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Keith Thurman Barely Gets The Decision Win Over Lopez

Keith Thurman Barely Gets The Decision Win Over Lopez

WBA Super World Welterweight champion Keith Thurman (29-0) was pushed a little more than he or anyone else expected on Saturday night in Brooklyn, but One-Time did earn the majority decision victory over a fit and motivated Josesito Lopez (36-8). Thurman escaped a scary seventh round to subdue the man known as the Riverside Rocky.

After a two-year absence from the ring, Thurman got the nod from two judges who scored the fight 115-111 (Steve Weisfeld) and 117-109 (Tom Schreck) in his favor. Don Ackerman saw the fight a draw (113-113), which seemed to raise some eyebrows–mine included. Thurman easily controlled the early rounds with his speed and effective combinations.

He dropped Lopez in the second frame with a strafing left hook that landed

It happened toward the end of the round, and Lopez was able to survive, but you could see Thurman's confidence rise. Perhaps he got a little too comfortable.

In the seventh round, Lopez caught Thurman on the ropes with his own left hook. This punch landed even more squarely than Thurman's shot in the second. Lopez followed it up with a hard straight right hand that further scrambled Thurman's balance. During the post-fight interview, Thurman admitted he was indeed buzzed by the sequence.

For a time, it looked as if referee Steve Willis was on the verge of stopping the bout. Thurman did a good job skirting the ropes and throwing just enough punches to survive the assault and to convince Willis he could continue. With tons of rounds in the bank on two of the cards, Thurman moved and boxed effectively to finish the bout.

Lopez nearly shifted the course of the evening with his flurry in the seventh, but Thurman righted the ship enough to come away with the win. His movement was the difference, but he's going to need to shore up his defense if he is going to take on the elite welterweights.

After the bout was over, Thurman called out Manny Pacquiao. Thurman's name was one of five mentioned as a potential next opponent for the future Hall-of-Famer after he dominated Adrien Broner on Showtime PPV last week. A Pacquiao-Thurman bout would unify the WBA titles, so it makes sense, but we'll see if it comes to fruition.

Thurman did commit to fighting again in 2019.

Lopez's stock should have improved even in defeat. He showed his signature toughness and found a way to touch an elite champion like Thurman with some heavy shots. Even at 34 years old, he looks like a live opponent for most in the welterweight division.



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