By Rey Colon
A serious incident occurred on April 16 in Bayamon when Juan Manuel Lopez lost his unbeaten record, and the WBO featherweight belt, by way of an eight round TKO to Mexico's Orlando Salido. The incident could lead to heavy sanctions because of a post-fight riot where several individuals showered the ring with different objects - including bottles of water - which caused injuries to Guaynabo Mayor Hector O'Neill, and the adviser to the Department of Recreation and Sport, Carlos 'Cidrita' Aponte.
The mele began after the referee Roberto Ramirez stopped the fight and the corner of Lopez angrily protested the decision along with other individuals connected to the now former champion. The official was forced to leave the arena under police protection while receiving unprintable insults and epithets.
O'Neill, who was in the VIP area along with other political leaders and athletes, allegedly received a head wound that required three stitches while Aponte was hit by a bottle at high speed in the center of his chest and it momentarily knocked the wind out of him.
"The Commission is evaluating what happened there on the 16th and what led to the riots and once we finish we will announce the results. We were out a few days because of Easter but we are working on the issue and this week we have been able to address the situation," revealed Dommys Delgado Berty, president of the Puerto Rico Boxing Commission.
Water bottles were not only directed to the center of the ring but flew in the area of the press and staff of Showtime. Many had to find shelter with tables and chairs to avoid being hit.