ANAHEIM, Calif. – Leo “El Terremoto” Santa Cruz defended his WBA Featherweight World Championship in convincing fashion on Saturday night, knocking down Kiko “Sensación” Martinez twice in the first round, then ending it on a barrage of punches as the fight was called at 2:09 in the fifth round in the main event of a SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING doubleheader at Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.
Santa Cruz with a typical wood-chipper attack highlighted by two first-round knockdowns. Martinez survived the opening onslaught and enjoyed several good moments but Santa Cruz's size and superior motor proved pivotal as referee Raul Caiz eventually stopped the bout once it became too one-sided. The pair combined for more than 1,000 punches in less than five rounds of action.
Santa Cruz wasted no time getting the upper hand as the opening bell rung. He knocked Martinez out twice in the first round; the first just 23 seconds into the fight and the second on a devastating right hand at two minutes into the round prompting SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING play-by-play announcer Mauro Ranallo to tell expert analyst Al Bernstein: “We may be able to get to Disneyland before the end of the night.”
Martinez fell into a groove in the third and fourth rounds, but got into trouble two minutes into the fifth round as Santa Cruz had him up against the ropes connecting on numerous body shots, uppercuts and combinations before referee Raul Caiz Sr. signaled the end of the fight for Santa Cruz’s second straight world title defense in Southern California.