Spence stops Ugas, unifies WBC, WBA, IBF belts

Photo: Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

By Jeff Zimmerman at ringside

In a WBA/WBC/IBF welterweight unification battle, Errol Spence Jr (28-0, 22 KOs) from Dallas stopped Yordenis Ugas out of Cuba (27-5, 12 KOs) in round ten on Saturday night in front of a raucous 39,946 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas in a tough, gritty fight.

The southpaw Spence Jr. opened the fight with his right jab and straight lefts to the body as Ugas looked to time and counter Spence over the first couple of rounds and had some success doing so. By the third, Spence picked up the pace as he landed his overhand left and uppercuts and his patented body shots. The fourth round was much the same as Spence worked his way inside of Ugas and scored to the head and body.

Spence took charge in round six with combinations and uppercuts, before a big right hand by Ugas knocked his mouthpiece out. Spence looked away to find it and Ugas capitalized with a perfectly placed right hand that temporarily wobbled Spence as he bounced off the ropes. Referee Laurence Cole eventually stopped the action and Spence was able to retrieve his mouthpiece and fully recover and went back on the attack the last part of the round. In round seven, Spence was in kill-mode as he went for the knockout and got his hometown crowd in a frenzy, but Ugas showed his warrior spirit and countered with some nice counter shots of his own.

In round eight, Spence Jr. continued the onslaught and forced the referee to halt the action to have the ringside physician look at the right eye of Ugas, that was almost completely shut. By the tenth round it was target practice for Spence who smelled blood and kept pounding Ugas on the inside as he tried desperately to end the fight with a knockout. And right before he could, Cole went back to the doctor and this time was advised to stop the fight. The official time was 1:44 as Spence Jr. earned the TKO victory.

Spence has overcome so much the last few years, it’s a small miracle he ever decided to lace up the gloves again, especially after his horrific car accident in October 2019. And instead of taking a “tune up” fight in his first fight after the accident, he took on former champ Danny Garcia and beat him convincingly over 12 rounds in December 2020. Spence has said he doesn’t believe in “tune-up fights” and instead takes on challenges that most would shy away from.

Spence then missed out on the biggest payday of his career when a detached retina was discovered days before his scheduled fight last August with the legendary Senator from the Philippines, Manny Pacquiao. Ugas happily stepped in and picked a part an old Pacquiao over twelve rounds to claim the WBA belt and send Pacman to retirement.

Ugas, like Spence, had his own incredible backstory and just as harrowing coming into this unification welterweight showdown. Ugas tried to flee his native Cuba several times, only to be caught and jailed each time. He eventually made it to the U.S. and after a career that has seen many ups and downs, Ugas is finally living the American Dream. He knew the large task at hand against the favored Spence Jr. as he told the media leading up to the fight.

But the night belonged to the American, Spence Jr., a former U.S. Olympian, as he showed he is still one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world. He got the big win in his home city and his home stadium, the house that Jerry built for his beloved Dallas Cowboys. Spence displayed to the world that despite the setbacks, he is still “The Truth” and he likes nothing more than to prove people wrong.

“When people say I can’t do this or I can’t do that, I prove them wrong every time. I am the same guy I was before the accident and the injury. I feel like I’m better than that guy that fought Shawn Porter or Danny Garcia,” said Spence leading up to the fight with Ugas.

Now that he has added the WBA belt to his WBC and IBF, the only one left is the WBO that belongs Terence “Bud” Crawford, another pound-for-pound great. The fight that seemed all but dead not too long ago, is once again alive to be this generation’s “Super Fight”.

And Spence Jr. made it clear and left no doubt on what he wants next as he told his fans in the ring after the fight:
“I want Terence Crawford next. Terence, I’m coming for that **mutha fkn** belt.”

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  • Very good performance by Spence. Now Crawford fight must happen. Laurence Cole is horrible

    • I predicted Spence on a UD, but not a KO. Good job Spence! Ugas not on the same level.

    • Yeh. Thats about what i thought would happen. Now Crawford. Period. No excuses

    • Laurence Cole did a great job, dont get gaslit by the horrible commentating job

    • Errol take God with you every time, keep training hard hit to hurt , you’ll never lose
      Randy Hardy: God bless you.

  • Laurence “The Crookedest Ref in Boxing” Cole. How is there not a Federal investigation into this corrupt piece of trash?

    • What did he do that was at all corrupt? The commentating team were out of their minds slandering Cole and here you are parroting their perspective

  • Round six comes down to professionalism and Ugas didn’t have any (in that moment), but what he did wasn’t wrong.
    Spence Jr lost his gum shield and made an amateur mistake. He looked away thinking the ref was going to pause the action. He got hit clean when he wasn’t looking. We know what Ugas did was legal, but I’ve seen a lot of great pros step back so the other fighter could get the shield replaced.

    Again Ugas had all the rights to hit Spence when he turned away, but I don’t like it. It reminds me of when Mayweather Jr ko’d Ortiz.

    Either way it was a great fight, but other than the blind side (and legal) shot it was all Spence Jr.

    • He knocked his mouthpiece out!!!!! With a good shot! You want him to stop and wait for the ref, Crooked Cole, to help him out????? That’s EXACTLY what happened. This was nothing like the sucker punch by Mayweather who is a dirty scumbag. You don’t stop the action because an idiot looks for his mouthpiece after a shot. Can you imagine, every fighter would become Corrales. Wow, are you Cole’s brother?

      • Lol I am not a Mayweather fan but he is dirty because Ortiz headbutted him first so he punched him as he looked away? Grow up kid. You people who just have nothing to say about Mayweather crack me up.

        • Harry is a classic Floyd fan boy. Addicted to Floyd’s fast cars gold chains and a serial avoider of competitive fights when they counted. Harry thinks Larry Holmes was better than Ali. He did beat him right. LOLOL

        • Somehow managed to get Floyd in the conversation. Maybe get off Maywearher’s sachs?

        • Agreed … they ignore the facts and highlight only part of what really occurred that night to support their narrative

      • You clearly werent watching the fight. Spence wasnt hurt and Ugas had no advantage at all. Cole didnt stop it right away, but once there was a lul, he stopped it and had him put in his guard. Your perspective is the fault of the horrible commentating job. They were delusional

    • name those fights where a fighter loses their gumshield after getting hit and the aggressor stopped. You are full of shit every fighter would capitalize in that situation and you comparing what happened to that of Mayweather and Ortiz says it all.

    • Ugas took a page from the Floyd Mayweather book. Victor Ortiz, Arturo Gatti were victims of this mentality. Honor means nothing for a certain type of fighters such as, Ugas & Mayweather.

      • How is Mayweather dishonorable when Victor Ortiz purposely headbutted him. Mayweather followed the rules and one up Ortiz.

    • Derrick, at this point in his career, there are no amature mistakes. They were both landing with heat and one got through. That whole round was just weird.

    • Derrick Jedlicka: Good summary. Spence himself said after the fight he made the mistake of looking away. And there is the professional side in boxing where you don’t sucker punch your opponent.

    • Derrick go back and look at the Ortiz and Mayweather fight the reason Ortiz got knocked out was caused by him intentionally head butting mayweather, I gusse that didn’t matter to you anyway that prompted the referree to stop and give him a warning, had he not done that he would not have given Mayweather the oppurnity to knock him out this was different and Spence admitted he made the mistake.

  • Spence is a Middleweight that can make Welterweight. Looked massive here. Great fight though ……

  • Decent performance by Spence. Anyone who says great performance must be a millennial. Chicken Spence will NOT fight Crawford and he will find a way to price himself out. Mark my words, Chicken Spence will NOT fight Crawford in 2022. Fact!

    • We all know who is the millennial in here. Using the word ” decent” for Spence’s performance neasure how shallow is your knowledge about this sport.

    • Well, he does have 3 of the 4 belts so the statement of pricing himself out is kinda ridiculous, dont u think? Their both star fighters, it now comes down to who holds the most gold and thats Spence. 60/40 is mote than fair

      • Simple minded logic, you think because Spence has the three belts now he deserves the lions share ? Cmon you amateur! The only reason Spence has those belts is because he’s had them spoon fed to him by Al Haymon controlling the other belt holders and NOT allowing those guys nor Spence to fight Crawford while those other guys had the belts!

        If Spence is really down for it then do my “25/25/50 KO BONUS SPLIT!”

        25% of purse guaranteed to each guy.
        50% KO BONUS for WINNER by KO!
        = 75%/25% split for fighter who EARNS that “A-Side” money!
        If it’s a close decision that they both split that 50% Bonus and each walk away with equal amounts because they didn’t proved superiority over the other and let them RUN IT BACK again for the same “25/25/50 KO BONUS SPLIT”

        • Lmao.. ur numbers are based off of a die hard fan of Crawford and not a realistic figure. C’mon guy, get out of ur emotions and look at it from a realistic side. Ur numbers will NEVER happen. And ur calling me amateur. Lmao. Lets also look at the ppv this fight generated. I havent seen the nbrs yet but that shld help determine who gets the lions share. Thats how this game works!

          • Agreed that guys knows nothing about boxing. He must have been drinking when he posted those figures. Not only does Spence hold majority of titles but Spence sells more PPV than Crawford. Spence is the A side if you truly take everything into account. Either way this fight should be a good one and if Crawford really wants the fight he will take 60/40. He was searching for the big fish while on vacation in the waters… welp look no more because the big fish just called him out. #StrapSeason #ManDown

        • Sorry, but it doesn’t quite work like that! It’s going to be a 60/40 split as Spence has 75% of the belts now. He also outsells Crawford big time at the gate, TV and more importantly PPV! This will be Crawford’s highest purse with the potential to make way more should he win and have a rematch!

  • I really hope Spence don’t fight Crawford like he fought Ugas Crawford will Counter all night long hopefully Spence changes his style up before fighting Crawford because he’s going to get knocked out my opinion Ugas hits and then stop hits then stop can’t win like that

    • nah. Crawford is a frontrunner. Hasn’t fought any tough fights. Kavalutis? PLEASE. Spence does alot of things very well and he takes even a punch he doesn’t see coming with no mouthpiece and did not spaz out. Should be a good fight but Bud will be hard to get to sign the contract i predict.

        • @Ref, stop the crap! Mikey wasn’t 135 lbs when they fought! Mikey asked for it talking shit about seeing holes in Spence’s game! Mikey stepped inside the ring with a full fledged WW for his biggest payday to date and got shutoff completely! Mikey was the superior boxer??? NOT!!!

  • eating crow leaves feathers in my mouth but that’s the way it is. Spence did his job. Nice work.

  • Nice game plan. Stand head to head but throw one punch at a time once in awhile. Beating old Manny must have made Ugas delusional.

    • You’re right, that was the dumbest strategy I’ve ever seen by a top tier fighter. On the outside it was an even fight!

      • Because it wasn’t strategy! Ugas was “following the script laid out by Al Haymon!”
        “Look good but don’t beat Spence”
        Ugas had Spence hurt bad and he doesn’t go hard after him? Hmmmm?

        • Julian, if the injuries sustained by Uvas were not there, I’d say most definitely. However, no one should doubt script following in many fights.

  • If you are waiting for see Spencer vs Crawford???

    Sit down cause you will get tired of waiting cause it won’t happen soon

  • I doubt this version of spence can win against crawford but, ring rust might have been a factor! He looked slower than usual, he got hurt on the 6 on a rookie mistake and honestly, he got a break from the referee stopping the action when he was wabbled! A top spence would have k.o. ugas in the 5 round at the most! Anyways, this was a C+ performance by spence and definately those long breaks affected his performance!

  • Spence was legitimately hurt…his mouth piece was knocked out and he was hurt…Spence is definitely not the same fighter before the accident….He is just not that fearsome force anymore….stands straight up at times…balance is not the same which leaves him open for counters…heart is still there but skills not the same that we witnessed….was hurt to the body…Styles make fights and Ugas just could not pull the trigger yet Ugas manages to counter at times and hurt Spence to the body
    ….Crawford is a deadly counterpuncher… Though the Crawford fight may happen next…it is advisable that Spence maybe get another fight….Crawford destroys Spence

  • A brave effort by Ugas, but I wished he would have worked his jab more to set up his long right hands. Ugas also had some uppercut chances, but Spence’s pressure, jabs, right hooks and body shots tend to discourage folks in the 2nd half of fights. I believe Spence was hurt, but the mouthpiece delayed Ugas’ golden chance. Ugas took his loss like a solid professional fighter.

    Well, it’s time for Spence and Crawford to “scrap up” for a Texas show. For now, I favor Crawford to win. For some strange reason, I have a feeling Spence will have problems handling Crawford’s power. I also have a concern about Spence’s front foot heavy approach against Crawford. Spence was throwing some wide punches, so he better tighten up his punches against Crawford. Too early to put it in stone.

  • Fine performance by Spence but the fact Laurence Cole still gets ring assignments like this is an indictment of this sport’s degree of corruption.

  • Ugas did exactly what I said he was going to do. Cover up, low punch output and get battered around the ring. If Spence was fighting someone who didn’t fight like they were cased in concrete there is no way he would’ve fought that carless and aggressive. Would love to see him fight Crawford like that though. No matter how he fights Crawford I think he loses.

  • UGas should of protected his body better and moved his head, if that eye didn’t swell up UGas could of came on in the last two rounds, Spence looked a little punched out. Crawford beats Spence I believe, Crawford just too accurate and he won’t let Spence beat him to the body without retaliation.

  • Ugas’ strategy was absolutely nuts. The first couple of rounds were basically even, because he used his jab effectively and kept his distance on the outside. Then Ugas decides to trade punches with Spence on the inside. His corner didn’t try to rectify the mistake either.

  • All these fights, mistmstches who pays for these ? I’m sure PBC is barelly breaking even.

  • Spence made the fight all night and pressed the action, taking chances he didn’t even need to he could’ve just boxed his way to a comfortable UD. Ugas didn’t do anywhere near enough and paid the price. He hardly took any advantage of openings Spence’s aggression gave him. Even when he staggered him he didnt capatilise on his success. I think Crawford breaks Spence down same everyone else but just want the fight to happen.

    • His mandatory Staniosis will beat him. Boots will beat him too. He does a few things good but that not enough to beat Virgil Ortiz or Butaev.

  • Can we all agree Spence-Crawford fight should be in Vegas and Spence takes the bigger purse? Not a fan of big fights in Texas because Cole gets the role of major fights who is corrupt

    • Why should Spence get the bigger purse? Because Al Haymon been protecting him from Crawford?
      Nah bro, be a Real Man and call your shot!
      The CRAWFORD vs Spence fight should be done under my “25/25/50 KO BONUS PURSE” where the Winner by KO EARNS the Lions share of the purse.
      25% guaranteed to both guys,
      50% BONUS is EARNED by WIN by KO!

      • That is a stupid breakdown of how the purse should be split, and you know it! Who does that just because you say so? You don’t like Spence, I get it! Spence has 3 belts, Bud has one! Errol’s Risk vs. Reward is much higher than Crawford’s, who literally hasn’t fought the same level of competition. But keep giving Bud an excuse not to sign the contract. I already see the built-in excuses when Spence beats Crawford! Do you honestly think real fans and not “fan boys” that are into their feelings, won’t watch because of the purse split? Spence is in the driver’s seat, and he should dictate the terms! That’s the way boxing works!!! “65-35%” split for Spence; % of PPV for Crawford and rematch clause. “60-40%” split for Spence, smaller % of PPV for Crawford, Spence gets to dictate rematch options!!! If anything, Crawford will try to price himself out of this fight! Neither fighter is afraid of the other. This is business, and Spence is the A-side! Period.

        • Stupid is a harsh word…”Creative” is a better word choice….Spence Crawford deserve a major pay day.,…two elite fighters…do like Julian jaz “creative” contract cause it may encourage elite fighters to come in shape….not fight with hidden injuries thereby cheating the public cause the contract is set….plus other sports have incentive based contracts for athletes involving outcomes….why not ours….by the way ….what makes a “real fan” and who gives authority to label what type fan you are?

          • @Sean, I said what I said!!! You can use “creative” if you like! Most “elite” fighters will typically come in prepared and on weight! There are of course exceptions. Incentive laden contracts may work well in other sports, however boxing is a different animal! MMA has a similar business model to present fighters fotn, ko of the night, sub of the night type bonuses. MMA fighters may brawl their asses off and depending on what or who Dana White thinks is deserving gets the bonus money! UFC makes most of the money! In boxing, there are lots of hands in the soup! The promoters, the sanctioning bodies, the training staff, the sparring partners, gym fees, etc. A “real fan” is one who studies the science, history, fighters, trainers, strategy, videos of many styles and angles, etc. “Fanboys” are mostly people that listen others opinion or internet reports about a fighter and take it as fact. They probably can’t tell you five of a fighters opponents, unless the fighter has all ko’s… how they won the fight. What they did well/wrong. So to answer your last question, “you give you” the authority to label what type of Fan you are!

          • Boxing fan for 43years…trained and sparred with all type of fighters….and .been in several professional boxing camps…know several professional fighters….just love the fight game …but that does not make me more of a fan then anyone else….
            …I just love boxing and I understand that for boxing to thrive we need all types of fans….in particular the “fan boys”…..they support boxing also…buy the ppvs and help fill the big stadiums….drive the tv rating up….creating affordable innovative boxing streaming channels like DAZN..,. trust me more fans irrespective of type….more options…keeping the sport relevant and thriving.

        • Agreed. People dont realize how much money it takes to run a camp at the elite level. Saying 25% for one side if he gets KO’d is absurd. Thats a good incentive for beginning pro’s and possibly even mid level pro’s but you cant operate the elite’s like that. At that point, why fight. This is where u wld see cheating to “win at all costs”.

  • The fight went exactly how I predicted. I said Spence by easy decision or late round stoppage. Some fool hacked me and posted under my name and said “Spence TKO within 3, you heard it here first” I had to set the record straight, because I did not want some ignorant clown claiming to be me me posting his nonsense. As a result, all comments were deleted by fightnews. I knew Ugas had the grit and skill to survive 3 rounds. So many people on here claim to be boxing experts and aficionados, but really don’t seem to know much about boxing other than what they read on the internet. Granted, many on this sight do, but anybody who thinks Ugas was going to win simply can not break down styles.

  • Spence has to stay away from Crawford, or he will get knocked out.
    Crawford has more power, killer instinct and finishing skills than the Cuban did tonight and Spence would not be able to avoid the inevitable. It was a good win by the Texan, but he is not the best at 147. I honestly don’t think that Spence gets by boots Ennis either.

    • @Chris the natural! Why would Spence need to stay away from Crawford? I read this forum quite often, and don’t always comment, but Spence has proven you and countless others wrong time and time again! What 2/3 belt CHAMPION (maybe Canelo)would really stay away from another 1 belt champion? Crawford will not be able to keep Spence off of him like so many of these comments suggested Ugas would do! The body work by Spence made Ugas a stationary target! Just because Crawford switches stances, his body will still be there for Spence to take away his legs. Spence is the superior boxer/puncher to Crawford! Spence will stop Crawford maybe worse than Ugas! Just remember when the fight happens, and it will or most true fans of the sport won’t accept any PPV’s of either if they are not fighting each other! Errol is snatching bodies and breaking orbital bones! Regardless of what “you” say about Spence not being the best at 147, he is until someone (fighter) proves otherwise

      • Crawford is good but Spence has proved that he is on another level and still seems to be after the accident.

    • Are you alking about the Same Boots Ennis that you think is avoiding Blair The Flair Cobbs?

    • I thin Spence/Crawford is the ultimate toss up. Both guys are talented, tough and experienced. Boots is a monster and the future. I doubt either will fight him anytime soon because ” he has no following and we won’t get paid” That’s what they always say. Boots is for real. Bad man!

  • Congratulations spence.
    Well deserved win.
    I still admire manny pacquiao, win or loose, never complain.
    Spence will methodically destroy crawford. Why? The best offence is a good defence.

  • Where is Michael you heard it first who said he bet 10k on Ugas ? Where are you Michael ?
    Wasn’t expecting a one sided fight like this..

  • If Crawford vs Spence fight will be next year, then Spence will have a weight problem and it will be capitalized by Crawford.

  • It was a methodical beat down by Spence. Crawford Spence should be good. Let’s get it on!!!

  • Very good fight! Good action from start to finish! Ugas looked like the stronger of the two, but Spence sharper!! Didn’t agree with the stoppage, but I felt like it was coming anyway as Ugas couldn’t see shots coming from that side at all. Protect him for another day! And hey he has that beautiful fiancé to look forward to!! As for Spence….. let’s see how bad he and Terrance want this?! As of now, I still think Crawford has more levels to him!! Crawford by decision!!!!!

    • Once Crawford has him figured out, the fight is over. he will not be allowed to go the distance. Definitely, Spence not the best at 147.

  • Ugas was not in the same class. Spence was so much faster and throwing combinations. An A boxer vs a B boxer, one Spence ( is unbeaten) , the other(Ugas) has 5 losses. Logic prevailed.

  • I’m wondering if the writer actually watched the fight. At no point did U gas rock Spence. Ugas hit Spence after Spence stopped because he thought the referee called a break when his mouthpiece fell out. Spence fell backwards because of his momentum in stepping backwards and a being hit by U gas at the same time. Within 3 seconds Spence was back to throwing punches that were ripping Unas body and face. This was not a competitive fight, Spence dominated almost every round.

  • UGAS didn’t understand that in Boxing you throw Punches, Not stand there and be a punching Bag

  • OK after a lopsided pounding Spence get the TKO now wants Crawfish who finally cant hide behind uncle Bob so sign that 70/30 contract and if your gonna be great be great one of these dudes will be undisputed Spence grinded his way to 3 belts beating the current champion of each Crawfish beat a suspect Aussie and until pre retirement Porter had not fought a top 5 ranked 147lber so this should be a great test for him as well so again sign and may the best 147lber win

    • Crawford is an elite fighter…Stopped Porter that is quite telling….Porter fought the elites and never was stopped….Don’t sleep on Crawford …He is special,.is a beast…Spence knows that…

  • I’m a big Spence fan. However, he looked at best about 70% of his his former self before he fought Shawn Porter. I noticed his jab was weaker, his balance was always a little off, and his eyes looked distant. Even at 70% he ruined his opponent last night, but for the sake of his future happiness, I think he should consider retirement.

    • Well stated…Ferguson…the three things you pointed out were quite noticeable…,his balance just was not there…watch the replay…. Ugas just did not pull the trigger…not Ugas style….Spence just not that dominant special fighter that we remember…can you imagine that version of Spence moving up to fight Charlo or even an Old GGG.. aforementioned fighters are offensive beasts….

    • Hahaha you are joking, right??? Floyd is definitely not the best. His record is fabricated. He was a showman and a entertainer. Not a fighter. He’s a total fraud. 100% protected and made lots of money for corporate crooks. It’ll be a great day when he he is never mentioned again. His career has already been forgotten by the masses. Out of 50 fights he has maybe 2 that are worth rewatching.

  • Seems like Spence was following in Wards shoes against Kovalev being the new nut cracker, he sure got away with a lot cheap low blows during the course of the bout.

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