Jessie Vargas kept his spot on the Mayweather vs Cotto card with a win tonight over Lanardo Tyner, but he had to work for it. (Photo by Tom Casino/Showtime)
Tonight's Mayweather Promotions edition of ShoBox: The New Generation was notable in a lot of ways, though the winners were the expected two, both promoted by, of course, Mayweather Promotions.
In the night's welterweight main event, Jessie Vargas and Lanardo Tyner traded low blows and saw their fight turn from chippy to downright nasty before settling into a groove that saw the bigger, younger, fresher Vargas take over the pace en route to a decision victory. All three judges scored it 99-91 for Vargas, who stayed unbeaten at 18-0 (9 KO), while Bad Left Hook scored it 97-93 for the prospect.
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Referee Tony Weeks had quite a handful early on in the bout, as the two threw punches after the bell in three of the first five rounds. Tyner floored Vargas with an enormous low blow, directly to the right side of the cup, putting Vargas down for nearly his full five-minute break. After the low blow, he also caught Vargas with a right hand to the head. Upon return to action, Vargas drilled Tyner with what appeared to be a retaliatory shot to the jewels, which angered Tyner something awful. At that point, Weeks took control of the fight, and there were only minor fouls from then on.
At the end of the night, Vargas and Tyner hugged. Boxing.
Tyner (25-7-2, 15 KO) gave his usual spirited, chatty, honesty effort, and wasn't about to be bullied by the younger fighter. In the end, Vargas was simply too physically strong to be dented by Tyner's shots, and Tyner too often tried to steal rounds in the final 30 seconds, while not letting his hands go enough before then.
The 22-year-old Vargas is in a questionable spot as a prospect. He can fight, but his ceiling may not be all that high. He has faced better opponents in his last two fights than most guys at his stage do, but has also showed vulnerabilities against both that would possibly be exposed not just in two or three more steps up, but in the next true step up the ladder. We'll see.
Vargas is tentatively set to return in the opening bout of the Mayweather vs Cotto PPV on May 5.
In the night's opening televised bout, Mayweather's newest signing Deandre Latimore failed to impress anyone with a cautious 10-round win over Colombia's Milton Nunez that almost saw Latimore knocked out late. He was hurt in the ninth round, thinking he was on cruise control, and had a knockdown ruled against him by referee Joe Cortez. This was debatable, but I think it was the right call, as Latimore likely would have fallen even if Cortez had not oddly jumped between them and kind of initiated it.
But in the 10th, Latimore flat-out ran, and wound up on his back again. Replays showed conclusively it was the result of a headbutt, not a punch, but Cortez ruled another knockdown.
Latimore (23-3, 17 KO) won on majority decision scores of 96-92, 95-93, and 94-94. Nunez falls to 23-4-1 (21 KO), and this was his first career loss that was not the result of a first round knockout, so I guess that's something to be proud of, huh? Latimore won, but did not seriously insert himself into the mix at 154 pounds. Of course, not seriously being in the mix probably will get him a fight with Canelo Alvarez.