Premier Boxing Champions, one week removed from its grand debut on NBC, made its first appearance on Spike TV on Friday night at the Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario, California. The night was filled with knockdowns, knockouts, and non-stop action in what was a very successful set of boxing bouts for Spike. Here's a rundown of the results from Friday, complete with highlights of each bout.
Andre Berto (30-3, 23 KOs) def. Josesito Lopez (33-7, 19 KOs) via TKO, round 6 (KO highlights at the top of the page)
Berto was behind on the scorecards (50-45, 48-47, 47-48) to the hometown favorite "Riverside Rocky" Lopez. This welterweight (147 lbs) battle was quite entertaining over the first five rounds, with Lopez landing hard body shots and generally being more active. Berto cornered Lopez against the ropes to get off his best offense, and in the 6th round he caught Lopez with a hard right hand in an exchange, and put him on the canvas with another right. Lopez beat the count but was floored a 2nd time with another right hand just seconds later, and the referee didn't bother with a count. The fans weren't pleased and neither was Lopez, but the result stands as a big win for Berto to keep himself relevant in the welterweight division.
Chris Arreola (36-4, 31 KOs) def. Curtis Harper (12-4, 8 KOs) via unanimous decision (78-73, 77-74, 76-75)
This fight wasn't supposed to be on the televised broadcast, but the opening fight ended quickly and Spike had enough time to add this swing bout to the card. Former heavyweight contender Arreola was out of shape but still expected to run through journeyman Curtis Harper (in a similarly portly appearance), and that looked to be the case in the 1st round. Harper was dropped with a vicious right hand and then battered all over the place and somehow the referee let it continue. Arreola clearly hurt his right arm, and Harper managed a way back into the fight by slugging it out and blasting Arreola in what can only be described as a sloppy heavyweight slobberknocker. Arreola found a second wind as the two often landed punches simultaneously and somehow didn't put each other down in this eight round war. If you're a boxing purist who is all about the technique and art of the sport, you probably hated this fight. For everyone else, this was absolutely fun. Here are the highlights below.
Shawn Porter (25-1-1, 16 KOs) def. Erick Boné (16-2, 8 KOs) via KO, round 5
Boné was a game opponent on just 24 hours notice after Roberto Garcia failed his pre-fight medicals. Porter closed out the show though with a pair of knockdowns in the 5th round, with Boné failing to beat the count the 2nd time. It appeared that Bone hurt his right ankle on a slip moments before the 1st knockdown, and he was visibly shaken by Porter's crushing body blows. The body shots did Boné in on the 1st knockdown, and a thudding right to the body started the sequence for the finish. Porter swung away and a right-left-right combo decked Boné for good in this welterweight contest.
Aside from the stupid headband cam, the music intros for the fighters, and the puzzling decision to have the punch-drunk Tommy Hearns provide studio analysis, Spike TV put out a strong broadcast. The commentary team of NFL RedZone's Scott Hanson, Antonio Tarver, and Bellator MMA's Jimmy Smith was a surprisingly good trio with much better chemistry compared to Marv Albert and Sugar Ray Leonard on NBC.
PBC's next card is on April 4th live at 3:30 PM ET/12:30 PM PT on CBS. The main event is a light heavyweight title fight between Adonis Stevenson and Sakio Bika in Quebec City, Quebec.
Full Highlights Recap
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