A roundup of the past week's notable boxing results from around the world:
Saturday at Oberhausen, Germany
Felix Sturm W12 Fedor Chudinov
Wins a super middleweight title
Scores: 115-113 (twice), 114-114
Records: Sturm (40-5-3, 18 KOs); Chudinov (14-1, 10 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: On May 9 in Frankfurt, Germany, Chudinov, 28, of Russia, won a split decision against Sturm, 37, of Germany, to claim a vacant world title. After a successful defense in September, Chudinov went back to Sturm's turf to meet him in a rematch. While he got a fair decision in the first encounter, Chudinov was not so lucky in the rematch, losing a majority decision in a fight he appeared to clearly win.
Nonetheless, Sturm claimed the belt and now has won five world titles, including four belts at middleweight and this one at super middleweight. He may not have much time to enjoy it because, according to the Chudinov camp, he has a rematch clause for a third fight, which also would take place in Germany.
Sturm, who came into the fight in an 0-2-1 rut, took a lot of heavy shots from the more powerful Chudinov, who had a powerful right hand working as well as his jab, and he went at Sturm from the outset. Chudinov probably was out-boxed in a few of the early rounds, but he came on very strong in the middle of the fight and appeared to be in command. In the 10th round, Sturm suffered a cut over his right eye as a result of an accidental head butt.
Sturm's best round was probably the 12th, which, according to CompuBox punch statistics, was the only round of the fight in which he landed more punches (24) than Chudinov (22). In fact, the CompuBox statistics overwhelmingly favored Chudinov, who threw -- and landed -- way more punches, in addition to clearly being the heavier hitter. He landed 297 of 1,022 punches (29 percent) while Sturm connected on 184 of 605 blows (30 percent).
Also on the card, former two-time heavyweight title challenger, Francesco Pianeta (32-2-1, 18 KOs), 31, a native of Italy based in Germany, knocked out Hasan Olaki (6-3, 3 KOs), 36, of Turkey, in the fifth round of a ridiculous mismatch. Pianeta got knocked out by Wladimir Klitschko in the sixth round in a 2013 championship fight and by Ruslan Chagaev in the first round in a secondary title bout in his previous fight last July.
Saturday at Phoenix
Jessie Magdaleno KO7 Rey Perez
Records: Magdaleno (23-0, 17 KOs); Perez (20-8, 5 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: Magdaleno, a 24-year-old southpaw from Las Vegas, has been an enigma. He has big talent and was considered a can't-miss prospect when he turned pro in 2010. But he has been slow to develop and hampered by issues making weight and questions about his desire and work ethic. Not too long ago, Magdaleno, the younger brother of lightweight contender Diego Magdaleno, had meeting with manager Frank Espinoza and brass from promoter Top Rank in which Magdaleno was told it was time to get serious about his career. We'll see how that plays out but so far, so good. Magdaleno appeared in shape and was on weight for his main event on UniMas' "Solo Boxeo Tecate," even though Perez, a late replacement for the Philippines' Edward Mansito (13-3-2, 7 KOs), was seven pounds over the contract weight.
Magdaleno dominated the fight from start to finish, finally putting Perez away with a perfect left hook to the body as he dropped him for the full count at 2 minute, 51 seconds of the seventh round. If Magdaleno can stay on course he could land a shot at junior featherweight world titlist Nonito Donaire this year.
Saturday at Monterrey, Mexico
Francisco Rodriguez W10 Ramon Garcia
Scores: 99-88, 99-89, 96-91
Records: Rodriguez (18-4-1, 11 KOs); Garcia (20-8-1, 12 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: Rodriguez, 22, of Mexico, a former unified strawweight titlist, and former junior flyweight titleholder Garcia, a 33-year-old southpaw, also from Mexico, both came into this fight in dire need of a win.
Rodriguez, who outpointed Japan's Katsunari Takayama to unify two strawweight world titles in the 2014 ESPN.com fight of the year, had lost two fights in a row to quality opponents in Donnie Nietes in a junior flyweight world title bout and former strawweight titleholder Moises Fuentes. Garcia has lost three bouts in a row, including a decision for a vacant junior flyweight world title to Javier Mendoza in 2014.
In the end, it was Rodriguez, fighting in his hometown, who was far more aggressive and accurate with his punches as he earned the much-needed victory in an entertaining scrap. He won the fight in rather dominant fashion as he dropped Garcia three times and rolled to the decision.
An accidental head butt opened a cut over Garcia's right eye in the fourth round. In the seventh round, Rodriguez dropped Garcia twice, first with a right hand. Then Rodriguez sprinted across the ring and immediately knocked him down again with another right hand. Garcia survived the final two minutes of the round but tasted the canvas again in the eighth round when Rodriguez nailed him with a left uppercut that forced him to touch his knee down.
In the junior lightweight co-feature, 21-year-old prospect Carlos Diaz (19-0, 10 KOs), of Mexico, remained unbeaten as he scored a knockout down in the first round and cruised to a decision win against countryman Ulises Perez (15-4, 7 KOs). The judges had him winning 98-91, 98-91 and 96-93.
Friday at Atlantic City, N.J.
Adam Lopez W10 Mario Munoz
Scores: 98-92 (twice), 97-93
Records: Lopez (15-0, 7 KOs); Munoz (16-1-1, 10 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: Lopez, 25, of San Antonio, continued on his path to being a contender with a hard-fought but clear decision victory over Munoz, 25, of Mexico, in the main event of a quadrupleheader on Showtime's "ShoBox: The New Generation," a series on which Lopez has become a regular. Lopez, who suffered a bad cut over his right eye, outworked the game Munoz and landed the more effective shots as he plowed his way to a victory that did not come easy. There were a lot of accidental head butts and rough tactics.
"This was my toughest fight as a pro and I think I proved a lot," Lopez said. "I showed I could fight through a lot of adversity. The cut in my eye was definitely a factor for my performance in a couple of rounds, but I put the pedal to the metal and got through it. I landed the more telling shots. This is the kind of fight I can learn from. Fighting through the cut and all the head butts, and still persevering. These are the kinds of fights that make fighters better. You don't learn a thing by blowing guys out. Munoz was a good fighter and landed some tight shots on me, but I was definitely the better fighter and there was no question I would get the decision. I thought I might stop him in the eighth or ninth, but it didn't happen."
Munoz was disappointed by the judges' decision, saying, "I'm a better fighter than he is. I landed more combinations. My face is unmarked, look at his. He hurt me more from his low blows and head butts than he did with his punches. I'd love to fight him again."
Ronald Ellis D8 Jerry Odom
Scores: 76-76 (twice), 78-74 Ellis
Records: Ellis (12-0-1, 10 KOs); Odom (13-2-1, 12 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: Ellis, 26, of Lynn, Massachusetts, and Odom, 22, of Washington, D.C., fought to a legitimate draw in a very close fight that was action packed early on before they settled into more of a boxing match. Odom, although he did not get the victory, bounced back in some measure since suffering a bad third-round knockout to Samuel Clarkson in his last fight in July.
"I started strong and I showed that I belong here, in a nationally televised show," Ellis said. "I'm happy with what I did. I showed tonight that I can counter a busy fighter. I can take a punch. I can also be a boxer-puncher. Odom tried to do his thing at the beginning, but he just couldn't do it with me. I followed my trainer's advice. I punched, I stood back. I used my left hook. I think I really hurt him a couple times. I won that fight. I'm sure. At first, I banged with him and then I showed my boxing. It was easy in there. I won that fight. He never hurt me. I'll be back. You will be seeing a lot of me in the future."
Odom also felt he won, saying, "I can't be disappointed with the decision because I fought my heart out. I know I hurt him. He hurt me a bit in the second, but I got back on my feet and I kept on going. I feel I pulled it out in the last rounds. I worked the body. I think I did some damage. Ellis looked hurt. I mean no disrespect, but I felt I definitely did enough to win, but the judges saw it differently."
O'Shanique Foster TKO7 Lavisas Williams
Records: Foster (10-1, 7 KOs); Williams (8-1-1, 3 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: Foster, 22, of Orange, Texas, suffered his first loss in a terrible showing in November, but he has now won two fights in a row after knocking out Williams, a 24-year-old southpaw from Rochester, New York. Foster scored four knockdowns in the fight. He sent Williams to the canvas in the second, third, fourth and seventh rounds. After the knockdown in the seventh round, Williams' corner threw in the towel and referee Shada Murdaugh waved off the fight at 52 seconds.
"This is a huge relief for me," Foster said. "I feel great. I think people saw a glimpse of the kind of fighter I can be tonight. That wasn't me in my first 'ShoBox' fight. I don't know if I froze under the lights or if I lost because of the cold weather outside, but I wasn't nearly as confident for that fight as I was tonight, and it affected my performance.
"I had a tremendous training camp, my best camp ever, which played a big part in my confidence tonight. I thank God for the opportunity to fight on national television again and I'm already looking forward to the next time."
Williams said he never got into the fight. "For some reason, I just could not get loose," he said. "I had a cold, but I won't take anything away from Foster. He knocked me down, but I actually thought he pushed me down most of those times. I learned something tonight. I can't do what I did. I can't wait on my opponent. I have to attack first. I'll be back."
Christopher Brooker D8 John Magda
Scores: 77-74 Magda, 78-74 Brooker, 76-76
Records: Brooker (7-1-1, 5 KOs); Magda (11-0-1, 7 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: Robbery alert! Brooker, 24, of Philadelphia, got flat out robbed of a win in this one thanks to the incredibly off base scoring of judge Donald Givens, whose name might sound familiar. Givens, who stunningly scored the fight for Magda, 24, of Rutherford, New Jersey, was one of the judges in the infamous majority decision given to Paul Williams against Erislandy Lara in their high-profile HBO fight in Atlantic City in 2011. The scoring of that fight was so bad that the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board suspended all three judges indefinitely.
Givens was on the shelf for four years and not allowed to judge again until returning in June 2015. And now he is at it again with a brutally questionable scorecard in this fight, where judge Larry Layton's draw scorecard was almost as bad.
The much busier and more accurate Brooker appeared to dominate the fight, one that seemed easy to score. According to CompuBox punch statistics, Brooker threw and landed more punches than southpaw Magda by a significant margin Brooker landed punches in every round and landed nearly twice as many punches. Overall, Brooker landed 152 of 481 punches (32 percent) and Magda connected on 78 of 268 blows (29 percent). Showtime's announcers all had Brooker clearly winning.
Brooker was extremely upset by the scoring, and rightly so.
"I don't train eight hours a day, seven days a week to get this kind of decision," Brooker said. "That was not a draw. I clearly won the fight. I don't want to take away from Magda. He's strong fighter and he countered well, but I showed everybody that hard work beats talent any day. I won this fight. I was the aggressor. I threw some big punches. My right was key. In the beginning, Magda was fast, but I placed my punches and I know I did enough to win the fight."
Magda was not very convincing in making a case for himself, saying, "I feel OK, but this was a tough fight. He stayed on me and pressed forward, which we knew he would. But he was stronger than I thought. I'll have to watch the tape again, but I thought I landed the more effective punches."
Friday at Los Angeles
Diego De La Hoya KO4 Arturo Badillo
Records: De La Hoya (14-0, 8 KOs); Badillo (21-10, 19 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: De La Hoya, 21, of Mexico, the first cousin of promoter and Hall of Famer Oscar De La Hoya, is a quality prospect who continued to gain much-needed experience as he took apart seasoned veteran Badillo, 28, also of Mexico.
Boxing in the main event of Golden Boy's "LA Fight Club" series, De La Hoya unloaded on Badillo from the outset, especially with a harsh body attack to immediately take control in the opening round. De La Hoya, who is trained by Joel Diaz, suffered a small cut over his left eye in the second round, but he dealt with it fine. Badillo came to fight and put in an excellent effort, but De La Hoya was too fast and too powerful for him. He pounded Badillo throughout the fight until putting him away with a left hook to the body in the fourth round. Badillo went down to his knees, spit out his mouthpiece and referee Jerry Cantu counted him out at 1 minute, 11 seconds.
"At first, the excitement got the best of me and I was trying to look for a knockout, but in the second round I realized I was going to play into his game," De La Hoya said. "I decided to change the pace and take my time and just play it safe. By the third round, I realized he was getting tired and that's when I decided to take advantage and dedicate the third round to knocking him out."
Badillo got knocked out for the fourth time in a row and lost for the ninth time in his past 10 fights, with each defeat in the stretch coming by knockout.
"I knew about Diego De La Hoya's fighting style and I was prepared to fight a very tough opponent," Badillo said. "I felt comfortable in the ring in the first couple of rounds. I don't feel hurt, but that shot in the liver really harmed me. Unfortunately, those things happen and all I can do is go back to the gym and train for my next fight."
Friday at Sloan, Iowa
John Vera Jr. TKO4 Ayi Bruce
Records: Vera Jr. (13-0, 8 KOs); Bruce (23-13, 15 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: In the main event of promoter Greg Cohen's CBS Sports Net-televised card, Vera, 27, of Fort Worth, Texas, dominated Bruce, 29, a Ghana native fighting out of Albany, New York, en route to the knockout. Although Bruce lost his fourth fight in a row and dropped to 3-10 in his last 13 fights he was actually a step up in competition for the wholly untested Vera, who came into the bout having faced opponents with a combined record of 36-111-3. It was not much of a test, but Vera, a southpaw, passed it as he dropped Bruce three times in the fourth round. The first two knockdowns came on right hooks to the body and the final one came on a right hook to the head. Bruce beat the count but had no interest in continuing and referee Adam Pollack waved off the fight at 2 minutes.
Tony Luis W8 Samuel Amoako
Scores: 80-72 (three times)
Records: Luis (21-3, 7 KOs); Amoako (21-8, 15 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: In April 2015, Luis, 28, of Ontario, traveled to England for a shot at an interim lightweight world title but lost a highly competitive decision to Derry Mathews. On the comeback trail, Luis notched his second consecutive win in thoroughly dominant fashion against Amoako, 31, a native of Ghana fighting out of Silver Springs, Maryland, who dropped his fourth fight in a row. Luis won with ease against Amoako, who had no answers and was in survival mode in the late going.
Also on the card, 20-year-old welterweight prospect Malik Hawkins (6-0, 5 KOs), a former amateur standout from Baltimore, needed 2 minutes, 3 second to crush Cody Pederson (1-1, 1 KO), 26, of Liberty, Missouri, dropping him three times in a dominant first-round knockout.
Friday at Puerto Madryn, Argentina
Omar Narvaez TKO8 Jesus Vargas
Records: Narvaez (45-2-2, 24 KOs); Vargas (14-4-1, 10 KOs)
Rafael's remarks: In December 2014, longtime junior bantamweight titleholder Narvaez, 40, of Argentina, got blown away by Japanese prodigy Naoya Inoue in the second round to end his title reign. After a 10-month layoff, Narvaez returned in October for a near-shutout 10-round decision against journeyman Diego Liriano. Narvaez, a southpaw, who also had a long reign with a flyweight title, picked up his second win a row as he forced Vargas, 23, of Venezuela, to retire on his stool one second into the eighth round and ended his four-fight winning streak. Narvaez dominated the fight and laid a bad beating on Vargas with a two-handed attack in the seventh round that had him taking shots while looking for cover in a corner. He finished the round but he was done in his corner after the round. Narvaez is now hoping for a rematch with Inoue.