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Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Vera's left hand still swollen

By Dan Rafael


Although Bryan Vera lost his super middleweight rematch by unanimous decision in an action-packed fight Saturday night with Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. at the Alamodome, he deserves credit for fighting as hard he did with an injury that definitely hampered him.

When Vera came to ringside after the fight to speak to the media, his left hand was extremely swollen and bruised. He injured it early in the fight and was forced to abandon the left jab that had been working pretty well until that point.

Even a few days later, the hand is still swollen, and Vera continues to ice it.

“He went to see the doctor [on Tuesday], to a hand specialist,” manager David Watson told ESPN.com. “But they don’t know yet if the hand is broken. They said Bryan has to wait for the swelling to go down more until they’ll know. His hand is still swollen from his wrist all the way down to his knuckles. That’s why after the fourth round the fight began to turn because he couldn’t use his jab anymore.”

Vera saw a hand specialist in his hometown of Austin, Texas.

“It’s at least badly sprained,” Watson said. “He’s in pain but he can move it a little bit. That fight can be summed up like this -- a guy with one hand survived that kind of battle with Chavez Jr. for eight rounds. That says a whole lot about what Bryan Vera is made of.”

It was as gutsy a performance as you’ll see and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Vera back on HBO sooner than later because of the entertainment he provides. Whatever happens, Watson said, Vera would probably move down to middleweight. Remember, when the first fight with Chavez (48-1-1, 32 KOs) came up, Vera moved up in weight to take it. Vera (23-8, 14 KOs) really is a middleweight.

Vera also had an MRI on his head as a precaution, Watson said. That was the right move. He took tremendous punishment from Chavez, who landed flush right hands to the head all night.

Watson said the test results were clean.

“He’s fine,” Watson said. “The tests were fine. There were no problems at all. It was a tough fight, but he’ll be back.”