By Miguel Maravilla
WBA super welterweight champion Erislandy “The American Dream” Lara (28-3-3, 16 KOs) won his third title in a second weight class when he knocked out Thomas “Cornflake” LaManna (30-5-1, 12 KOs) in the first round to claim the vacant WBA middleweight title on Saturday night at the Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, California. Lara, 38, shot an overhead left through LaManna’s guard to lay him out and he was done. The referee immediately stopped the fight. Lara needed just 80 seconds to end the fight.
“He said at the press conference that he was going to knock me out, but he ran right into that punch,” said Lara. “Maybe he was overthinking it all along.”
“I felt strong and sharp tonight at middleweight, but I still want all of the big fights at 154-pounds too. I want the winner of the Jermell Charlo-Brian Castaño unification fight. (WBC middleweight champion) Jermall Charlo is like family, we worked in the same gym for years, but this is a sport and I’d welcome the challenge.
“I feel great physically. I’m going to keep doing this until my body tells me I can’t do it anymore. I don’t feel like I’ve taken a lot of punishment in my career and I know I have at least another three years of my prime left.”