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November 21, 2015 Jayson Velez vs Ronny Rios Full Fight Replay at Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino, Events Center, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA for the vacant WBC Silver featherweight title
The Jayson Velez vs. Ronny Rios match-up looked on paper like a predictable encounter, with the former, young unbeaten prospect Velez, expected to secure his 24th victory to go with his one draw. But on the night, nothing went according to plan for Velez, as he staggered to a first career defeat.
Ronny Rios fought the fight of his life, to out-point the Puerto Rican 97-92, 95-94, 96-93, on the judges scorecards. The native of Santa Ana, California was expected to lose to the previously unbeaten Velez, after being completely dismantled by Robinson Castellanos in October of last year, but instead announced himself as a contender in the featherweight division by outworking the Puerto Rican. The fights first half was an even affair, with both fighters landing some damaging blows, but Rios’ early shots to the Velez body slowed him down the stretch. In the fights second half Rios targeted vicious shots in ever greater numbers towards the Velez ribcage, turning what seemed like a close fight into an easy win. Velez simply couldn’t keep up with the power, accuracy, and volume of the Rios onslaught, and succumbed his first ever loss over a gruelling 10 rounds.
The Rios career record is now 25-1, and he picked up the WBC Silver Featherweight crown, formerly held by Castellanos. Rios is expected to fight for a world title sometime next year. Velez meanwhile faces an uphill climb back into contention in a division not devoid of talent.