WBO Jr. Featherweight World Champion Emanuel Navarrete Drops Uriel Lopez Twice, Stops Him in Sixth

The WBO junior featherweight champion started slow, but he eventually brutalized his overmatched opponent to the body during the main event of a five-fight card ESPN aired from TV Azteca’s Studios in Mexico City. Mexico’s Navarette knocked Lopez to the canvas with body shots once apiece in the fifth and sixth rounds before their bout was stopped late in the sixth round.

The 25-year-old Navarrete’s 122-pound title was not at stake in what was scheduled as a 10-round, 126-pound bout.

Navarrete (32-1, 28 KOs) was listed as an astounding 250-1 favorite by several reputable Internet sports books before winning Saturday night. The 25-year-old Lopez (13-14-1, 6 KOs) has lost four straight fights and was defeated by knockout or TKO for the fourth time in his eight-year pro career.

The 25-year-old Navarrete has won 27 consecutive fights since Daniel Argueta dealt him Navarrete’s lone loss, a four-round, unanimous-decision defeat in July 2012. He also has recorded six straight knockouts.

Navarrete nailed Lopez with another left to the body about 15 seconds into the sixth round. A right hand by Navarrete up top moved Lopez into the ropes with just over two minutes to go in the sixth.

Navarrete unloaded rights and lefts to Lopez’s head late in the sixth, before another left to Lopez’s body started sending him to the canvas again with 48 seconds remaining in that round. Navarrete connected with a short left uppercut to Lopez’s head as he was on his way down, but his left to Lopez’s body did the real damage.

A battered Lopez got up before the referee counted to 10, but the fight was stopped anyway.

Navarrete followed a left uppercut with a left to Lopez’s body barely 30 seconds into the fifth round. Another left to the body by Navarrete made Lopez take a knee with 1:45 to go in the fifth round.

Lopez answered the referee’s count at nine. A right hand by Navarrete snapped back Lopez’s head with about 50 seconds remaining in the fifth round.

Navarrete’s stiff jab backed up Lopez late in the fifth round as well.

Lopez landed a flush left hook in the first minute of the fourth round. Navarrete landed a straight right hand, and then a left hook to Lopez’s body toward the end of the fourth round.

Navarette’s jab remained an effective weapon in the third round.

Neither fighter did much in an uneventful first round, but both boxers began letting their hands go in the second round. Lopez landed several right hands in that round, but Navarrete backed him up by landing a right hand of his own with just under 20 seconds to go in the second round.

Bob Arum, Navarrete’s promoter, told BoxingScene.com before his victory Saturday night that he expects Navarrete to give up his WBO 122-pound crown and continue competing in the 126-pound division (https://www.boxingscene.com/arum-navarrete-stay-featherweight-fight-magdaleno-wbo-title–149639).

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.