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24 SEPTEMBER 2018

Where am I? Home Columns Marc Livitz
 

Rios Tops Velez To Claim Vacant WBC Title


By Marc Livitz: Las Vegas, NV - Ronny Rios fought his way out of an early deficit as he controlled the bulk of activity in a ten round, unanimous decision win over Jayson Velez for the vacant WBC silver featherweight championship in Las Vegas on Saturday. Velez tasted defeat for the first time in his professional career with the loss.

 

Velez (23-1-1, 16 KO’s) quickly took control of the first round after Rios (25-1, 10 KO’s) tried to dictate the pace early. Jayson was answering the majority of Ronny’s jab work with effective counters, mostly to the body. Rios was cautioned by referee Jay Nady later in the second to keep his shots above the belt line as his attempts to land a short left to Velez’s liver were a bit off. He did, however tag his Puerto Rican opponent with some quick rights to the head. Jayson returned the favor with a left hook of his own to the face shortly thereafter. Through three rather fast paced and eventful rounds, the bout appeared to be a tossup.

 

Velez continued to jab away at Rios. As long as he remained at just the right distance, he could control the action, yet close in, Ronny aggressively went to the body. Sometimes a bit too much as he was warned for a second time by Nady to keep his shots higher. A third soon followed, much to Ronny’s disbelief. A point deduction soon followed just moments into the fifth. Like many fighters of today, Velez had his trunks pulled up so high that the guesswork of what is or what isn’t a low blow would be quite subjective. With half the fight now in the bag, some would perhaps wonder if the one point deduction would make a difference if the bout went the full ten rounds.

 

In any case, the brush with the referee seemed to light a fire in Rios, to which Velez replied accordingly. Ronny was landing cleaner shots to Jayson’s head and combinations from the body upward soon followed throughout much of the sixth. His luck followed him into the seventh round. He looked to be in control at this point. Velez’s shots held no mustard at all. Ronny continued the high and low assault. The California fighter was beginning to look really good. He caught Velez once more with a left hook to the jaw towards the end of the eighth.

 

Throughout much of the ninth, Jayson Velez was pushing his punches and not displaying a willingness to get down into the trenches of gutting out a victory. He seemed to be looking more to keep Rios away than to neutralize him, although he did catch Rios with a good right to lead matters into the last three minutes of action.

 

Each man was off to the races at the bell to signal round ten. The bout was teetering on a phone booth battle. Jayson was firing away and Ronny would wisely tie him up at times, while in other moments he connected with his uppercuts once again. He tagged Velez with a sly left hook to the chin after absorbing parts of a head attack.

 

The bout would ultimately go to the scorecards. Ronny Rios seemed to be the rightful victor in a fight that he took away from Jayson Velez after a few rounds. The judges, of course held the final call. Their cards were as follows: 97-92, 95-94 and 96-93 to the winner by unanimous decision, Ronny Rios, who captured the WBC silver featherweight title.

 

Additional Undercard Results From Las Vegas

Jose Martinez UD 8 Oscar Mojica – Flyweights

Alberto Machado KO 1 Tyrone Luckey – Featherweights

Zhilei Zhang UD 4 Juan Goode – Heavyweights

Hector Tanajara KO 1 Jose Fabian Naranjo – Lightweights

 

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November 21, 2015




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