Tonight in Corpus Christi, Texas, an exciting HBO tripleheader took place, headlined by Roman Martinez vs. Mikey Garcia, and showcasing Nonito Donaire vs. Vic Darchinyan II and Vanes Martirosyan vs. Demetrius Andrade.
So how did all three of the fights play out? Read on for our coverage of the Andrade vs. Martirosyan, Donaire vs. Darchinyan II and Martinez vs. Garcia results.
Roman Martinez vs. Mikey Garcia Results
Mikey Garcia moved to 33-0 (28 KOs) with a 8th round knockout at 56 seconds over Rocky Martinez, now 27-2-2 (16 KOs). With the win, Garcia earns Martinez’ WBO 130-pound belt in his first bout in the weight class after reigning as a featherweight titleholder. A single left hook to the body deposited Martinez for the count. Garcia looked spectacular, despite a rocky moment in the second round.
The first round saw a feeling out period, where Garcia controlled the action with a few crisp shots. In the second round, both men continued probing each other at long range. Garcia, 128.75, was calculating and in control. Towards the end of the round, as both threw at the same time, it was a perfect right hand by Martinez that dropped Garcia on his backside! With his face etched in disappointment, he rose as the round came to and end.
Garcia landed some crisp rights during a competitive third round. Martinez had some success boxing Garcia, with the single shots of Garcia making more of an impact. For the last minute, Garcia let his hands go and seemed to have Martinez searching for answers, as he showed a potential precursor to what could be a period of dominance for Garcia. Action picked up a bit in the 4th. Martinez, though suffering a talent deficit in this matchup, showed spirit by letting his hands ago and connecting with some nice one-twos and single jabs. Martinez is a gutty and able battler, showing it in some give-and-take through the first third of the fight.
Some nice work from both men in the 5th. Garcia is using range to steer clear of Martinez’ offerings. But Martinez is plucky–a seasoned world-class veteran with a lot of skills. He stubbornly refused to let Garcia establish much separation. Some good shots in the final minute gave Garcia the round. But beyond his offensive potential. Garcia showed what a savvy defensive fighter he is. With both men at arm’s length and showing respect, the fight had periods of placidity. Martinez is sneaky with quick little short shots, with Garcia landing the howitzers. One such punch had Martinez is bad trouble for the first time in the fight. In the final minute, a left hook wobbled Martinez and a series of right hands smacked Martinez around, as the Puerto Rican defiantly tried to egg on Garcia as the bell rung.
Garcia continued moving in and out with fluidity and quickness, while lashing out with the occasional single punch or 2 or 3 punch combination. A mid-round outburst was again telling, as Martinez struggled to keep the fight from slipping away, which it seemed to be doing in the 7th. Garcia’s punches were thumping and though Martinez was resilient, the work of Garcia was shining, with Martinez fading into the night.
Needing something big in the 8th, Martinez opened with fury, but a Garcia right had Martinez on unsteady legs. With Martinez moving back to the ropes, a gigantic left hook to the body folded Martinez for the count. While not a good fight per se, it was an awfully-impressive performance for Garcia, who showed a lot of ability in a systematic breakdown of a gutty and iron-willed champion in Martinez.
Nonito Donaire vs. Vic Darchinyan II Results
In a come-from-behind victory, Nonito Donaire scored a TKO in round 9 over former victim Vic Darchinyan. Until the 9th round, it had been a terrible showing for Donaire, 125.25, who looked listless and uninspired–almost shot. But in the 9th, as was the case in their first fight, it was left hooks that creamed Darchinyan over his blindside southpaw right lead that did the trick.
Donaire goes to 32-2 (21 KOs), while Darchinyan falls to 38-6-1 (28 KOs). In their first fight in 2007, Donaire also won by knockout.
But the result will not show that Darchinyan was up by 4 points on two cards prior to the knockout. It was part of what Darchinyan, and partially what Donaire did not do, which is throw punches. Donaire did well at long range, but time and again, the southpaw lefts of Darchinyan found their mark at an alarming rate.
A big left at the end of the first showed Darchinyan meant business. The second round saw both men probing, feinting, mean-mugging, and poking–anything but real punching exchanges. Such would be the case for much of the fight, with both men compiling punch stats more commonly seen in a Nikolai Valuev bout. The second round saw Darchinyan crisp with his left hand–both to the head and body. An exchange toward the end of a quiet second saw both men staggered. What stood out most was how easy it was for the 37-year old Darchinyan to find Donaire with the sweeping left.
Donaire did a better job of keeping Darchinyan at distance in the third, though he took another telling left hand and right hook from Darchinyan. But some well-times long range shots may have edged Donaire the round. The 4th saw Donaire looking a bit ragged. A little doughy at featherweight, his reflexes didn’t look good as he absorbed some more Darch lefts. Donaire landed a left hook, but action was sparse.
More posturing in the fifth, interrupted by rare breakouts of fighting. Darchinyan landed some nice lefts to the body and one to the head that rattled Donaire right t the end of the round before Darchinyan could follow up. The 6th saw Donaire try to fire himself up, jumping on his toes and darting out quick shots while the stumpier Darchinyan tried to get into range. But try as he did, he couldn’t get his offense untracked. It didn’t help that he had to watch out for the suddenly-delivered left hand whacks of his opponent.
Both men had their moments in the 7th, with Darchinyan getting Donaire against the ropes for a nice sequence, but Donaire also finding his range increasingly–peppering Darchinyan with some jabs and right hands. Same as usual in the 8th, with more Darchinyan southpaw lefts earning him the round, particularly after a savage round-ending onslaught, though Donaire made it close with some swift boxing.
The 9th saw something light a fire under Donaire. Early, a Donaire hook, the punch of the night, indicated that he was beginning to find his mark. Darchinyan seemed unsure for the first time in the fight. A hard right affected Vic, before a series of left hooks found their mark. One especially hard and accurate left hook spilled Darchinyan to the canvas. He rose, but his legs were unsteady. And as Donaire followed up, Darchinyan couldn’t find his footing. Donaire began whipping him with lefts and rights, as the mugging moved into the corner. After some devastating shots, referee Laurence Cole finally stepped in at 2:06.
The takeaway from this fight is that while Donaire showed a lot in coming back from off the pace to score a massively-violent TKO, he looks like a fighter mired in a slump. The fire wasn’t there for most of the fight. He looked easier than ever to hit and not like the same guy from just a year or two ago. Dare I say, he looks like a bit of a spent force. The ending offered some promise, however, so maybe he can still recapture his previous form. But the guy we saw for the first 8 rounds was not the man we has become accustomed to seeing.
Demetrius Andrade vs. Vanes Martirosyan Results
In an absurdly-scored 12-rounder for the vacant WBO 154-pound title, Demetrius Andrade won a 12-round split decision over Vanes Martirosyan. It was a battle of undefeated former U.S. Olympians in an unevenly-fought contest. Massive periods of silence were interrupted by occasional bursts of excitement. In the end, it was Andrade, 153.75, who claimed his first belt, while Martirosyan, also 153.73, suffers his forst loss falling to 33-1-1 (21 KOs).
The southpaw Andrade, a spidery 154-pounder, was dominating round one with long-range shots. Then suddenly, a counter left hook by Martirosyan beat Andrade’s straight left, depositing Andrade to the canvas for the bout’s only knockdown and perhaps its lone moment of excitement. Andrade got back on the right track in the 2nd, nailing Martirosyan with an uppercut. He kept his distance better and got the jab untracked. While Andrade was reacting oddly when hit, he dominated the action and raked Martirosyan with shots during the round.
The third saw Andrade find his mojo, moving well and popping Martirosyan with fast outbursts and going downstairs. Martirosyan warmed up better in the 4th, even with his left eye falling into increasing disrepair. He landed some nice shots on Andrade, but found himself on the end of the jab a lot more as the round carried on. The 5th saw another docile round. Andrade is a huge junior middleweight with quick reflexes. Martirosyan, though having good size, was moving backwards too much to sustain a consistently-flowing offense on Andrade.
The 6th round saw Andrade open by winging shots at Martirosyan, landing 7 or 8 telling and whipping punches. Martirosyan had his head straight up and paid the price. He remained tough, however, landing a big left at the bell. Andrade took control in the 7th with Martirosyan continuing to foolishly move backwards. The 8th saw better two-way action, but Martirosyan seemed to come out of a slumber, rattling home a number of right hands on a more flat-footed Andrade.
Some nice body shots by Martirosyan in the 9th, but Andrade got back to using the stick and was doing better by the end of the round. When Andrade let loose, the disparity was apparent. That’s what he did in the 10th, landing some nice shots, including a sweeping hook. The 11th say Andrade using the jab to good affect, while still flashing the two-handed attack he had shown earlier. Vanes strangely showed no gusto in the 12th. If only he had known the outcome of the fight was still ridiculously lying in th balance. Andrade easily won the 12th and appeared to be a unanimous decision winner by a decisive margin.
Then came the scoring–a split decision for Andrade by scores of 115-112, Martirosyan, and 114-113 and 117-110 for Andrade. When horrible scorecards are discussed in the future, we need to remember the clunker turned in this evening by one Javier Alvarez, who scored the fight 115-112 for Martirosyan in one of the more indefensible displays of ineptitude ever seen in a pro fight. Judge Don Griffin didn’t have it much better at only 114-113 for Andrade. It turns out that Andrade needed to win the last 4 rounds to win the fight. Startling. Just astounding. The ProBoxing-Fans card agreed with judge Jesse Reyes at 117-110 Andrade.
Thanks for checking out our coverage tonight, and be sure to check back over the coming days for more aftermath and analysis, and rankings updates. Have thoughts about how the fights went down? Add your comments on the Martinez vs. Garcia and Donaire vs. Darchinyan results below.