Brandon Rios wins following disqualification; Kovalev dominates with TKO in second round

August 3, 2014

Las Vegas --  Lately things just cannot seem to go right for Brandon Rios, even when he wins.

On Saturday night at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, Rios defeated Argentina's Diego Chaves when referee Vic Drakulich disqualified Chavez in the ninth round of an otherwise competitive welterweight bout.

"He kept punching and he kept poking me in the eye," said Rios.  "That's not right.  This is not the way I want to win.  I don't know if I would win or not. But I didn't want the fight to end this way."

Originally scheduled for ten rounds, the fight involved multiple point deductions for various fouls, with Chavez getting a point deduction in Round 3 for holding and another in Round 8 for pushing his open glove into Rios' face, while Rios lost a point himself in Round 5 for throwing Chavez to the ground.

The roughhouse tactics frustrated all three men in the ring -- Rios, Chavez, and the referee as well.

"I'm happy the way I fought in the beginning, but I'm not happy the way it went," said Rios.  "He's a dirty fighter."

One possible problem for Chavez was perhaps understanding the specific warnings from the referee, as Drakulich gave his warnings in English, rather than Spanish.

Ironically, the fight nearly was cancelled before it even started as Chaves had visa problems that were not cleared up until the week of the fight.  That legal snafu caused Chaves to fly into Nevada on Thursday, although energy-wise, he did not seem to be hindered by any jet lag.

The bout started off with a bang, as Chaves came out blazing in Round One, landing clean combination shots to Rios' head.  In fact, the faster-handed Chavez gave Rios problems throughout the bout, and was actually ahead by a point on two of the three judges scorecards at the time of the disqualification.

The heavy-handed Rios entered the ring as the favorite despite his two-fight losing streak, and also had his moments, especially when he landed some punishing body shots that seemed to slow Chaves down in the later rounds.

Unfortunately, those few moments of quality boxing would eventually give way to the needless fouls.

Kovalev "Krushes" Caparello, ready to take on Hopkins

In a WBO Light Heavyweight World Championship bout taking place on the East Coast, Sergey "Krusher" Kovalev (25-0-1, 23 KO's) defeated Australian challenger Blake Caparello (19-1-1, 6 KO's) in the second round behind an impressive display of power.

Caparello actually had the upper hand early, scoring a flash knockdown when he stepped on Kovalev's foot and simultaneously hit him with a clean shot to the head, causing him to hit the canvas.  The referee ruled it a knockdown rather than a slip, but Kovalev was not hurt by the punch.

In Round 2, a single Kovalev right to the midsection dropped Caparello, and it was all downhill from there for the Australian.  After two more knockdowns, referee Sparkle Lee properly called it off at 1:47 of Round 2. 

Kovalev will next face champion Bernard Hopkins.

By Mike Elliott
Editor for

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