In the co-feature in Carson, California, Mario Barrios (23-0, 14 KOs) knocked out his seventh consecutive opponent as the 23-year-old from San Antonio stopped Mexico’s Richard Zamora (15-3, 10 KOs). The stoppage came at 2:16 in round four as referee Ray Corona waved off the fight after a barrage of Barrios punches landed cleanly and dazed the game Zamora.
With trainer Virgil Hunter in his corner, the accurate Barrios landed a staggering 59 percent of his power punches, including 37 of 58 (64 percent) in the fourth and final round.
“He wasn’t an easy target at all,” said Barrios, who sparred with Amir Khan and Devin Haney in training camp and is the WBA’s No. 1 ranked fighter at 140 pounds. We just used everything we worked on in camp to find my range.”
He added: “It was an amazing fight. I tip my hat to Zamora – he’s a hell of a warrior. I wish him nothing but the best for the rest of his career. Like he said at the press conference, he wanted a war and I brought it to him. Total respect to him.”
Zamora was making his United States debut. “I came to fight,” he said. “I didn’t come to lay down. I thought I still could have fought more. I don’t want to criticize the referee. He did what he had to do.”
Barrios said he’s ready for the next big step-up in his career. “That’s up to my managerial team,” he said. “Whenever they feel I’m ready I’ll fight for a world title. Any one of them. I am knocking down the door for a world title right now.”
In the Showtime telecast opener, Javier Fortuna (34-2-1, 23 KOs) won a unanimous decision against Sharif Bogere (32-2, 20 KOs) in a 10-round lightweight bout. All three judges scored the fight 96-93 in favor of Fortuna.
The southpaw Fortuna, of Braintree, Mass, by way of the Dominican Republic, knocked down Bogere in the sixth round, the same round Bogere suffered a nasty cut above his right eye after an accidental head clash.
The knockdown occurred after a powerful left uppercut by Fortuna dazed Bogere, who appeared to be pushed down and touched his glove on the canvas. Referee Edward Collantes scored it a knockdown, giving Fortuna the 10-8 round.
“(The knock down) was correct,” said Fortuna, who said he would love a future shot against Davis. “I saw his eyes were a little glossy and his legs buckled a bit. When I saw that he was cut, the game plan changed again and we had to work again to attack the cut.”
Originally from Uganda but now living in Las Vegas, Bogere gave himself a seven out of 10 grade. “I think I won the fight,” he said. “Even the knockdown was bull. He kept coming at me with the head. He kept trying to head butt me. The challenge was that there was blood in my eye. The first couple of rounds I was boxing him easily.”
In the power punch category, Fortuna connected on 89 of 310 punches for 29 percent while Bogere landed 59 of 317 for just 19 percent. Bogere was riding a 13-fight winning streak over the past six years coming into the fight.
“What I want right now is a contract so I can fight Gervonta Davis wherever. Lomachenko, any of them,” said Fortuna, who had a No Decision against Adrian Granados last June on Showtime after falling out of the ring in the fourth round suffering a head and neck injury.