WBO featherweight champion Emanuel “Vaquero” Navarrete (36-1, 30 KOs) scored a spectacular sixth round knockout over Eduardo Baez (21-3-2, 7 KOs) on Saturday night at the Pechanga Arena (formerly known as the San Diego Sports Arena) in San Diego, California. Baez appeared on his way to a shocking upset until Navarrete ended matters with one punch – a shot to the liver. Time was 1:05.
Navarrete, who hadn’t fought in nearly a year and let his weight balloon in the interim, was trailing on two of the three judges’ cards (50-45 and 48-47) at the time of the stoppage, while one card had Navarrete ahead 49-46.
“I expected a fight like this,” Navarrete said. “I never underestimated Eduardo Baez. I knew that he was an excellent fighter and the fact that he hit pretty hard. It was a lot more complicated than I anticipated. But then came that shot, and I was able to finish him. That’s a very Mexican punch. It comes with my blood. And you can see, I don’t throw a perfect left hook like you’re used to seeing. But this one came out perfect for me. And you saw the result because not many guys can take that shot.”