Robert ‘The Ghost’ Guerrero Puts the Welterweight Division on Notice with an Absolute Mugging of Andre Berto
By Ace Freeman (24-Nov-2012)
Robert Guerrero W UD12 Andre BertoFormer featherweight world champion Robert Guerrero made a huge statement in the welterweight division moments ago at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, California where he battered top contender Andre Berto for twelve rugged rounds as seen live on HBO World Championship Boxing. Berto came out in the first round with a Mayweather style defensive posture but quickly showed… Floyd Mayweather he is not. Guerrero rough-housed his way inside and mugged Berto around in the opening stanza and finally dropped him with a big straight left. Berto was in trouble but hung on until the bell. In the second another left hand from Guerrero raked across Berto’s face, visibly injuring his right eye in the process. Guerrero then bullied Berto to the ropes and knocked him down a second time with a big uppercut. The early drama sent both men into a frenzy and it was an aggressive and rugged fight right from the outset.
Berto did well to recover from the disastrous first two rounds and had a good fourth where he landed some big uppercuts on the inside. To his credit, ‘The Ghost’ took the punches very well.
Coming up from featherweight in recent years, Guerrero looked very strong in against the sculpted Berto and both men grappled and held on early vying for position on the inside. Despite being considered the smaller man coming in to the bout, the bay area native looked the stronger of the two as he frequently walked Berto back when both men met head on.
The middle rounds were largely fought in the trenches with a lot of punches being exchanged in close during frequent clinches. Guerrero was the busier of the two but Berto landed some flashy single shots with a lot of speed on them.
In Round 7 Guerrero continued to impress with his strength where he bullied Berto to the ropes and absolutely mugged him with an array of well placed body shots and uppercuts. Berto showed a lot of heart and resolve to stand up to a heavy assault and brought the crowd to their feet when he fired back with ferocity between Guerrero’s busy attack. The seventh proved to be the most action packed round up to that point in the fight and ‘The Ghost’ put an exclamation point on it when he wobbled Berto in the closing moments.
Late in the fight the pattern from the middle rounds continued with Guerrero pressing Berto onto the ropes, leaning on him, and unloading while the Haitian held on and fired back with heavy single shots in between. It wasn’t pretty, but it was grueling and highly dramatic and the California Fight Fans were loving every minute of it.
Entering the championship rounds both men had trouble with their vision. Berto had swelling around both eyes and Guerrero complained to his corner he was having trouble seeing out of his closing right eye. Despite this, it was more of the same late in the fight with neither man giving ground.
It was a brutal war of attrition in the final two rounds and Guerrero continued with more of the same, shoulder down, driving in to Berto like a linebacker. Just as he had been all fight, Berto remained on the ropes almost exclusively and tried as hard as he could to fire back with fast shots any time there was an opening.
The fighters closed the show by fighting the final round as a microcosm of the whole fight – toe-to-toe along the ropes – at a much higher pace, both determined to leave everything in the ring.
The bell sounded with the crowd on their feet saluting the brutal courage of both men as Guerrero continued hammering away seemingly unaware the end had finally come to an end.
It was a brilliant battle and an even more brilliant performance by Guerrero who put the welterweight division on notice absolutely drubbing one of it’s fastest and strongest contenders.
When the scores were read the former featherweight world champion was ahead on all three cards by the same tally of 116-110 across the board.
Guerrero landed nearly 80 more punches in the fight while Berto landed at a slightly higher percentage.
The win captured Guerrero the interim WBC welterweight title and improved to 31-1-1 (18 KOs) while Berto slides to 28-2 (22 KOs).
“Hey, I want Mayweather next!” Guerrero exclaimed post fight. “Lets do this Floyd!”