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Jaime Munguia works close . . . he works very close.

The Mexican star defeated Ukraine’s Sergiy Derevyanchenko via razor-thin unanimous decision in a 12-round super middleweight non-title bout Saturday night at Toyota Arena in Ontario, Calif. The official scores were 115-112, 114-113 and 114-113.

Munguia (42-0, 33 KOs) had a nightmare fight as he absorbed dozens of meaty headshots. But he also displayed incredible fighting guts and managed to maintain his unbeaten record courtesy of a body-shot knockdown in the dying seconds of the fight.

“We knew it was a very close fight, but the knockdown helped,” Munguia said during his post-fight interview with DAZN. “It was a very tough lesson. I have a lot to learn. There are a few details that I need to get better.”

In an explosive opening session, Munguia released a prolonged and effective burst that dazed Derevyanchenko. But the Ukrainian star remained composed enough to get in a couple of flush counters that shook Munguia to his boots. That type of back-and-forth action was a sign of things to come.

A sharp left hook counter to the temple rocked Derevyanchenko again in the second and prompted the Mexican to let his hands go in earnest once more. Munguia couldn’t land anything concussive, but the crowd was now in a frenzy.

After the rocky opening, Derevyanchenko showed his class in the third. A quick left hook forced Munguia to stand static against the ropes, and then he was nailed by a sharp two-fisted assault. The pace was incredible for middleweights, and it looked as if something had to give.

Munguia is irresistible as a slugger, but he can box well when the moment moves him and is very adept at working off the jab. But while he can bank rounds with that shot, it’s in his DNA to be aggressive and he just can’t help himself.

After posting a good boxing round in the fourth, Munguia faced the greatest crisis of his career in the fifth. Derevyanchenko nailed his man with a big left hook and Munguia backed up in clear distress. The Ukrainian fighter smelled blood and unleashed a ruthless, sustained assault that almost forced a stoppage.

It’s ironic that Munguia enjoyed his best spells in the quieter rounds, and the seventh was a perfect example of that. When the Mexican relied on his youth, speed, and sharpness, Derevyanchenko appeared to struggle and his success was very limited.

Munguia was more adventurous in the eighth and paid the price. Derevyanchenko clipped him on the counter and snapped his head back with straight shots. There was a bad clash of heads in this session, but both fighters emerged from it without damage.

It was punches doing damage again in the 10th and Munguia was the receiving end. He’s just far too easy to hit, and if a 37-year-old Derevyanchenko is scoring for fun, then what would Jermall Charlo do? What would Zhanibek Alimkhanuly do? What would a 41-year-old Gennadiy Golovkin do?

It was reported that Golden Boy Promotions requested that this fight be reduced from 12 rounds to 10. It offered Derevyanchenko a large sum of money to do that, and he declined. As it turned out, this was a blessing for Munguia.

He lost the 10th, won the 11th and then scored the crucial knockdown in the 12th.

Munguia made it clear that he now intends to move to 168 pounds permanently. In a bizarre moment, he stated that he wasn’t calling anyone out but that he was willing to face any of the champions. Update: Canelo Alvarez is the only super middleweight champion unless one chases the WBA (Regular) title.

But that’s all for the future — Saturday, the Tijuana-born standout was in a terrific fight.

One feels for Derevyanchenko, who has lost yet another close fight. He went through the same experience against Daniel Jacobs and Golovkin. He is so much better than his 14-5 (10 KOs) mark would suggest.

This one will hurt for a long time.

The Sporting News updated the results of the Munguia-Derevyanchenko card throughout the night.

Jaime Munguia vs. Sergiy Derevyanchenko full card results

  • Jaime Munguia def. Sergiy Derevyanchenko via unanimous decision (115-112, 114-113, 114-113); super middleweights.
  • Shane Mosley Jr. def. D’Mitrius Ballard via 7th-round TKO (1:42); super middleweights.
  • Mayeli Flores def. Mariana Juarez via unanimous decision (80-72, 79-73, 79-73); super bantamweights.
  • Ricardo Rafael Sandoval def. Rocco Santomauro via unanimous decision (98-92, 96-94, 96-94); flyweights.
  • Jorge Chavez def. Christian Lorenzo via unanimous decision (60-54, 60-54, 60-54); featherweights.
  • Anthony Saldivar def. Jerome Clayton via 2nd-round TKO (2:01); super welterweights.



Read the full article here

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