HIALEAH, FL — A rain delay didn’t hamper the rhythm of Erislandy Lara, who came out aggressive and became the first man to stop Jan Zaveck last night at the Hialeah Park Race Track.
Instead of his usual movement, Lara opted to remain mostly flatfooted to generate power and used a high guard for defense. The strategy allowed the WBA titlist to stun Zaveck repeatedly with counter straight lefts. It would be this shot that injured Zaveck in the third, forcing him to turn away and quit in pain.
“I think I handled the pressure well tonight,” said Lara. “I stayed in the pocket and fought my fight. This was a great win for me. (Zaveck) is a former champion and he’s never been knocked out until tonight.”
Zaveck complained of sharp pain that prompted his capitulation.
“I currently have a sharp pain going from my neck to my shoulder on the right side,” explained the 38-year old challenger. “I knew I could try to fight on and land a lucky punch, but that was a small possibility and it was probably better to stop and fight another day. I felt good in there before that. I tried to surprise him by fighting him in close, but I was taking too many punches and he has very good power.
I have never been injured like this before. It is very strange. The pain is surging.”
Lara is now focused on either obtaining a rematch with Canelo Alvarez, or securing a fight with Miguel Cotto.
“I’ll face anyone they want to put in front of me at 154 lbs, unless it’s Canelo (Alavarez) or (Miguel) Cotto. Then we’ll go up to 160 lbs.”