In a goofy, strangely-officiated fight that saw both fighters deducted points and ended with a disqualification, Brandon Rios snapped a two-fight losing streak with a DQ-9 victory against Argentina's Diego Chaves tonight on HBO Boxing After Dark at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.
Scores at the time of stoppage were 75-74 Rios, and 75-74 Chaves on the other two cards. Rios led on the BLH card, 75-74. Chaves was penalized in rounds three and seven for excessive holding and sticking his glove in Rios' face, respectively, while Rios lost a point in round five for tossing Chaves to the canvas.
Referee Vic Drakulich, whose record isn't exactly spotless, had a terrible time controlling the contest, and seemed to fall for a lot of complaints from both sides, too. In round eight, Drakulich, having warned Chaves it was coming on the next foul, disqualified Chaves for this:
In all candor, no one seems exactly sure why Chaves was DQ'd there, but Rios claims he was again being poked in the eye.
"This is not the way I wanted to win. I don't know if I was winning or not. Chaves has tremendous skills. But come on, man, don't fight dirty," Rios told HBO's Jim Lampley after the fight. "I'd go in, he'd grab me, and I didn't want to get headbutt. And I didn't want to headbutt him. Every time I'd get in, he'd grab me, then he'd put his finger in my eyes."
Asked if he felt he was "back," Rios (32-2-1, 23 KO) was modest. "Not yet, this wasn't a great performance. I think I can do better. We'll see. I'm ready to come back to work."
Chaves (23-2, 19 KO) falls to 0-2 on major U.S. televised cards, following his 2013 loss to Keith Thurman. He was perplexed about the DQ, and called for a rematch. "Truly, I don't know (what caused the DQ," Chaves said, "because during the (eight) rounds we fought, I was taking headbutts and rabbit punches. I don't know what I did."
He added, "I was schooling him. I think it was unjustified the way I was disqualified. I was hitting him comfortably whenever I wanted to. I want to fight again here, and I want to fight Brandon Rios. But they need a different referee, because this was a disgrace. I'll fight Rios anywhere he wants, even at his house."