UNCASVILLE, Connecticut – Jose Nunez got off to a strong start Wednesday night, but he didn’t do enough to beat Aram Avagyan.
The Panamanian prospect defeated Armenia’s Avagyan on one scorecard, but their eight-round, super featherweight fight resulted in an eight-round majority draw at Mohegan Sun Arena. Judge Peter Hary scored Nunez a 77-75 winner, yet judges Tom Carusone and John McKaie scored the action even (76-76).
Nunez (11-0-2, 4 KOs) and Avagyan (10-0-2, 4 KOs) both remained unbeaten, though neither boxer moved forward, toward a bigger fight.
“There was no justice tonight,” Nunez said. “It’s not fair. I won the first four rounds and closed out the last one as well. I executed the game plan really well. I knew he was a tough opponent, so I needed to slow him down by attacking the body and that’s exactly what I did. I definitely felt like I hurt him. I got him with a big uppercut, and from the fourth round on, he was gushing blood.”
Avagyan also believes he deserved the victory.
“I definitely did enough to get the win,” Avagyan said. “It doesn’t make sense to me. He never hurt me. I got hit with some body shots, but I blocked everything. Every big shot he threw, he missed. I thought I fought a good fight and deserved the win. I’m not interested in a rematch if it’s going to be judged like that. If it’s going to be fair, then yes, I would fight him again.”
Nunez opened the eighth and final round by attacking Avagyan’s body. Perhaps sensing he needed to win that round, Nunez never stopped punching in those final three minutes, even as Avagyan kept pressuring him.
Nunez got back to sticking and landing in the opening minute of the seventh round. Avagyan backed up Nunez later in the seventh round and landed several combinations as Nunez attempted to fend him off.
Nunez went down with about 1:20 to go in the sixth round, but referee Johnny Callas ruled Avagyan tripped him to the canvas. Neither fighter was particularly sharp in that sixth round.
Avagyan landed the harder punches during the fifth round, when a tiring Nunez often moved away from him and held.
Nunez continued hitting Avagyan to his body in the first half of the fourth round. Avagyan’s left hook landed flush with just under a minute to go in the fourth round.
Nunez swung wildly at times in the fourth round, but Avagyan couldn’t make him pay with any of his counter shots.
Nunez caught Avagyan with two effective left hands to the body in the opening minute of the third round. Avagyan pressed forward for much of the third round, but Nunez landed a variety of punches on him.
Avagyan did drill Nunez with a right hand that stopped Nunes in his tracks just before the third round ended.
Nunez landed a left uppercut just before the midway mark of the second round. Nunez landed a right to Avagyan’s body with just under a minute remaining in that second round.
Callas warned Avagyan for hitting Nunez behind his head toward the end of the second round.
Nunez was the aggressor and the busier boxer during the first round, but Avagyan landed a pair of straight right hands – one with just over a minute to go in the opening round and another about 10 seconds later. Avagyan also nailed Nunez with a left hook just before the first round ended.
This ‘ShoBox’ broadcast was supposed to start Wednesday night with an eight-round, featherweight fight between Martino Jules (10-0, 2 KOs), of Allentown, Pennsylvania, and Puerto Rico’s Pedro Marquez (12-1, 8 KOs). Marquez pulled out of their fight Wednesday morning, when he felt ill and was advised not to box by a doctor at a local hospital.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.