Former flyweight titlist Luis 'El Nica' Concepcion is officially on the hunt for a super flyweight belt following a 7th round stoppage over Duvan Hernandez in their headliner Saturday evening in Panama City, Panama.
The win puts Concepcion in the running for a shot at current 115 lb. titlist Carlos Caudras, pending the outcome of a September title defense versus Sonny Boy Jaro.
Concepcion struck early, dropping Herandez hard in round two and proceeding with his all-action style that has led to so many classic wars during his time spent as a flyweight champ. The local hero continued to pour on his attack until Hernandez (12-2-1, 9KOs) - fighting outside of Colombia for the first time in his young career - had no more fight left to give.
The official time was 2:28 of round seven.
Concepcion rolls to 32-3 (23KOs) in picking up his ninth straight win. The bout was his first official super flyweight fight, excluding over-the-limit bouts he took as means to stay busy during his time spent as one of the top flyweights in the world.
A thrilling stay as flyweight titlist came to an end in April '11, suffering an 11th round knockout with Hernan 'Tyson' Marquez in an all-out war that saw both fighters hit the deck. The rematch was far less competitive, with Concepcion hitting the deck three times in suffering a 1st round knockout later that year.
The second loss to Marquez was his last defeat, having now won nine straight. Saturday's bout was taken as means to make a run in the ever-growing 115 lb. division, having already stated his intentions to pursue a title fight with Cuadras either later this year or during the first quarter of 2015.
In the evening's co-feature, Carlos Ortega pulled off a minor upset with a 12-round points win over countryman Leroy Estrada (12-2, 5KOs). Scores were 116-112 (twice) and 115-114 in favor of Ortega (10-3-2, 4KOs), who emerges as an improbable title challenger as he awaits the outcome of the forthcoming strawweight title fight between defending champ Oswlado Novoa and unbeaten mandatory contender Wanheng Menayothin.
Both bouts aired live on TV Max 9 in Panama, and streamed live on the network's website
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox