By Keith Idec, photos by David Martin Warr
Yuriorkis Gamboa said Saturday night that he’ll finally fight Juan Manuel Lopez in March or April now that they’ve both won lightweight tune-up fights in Miami. Cuba’s Gamboa was busier and better than Miguel Beltran Jr. throughout their 10-round bout, the main event Saturday night at Miami-Dade County Fair & Expo.
The 35-year-old Lopez (36-6, 32 KOs) and the 36-year-old Gamboa (28-2, 17 KOs) were on a collision course in 2010. Orlando Salido, whom Gamboa beat by unanimous decision in September 2010, ruined their bout by upsetting Lopez by eighth-round technical knockout in April 2011.
Mexico’s Salido also stopped Lopez in the 10th round of their rematch in March 2012.
Gamboa-Lopez would’ve been broadcast by HBO or Showtime had it taken place when both boxers were in their primes. Now it’ll likely headline an independent pay-per-view show, similar to the card that was offered Saturday night for $24.95 in HD.
Before Gamboa nearly shut out Beltran (33-6, 22 KOs, 1 NC) on Saturday night (100-89, 99-90, 98-91), Lopez dropped Argentina’s Cristian Mino four times – twice in the third round, once in the fourth and once in the sixth.
Mino (19-3, 17 KOs) also had a point deducted for holding in the 10th round. He survived to the final bell, however, and lost a unanimous decision.