Lamont Peterson put himself in contention in the welterweight division with his comeback fight tonight, outpointing David Avanesyan to win the WBA “world” welterweight title, and put himself in line for a potential shot at the Thurman-Garcia winner after their March 4 fight.
The three judges had it 115-113, 116-112, and 116-112. BLH’s Wil Esco and myself had it slightly wider, at 118-110 and 117-111, respectively.
Peterson (35-3-1, 17 KO) did his best work in the fight to the body, and didn’t look like he’d missed a step after a long layoff, having not fought since late 2015. The former junior welterweight titleholder started a little slow, but really picked up his pace in the second half of the fight, forcing Avanesyan (22-2-1, 11 KO) to do the same.
It was Peterson, though, who caught the judges’ eyes more, and rightly so. Avanesyan was very competitive in this fight, but just didn’t win enough rounds. He did make Peterson earn every round he won, however, and the two of them put on a good fight with a furious final round that saw Peterson seemingly going for the knockout, and Avanesyan doing everything he could to combat that approach.