Cuban maestro Erislandy Lara was virtually perfect against Delvin Rodriguez Friday night as he trounced the Dominican Republic native over 12 rounds to retain his WBA super welterweight championship. In what amounted to Cuban water torture, Lara won every second of every round to win 120-107 on all three ringside scorecards.
The main event of Premier Boxing Champions on Spike TV’s Friday Night Lights Out series, Lara dazzled his foe in front of a near-sellout crowd inside the UIC Pavilion in Chicago.
Lara used his brilliant southpaw jab to set up his surgical straight left hand repeatedly, two punches that kept Rodriguez at a safe distance from the start. Rodriguez tried in vain to get inside, but Lara’s movement and terrific counter punching prevented everything. Lara struck when he wanted, avoided mostly everything his challenger threw and remained in control throughout.
Related » PBC on Spike Round-by-Round Scoring
Lara nearly ended things in the middle rounds when he leveled Rodriguez with a perfect jab/straight left that landed squarely on his jaw in the sixth. Rodriguez (28-8-4, 17 KOs) was shaken badly but when he climbed back to his feet; the bell had sounded to end the frame. From there, Rodriguez was a little coy to let his hands go and wound up getting pummeled until the end.
“The future is clear,” Lara (21-2-2, 12 KOs) said through an interpreter after the mugging. “We want Floyd Mayweather and Miguel Cotto and we’ll take (Gennady) Golovkin at 160 (pounds).”
In the co-featured bout of the evening, Russian light heavyweight powerhouse Artur Beterbiev pounded on late-replacement Alexander Johnson, dropping him several times until the end came in the seventh round. Beterbiev used his crushing power to knock Johnson down in the fifth, and then closed the show in the seventh.
Beterbiev dropped Johnson with a short left hand early in the seventh and when the fight resumed, the Montreal-based Beterbiev unleashed a monster of a right hand, felling the American for good; referee Celestino Ruiz halted it immediately. The official time of the TKO came at 1:38 of the frame, allowing Beterbiev to rise to 9-0 with his ninth career knockout. Johnson fell to 16-3 with seven KOs.
« Previous Former World Champ Antonio Tarver to Fight Steve Cunningham in August Next Premier Boxing Champions ‘Lara vs. Rodriguez’ on Spike Results & Play-by-Play »