By Ernest Gabion
Staples Center, Los Angeles, California - In a twelve round WBC junior middleweight title eliminator Vanes Martirosyan finally seems ready to go after the big name fighters - after winning by way of a hotly contested seven round stoppage over Saul Roman.
Martirosyan started off strong in the first by backing up Roman with clean combinations only to get countered with a perfect right hand/left hook combo that floored the young Armenian. In the second we saw more of the same with Martirosyan controlling the pace only to be countered with left hooks when Martirosyan does not bring back his right hand after throwing it. Martirosyan's timing gets on track in the fourth by countering Roman at will, and stunning Roman late in that round.
The fifth saw Martirosyan show some visible wear and tear facially as swelling and severe redness creeped in but he was still able to control much of that round. Round six saw a tightening of the fight as Martirosyan appeared fatigued allowing Roman back in the fight.
Round seven saw the tide change for Roman as he started walking down Martirosyan by keeping him trapped on the ropes only to have it turn back to Martirosyan when he catches Roman with a clean right hand that rocked the Mexican. A follow up series of right hands hurts and drops Roman. Roman gets up but is worse for wear as Martirosyan seizes the momentum and attacks Roman to the point where referee John Shorle was forced to stop the fight at 2:58 of the round.
Martirosyan, who also picks up the WBC's Silver belt for his troubles, improves to 30-0 (19KOs) and is now in line for a shot at Saul Alvarez's WBC title. Roman falls to 34-9 (29KOs).