As expected, Leo Santa Cruz had no trouble tonight with a second round knockout win over Manuel Roman in an extreme mismatch on the Mayweather-Maidana 2 pay-per-view undercard, the final fight before the main event. Santa Cruz (28-0-1, 16 KO) retained his WBC super bantamweight title with the win.
Santa Cruz, 26, will now be expected to face a legitimate contender, and did indicate his willingness to fight Guillermo Rigondeaux, the king at 122 pounds, in a post-fight interview with Jim Gray. Whether that actually happens or not is another story, and few in or around boxing expect to see that fight. Santa Cruz is with Al Haymon, and while Rigondeaux is no longer under the Top Rank banner officially, it may be difficult for the two sides to work out an agreement that they see as mutually beneficial. It's a great fight on paper, and one we should see, but it still feels unlikely.
Roman (17-3-3, 6 KO) did as expected. It was clear in round one that he was overmatched, as he ate right hands from Santa Cruz, and was knocked out on one in the second. He was no threat to Santa Cruz, had no business fighting for a world title even by boxing's lax standards, and he was disposed of quickly. In no way is this an issue with Manuel Roman -- of course he took the fight he was offered. Why wouldn't he? It was a good payday and a big opportunity. The problem was that it was offered to him in the first place.