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Posted: Wednesday, June 1, 2022. 11:06 am CST.

By Aaron Humes: The quest of Belizean coach Cromwell Gordon to land a world title for American Rolando “Rolly” Romero on Saturday night in Brooklyn ended in disappointment as champion Gervonta Davis retained his title by sixth-round knockout.

Davis’ counter left hook sent Romero face-first into the ropes before referee David Fields stopped the fight at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

ESPN reports that Romero pressed the advantage early, stalking the man known as “Tank” and connecting with power shots that had Davis holding on.

But the devastating left-hand counter with 21 seconds in the round changed matters entirely, as Romero got to his feet unsteadily and referee Fields didn’t like what he saw and stepped in.

Romero was the busier fighter, throwing 115 total punches and 76 power shots per CompuBox to 84 and 58 for Davis, but the champion was better poised and led on two of three scorecards prior to the KO. Romero, known for his awkward, free-swinging style, employed a more focused, disciplined strategy, working the jab and getting Davis’ attention with his power. Ultimately, Davis’ response showed Romero was not quite up to the task of keeping to this style and absorbing punishment from an acknowledged elite fighter.

Romero (14-1, 12 KOs) acknowledged that he erred when he “jumped into his shot” but felt he was in control otherwise. The 26-year-old from Las Vegas said Davis was hurt on multiple occasions, particularly from a stiff jab, and felt he won every round until the finish.

“He caught me with a left hook,” Romero said. “I’m a warrior, I wanted to continue to fight. … I won every moment of that fight. I exposed him and we need to run that s— back. … I had him running … the entire fight. He got a nice shot in. He was scared of me. He won’t fight me again.”

Champion Davis said, “I know when to take it to my opponents and when to chill out. There was someone in the crowd … and they were telling me to press forward, and I was like, ‘Not yet, I got to loosen him up a little more.'”

“The crazy thing is I didn’t even throw it that hard…I just threw it. He just ran right into it. Something like when [Manny] Pacquiao got caught by [Juan Manuel Marquez].”

Davis likely moves on to face contenders Ryan Garcia or Devin Haney or George Kambosos, the undisputed lightweight champion who fights Haney next weekend.

 

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