27 Jan 2019, 09:53 IST
NEW YORK (AP) — Keith Thurman’s elbow and hand seemed fantastic, and his chin held up in opposition to a decided assault by Josesito Lopez.
It was a adequate return that Thurman may be prepared for Manny Pacquiao subsequent.
Thurman got here again from a 22-month layoff to beat Lopez by way of majority resolution Saturday evening to retain his welterweight title.
Thurman acquired off to a quick begin with a second-round knockdown, withstood a giant seventh spherical from Lopez, and regained management to enhance to 29-0. It was the WBA champion’s first combat since March 4, 2017, earlier than he was sidelined first by proper elbow surgical procedure after which an injured left hand.
Each seemed again to regular inside Barclays Middle and so did Thurman’s legs, as he moved effectively to principally keep out of hassle in opposition to Lopez, who saved coming ahead all through the combat however typically acquired caught with uppercuts and mixtures for his efforts.
“He got here proper for me,” Thurman stated. “I stated you would not see one of the best Keith Thurman tonight, however you’d nonetheless see a world-class efficiency, and I gave you that tonight.”
He’d possible want a greater one in opposition to the 40-year-old Pacquiao, who confirmed he has loads left with a simple victory over Adrien Broner final week.
“I’d almost definitely undoubtedly take the Manny Pacquiao combat this yr,” Thurman stated. “I really feel good. That was a lovely combat. I am able to combat wherever Pacquiao desires it.”
Decide Tom Schreck had it 117-109 for Thurman and Steve Weisfeld had it 115-111, whereas Don Ackerman had it even at 113-113. The Related Press had it 117-110 for Thurman.
Lopez (36-8) stalked all evening and had Thurman harm within the seventh spherical, however in any other case Thurman’s velocity would not let Lopez get in adequate place to have sufficient energy on his punches.
“I used to be dissatisfied I could not end him and get him out of there,” Lopez stated. “If he thinks he is one of the best welterweight on the market, then I would like two by means of 5 lined up for me.”
Thurman was again within the ring for the primary time since he edged Danny Garcia in a break up resolution, additionally in Brooklyn, to unify 147-pound titles. He had surgical procedure two months later to take away bone spurs from his proper elbow and when he resumed coaching after a prolonged restoration, he harm his left hand.
That saved him out of the ring for practically two years and he needed to vacate the WBC’s model of the title that he had gained from Garcia.
Thurman confirmed no worries about his well being, swinging onerous with each arms within the opening spherical. And for positive there was nothing flawed along with his legs, as he moved far too shortly for Lopez, moving into place to throw uppercuts and hooks and getting proper out of the best way for no matter Lopez threw again.
He then knocked Lopez down with a left hook to the chin within the second and appeared to harm him once more later within the spherical en route to large benefits in energy punches (168-100) and jabs (79-17) within the combat.
Issues modified instantly within the seventh, when Lopez harm Thurman with a proper hand and spent a lot of the spherical chasing him round and connecting with pictures that appeared to have Thurman in hassle. Thurman recovered towards the tip of the spherical and landed some good mixtures within the eighth to regain momentum.
“He had me buzzed and shaken up within the seventh spherical, however I attempted to remain on the surface away,” Thurman stated.
Within the co-main occasion, Polish energy puncher Adam Kownacki, who is predicated in Brooklyn, stopped Gerald Washington within the second spherical of their heavyweight bout.
Kownacki (19-0, 15 KOs), with whole sections of the stands behind his nook stuffed with Polish followers sporting purple, had Washington caught in opposition to the ropes late within the first spherical and dropped him after a proper hand early within the second. Washington struggled to stand up, first falling backward into the underside rope, earlier than rising. Referee Harvey Dock let Washington proceed however not for lengthy, stepping in to cease it at 1:09 of the spherical after Kownacki — not bothered by a lower close to his left eye — shortly pounced and harm Washington once more.
“I educated onerous for this combat,” Kownacki stated. “I ready for 10 onerous rounds, however I am glad I acquired it executed and ended it as quick as I did.”
Washington fell to 19-3-1, however 0-Three in opposition to the three undefeated fighters he has confronted. He was additionally stopped by heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and Jarrell Miller.
Additionally, Tugstsogt Nyambayar, a 2012 Olympic silver medalist for Mongolia, improved to 11-Zero with a unanimous resolution in opposition to Claudio Marrero (23-3), turning into the necessary challenger for WBC 126-pound champion Gary Russell.
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