Results from Las Vegas where Teofimo Lopez Retained his Title in a Dull Fight


By Arne K. Lang

Las Vegas, NV -- Mandalay Bay and the neighboring Luxor are the only casino-resorts within walking distance of Allegiant Stadium, the site of Sunday's Super Bowl. Today, there was a massive traffic jam around the resort when this reporter arrived in the mid-afternoon. The attraction was Teofimo Lopez who would be defending his WBO 140-pound world title against Massachusetts product Jamaine Ortiz.

Hopefully the big game will provide more entertainment than the fight which was a dull affair. Ortiz got on his bicycle in the opening round and rode it throughout, frustrating Lopez who wasn't able to cut off the ring. The best punch of the fight wasn't a punch at all but, rather, an accidental head butt that opened a gash above Ortiz's left eye. It did not compromise Ortiz's game plan, however, which was to goad Teofimo into losing his composure by constantly circling to stay out of harm's way.

The Brooklyn-born Lopez, who was Honduras' lone representative in the 2016 Olympics, was making the first defense of the belt he won with upset of Josh Taylor after previously holding the lineal lightweight title. With the victory, he improved his ledger to 20-1 (13). Ortiz, who was competitive in a losing effort vs Vasyl Lomachenko, declined to 17-2-1. It was his second loss to Teofimo, the first coming when they were teenagers and met in the finals of a National Golden Gloves tournament.

The judges had it 117-111 and 115-113 twice for the defending champion. He didn't win via effective aggression, but any aggression is better than no aggression at all.

A lot of enticing fights remain for Teofimo Lopez in the sexy 140-pound division but he has talked about moving up to welterweight to challenge Terence Crawford. Based on his showing tonight, that would be ill-advised.


Lightweight Keyshawn Davis (10-0-1 NC) stepped up in class after a lackluster performance against Nahir Albright and passed the test with flying colors, dominating Jose Pedraza (29-6-1) en route to a sixth-round stoppage. Pedraza, a 2008 Beijing Olympian and former world title-holder at 130 and 135, was never off his feat but absorbed a bad beating for as long as the match lasted. The Puerto Rican, who turns 35 in May, is now 0-3-1 in his last four and would be wise to call it a career.

Davis, a silver medalist in Tokyo who is now part of Team Terence Crawford, had made known his interest in fighting Emmanuel Navarette, but in his post-fight interview said his preference would be to move up to 140 for a shot at Teofimo Lopez.

Other Bouts

In an upset, Mexico's Rene Tellez Giron (18-4, 12 KOs) scored a unanimous decision over SoCal's George “El Yuyu” Acosta in an 8-round lightweight contest. Giron put Acosta (17-2) on the deck in the fifth round en route to winning by scores of 79-72, 78-73, and 76-75.

In an 8-round match that was entertaining in spurts before slowing down, Milwaukee's Javier Martinez (10-0-1, 3 KOs) won a unanimous 8-round decision over SoCal's Raul Salomon (12-3). The judges had it 79-93 and 78-74 twice. The match was contested at the catch-weight of 165 pounds.

Brisbane, California lightweight Charlie Sheehy improved to 9-0 (5) at the expense of Mexico's spunky Abdel Sauceda (12-4) who never took a back step but was outclassed, losing all eight rounds on all three scorecards. Sheehy, who is of Irish and Filipino stock, defeated Ryan Garcia and Vergil Ortiz in his amateur days.

The sky is the limit for 19-year-old Cleveland southpaw Abdullah Mason, the 2023 TSS Prospect of the Year. Tonight Mason (12-0, 9 KOs) turned in another brilliant performance, demolishing 31-year-old Army veteran Benjamin Gurment who was undefeated (8-0-3) heading in.

With his father and oldest brother Amir working his corner alongside cutman Jacob “Stitch” Duran, Mason ended matters with a brutal left hook at the 1:23 mark of round two. Gurment was marked-up before the first round ended.

Alan “Kid Kansas” Garcia, a 21-year-old lightweight from Ulysses, KS, showed that he is a prospect worth watching with a first-round blast-out of Denver's Tomas Ornelas (7-4). Garcia, who has been training under Gloria Alvarado at Freddie Roach's Wild Card Gym, improved to 11-0 with his ninth win inside the distance.

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania's Lemir Isom-Riley (4-2, 2 KOs) stopped Antonio Zepeda (6-2) in the third round of a 6-round heavyweight go. An Arizona native who lettered four years as a defensive end at UNLV, the six-foot-six, 300-pound Zepeda was getting beat up when he took a knee with an apparent knee injury leading his corner to waive it off.

In the lid-lifter, Art Barrera Jr, an 18-year-old super lightweight, needed less than a round to dismiss Robert Portales who was on the canvas twice before the mismatch was halted. A hot prospect from Paramount, CA, Barrera Jr (3-0, 3 KOs) trains at Robert Garcia’s Boxing Academy.

Photo credit: Mikey Williams / Top Rank via Getty Images
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