Lara, Charlo, Hurd defend titles, Charlo with 1st-round KO
NEW YORK (AP) — All three champions defended their titles Saturday night in different fashions.
The highlight was Jermell Charlo’s first-round knockout of Erickson Lubin. Or maybe it was Jarrett Hurd’s action-packed win over Austin Trout.
It certainly wasn’t Erislandy Lara’s unanimous decision over Terrell Gausha.
Lara schooled Gausha for most of their 12-round WBA welterweight title fight, outpointing the 2012 U.S. Olympian to close out the triple-championship card.
The feature was hardly that, a display of imprecise punching and pawing. Lara, a native of Cuba now nicknamed “the American Dream” and fighting out of Houston, knocked down Gausha in the fourth round with a right-left combination, but by the ninth, many of those remaining in an announced crowd of 7,643 were chanting “This is boring!”
The previous two bouts were anything but.
Charlo stunned Lubin with a sharp, short right to the chin and knocked out the challenger 2:41 into their WBC super welterweight title fight. Hurd overcame a cut to his left eye to stop a game Trout in 10 rounds in their IBF junior middleweight championship fight.
Charlo’s first good punch of the bout was enough for the win. Lubin, who was in a crouch when hit, took the shot directly on his chin. One of the rising stars of boxing, he was immediately counted out as his left leg twitched while he was on the canvas.
Charlo scored his 15th knockout in his 30th fight and second defense. His twin brother, Jarmell, also has been a world champ.
“They were giving him a lot of attention. I was quiet the whole time,” Charlo said. “They said they were going to come take my title. I had to defend it.
“They didn’t know what I was bringing into this and I think (Lubin) was worried about the wrong things.”
Lubin took his first loss after 18 wins. He left the ring under his own power, his night over in quick fashion.
“I’m fine,” Lubin said. “He caught me with a blind shot. I didn’t see it coming. He landed it. I felt like when I got up I could have kept fighting, but it’s boxing. It happens.”
Hurd and Trout were set to go to the hospital after their fight. But Hurd was cleared by doctors at the Barclays Center.
Hurd had the eye looked at by ring doctors several times. But it was Trout’s right eye that was pretty much closed by the end of the 10th, and the action-filled fight was stopped before the 11th began.
Nicknamed “Swift,” Hurd wasn’t all that quick for much of the bout, but he took charge midway through — despite the blood flowing down the left side of his face and by his left ear. Trout carried much of the early rounds, but he didn’t have the punching power to do enough damage to the champion.
Hurd is 21-0 with 15 knockouts, while Trout, a former champion, is 30-4. It was the first time he has been stopped in a fight.
“It’s most definitely tougher to defend the title than win it,” Hurd said. “I’m always the one that comes on stronger at the end of the fight. We knew we were going to wear Austin Trout down in the later rounds and eventually stop him. My cut made me a little better with my head movement.”
Trout cut Hurd in the seventh round, but Hurd still carried the action. There were plenty of toe-to-toe exchanges during the round, and Hurd even had his hands down for much of it as he searched for a knockout blow.
But Trout hung tough, even though Hurd dominated most of the next three rounds. With Trout on his stool, the fight was stopped seconds before the 11th would have begun.
Charlo has his eyes on Hurd.
“Give me another title,” he said. “I want Hurd. Hurd just won. Give me Hurd.”
The veteran Lara, 25-2-2, won a unanimous decision, handing Gausha his first defeat in 21 fights. Gausha clearly was in with a superior boxer, though neither fighter impressed.
“I take the rhythm of the boxing match and that’s when I take over,” Lara said. “He’s fighting with the best in the division. He’s not a stupid fighter, but he knew who he was facing.”