By Barry Holbrook: In a devastating performance, WBO super bantamweight champion Emanuel Navarrete (28-1, 24 KOs) made easy work of fringe #10 WBO contender Francisco De Vaca (20-1, 6 KOs)  in stopping him in the third round on Saturday night on at the Banc of Stadium in Los Angeles, .

(Photo Credit: Mikey / Top Rank)

The much bigger and stronger 5’7″ Navarrete backed the light hitting De Vaca against the ropes in the third round, and unloaded on him with huge power shots until referee Raul Caiz Sr . stepped in and stopped the contest. The official time of the stoppage was at 1:54 of round three.

Navarrete too powerful for De Vaca

De Vaca, 24, lacked the punching power and chin to stand in there with the hard hitting Navarrete. When De Vaca chose to fight off the ropes, it was easy pickings for Navarrete to work him over with his hard hitting shots until the referee e had o choice but to stop the fight.

In round one, Navarrete came out fast swinging for the fences with big power shots to the head and body of De Vaca. Although De Vaca landed a lot of nice shots in the round, it was painfully obvous that he wasn’t going to last long with the way he was getting hit hard by Navarrete.

In the second round, Navarrete began to really unload on De Vaca with shots. Navarrete landed several hard punches that dropped De Vaca to the canvas. Other than the knockdown, De Vaca looked fairly good in the round. When he wasn’t getting royally hammered by Navarrete, De Vaca showed some talent. The problem that De Vaca had, besides being too small and weak, was his lack of defensive skills. He was made for Navarrete, because he couldn’t defend against his big shots.

De Vaca was crushed in the third

In the third round, Navarrete continued to paste the hapless De Vaca with big power shots one after another. De Vaca looked bloody and better when the referee Raul Caiz Sr. finally stepped in and halted the slaughter.

All in all, it was a total massacre from start to finish. If this is the best that Top Rank could get for Navarrete, then you can give them a pass, but he needs to be fighting better guys. This wasn’t even sporting tonight. De Vaca never stood a chance in there.

While Navarrete can still make the 122 pound limit, he needs to be fighting guys like Rey Vargas, Daniel Roman, or . Unfortunately for Navarrete, the super bantamweight division is really weak right now. That’s why it would be better for him to move up to featherweight to go after guys like Gary Russell Jr., Shakur Stevenson, Josh Warrington, or Leo Santa Cruz.

Navarrete to fight on Fury-Wallin card on September 14

“I’m talking to Top Rank about fighting September 14 on the card in Las Vegas. I want to thank and Zanfer Promotions for the opportunity,” said Navarrete after the fight. De Vaca showed his fighting heart. He gave 100 percent in the ring tonight.”

Given the quick turn around, it’s highly unlikely that Navarrete will be put  in with a live body next month for his fight on September 14.  It’s too bad, because with tonight’s fight being a poor mismatch from the word go, the fans are likely to see a similar contest involving Navarrete on the vs. Otto Wallin card on + next month. It would be nice if Top Rank surprised the fans by matching Navarrete against someone good like Marlon Tapales, Murodjon Akhmadaliev, TJ Doheny or Brandon Figueroa.

stops Rafael Rivera

Showing that he’s still a big puncher, former 122 pound champion (27-1, 18 KOs) defeated the game but limited Rafael Rivera (27-4-2, 18 KOs) by a ninth round technical decision. The scores were 88-82, 89-81, and 89-81. News 24 scored it 89-81. Magdaleno suffered a cut on his nose, which eventually forced the fight to be stopped.

“These things happen. It’s part of the sport,” Magdaleno said. “I have a lot of respect for Rivera. He is a warrior. I felt very good, and I felt strong. And, I would say better than ever. I want a world title. I’m ready.”

If Magdaleno hadn’t been cut, he looked on his way to easily winning the fight by a one-sided 12 round decision. He didn’t have Rivera in danger of being knocked out.

Other results on the card

Arnold Barboza defeats Ricky Sismundo

Unbeaten light welterweight Arnold Barboza (22-0, 9 KOs) kept his perfect record intact with a fourth round stoppage of journeyman Ricky Sismundo (35-15-3, 17 KOs). The fight was halted after the fourth round had ended. Sismundo ely chose not to come out after the round had ended. Barboza knocked Sismundo down in the third round.

“I want a world title shot now,” Barboza said. “I want to challenge all the champions. It doesn’t matter who it is, or where it takes place. All I want is to face Ramirez, Prograis, or Taylor, and I want it now!”

It might be a little premature for Barboza to be looking to take on Jose Ramirez, Josh Taylor or Regis Prograis. Barboza is a good fighter, but he’s not a huge puncher like he would need to be, and he’s not shown the kind of skills that would indicate that he could beat any of the lions at 140. It would be better for Barboza to wait and go after one of the titles when or if any of the current champions move up in eight.

Janibek Alimkhanuly stops Stuart McClellan

Middleweight prospect Janibek Alimkhanuly (7-0, 3 KOs) destroyed Stuart McClellan (27-4-3, 11 KOs) in a fifth round TKO in a one-sided contest. Alimkhanuly knocked McClellan down in round five, and then unloaded on him after he got back to his feet. The referee then stepped in and halted the fight. the time of the stoppage was at 2:51 of round five.

Chris Van Heerden defeats Aslanbek Kozaev

Welterweight Chris Van Heerden (28-2-1, 12 KO) defeated Aslanbek Kozaev (33-3-1, 28 KOs) by an eight round unanimous decision. The scores were 79-73, 79-73, and 78-74. News 24 scored it for Van Heerden by a 79-73 score. Both fighters were cut. Van Heerden sustained a cut over his left eye in the first round, and then later a cut over his right eye in the fifth from a clash of heads. For his part, Kozaev suffered a cut on his nose in round three, and cut over his left eye in round five. Van Heerden, 32, had too much experience for the 31-year-old Kozaev.

Javier Molina decisions Manuel Mendez

Light welterweight Javier Molina (20-2, 8 KOs) defeated Manuel Mendez (16-6-3, 11 KOs) by an eight round unanimous decision. The scores were 79-73, 79-73 and 78-74. The difference in talent between the two fighters was telling. the 2008 U.S Olympian Molina was too good for Mendez, and he was able to use his superior skills to run away with the fight in the second half of the contest. Molina is a good fighter, but he’s come up short during his career when he’s stepped up against Jamal James and Artemio Reyes.

Dmitry Yun beats Javier Martinez 

Lightweight prospect Dmitry Yun (2-0) defeated Javier Martinez (5-7 3 KOs) by a six round unanimous decision. The scores were 57-54, 57-54, and 56-54.  Surprisingly, Martinez dropped Yun in the first round. In round three, Martinez lost a point for spitting out his mouthpiece. Yun was knocked down in the same round. Yun outworked Martinez down the stretch to get the win, but obviously wasn’t a great performance from him. Getting dropped by a journeyman is a bad sign for Yun.

Elvis Rodriguez TKOs Jesus Gonzalez 

Light welterweight Elvis Rodriguez (3-0-1, 3 KOs) defeated Jesus Gonzalez (6-3, 2 KOs) by a 1st round stoppage. Rodriguez dropped Gonzalez twice in the first round. The referee then halted the fight. The official time of the stoppage was 1:42 of round one.


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