Bermaine Stiverne outpoints Chris Arreola in a bloody battle
In a surprise upset, Bermane Stiverne (23-1-1) defeated Chris Arreola (35-3) by a 12 round unanimous decision to become the WBC mandatory challenger on Saturday night at the Citizens Business Bank Arena, in Ontario, California, USA.
The judges scored the fight 117-110, 117-110 and 118-109.
The fight looked like it was going to go Arreola’s way in the first two rounds, as he landed a lot of hard shots in trying to score a quick knockout. However, in the 3rd round, Stiverne changed things around by knocking Arreola down late in the round with a big right hand to the head.
The punch bloodied Arreola’s nose badly enough to where he bled the remainder of the fight from his nose despite his corner’s frantic attempts to stop his nose from bleeding.
Arreola came back well in the 6th round and hurt Stiverne with some big right hands. Stiverne regained control of the fight in the 7th and never relinquished again. Arreola was troubled by Stiverne’s big right hand shots and he never seemed to make the needed adjustments to stop from getting hit so much. The way to beat Stiverne is to box him and avoid exchanges as much as possible because he hits too hard to beat him that way. Arreola seemed to make it a point to slug it out with Stiverne and that ended up costing him because he was forced to take too many heavy shots. In the last half of the fight, Arreola looked like a bloody and beaten fighter that had taken too many head shots.
The loss for the 32-year-old Arreola ruins his hopes of getting a title shot against WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko. Instead, it’ll be Stiverne that gets a title shot, if Vitali doesn’t retire. Either way, Stiverne will soon be fighting for a title.
Arreola might have been hurt by the combination of his year out of the ring as well as his high number of early knockouts that he’s had in the last two years. Arreola isn’t used to fighting hard for 12 rounds because he has so many yearly knockouts on his resume.