Sunday, March 26, 2023  |



Antonio Orozco wins hard-fought decision over Abner Lopez


INDIO, Calif. — Junior welterweight contender Antonio Orozco had to dig deep and grind out a hard-fought 10-round unanimous decision over Abner Lopez at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.

With the win, Orozco improves to 25-0 (16 knockouts). Lopez falls to 23-6 (19 KOs).

Orozco, who is the WBC’s mandatory challenger to RING champion Terence Crawford, was the more effective fighter through the first two rounds.

Lopez seemed to stun Orozco with a barrage of punches in Round 3. That round led to Lopez becoming more aggressive for most of the fight in an attempt to land left hooks to Orozco’s head.

“He (Lopez) was a strong fighter and we noticed him attempting to walk us down in that (fourth) round,” said Orozco after the fight. “We gave him looks and we stuck and moved.”

Lopez was able to set traps with more left hooks to the head or by cutting off the ring.

As the bout progressed, Orozco had to deal with a bruise below his left eye and a cut over his left eye. He stood and traded with Lopez, scoring with hooks to the body.

Both fighters had their moments in the final round, exchanging combinations mostly to the head as the bell sounded to end the fight.

All three judges scored the bout in favor of Orozco: 99-91, 99-91 and 97-93.

“We came on stronger in the later rounds,” said Orozco, who resides in San Diego. “We got the win and that’s what matters.”

Diaz stops Proa

Featherweight contender Joseph Diaz Jr. made quick work of Victor Proa, stopping him in the second round.

Diaz improves to 21-0 (12 KOs), while Proa falls to 28-2-2 (21 KOs).

It was all Diaz from the opening bell. He pressed the action, forcing the shorter Proa to fight defensively off his back foot.

“I wanted to show I had power, which is why I was sitting down on my punches,” said Diaz after the fight.

Proa attempted to stand his ground early in Round 2 but paid for it when he was dropped by a left hand to the head. He stood up, but was met with a barrage of punches from Diaz. Proa attempted to fight back, but referee Raul Caiz Jr. saved him from further punishment, stopping the bout at 1:07.

“I want to get back in the ring as soon as possible,” said Diaz, who mentioned he would like to fight the top contenders and world titleholders at 126 pounds. “I want to fight on the undercard of the Canelo (Alvarez) fight (on Sept. 17).”

Non-televised bouts

– Junior featherweight Roy Tapia (12-1-2, 6 KOs) dropped Jairo Hernandez (17-10, 9 KOs) in Round 3 en route to an eight-round unanimous decision. All three judges scored the bout 77-74 for Tapia.

– Nick Arce (8-1, 6 KOs) dropped a six-round unanimous decision to Jesus Aguinaga (5-4-1), who stunned Arce multiple times in Rounds 4 and 6. All three judges scored the junior lightweight bout 59-55 in favor of Aguinaga.

– Highly-touted amateur Vergil Ortiz stopped fellow junior welterweight Julio Rodas (0-3) at 1:37 of the first round. Ortiz was making his pro debut.

– In the opening bout of the Golden Boy Promotions card, junior featherweight Cesar Diaz (2-0, 2 KOs) knocked out Ramiro Ruiz (0-4) at :56 of the third round.

Francisco A. Salazar has written for RingTV since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (CA) Star newspaper,, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing.