IBF Welterweight Champion, Errol Spence, Jr. (23-0, 20 KO's) made the first defense of his title at the Barclays in New York on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING against former world champion Lamont Peterson (35-4, 17 KO's) and he made the statement he had eluded to before the fight.
He began the fight in the first round by throwing a multitude of jabs from his southpaw stance as Peterson held his ground, but he was in a defensive mode as Spence threw jab after jab.
In the second round, just as in the first round, Spence not only continued his barrage of jabs, but also landed shots to the stomach and short uppercuts as Peterson attempted to get in close and land his punches. To Peterson's credit, he did land several good jabs and two nice right hands on the champion at the end of the round.
In the third and fourth rounds, Peterson started to press the fight against Spence, but the southpaw champion began landing punches through the defensive stance of Peterson.
At the end of the third round, Peterson did land a good shot on Spence, but it had no effect on him. But Spence followed that up with a big left hook in the last minute of the fourth round that rocked Peterson and he appeared to be hurt. Peterson then went into his defensive mode again and was able to last until the bell sounded.
The most exciting round of the fight was in the fifth round when both were fighting in close and Spence landed a huge left hook to the temple of Peterson and he went down to the canvas. After the fight continued, Spence stalked Peterson around the ring but time ran out and he was unable to finish him off.
With both eyes swollen before the sixth round, Peterson came out and attempted to land that elusive one punch to maybe win the fight, but Spence had the momentum and continued to land punches to the body and more short uppercuts.
As Peterson started the seventh round, he not only had two swollen eyes, but a cut over his left eye. It was now a matter of time before the fight would end, and Spence continued to land punches with both hands as Peterson backed up throughout this round.
Just before the eighth round, the referee and doctor's were in the corner and Peterson could be seen looking at his trainer numerous times, and he looked like he didn't want anymore to do with Spence.
And just before the fighters were to begin the eighth round, Peterson's corner waived off the fight, and the fight was stopped. Spence made his statement to the welterweight division that he could be the best fighter at that weight and Thurman probably didn't like what he saw tonight.