ROBBERY! Richardson Hitchins gifted terrible UD-12 over Gustavo Lemos, Pacheco wins tough decision

Fighting

Apparently, hugs and shoves are scoring blows in Las Vegas, because that’s the only way you could possibly give Richardson Hitchins a decision victory over Gustavo Lemos. Yet, here we are, with Lemos on the unfortunate end of the worst robbery I’ve seen in quite a while, and Hitchins (18-0, 7 KO) leaving still undefeated and in mandatory position for the IBF belt.

The result deserves nothing more than a poop emoji and a .GIF of someone vomiting, but let’s do a recap anyway! Lemos (29-1, 19 KO) came out fast, throwing hard and often, and looking like the latest in a proud history of unheralded Argentinian boogeymen and upset specialists. Hitchins went to the grab-and-hold early, struggling to really establish his signature jab until Lemos seemed to start slowing down a bit in the 4th round.

Hitchins did his best work in the 6th and 7th, letting his hands go more frequently as Lemos slowed his own pace, but Lemos hit the accelerator again and finished the last four rounds very strong. He had Hitchins hurt early in the 8th, which Hitchins grabbed and held his way through without even so much as a warning.

Hitchins spent most of the 12th and final round either fleeing or grabbing, but somehow all three judges scored it for him. The official scores came in at 117-111, 115-113, 115-113 in favor of Hitchins, while Bad Left Hook had it unofficially 116-112 in favor of Lemos.

Even the commentary team, which included Claressa Shields actively coaching and rooting for Hitchins throughout the fight, openly mocked the 117-111 score. Just an absolute embarrassment, a trash result, and a real shame for Gustavo Lemos, who fought crudely but effectively, did much more and much better work, and deserved to have his hand raised at the end.

Diego Pacheco UD-10 Shawn McCalman

Diego Pacheco won’t have anything from tonight on his career highlight reel, but he exits with a decision victory over a surprisingly rugged Shawn McCalman.

McCalman (15-1, 7 KO) made the fight work for him early by keeping Pacheco (21-0, 17 KO) uncomfortable in the clinch. Pacheco started flat, largely reactive to McCalman’s work rather than taking control of the fight himself. Meanwhile, McCalman was lunging in constantly, and getting the best of the frequent tie-ups.

McCalman didn’t have the power to really damage Pacheco, landing a big left hand in the 2nd that barely made Pacheco blink. But, McCalman did challenge Pacheco in other ways, taking a lot of warnings for scrappy tactics like shoulder shoves and grappling. He and Pacheco traded big punches in the 7th, but Pacheco got the better of the exchanges while finishing much stronger than he started.

It wasn’t pretty, but Pacheco did enough to earn a unanimous decision on official scores of 98-92, 97-93, and 96-94. Hopefully, the fight also taught Pacheco a thing or two about handling a grab-happy opponent, too.

Galal Yafai TKO-8 Agustin Gauto

Another win for Galal Yafai, but another fight where he didn’t like fighting inside and took more clean shots than a top level fighter probably should. Yafai (7-0, 5 KO) had Agustin Gauto staggered as early as the 1st round, getting his left hand through the guard consistently and prompting a doctor evaluation of Gauto after Round 4.

Gauto (21-2, 15 KO) caught Yafai with a few power shots, including a fantastic pair of counters in the 5th, but Yafai never seemed in real danger. The worst damage he suffered came on a clash of heads in the 6th, an accidental bump that opened up a significant cut on Yafai’s eyebrow.

Yafai also continued his habit of shoving and pushing throughout the fight, for which he was repeatedly warned but never actually punished. With the fight at his distance and without much concern over the punches he got in return, Yafai kept piling on the damage until the referee finally stepped in and halted it shortly before the end of the 8th.

Other results:

  • Skye Nicolson UD-10 Sarah Mahfoud (100-90, 100-90, 99-91)
  • Marc Castro UD-10 Abraham Montoya (100-90, 98-92, 97-93)

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