well against Smith. Smith looked exhausted by the end of the round. In the eighth round continued to be first backing Smith up. In the ninth round a right from Smith to the head of Barrera hurt him. Barrera throwing overhand rights mostly missing. In the tenth and final round Barrera knocked Smith into the ropes with a lead right to the chin. The bout was changed from 12 to 10 by the promoter.
Judges had it 96-93, 97-92 twice. This writer had it 98-91.
In the Main Event WBC super featherweight champion Miguel “El Alacran” Berchelt, 32-1 (28), of Mexico, won a lopsided decision over former champion and now No. 1 ranked southpaw Takashi Miura, 31-4-2 (24), of Tokyo, JAP, over 12 rounds.
In the opening round Berchelt danced around the ring landing punches against the oncoming Miura who landed few punches. Berchelt landed a left hook to the head of Miura causing his right glove to touch the canvas. Referee Raul Caiz, Sr. gave him the 8 count. In the second round Berchelt easily outscored the defensive minded Miura who was rocked at the bell and immediately held on. In the third round Berchelt controlled the first half of the round while Miura finally got his offense working taking the second half of the round. In the fourth round Berchelt was landing quite well until a lead left by Miura stopped him in his tracks. Berchelt came right back and continued outworking Miura. A right hand to the head of Miura at the bell got his attention.
In the fifth round Berchelt continued to dominate Miura countering well while moving around the ring and landing a hard right to the chin of Miura hurting him. In the sixth round Miura got the attention of Berchelt with a lead left to the chin. At the end of the round both boxers landed well with single shots to the chin. In the seventh round Miura continues to follow Berchelt around the ring failing to cut the ring off. Berchelt countered the oncoming Miura with a double left jab followed by a straight right to the chin of Miura. In the eighth round Miura continued to chase Berchelt only to run into counter punches.
In the ninth round Miura landed a solid left to the mid-section of Berchelt. Miura was desperate knowing he was well behind throwing wild punches. Berchelt continued to counter Miura well. In the tenth round a wild miss by Miura was countered by a combination by Berchelt. Miura landed several left body shots realizing too late in the fight kill the body and the head will fall. Berchelt landed the best punch of the round a left hook to the liver of Miura. At the end of the round Miura has swelling around his right eye and was examined by the ring physician. In the eleventh round Miura landed a pair of left hands to the head of Berchelt. Berchelt came back to land four punches without return from Miura. At the end of the round Berchelt landed a right to the head of Miura but was countered by a solid left to the head. In the twelfth and final round it got sloppy with both boxers throwing wild haymakers. Berchelt landed three left hooks to the ribs of Miura.
Judges scored 116-111, 119-108, 120-109 and this writer 119-108.
“I knew it was going to be a tough fight but I knew I was going to win. He landed hard lefts to the body hurting me on occasions. I’m ready to fight the best (Lomachenko),” said Berchelt.
In the co-feature WBA super featherweight champion southpaw Jezreel Corrales, 22-1 (8), of Panama City, PAN, defeated No. 10 ranked Robinson Castellanos, 24-13 (14), of Mexico, at 0:31 of the tenth round by technical decision.
In the opening round it was all Corrales whose awkward style with right hand low from the southpaw easily outworked Castellanos. In the second round the referee Jerry Cantu warned both fighters after a clash of heads causing a cut on the forehead of Castellanos. In the third round with Corrales forcing the head of Castellanos down was hit low getting a minute to recover. The round was a good one by both boxers mixing it up. In the fourth round Castellanos dropped Corrales who was off balance with a right to the head. Both fighters were cut by head butts. Castellanos dropped Corrales with a right hook to the chin. Corrales suffered from a cut outside of his right eye.
In the fifth round of a very sloppy fight both boxers continued to slug it out in another close fight. In the sixth round Corrales came back edging out Castellanos in a very close and busy round by both boxers. In the seventh round Castellanos was landing well with short rights to the head of Corrales. Corrales landed a good left hand and followed it up shortly afterwards with another left dropping Castellanos who blocked the punch with his right hand by a Corrales left that had enough force it knocked him down. In the eighth round Corrales was boxing with both hands to his side in a very competitive round by both boxers.
In the ninth round Castellanos landed a lead right that was countered by a left from Corrales to the head. Castellanos suffered a small cut under his right eye. In the tenth round Corrales seemed ahead until a accidental clash of heads caused by Corrales caused a nasty cut under the right eye on the cheek bone of Castellanos causing the ring physician to call a halt.
Judge Caiz 94-93, Russell 96-92 and Young 94-94 while this writer had it 94-93.