The CBZ Newswire

Keith Thurman Makes Julio Diaz Quit After 3 High Action Rounds

by on Apr.28, 2014, under Boxing News

Report by Christopher Morgan 

Photos by Armando Cabrera


Keith Thurman (right) and Julio Diaz size each other up.

Keith Thurman (right) and Julio Diaz size each other up.


CARSON, CA, April, 26, 2014 — Keith Thurman lived up to his nickname of “One Time” with a blistering 3 round performance that left Julio Diaz unable to continue due to a Rib injury after 3 rounds of rapid give and take boxing. The crowd at the Stubhub center in Carson California were disappointed in the brevity of the main event but there was solace in the fact that the co-main event was arguably the Fight of the year to date and will be difficult to top for the rest.

The first round begins with Keith Thurman (22 – 0, 20 Kos) coming out and initiating a glove touch with Julio Diaz (40 -9, 29 Kos) which seems slightly peculiar as Thurman had made bold comments about knocking Julio’s head off in the lead up to the fight.  Thurman jabs three times then misses with a hook off the jab throwing it just a little too wide. Julio Diaz misses a right hand lead and gets caught with a hard hook from Thurman that rocks him back against the ropes, another hook lands from Thurman making Diaz legs do a little dance uncontrollably coming off the floor.  Near rounds end Thurman feints Diaz out of position then backpedals with Diaz in pursuit landing a series of hooks to Diaz body in the process.

Thurman comes out for round two with four straight jabs which Diaz counters over the top with a hard right hand that catches a surprised looking Thurman and sends his head flying back. Thurman advances and throws a three punch combination, feints then jacks Diaz jaw with a hard right uppercut.  Both men trade on the ropes landing hard body shots, Diaz catches a left hook to the body stumbles forward, then drops to the floor in a delayed reaction.  Diaz rises from the knockdown and charges missing a three punch combination that Thurman skillfully ducks and runs away from but Thurman gets caught by a fourth surprise left hook on the ropes as the bell rings.

Julio Diaz comes out for the third throwing lazy jabs, just to set range when he explodes an overhand right that lands flush on Thurman. Moments later another right hand lands for Diaz, Diaz throws a left and right to the body then upstairs with a left that all land. Thurman is less active for the first minute stalking and weaving around without throwing much when he springs forward and lands a left hook that sparks Diaz to come forward and trade. Diaz hurts Thurman to the body, traps him on the ropes and unloads at rounds end.

In between rounds the referee waves his hands over Diaz to signal the fight is over while holding his hands over his ribs to indicate Diaz is quitting with a rib injury.

It is unfortunate that the fight came to such a premature end as the action was really starting to heat up in the third round with both men having their moments. It seems that Keith really does possess one time fight ending power at the top level. The fans booed the decision of Diaz to quit but weren’t too upset as they had just witnessed an amazing clash that we will get to in just a second.


Televised Undercard:


John Molina (Left) tries to hold hard charging Lucas Matthysse off with a jab.

John Molina (Left) tries to hold hard charging Lucas Matthysse off with a jab.

The co-main event featured two hard hitting sluggers on the comeback trail as Lucas Matthysse of Argentina (34-3, 32 Kos) was looking to get back into the win column following his loss to 140lb champ Danny Garcia last September. John Molina of nearby Covina California (27-3, 22 Kos) was looking to get another chance at the top level after being wiped out in one round by Antonio Demarco a year and a half ago in Oakland.

The first round shows both men sizing each other up with an occasional right hand lead to the body from Lucas Matthysse with John Molina not very active for the first two minutes.  As Matthysse throws yet another lead right to the body John Molina suddenly explodes over the top with a looping right hand that rocks Matthysse to his heels. While hurt badly Matthysse elects to up the aggression and trade with Molina knocking him straight back into the ropes with a right hand at rounds end.

After having found success hurting Matthysse with the right hand in the first round, Molina sits back for much of round two waiting for Mattyhsse to throw a punch and then throwing the clubbing right over the top. Matthysse pushes Molina to the ropes and feeds him a hard left hook, Matthysse misses a three punch combo and gets dropped hard by you guessed it, a Molina right hand. Matthysse gets up quickly at five and appears ok.

Although John Molina fought most of his career at lightweight he appears to be in a heavier weight division than Matthysse in the ring tonight as he seems to be moving Matthysse back with his punches in the third round. Matthysse seems to be respecting Molinas power more in the third round as his guard is higher and tighter than in the previous two.  Matthysse turns away during an exchange prompting Molina to rush in to take advantage forcing the ref to call time to inspect the injury to Matthysse, Matthysse is now bleeding from a cut over his left eye.

In the fourth and fifth rounds both men slug it out with Molina punching with Matthysse whenever he opens up trying to land that potent right hand. Molina is credited with another knockdown in the fifth when he clearly lands a punch behind the head that sends Matthysse down to the canvas for the second knockdown of the night. Matthysse slugs it out with Molina rocking him in the final seconds on the fifth.

In the 6th through 9th rounds Matthysse begins to take over the fight by closing the distance on Molina and electing to fight chest to chest thereby not allowing Molina to get the range needed to unleash his monster right hand whipsaw.  At the close of the eighth Matthysse finally gets to Molina and drops him hard with a right, Molina falls down exhausted but somehow gets up to beat the count.

Matthysse comes out for the tenth round going for the kill after softening Molina up for the previous four rounds, Matthysse appears fresher and better conditioned and also better able to deal with the punishment he has received.  Matthysse scores another big knockdown at the end of the tenth but Molina showing tremendous heart gets up and survives the round.

Lucas Matthysse goes all out for the kill in the eleventh round, trapping Molina on the ropes and landing hook after hook until Molina crumples to the canvas forcing the referee to step in and save him from further punishment.

Each man showed tremendous heart and answered a lot of questions about their hearts and chin in this great action packed fight. The fans gained a greater appreciation for each man with a universal acceptance of this bout being the fight of the year up to this point.  Each fighter provided they did not take too much punishment deserve big things in the future.


Omar Figueroa (Right) Throws a long right hand to the head of Jerry Belmontes.

Omar Figueroa (Right) Throws a long right hand to the head of Jerry Belmontes.

In the first televised bout of the evening WBC lightweight champion Omar Figueroa (22-0, 17 Kos) of Wellasco Texas earned a disputed twelve round split decision over Jerry Belmontes of Corpus Christi Texas (19-3, 5 Kos)

The fight was hotly contested for the first five rounds with both men fighting mostly in a phone booth chest to chest slugfest until each man appeared to run out of energy and coast from round six through twelve. Loud boos from the crowd began raining down in the seventh from the lack of action and continued till the end.  This writer felt that Belmontes was ahead after five but did so much back pedaling over the last half of the bout that he threw the fight away.


Non Televised Undercard Bouts:

Brazilian Olympian Yamaguchi Falcoa got to make a SECOND pro debut after having been part of a double disqualification in his first attempt back in January of this year. Yamaguchi’s dance partner was Tijuana Mexico’s Francisco Najera (0-1)

Yamaguchi scored a fun high action four round unanimous decision victory but never appeared to take the bout seriously as he looked to be having a lot of fun at one point he turned completely away from Najera and clowned to the crowd.  The fight was in the middleweight division.


In a one round blowout welterweight Bryant Perella of Lehigh Acres Florida, (3-0, 2 kos) showed an extremely impressive arsenal and killer instinct in taking out Brooklyn New Yorks Robert Crespo (4-3, 3 Kos).

Bryant Perella appeared be hitting a heavy bag in the way he teed off on Robert Crespo rocking him from corner to corner scoring two knockdowns the first to the head and the second to the body leaving Crespo in a heap on the canvas.


Former 2011 National Featherweight champion and 2012 US Olympian Joseph Diaz Jr earned a shutout 6 round unanimous decision over highly experienced pro Luis Maldanado. Joseph Diaz, or “Joe Joe” to his rabid local supporters (Joeseph is from nearby El Monte California) improved his record to 10- 0 with 7 stoppages with the win, Luis Maldanado dropped to 38-12-1 with 29 by stoppage.   Joesph Diaz looked very composed probably due to his extensive amateur background as he utilized an almost non stop combination punching attack rocking Maldanado several times throughout the bout sometimes throwing 5 and 6 punch combinations. Luis landed his share of hard shots but it never deterred Joseph from continually coming forward and applying pressure, good action fight and a promising young prospect in Joseph Diaz.


Middleweight Jermall Charlo of Houston Texas (17-0, 13 Kos), not to be confused with his similarly named twin brother Jermell Charlo scored a fourth round stoppage over the tough but limited Hector Munoz (22-12-1, 14 Kos) of Albuquerque New Mexico.  Jermall Showed an impressive arsenal mixing in a varied attack the most noteworthy being his hard crisp piston like jab and bone jarring uppercut. Hector Munoz gave the best game effort he could muster but it his punches were just a little too wide and slow for the athletically gifted and fast Charlo who saw everything coming and was able to slip and counter at will.  The end came at the conclusion of the fourth round after Charlo had landed a blistering double left hook to the beet red face of Munoz a face that was showing all of the damage accumulated over the previous rounds of action.  In between rounds the doctor jumped in and administered a “follow my finger” test and then advised the ref to stop the fight.


In the third bout of the stacked fight card  2012 US Olympian and former national amateur champion at middleweight Terrell Gausha (8-0, 5 Kos) of Cleveland Ohio won a pedestrian shutout unanimous decision over Charles “the killer” Whitaker (40-14-2, 24 Kos) of Winter Haven Florida.  In a bout of “if you’ve seen one round, you’ve seen em all” Charles Whitaker was content to try and land one punch, a left hook lead, and sometimes only threw that one punch in an entire round. Terrell tried his best to close distance and land his shots and he was somewhat effective especially in the sixth round when he dropped Whitaker with a left to the body and right upstairs but had a hard time tracking down Whitaker who ran all night long.


Frankie “Pitbull” Gomez of East LA, (16-0, 12 Kos) made quick work of Bayamon Puerto Rico’s Orlando Vasquez (12-3-1, 6 Kos) registering a second round knockout after scoring two knockdowns on Vasquez. Frankie brought so much pressure that Vasquez was afraid to ever let his hands go in fear of being countered, this allowed Frankie to live up to his name and bull Vasquez around the ring at will.


In the first bout of the evening, Sharif Bogere of Las Vegas Nevada (23-1, 15 Kos) had his way with tough Mexican Arturo Urena of Mazatlan (26-16-1, 22 Kos) in forcing a doctors stoppage after 6 one sided rounds.  Sharif spent the first five rounds as if in a sparring session with little urgency or energy being extended as he seemed to be going through the motions.  At the start of the sixth round Sharif sparked possibly by the end of the bout drawing near came right out of his corner and began teeing off on Urena landing a series of hooks flush to the head that forced the referee to step in and halt the bout.


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