WBA junior middleweight champion Erislandy Lara (25-3-2, 14 KOs) finally met his match last Saturday night in getting beaten by IBF World junior middleweight champion Jarrett Hurd (22-0, 15 KOs) by a 12 round split decision at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Lara, 34, thought he had done enough to deserve the win at the end of the hard-fought contest, but the judges gave it to Hurd by the scores 114-113, 114-113 for Hurd, and 114-113. Lara got knocked down by Hurd in the 12th round. If you’re going to make a case that you deserved the ‘W’, as we saw with Lara believing he should have won, then you’ve got to stay on your feet for the entire fight. Lara didn’t do that so he lost the fight. It’s as simple as that.
“Besides the last round, I thought I was winning this fight easily,” Lara said. ”That’s not to decide the fight. I was winning the fight.”
It wasn’t just the 12th round knockdown that decided the fight. Hurd was winning many of the rounds from the 3rd on because of the heavy, more numerous shots he was landing. Hurd was busy and consistently landing more shots than Lara in the fight, and of course his punches were harder because of his size.
Hurd looked like a middleweight fighting a junior middleweight. As soon as the two fighters stepped foot inside the ring last night, you could see that Lara was going to have a ton of problems against Hurd. The size that Hurd had going for him was going to be a huge obstacle for Lara to win the fight, and that’s ultimately what did it.
”One punch in a fight doesn’t determine the fight,” Lara said. ”It was a great fight for the fans. I stood there, fought and it was fun. I thought I clearly won the fight. Once again a decision goes against me, but hey we just have to do the rematch.”
It’s not the end of the world for Lara. Maybe Showtime Boxing will put some pressure on Hurd to throw Lara a bone by giving him a rematch for the boxing public. Personally, I don’t see that happening. Hurd is likely going to move on and either face WBC 154lb. champion Jermell Charlo or possibly the winner of the Sadam Ali vs. Liam Smith fight.
Under a worst case scenario, Hurd will defend his IBF/WBA titles against one of the contenders. That would be okay if Hurd wound up fighting a good opponent like Julian ‘J-Rock-Williams or Brian Carlos Castano. Hurd said he would like to fight Kell Brook. That’s a nice pipe dream that has next to no chance of happening in this lifetime.