Melee in Puerto Rico, JuanMa stops Vazquez in 11
By Hector Franco
October 30, 2016
Video Courtesy of News Channel Headlines
SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO - Last night at the Roberto Clemente Coliseum in Puerto Rico, Juan Manuel Lopez (35-5, 32 KOs) made his return to the boxing ring after more than a two-year hiatus. He stepped in the ring against Wilfredo Vazquez Jr. (24-7-1, 19 KOs). Lopez ended up getting a stoppage victory in the 11th round.
The fight started off well for Vazquez. Lopez showed every bit of the rust of the 2-year layoff. His punches were off point and looked forced. None of his punches had any snap to them. Even with Lopez not being at his best, Vazquez was still careful. Vazquez was picking the right times to attack and to move. After four rounds, most observers had Vazquez ahead comfortably winning all four rounds.
The momentum of the fight changed in the fifth round. The two men got their feet tangled up in an exchange that caused Vazquez to drop to the canvas. This seemed to motivate Lopez to push the pace in the fight as he began to apply a higher level of pressure on Vazquez. He was even able to hurt Vazquez with a right hook near the end of the round to officially turn the tide.
The next few rounds were close in the number of clean punches landed, but Lopez was the aggressor throughout. Vazquez began to have trouble seeing out of his left eye. This led to the fight becoming more of a brawl. Ultimately, the fight came to an end in the 11th round after Lopez backed Vazquez to the corner and unloaded a barrage of punches. Vazquez went down to the canvas and the referee called a halt to the contest. Unfortunately, the fight didn’t end there.
After the fight was stopped, Lopez began to celebrate and ran up to one of Vazquez’s corner men. They began trading blows and almost caused a huge riot at the arena. Bottles began flying to the ring. Luckily, tempers quickly died down as the two combatants began embracing each other in a show of showmanship.
Lopez after the fight spoke of fighting once again. He is looking for fights with Abner Mares who faces Jesus Cuellar on Dec. 10 and a rematch with the man who twice knocked him out, Orlando Salido. It’s unclear if those fights will come to fruition as Lopez could be looking at a suspension for fighting Vazquez’s corner man.
Vazquez announced that the fight with Lopez was his last.
(Featured Photo: Andre Kang/El Nuevo Dia)