Joseph Diaz Jr is now in line for a shot at the WBC featherweight title held by Gary Russell Jr, following a win tonight over late replacement opponent Rafael Rivera in Las Vegas, on the Canelo-GGG undercard.
Scores for the fight were 119-109, 119-109, and 120-108, a complete wipeout win for Diaz (25-0, 13 KO), who owned the ring and did progressive damage, though it was a game effort from Rivera (25-1-2, 16 KO), who came to fight and did get to Diaz now and then.
The 24-year-old Diaz has stated that he wants to get to his fight with Russell (28-1, 17 KO) as soon as possible. That one represents a very big step up in class for the 2012 U.S. Olympian.
Rivera, 23, came in on very short notice this week after Jorge Lara pulled out of the fight, but he was training for a fight next weekend, so he was in shape and ready. He was simply beaten by a better fighter, but he showed a lot of toughness in defeat, too.