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Azad Championship Report: Guerrero Manhandles Berto to retain Title via Decision

(Photo © German Villasenor, MaxBoxing)
(Photo © German Villasenor, MaxBoxing)

At the Citizen’s Bank Arena in Ontario, CA before a vocal crowd of roughly 4,500, WBC interim welterweight champ Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero, 31-1-1, 18 KOs, retained his title by being the more physical man, muscling former two-time welterweight titleholder Andre Berto, 28-2, 22 KOS, over twelve rounds. Guerrero came out fast, dropping Berto twice in the first two rounds and mashing him to the ropes in a mauling type fight to win by scores of 116-110 across the board.


The first knockdown came in the first round off a series of left hands from the southpaw Guerrero inside. Berto, fighting in a Floyd Mayweather-style shell defense (with more holes in it than Swiss cheese) fought at a slower than usual pace and was picked apart by the aggressive Guerrero.


“I told him I was going to eat him down,” said a triumphant Guerrero. “I had to beat him on the inside and beat him to the body. We were on the inside and I was pushing him into position to land my punches.”


Azad Championship Report
Azad Championship Report

In the second, Berto took an injury to his right eye, blinking and moving away. Guerrero again put him on the ropes and worked him over until Berto went down again.


From there, it was a mugging with Berto getting in shots here and there (particularly the uppercut) but to no avail. Guerrero, in his second welterweight fight, showed he has the chin to handle a big puncher and the strength to knock a strong welter like Berto off the blocks time and again.


Berto complained after that the ref, Lou Moret, allowed the rough tactics of Guerrero which at times contained low blows and shoulders. Berto was warned twice for rabbit punches while Guerrero warned for a low blows.  


“The ref was calling me for a lot of things so I was timid,” said Berto who started slow and stayed that way for the most part. “He was grabbing me and holding me on the inside. It is what it is. I came back after 14 months and fought RG. Endeof the day he fought a great fight.”


With the win, Guerrero, whose interim titleholder status earns him the mandatory challenger spot to Floyd Mayweather (unless the WBC had a rule change during the fight).


“I am here.  Let’s do this Floyd,” said Guerrero. “I got a UD against a great champion in Berto. I feel I am the best and can’t be beat. I’m unstoppable.”


In the co-feature, junior middle Keith Thurman stopped a shopworn Carlos Quintana in four rounds, dropping him the first and battering him like a ragdoll to win by TKO. The time was 2:19.


Bantamweight Randy Caballero improved his record to (17-0, 9 KOs) by stopping Rigoberto Casillas (8-9-1, 6 KOs) when Casillas corner was it off after the third.


Olympic heavyweight Dominic Breazeale moved to 2-0, 2 KOs by stopping a game but outclassed Mike Bissett (1-1, 1 KO) with four knockdowns in two rounds apiece.


Featherweight Manny Robles, Jr, 3-0, 1 KO, scored a first round technical knockout of Misael Martinez (0-7).


Junior Middleweight Jernell Charlo, 19-0, 9 KOs) went the boring distance with Dashon Johnson, 13-9-3, 4 KOs and scored a unanimous decision by scores of 98-91, 99-90, and 100-89.



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