Erislandy Lara earned a unanimous decision win over Freddy Hernandez in the TV opener to Showtime's Saturday night offering, which unfolded at Fantasy Springs in Indio, CA. The bloody visage told all who the loser was after ten, and the judges made it official, 95-94, 98-91, 99-90, seeing Lara as the better man.
Lara (now 17-1; lives in Florida; age 29), the Cuban born lefty, threw fewer punches than the loser but what he threw was of better quality in this junior middleweight tangle. His footwork helped him get angles on Hernandez, who stalked the victor but couldn't quite close the distance and make him wince. Lara clinched when he needed to get a breather, but if anyone doubted who won this--no Duane Ford jokes, pleeease--one needed only see the multiple cuts all over the loser's face after the tenner.
Lara went 246-561 to 128-710 for the loser on the night. Losing a point in round seven for a butt didn't deter Lara from the distance win. By the ninth, he had Hernadez (now 30-3; from Mexico; age 33; coming off a decision win over Luis Collazzo in October 2011 after losing a KO1 to Andre Berto before that) backing up, eating too much from the leather buffet.
The two-close 95-94 card, by David Denkin, will draw scorn till the next cruddy card.
Josesito Lopez talked to Steve Farhood after the Lara-Hernadez bout. Lopez said he thought the fight was close by round nine, and knew he needed to finish strong. He said he was shocked when the end came, and was worried that maybe some screwup was going against him. Will he fight Ortiz next? Or maybe Canelo? He said he's not a full welter now, but would be ready for that down the line.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV