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Welterweight Andre Berto stops Josesito Lopez in 6th round

Former welterweight champion Andre Berto stops Josesito Lopez in 6th round of PBC card

Welterweight Andre Berto stops Josesito Lopez in 6th round

ONTARIO, Calif. (AP) -- Andre Berto knocked down Josesito Lopez twice in the sixth round Friday night, winning their welterweight bout by stoppage.

Berto (30-3, 23 KOs), the former WBC 147-pound champion, landed several big shots in the decisive round of his second straight victory following consecutive defeats.

Lopez (33-7) got off to a strong start in front of his local fans, but didn't recover quickly enough from his second knockdown for referee Raul Caiz Jr., who ended it. Lopez and his corner were infuriated by the stoppage.

Former welterweight champion Shawn Porter stopped Ecuador's Erick Bone in the fifth round during the second show put on by Premier Boxing Champions, guru Al Haymon's grand scheme to put the sport back into the television mainstream with eye-catching shows and action-packed matchups on several networks.

Former title contender Chris Arreola also won a narrow unanimous decision over unknown Curtis Harper in a wild bout between two hefty heavyweights at Citizens Business Bank Arena, one hour east of Los Angeles.

The main event was an encouraging performance for Berto, who struggled with injuries while losing three of his previous five fights and falling from the sport's heights.

Lopez looked sharp early against Berto, whose relative immobility made him easier to hit. Berto showed off his power and hand speed in a good third round, doing damage around Lopez's right eye.

After staggering Lopez early in the sixth round, Berto connected with a right hand to the temple and sent the taller Lopez sprawling. After beating the count, Lopez went down again in another corner and Caiz immediately stopped the fight.

Lopez and trainer Henry Ramirez argued vociferously against the stoppage, but Berto leaped onto the ropes to celebrate a win that could put him back in contention for big-money bouts.

Bone (16-2) stepped into the co-main event after Roberto Garcia missed weight Thursday night. He did fairly well as a late replacement against Porter (25-1-1, 16 KOs), who was simply too strong in his first bout since losing his IBF belt by decision to Britain's Kell Brook last August.

Porter knocked down Bone with a body shot in the fifth, and a right to the chin eventually sent him tumbling under the ropes to end it.

Arreola (36-4) had a harrowing night in his return from a loss to Bermane Stiverne for the WBC title last May. Harper (12-4), who took the fight one week ago, got knocked down and nearly finished in the first round.

Yet Harper recovered and eventually tagged Arreola with numerous unblocked punches in an entertaining brawl, repeatedly staggering the iron-chinned favorite. Both fighters weighed in over 262 pounds for the bout, and both tired visibly after the opening flurries, yet they made it through all eight rounds to wild applause.

Following up on last week's debut in Las Vegas, PBC again created a lavish presentation to introduce its fighters, who walked alone to the ring down a long, winding ramp in front of an elaborate lights display.

Spike also used the broadcast as a chance to hone its new wrinkles in the time-tested presentation of combat sports on television, including a large aerial rigging that provided a 360-degree view of the fight. Referee Jack Rees and trainer Kenny Porter, Shawn's father, both wore cameras strapped to their heads to provide an unusual perspective on the ring.

Updated : 2021-09-17 07:52 GMT+08:00