Shocker: Lara KOs ex-champ Warrington

Warrington V Lara Fight Night
Photo: Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing

In a huge upset, featherweight Mauricio “Bronco” Lara (22-2, 15 KOs) knocked out previously unbeaten former IBF featherweight champion Josh Warrington (30-1, 7 KOs) on Saturday night at the SSE Arena outside London. Warrington, who relinquished his IBF title after the governing body refused to sanction a unification clash with WBA champion Xu Can, was outgunned the whole night. Lara dropped 25:1 favorite Warrington in round four and Warrington barely survived the round. Warrington was still hurt at the beginning of round five and was repeatedly staggered as the bout progressed. Lara finally laid out Warrington with a huge left hook in round nine to end it. Time was :54.

IBF #6 super featherweight Zelfa Barrett (25-1, 15 KOs) retained his IBF Intercontinental title with a controversial twelve round unanimous decision over former super bantamweight champion Kiko Martinez (41-10-2, 29 KOs). Martinez pressured Barrett the whole fight and gave as good as he got. Judges had it 118-111, 118-111, 116-113 for Barrett. Hometown officiating at its best.

Featherweight Leigh Wood (24-2, 14 KOs) scored a ninth round KO over previously unbeaten Reece Mould (13-1, 6 KOs) to claim the vacant British title. Wood dropped Mould in round four, then put Mould on the canvas twice in round nine to end it.

Unbeaten super lightweight Dalton Smith (6-0, 5 KOs) was victorious when Ishmael Ellis (11-4, 0 KOs) stayed on his stool after round three.

Featherweight Hopey Price (4-0, 1 KO) topped journeyman Daniel Mendoza (11-12, 4 KOs) over six. Score 60-54.

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  • The ‘ unpredictable beauty’ of boxing on display. I checked out Lara’s record during the week and was convinced this was a mismatch. Lara produced on the fight and the fight could easily have been stopped in the fourth.

  • Not sure if Warrington was just rusty or chose to fight reckless.. because all Lara did was throw the left hook and right hand. Felt unnecessary to get caught by those by a number one ranked fighter. But he won fairly.. IMO, Warrington should go to the Hospital and get his head checked. The way he sat back down and looked around slow like that didn’t look good to me.

  • After two rounds I thought” Warrington takes too many flush punches, I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets blasted out.” Sure enough…I have to admit, I love brutal fights like this!

  • I had absolutely no rooting interest in this fight – but the fact that Lara won is awesome!

  • Great fight between Warrington and Lara, and especially when its on that scale and platform. A performance such as Lara put on is always so inspiring, speaks to the underdog in most of us. Have to admit the joy in Lara bucking the odds is tempered by the understanding that the first left hook was never recovered from for Warrington. When a man is unable to recover such as he did, it speaks poorly of his future success in the sport. Almost like after years of punches and abuse, the body refuses to stock pile it. Not only can a fight like that hobble your career, nothing good can come from that damage in the future. Doesn’t matter who they are, you strap gloves on and enter the arena, we do do nothing but respect them on the highest order.

  • as it was apparent Lara was dominating this fight, for his sake I’m happy he was able to secure the Knock Out because, in the co-feature, that would have been the only way Kiko Martinez was going to leave the building with a victory.

  • additionally, that effort should come with a big future payday for Lara. Although I wouldn’t see him with much of a chance, maybe a fight with fellow Mexican ( and best in the division ) Emmanuel Navarrete is the one to make.

  • And Warrington was talking about fighting in America. Poor guy his career is over unless he goes back down in weight.

  • Great fight. Lara is strong and can punch. He ate punches by the bunches and walked into them like the terminator. I can just imagine what he could do if he worked on his jab and defense. Warrington should have boxed Lara more. Biggest mistake, don’t box Mexican style with Mexican. Congratulations Lara!

  • Clowns like Johnny Nelson saying the fight should have been stopped after the fourth round are the same clowns that celebrate Coralles come back win against Castillio or many of Gattis comeback wins. Boxing is a tough sport. Warrington was rightly given the opportunity to comeback and he couldn’t.

  • Great fight. Lara really rips his punches, and has a porous defense. He will make for some great fights.

  • Not seen the fight yet but congrats to Lara. I expect there is a rematch clause but whether or not Warrington will take it or do better is another matter.

  • I am from the UK, the scoring on the Kiko Martinez was scandalous even eddie hearn was dismayed by the scoring and barretts his fighter.
    Kiko Martinez pushed all the way, was level or in front even a split decision was suitable for 118-111 twice is shocking scoring.
    Eddie hearn was fuming, stated Kiko Martinez may as well gone on teh back foot for 12 rounds if going to be scored liked that. These judges need investigating, schooled or removed.

  • Hell of a fight. Warrington was in it to win it to the very end. My respect to both fighters.

  • tyson fury made a rather interesting point once about British fighters who become world champions. He said there are world champions who are British, and then there are British world champions. With all the different bells out there, the second one is more probable to happen. Liam Smith (and not disrespect meant to him) is perhaps a prime example of that. Often it helps to have a good promoter to lead the way for you, Look at Germany a few decades ago. I was really kind of shocked that Calum Smith lost so badly to Alvarez. I really thought Smith would have a better match with him than Kovalev had.
    Was this not a title fight first? If so, sure unfair to Lara.

  • A lot of commentators seem to think that Warrington fought the wrong fight. That he should have boxed Lara from the beginning. I have a different opinion. As the article mentioned, he was outgunned from the start.

    Warrington didn’t seem to have the power to discourage Lara and keep him from advancing. Lara was the much heavier puncher and kept throwing and bullying Warrington around the ring. Lara didn’t have the same boxing skills so his defense was his offense. Warrington needed to back Lara up to win, but he rarely was able to do it.

    I do believe this is the first time Warrington has faced a true puncher. Frampton was a super bantam moving up and was the smaller man. Lee Selby is not a puncher. Lara was probably the first true featherweight with heavy hands that Warrington has ever faced.

    I don’t know if he could have survived even if he boxed carefully from the start. He just didn’t have the weapons to keep Lara off him. Lara hurt him often before the first knockdown. The fight basically ended with that knockdown because Warrington’s legs were shaky from that point on. The fight probably have been stopped in the 4th. It was just a matter of time before Lara ended it.

  • Lara is reminiscent of a young Israel “Magnifico” Vasquez….. great offense, porous defense and awesome career!
    Had huge fights against his countrymen Oscar “Chololo” Larios and Rafael Marquez…. a trio of small Giants!

  • Lara is only 22, this win sets him up for some decent pay checks. Good on him as UK fighters are overrated anyway.

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