Joseph Diaz Jr. outpoints Javier Fortuna in successful lightweight debut

Joseph Diaz Jr. didn’t permit a lower or the Javier Fortuna’s troublesome fashion to maintain him from making a profitable light-weight debut. Photograph by Sye Williams / Golden Boy Promotions

Joseph Diaz Jr. made his light-weight debut a profitable one by outpointing averted contender Javier Fortuna over 12 aggressive rounds within the co-featured bout to the Gilberto Ramirez-Sullivan Barrera card at Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles on Friday.

Diaz (32-1-1, 15 KOs) overcame a lower over his left eye (suffered in Spherical 3), a degree deduction (for rabbit punches) in Spherical 4, and Fortuna’s unorthodox fashion to win a unanimous determination by scores of 117-110, 116-111 and 115-112. Most observers thought the 115-112 tally was extra indicative of the tit-for-tat motion the savvy southpaws put forth for 12 rounds.

Fortuna (36-3-1, 25 KOs), a 32-year-old veteran from the Dominican Republic, was the extra relaxed and cell boxer. The Ring’s No. 6-rated light-weight additionally had the heavier palms and gave the impression to be the busier fighter over the second half of the bout. Nonetheless, Diaz, The Ring’s No. 4-rated junior light-weight, exhibited faster palms and landed crisper punches. The previous IBF 130-pound titleholder (who misplaced his belt on the scales previous to a majority draw towards Shavkatdzhon Rakimov in his final bout in February) was additionally the aggressor all through many of the bout, stalking Fortuna behind sharp physique photographs and counter hooks. Diaz additionally gave the impression to be the bodily stronger of the 2, particularly after they grappled in clinches.

The victory locations Diaz, a 28-year-old member of the U.S. 2012 Olympic squad from South El Monte, California, within the crimson sizzling 135-pound division, which is residence to Ring/unified champ Teofimo Lopez, pound-for-pound rated Vasiliy Lomachenko, WBC titleholder Devin Haney and rising stars Gervonta Davis and Ryan Garcia.

Fortuna had a tough time getting any of his fellow light-weight contenders to face him, however Diaz did when the Dominican’s authentic opponent, Ryan Garcia, pulled out of the battle as a way to take care of psychological well being points.

Diaz was complimentary of Fortuna after the battle.

“He was a warrior,” Diaz mentioned throughout his post-fight interview. “I assumed I’d simply land physique photographs, however he’s a slick defensive fighter. He’s very proficient. I want him the very best and I hope he continues.”

Diaz was requested if he wished to proceed at light-weight or drop again all the way down to junior light-weight. He made it clear that he believes the motion is at light-weight.

“I can battle all the highest guys at 135 kilos,” he mentioned. “I would like Ryan Garcia or Devin Haney. Let’s make this s__t occur.”

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