A second straight hard-fought bout on the Mayweather vs Ortiz undercard came to a stop after 10 rounds of bloody action, when Pablo Cesar Cano was pulled out of the fight by trainer Rudy Perez, giving the stoppage victory to Erik Morales, who claimed a bogus title, but in the process became the first Mexican fighter in history to win world titles in four weight classes.
Morales (52-7, 36 KO) and Cano (22-1-1, 17 KO) both got busted up, but the stoppage came due to a grotesque cut on Cano's left eyelid. It was just an awful, awful cut, pouring blood and extending across his entire eyelid and over near his temple. The stoppage was entirely just, and would have come soon with Morales targeting the cut.
Morales, now 35, started a bit slow but came alive after a few rounds, which isn't unusual for the veteran warrior. Once he got into a rhythm, Cano, 21, just couldn't keep pace, and Morales exploited his extreme veteran advantages, out-thinking and ultimately out-fighting the highly game, determined young challenger.
Hats off to Cano, who put up a very good fight on short notice. Bad Left Hook had it 96-94 for Morales at the time of stoppage, and Cano proved that he can hang in with a good, veteran fighter already. He potentially has a real future, and his effort is to be respected.
And congratulations to Erik Morales. Whatever the title means to you, it means a lot to Erik Morales, and a lot to Mexican boxing fans. Some would argue he deserved this achievement in 2007, anyway, when he dropped a close decision to David Diaz for a lightweight belt.
Our Mayweather vs Ortiz undercard coverage continues at Bad Left Hook, so join us for the next fight: Saul "Canelo" Alvarez facing Alfonso Gomez.