In what was probably the best (meaning: most exciting) Pay-Per-View card I've seen all year, Ricardo Mayorga won a hard-fought majority decision over Fernando Vargas, Kermit Cintron scored a 10th round TKO over a very game Jesse Feliciano, and Roman Karmazin destroyed the comebacking Alejandro Garcia in three rounds.
There isn't that much to say about the first fight: Karmazin--who shortly held a 154-pound belt before losing it by a controversial majority decision to Cory "The Death of Boxing" Spinks--dominated Alejandro Garcia from the get-go, dropping him with a body shot in the opening stanza. It was another body shot, which came as part of a four punch combo, that would put him down for the count later on, in round 3. Garcia hadn't fought since losing his own 154-pound belt to Jose Antonio Rivera almost 18 months ago. So, while Karmazin puts himself in contention for another title shot in the near future, I'm not sure where Garcia goes from here. Back to Telefutura, I imagine.
Now here comes the good stuff: I was expecting Kermit Cintron to get rid of Jesse Feliciano in less than three rounds, and he sure as hell looked like he was on track to do so after round one. But Feliciano simply would not go down. I'm not sure what the deal was with this kid, but I haven't seen anything like it before: he took Kermit Cintron's best shots, yet he came coming forward. And, in doing so, he actually started winning rounds. You could tell how nervous Manny Steward was in the corner (and how frustrated Cintron was): at some point, towards the middle of the fight, Steward warned Cintron that he was losing, and that he was in danger of giving up his belt. I personally had Cintron winning most of the rounds, but Feliciano's will definitely impressed me. Even when the ref stepped in, after a barrage of punches by Cintron, Feliciano did not go down. Oddly enough, it was Kermit who ended up on the canvas, cringing in pain, after the ref stopped it. Apparently he suffered some kind of injury during his post-fight celebration. At first, I thought he'd jumped on one of the corner poles and hit himself on the balls, but I guess it was a hand injury. I'm still not sure exactly what it was, honestly, since I got up to get a beer during the post-fight interview. My apologies for the bad reporting. That said, Cintron-Feliciano was a hell of a fight, and even though I'm a Cintron fan, I was rooting for Feliciano by the 8th round. So I guess that says something about the guy.
Vargas-Mayorga was billed as "The Brawl" and it did not disappoint. El Matador came out strong in round one, clearly dominating Vargas, and even dropping him in the last minute of the round. It was pretty much the same story in rounds two and three. Vargas seemed to turn things around in round four, however, as he started landing an overhand right with frequency. After that, the fight was pretty much all back and forth for a while, with Vargas having the slight edge. I'd say that Vargas won 4 out of the 6 middle rounds. And he was well on his way to winning the 11th, and perhaps going up on the scorecards, when Mayorga landed a huge overhand right and dropped him in the last 20 seconds of the round. This pretty much sealed it for Mayorga, who dominated the 12th round as well. Somewhat surprisingly, it was a majority decision instead of a unanimous one. The scores were 114-112, 115-111, 113-113. I had it 115-111 for Mayorga, and I'm not sure what fight the guy who scored it a draw was watching.
Though I'm a huge fan of both guys, I was rooting for Mayorga to win this one: Vargas was going to retire regardless, and a win for Mayorga means that he'll stick around for a little bit longer. As was expected, Vargas announced his retirement after the fight, while Mayorga plans to campaign at 147. He can definitely spell trouble for anyone on any given night--just ask Vernon Forrest--and I wouldn't mind seeing him in there with Judah or Margarito or Cintron. Love him or hate him, he's exciting, and you know you enjoy watching him fight. I hadn't seem him look as good as he did tonight since he last fought Forrest. For some reason, I had an inkling that he would win, so I put some money on him, and on a wild hunch, I put some extra cash on him to win by decision. At 10 to 1, the odds were too tempting, and--though I wouldn't have predicted a decision--it came through.
In any case, it was a hell of a fight. Those of you who didn't get to see it should watch it on InDemand if Showtime ends up offering it.