A fight of the year and knockout of the year candidate is always a tough act to follow, but Erislandy Lara's win over Terrell Gausha certainly did not bring the excitement fans witnessed earlier in the night at the Barclays Center.
Lara retained his WBA junior middleweight title in the main event of a Showtime-televised card at the Barclays Center. The fight drew much negative reception from the fans, where hundreds and even thousands of fans left after every round, leaving the remaining couple of thousand fans from the 7,643 that attended the card to chant "This is boring!" and "This fight sucks!"
Lara retained his title via unanimous decision (116-111, 117-110, 117-110) with a dominating performance over Gausha. Gausha never landed any hard punches that hurt Lara as the champion kept landing jabs and dodging Gausha's punches. Fightful scored the fight 119-108 for Lara during Fightful's live coverage of the event.
Now that Lara has retained his title, Lara said in the post-fight interview that he wants to unify world titles at 154 pounds, starting with WBC junior middleweight champion Jermell Charlo.
“I’m ready to box anyone that comes my way. I’m the best boxer at 154 pounds and I won’t shy away from anyone that wants to fight me. I’ll box whoever, just line them up. I’m not afraid. I have proven that I’m a true champion. I’ll fight (Jermell) Charlo if I have to. We are friends, but business is business,” Lara said through a translator.
The only real excitement from in the ring came when Lara knocked down Gausha in the fourth round. Neither fighter was very active nor efficient in throwing punches. According to CompuBox, Lara landed an average of 10 punches per round while Gausha landed an average of 6.4 punches per round. Both men landed just 24 percent of their punches.
Fans quickly exited the arena, constantly booing both fighters. They started to take matters into their own hands to bring excitement to the main event by counting down the last 10 seconds of the last few rounds and cheering loudly as each round ended.
This is Lara's fifth title defense and second of 2017. Lara last fought in January, knocking out former world champion Yuri Foreman in the fourth round.