Robert Guerrero survived a grueling battle with Selcuk Aydin tonight, and put himself in the mix at 147 pounds. (Photo by Esther Lin/Showtime)
Robert Guerrero made a bold move jumping two weight classes tonight to face the strong and very tough Selcuk Aydin, and will leave San Jose with the interim WBC welterweight title and a win via unanimous decision. Guerrero won on scores of 116-112, 116-112, and 117-111 in a grueling, exhausting brawl. Bad Left Hook had it 114-114, but I've got no issue with the scores. I gave a couple of swing rounds to Aydin that could easily have gone to Guerrero. This was no robbery or anything of the sort.
Guerrero (30-1-1, 18 KO) started very well and fought with a huge chip on his shoulder, even blowing off Aydin (23-1, 17 KO) after the first round when the Turkish fighter wanted to tap gloves out of respect. From then on, it was a mean-spirited fight the whole way, with both guys looking to do damage and intimidate the other. Neither man would be intimidated, though. And with a passionate hometown crowd behind Guerrero, it all made for a great atmosphere.
Aydin made it a fight because of four things: Stamina, uppercuts, right hands down the pipe, and some body shots. But for the most part, he was outworked by a determined Guerrero, whose punch output and combinations were able to carry a lot of the action. Aydin would often disappear for stretches, hoping to load up on something big. He did have Guerrero hurt a few times in the fight, I think, but Guerrero was also very good at smothering Aydin when the going got rough, and Aydin never made a serious run, never really capitalized on the good work he did. He would do it, and it mattered, but Guerrero always found his way right back into the fight.
After the fight, Guerrero called out Floyd Mayweather, who is the full WBC titleholder at 147 pounds, but I just can't see that one happening yet, unless they figure Guerrero's fan in California will make for a good money fight against Mayweather. By resume, as much respect as Guerrero deserves for this win, he's just not quite there.
But I can't blame him for making the challenge. Guerrero truly wants to be a great fighter. And he's going to do everything he can to make that hapen.
It was another fine Showtime and Golden Boy outing tonight, with a pair of action fights on the main card, well-matched battles that delivered and then some. Maybe the bias in that partnership is nauseating, but right now they're coming through with cards that are fun to watch, and given the state of everything, it's hard to reasonably expect more. I'd say it's hard to ask for more, but that's just not true. That's really easy.