Josesito Lopez isn’t done quite yet. Pressure, volume, and constant body work carried him past previously unbeaten Miguel Cruz in El Paso.
Cruz’s (17-1, 11 KO) prospect status, already on shaky ground after some rough performances, seems gone for good. Lopez (36-7, 19 KO) easily found his way past Cruz’s jab and went to work with combinations to the head and body. Already struggling to keep Lopez off of him, Cruz’s struggles were further compounded by two point deductions for low blows.
Lopez never let up, outclassing Cruz on the inside and holding his own at jabbing distance to take a near-sweep on all three scorecards.
The middle feature was something of a spectacle. Anthony Dirrell (32-1-1, 24 KO) spent ten rounds toying with local boy Abie Han (26-4-1, 16 KO), shrugging off all incoming fire and landing a high percentage of his shots. Dirrell dropped him with a chopping right to the ear at the end of the first round and, though he couldn’t floor Han again, was in control the entire time, putting together combinations as Han hurled winging shots that left him off-balance.
Things got ugly in the fourth when Dirrell hit a takedown on Han, prompting Han to punch him off of his back and kickstart a brief UFC moment that saw Dirrell move to mount. After that, though, it was a fairly consistent narrative. Han threw heat, Dirrell easily blocked or absorbed it before coming back with bigger and more numerous shots.
Before the fight, Dirrell announced that he’ll retire at the end of the year and is hoping to end his career with a title bout. We’ll see where that goes.
The real highlight came in the opening bout, which saw underdog Claudio Marrero flatten unbeaten Jorge Lara in just 33 seconds. Lara (29-1-2, 21 KO) came out slugging against the former champion, only for Marrero (23-2, 17 KO) to catch him coming in with a blistering straight left. Lara crumpled on impact and, despite two attempts, couldn’t stand without his legs betraying him.
Marrero was already in the WBC and WBA top 10, so this could set up a big fight in the near future.
For the round-by-round coverage of the card, click here and scroll down to the comments..