Hollywood, California - Joseph "JoJo" Diaz Jr. (27-1, 14 KOs) won a twelve round unanimous decision over WBA "regular" featherweight world champion Jesus Rojas (26-2-2, 19 KOs) of Puerto Rico, who suffered his first career defeat in nearly 10- years. The scores were 116-112, 115-113, 117-111.
On Friday, the contest became a non-title fight after Diaz failed to make the featherweight limit of 126-pounds. Diaz came in at 126.6-pounds, which allows Rojas to keep the belt regardless of the outcome.
Diaz was coming back from the first defeat of his professional career,, after losing a twelve round unanimous decision to WBC featherweight world champion Gary Russell Jr. back in May.
The first round was close, with both boxers fighting on the inside. Rojas was applying a lot of pressure and throwing punches with both hands. Diaz kept his defense up and was countering back.
Diaz did much better in the second, where he appeared to stun Rojas with a combination and continued to fire off punches as he pinned him against the ropes.
The third was also close, with both having their moments - but it was Rojas who unloaded the kitchen in the fourth. He was throwing numerous combinations to the head and body as they fought on the inside. Rojas continued the heavy workrate as they continued to fight on the inside in the fifth round.
Rojas was still outworking Diaz in the sixth and being far more aggressive. Diaz was able to edge out the seventh with a better variety of boxing tactics and combinations. Rojas came out on fire in the eight, throwing a lot of his punches - but by the end of the round it was Diaz who took over and was backing Rojas up with hard shots.
Diaz, who was dealing with a swollen nose from an earlier uppercut, continued to make things close in the ninth and tenth, as he would wait for Rojas to shoot a lot of his punches and then come back with combinations. They were throwing shots at a grueling pace in the eleventh. Rojas just kept coming and kept throwing, as Diaz was trying to fight him off with sharp shots.
Rojas once again came out firing in the twelfth and final round. Diaz was sticking and moving. He would circle with combinations and grab Rojas when he got in close. Rojas began to dig hard to the body when Diaz would hold. Rojas ' crazy stamina was on full display as he would not stop firing his shots and pressed forward on Diaz until the final bell.
In thes co-main event, a battle between two undefeated prospects as Jonathan "Thunder" Navarro (14-0, 7 KOs) of East Los Angeles, Calif. defeated Damon "No Smilin'" Allen Jr. (15-1-1, 5 KOs) via stunning seventh-round technical knockout. Navarro was the stronger and more accurate of the two fighters, landing short right hands before forcing the fight to be stopped at 1:33 of the aforementioned round.
Ferdinand Kerobyan (10-0, 5 KOs) of North Hollywood, Calif. scored a dominant six-round unanimous decision won against a very tough Jose Rivera (6-3, 4 KOs) of Manchester, Conn. in a middleweight bout. Kerobyan was victorious with three identical scores of 60-54.
Aaron "Silencer" McKenna (5-0, 3 KOs) of Monaghan, Ireland defeated Rolando Mendevil (6-4, 4 KOs) of Sinaloa, Mexico via unanimous decision in a four-round welterweight clash. McKenna won with three scores of 40-36.
Jose Vargas (5-0, 4 KOs) scored a third-round technical knockout victory against Leonard Reyes (7-18, 3 KOs) of Tijuana, Mexico in a scheduled four-round featherweight battle. The fight was halted at :36 of the aforementioned round.