Teofimo Lopez leaves Heisman Trophy Evening with a cut up choice victory over Sandor Martin.
It was all set as much as be a giant night time as Prime Rank hosted a stacked card of future stars following the Heisman Award Ceremony, however the primary occasion ended up asking extra questions than answering them. Former undisputed light-weight champion Teofimo Lopez (18-1) headlined the cardboard by going through the tough Sandor Martin (40-3). The 29-year-old Martin changed Jose Pedraza (29-4-1) however was most famously identified for pulling the upset victory over former champion Mikey Garcia (40-2).
The primary spherical went as anticipated; Martin was circling and utilizing his legs to keep away from getting hit with some massive photographs. In the meantime, Lopez was trying to set up himself and toss stuff that will get Martin’s consideration. It was a recreation of cat and mouse which you’d anticipate from a southpaw with motion going through a counterpuncher with energy. The second spherical is when issues bought fascinating as Lopez saved lunging into Martin however leaving his palms down whereas doing so. World-class fighters will decide up on these habits, and Martin definitely did, which led him to counter with a verify proper hook to the aspect of Lopez’s head. The punch and momentum despatched Lopez to the ropes and touching the canvas, which the referee counted as a knockdown.
It was the proper name by the referee however one thing of a déjà vu for Lopez, who had one thing comparable occur to him a bit over a 12 months in the past when he confronted George Kambosos Jr. (20-2). It wasn’t within the first spherical like in that struggle, however being that the knockdown was within the second spherical, it’s arduous to think about that those self same ideas weren’t going by his head at that second. Lopez shrugged it off, and it was again to enterprise. A conflict of heads induced Martin’s nostril to be broken to the extent that he was visibly respiration by his mouth for the remainder of the struggle.
Teofimo Lopez earns a cut up choice victory however questions his future proper after the struggle.
Each spherical after gave the impression to be the identical every time. Martin was utilizing his legs successfully, and Lopez saved lunging ahead, leaving himself broad open for a counter shot. All through the rounds, you’ll be able to hear Lopez’s father telling his son to hear as he felt he wasn’t executing the sport plan. Talking of which, it didn’t look like there was a lot of a secondary recreation plan, and Lopez regarded as if he was attempting something to unravel the puzzle of Martin. Within the seventh spherical, he was caught with the identical punch as within the second, however this time, the referee determined to not name it a knockdown and continued the motion as soon as Lopez bought up.
As soon as the ultimate bell rang and the struggle went to the scorecards, the boldness wasn’t there with crew Lopez, and there was a bizarre feeling within the room as if the choice was going to be a shocker. When Martin’s first rating was learn 95-94, the Backyard bought quiet and eagerly anticipated the next two scores. Then it was introduced 96-93 & 97-92 for Lopez, giving him the cut up choice victory. The struggle was shut, and there was a cut up on social media about whether or not Lopez actually received the struggle. Though Lopez turned up his confidence through the post-fight interview, there was a second captured by ESPN with audio that wasn’t initially on through the telecast. Throughout their post-fight section on ESPN+, the manufacturing crew performed the audio the place Lopez was heard speaking to considered one of Prime Rank’s PR members (Gardy Lopez) and asking him, “Do I nonetheless bought it?”. For a person that normally oozes confidence, for a quick second, he was not sure about his efficiency and his future as a fighter.
Many feelings have been going by Lopez together with his spouse and son trying on from ringside. It appeared as if he was searching for redemption within the constructing the place he misplaced all of it, however as an alternative, he added extra questions for himself. Lopez failed to talk to the media after the struggle however determined to video himself at a health club to reassure everybody that he was okay.
What’s subsequent for Lopez? There are massive fights forward, just like the winner of Regis Prograis and Jose Ramirez if that will get made, or the winner of Josh Taylor vs. Jack Catterall 2. Lopez talked about probably going through George Kambosos Jr. once more, but when he does that, it might imply he isn’t fairly prepared for the highest names at tremendous light-weight. Lopez has choices, however at this stage of his profession, he might have to take a look at altering some issues inside his crew, beginning with the top coach place at present held by his father. Lopez Sr. has taken his son so far as he might go however now can be the time to make the change in order that Lopez can get to the subsequent degree in a division that’s full of expertise.
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