CARSON, Calif. -- No matter how you saw Saturday's main event at the StubHub Center unfolding, Bryan Vera was a victim.
Vera lost a unanimous decision to Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., but the Texas fighter wasn't alone in thinking he had done more than enough to earn the judges' approval.
"I think they know what happened in this fight, and I feel that I won," he said of fans in attendance, many of whom booed the decision -- which was scored 96-94, 97-93 and 98-92 for Chavez. "I was better than him, boxing-wise, and he hit me with a couple of shots because I was being very aggressive, because I felt I had to do that to beat him at his house."
Vera couldn't hide his frustration.
"I'm disappointed," he said. "I'm winning, and my trainer told me I was the winner. When I heard the 98-92 card, I felt they were going to steal it. I felt sick."
Vera said fighting at 173 pounds -- a catchweight that was settled on after the limit had been moved (more than once) from 160 -- favored him, contrary to conventional prefight wisdom.
"I felt like the biggest and the strongest," he said. "I'm a warrior and I sent him backwards the entire fight. He hit me a couple of times because I was moving very fast, but every time, I connected against him."
Vera believes he dominated the fight, moving Chavez around the ring as he pleased and outpunching his opponent, although those factors didn't translate on the scorecards.
After the fight, Vera was outspoken about his wish for a rematch, though he had his doubts that it would happen.
"I would love to face him again," he said. "I don’t think he wants to do it."
Vera brushed off the allegations of Chavez, who complained repeatedly during and after the fight of head-butts and low blows.
"I can be messy, and he has a big head, so I can fight the same way," he said. "He was doing what he likes to do. I don't think I fought that dirty."