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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

De La Hoya Pulverizes Chavez in Bloody Bout

LAS VEGAS -- Oscar De La Hoya made the 100th fight of Julio Cesar Chavez's career look like his first.


De La Hoya sliced open a cut over Chavez's left eye in the first round Friday night, then beat him into a bloody mess in the fourth round before referee Joe Cortez stepped in to stop the fight.


It was total domination by De La Hoya, who never let Chavez get into the fight and stopped the great Mexican champion for the first time in his career at 2:37 of the fourth round to win the WBC super lightweight title.


The end came after De La Hoya threw a left hook that brought blood spurting from the nose of Chavez, whose face was so covered in bright red blood that it was barely visible.


Chavez offered only a brief protest as De La Hoya was triumphantly hoisted onto the shoulders of his cornermen.


"We were trying to stop Julio Cesar Chavez in his tracks and we did it," De La Hoya said.


The sellout crowd of 15,283 had barely had a chance to cheer the fighters when a punch by De La Hoya opened a deep cut over Chavez's left eye midway through the first round.


Almost immediately, blood began flowing down Chavez's face and Cortez stopped the action briefly for the ringside doctor to look at his cut.


Chavez, an underdog for the first time in his career at 2-1 odds, fought tentatively from the opening bell, ignoring his usual style in an effort to try and box the taller and stronger challenger.


With his cut reopened in the fourth round, Chavez tried to fight back, briefly catching De La Hoya against the ropes in a neutral corner.


It turned out to be a mistake, however, as De La Hoya came out of the corner with a big left hook that sent blood streaming all over his opponent's face, then began backing him up with big shots to the head and body.


Cortez finally stepped in with Chavez's face a bloody mess and took him over to ringside doctor Flip Homansky, who told the referee to stop the fight.


De La Hoya, who captured the 63.5 kilogram title that Chavez had held almost uninterrupted for seven years, said he felt Chavez's nose break when he caught him with a left hook that started blood spurting from the champion in the fourth round.


"When I cut his eye and broke his nose with a left hook, I knew I had him," De La Hoya said.


De La Hoya, who upped his record to 22-0, was the aggressor throughout the fight, boxing from a crouch that seemed to befuddle Chavez.


Chavez, who had won 97 of his 99 previous fights, seemed unwilling to mix it up with De La Hoya, who used his jab effectively through the first few rounds.


"I couldn't see, I didn't feel Oscar's punch. But I still had a lot of fight left in me," Chavez insisted after the bout.


Chavez shook his head "no" as the ring doctor ordered the fight stopped, but did not protest further.


(For other results, see Scorecard.)