David Benavidez doesn’t own the WBC super middleweight championship anymore, but he’ll still head home with his perfect record intact.
A day after losing his title at the scale, Benavidez battered Alexis Angulo until Angulo’s corner men stopped their 12-round super middleweight match following the 10th round Saturday night at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. As hard as it was for Benavidez to make weight, the fight itself was as easy as the 10-1 odds suggested.
Phoenix’s Benavidez basically beat up Angulo for the most of a one-sided main event Showtime televised. He unloaded a barrage of power punches on Angulo toward the end of the 10th round, which led to the stoppage.
The 23-year-old Benavidez improved to 23-0, recorded his 20th knockout and became the first foe to stop Angulo inside the distance.
Colombia’s Angulo, who upset previously unbeaten prospect Anthony Sims Jr. (20-1, 18 KOs) in his prior appearance, lost for just the second time as a pro. Before Saturday night, the 36-year-old Angulo (26-2, 22 KOs) had lost only to former WBO super middleweight champ Gilberto Ramirez (40-0, 26 KOs), who beat him by unanimous in their 12-rounder two years ago in Oklahoma City.
“I felt good, man. I rate myself a solid A,” Benavidez, who was 2¾ pounds overweight Friday, told Showtime’s Brian Custer following his victory. “I could’ve did some stuff better, but overall it was a great performance. I didn’t wanna go too fast, leaving myself exposed to some big shots. He’s a heavy puncher. But like I said, I like to do stuff that nobody’s ever done. Nobody’s ever stopped him, and I’m pretty sure nobody’s ever gonna make him look like that again. I demolished him from round one to round 11. But hats off to him, his team. [He’s] a tough guy. They’re all gentlemen, all around.”
Benavidez landed 239 more punches overall than Angulo, according to CompuBox’s unofficial statistics. CompuBox credited Benavidez for landing 290-of-703 punches, whereas Angulo connected on only 51-of-400 punches.
That disparity was never more evident than during a completely lopsided 10th round.
Benavidez drilled Angulo with two right hands as they stood in the center of the ring with just over 30 seconds left in the 10th round. Benavidez backed his opponent into a corner soon thereafter and assaulted Angulo with various power shots, including a right uppercut that snapped back Angulo’s head.
Angulo blasted Benavidez with a right hand that backed him into the ropes toward the end of the ninth round. Benavidez wasn’t affected by that shot, though, and fired an array of power shots at Angulo before the bell sounded to end that round.
Angulo sprung out of a corner and threw right hands at Benavidez around the halfway point of the eighth round. Benavidez avoided those shots after landing hitting Angulo with two right hands several seconds earlier.
Benavidez opened up on Angulo later in the eighth with right hands that backed Angulo into a corner.
Benavidez nailed Angulo with two rights to the head just before the seventh round ended. An aggressive Angulo went after Benavidez just after the midway mark of the seventh round, but Benavidez blocked those shots.
Benavidez snuck a right hand around Angulo’s guard with about 30 seconds to go in the sixth round. Benavidez blasted Angulo with a right uppercut just before the bell sounded to end the sixth round, too.
A left uppercut by Benavidez seemed to stun Angulo with just over a minute remaining in the fifth round.
An overhand right by Benavidez landed with just over two minutes to go in the fourth round. Benavidez landed a left hook and quickly went after Angulo’s body later in the fourth round.
Benavidez landed a right to the body that backed up Angulo early in the third round.
A right hand by Benavidez backed Angulo into a corner with just over a minute to go in the first round. A short, left uppercut by Benavidez landed, but it didn’t keep Angulo from moving forward late in the opening round.
Nine rounds later, Benavidez at least earned some gratification from what amounted to a disappointing cross-country trip to the East Coast.
Benavidez lost his WBC super middleweight title Friday for the second time without actually suffering a defeat in the ring. He came in nearly three pounds overweight Friday morning for what was supposed to be a defense of his WBC 168-pound title.
Seattle’s Benavidez, who weighed 170¾ pounds, was so overweight that he declined to use the two hours allotted to return to the Mohegan Tribe Department of Regulation’s scale for a second attempt to make weight.
Angulo weighed in at 167½ pounds and thus was eligible to win the WBC belt that was stripped from Benavidez.
Benavidez previously was stripped of that title for testing positive for cocaine in August 2018. He won that belt back by knocking out Anthony Dirrell in the ninth round of the bout before he faced Angulo, last September 28 at Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.