By Jake Donovan
Kenneth Diaz was relentless in pounding out a third-round stoppage of Rikardo Smith in a battle of unbeaten welterweight prospects Friday evening in Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico.
Diaz (6-0, 5KO) made his presence felt immediately, jumping on Smith from the opening bell and letting him know who was going to control the real estate. A series of right hands had Smith on the run and eventually forcing him to take a knee on his way down to the canvas for the bout's lone knockdown.
Things remained on the level for the remainder of the bout. Smith's left eye began to swell shut in the second and reached a point where he could no longer defend himself once the third round rolled around. His corner recognized as such, literally throwing in the towel to rescue their battered fighter.
The official time was 0:45 of round three.
Diaz pounds out his sixth win in just 13 months as a pro. All of his bouts have taken place in his native Puerto Rico, where he is developing a following as a legitimate action fighter.
Smith suffers the first loss of his career. The bout was his first outside of his native Jamaica as he falls to 6-1 (1KO).
In preliminary action, Osenohan Vazquez (6-1-1, 2KO) and Antonio Sanchez (5-1, 3KO) fought to a six-round draw in a spirited affair. The bout was give and take throughout, with the three-way split (58-56 Sanchez, 58-56 Vazquez and 57-57 even) befitting of what took place in the ring.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter: @JakeNDaBox