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Anselmo Moreno vs. Vic Darchinyan: Round by Round Recap

By Nick Tywalk

Showtime Championship Boxing is going back to Cali. Anaheim, to be exact, for the rematch between bantamweights Abner Mares and Joseph Agbeko. Before we get to that, we'll see Anselmo Moreno defend his belt in that same division against always outspoken Vic Darchinyan.

Steve Albert, Al Bernstein and Antonio Tarver are the announce team for this broadcast, and they break down Mares-Agebko II. Then they turn their attention to the co-feature, saying Moreno is looking for a signature win.

Darchinyan comes to the ring first, still hoping to get back on top at age 35. The Raging Bull is 37-3-1, with his last two losses coming at the hands of Agbeko and Mares.

WBA bantamweight titleholder Moreno makes his ring walk second. Making his U.S. debut, he hopes to add to his 32-1-1 professional mark. Moreno hasn't tasted defeat since 2002, which was his first year as a pro.

The tale of the tape shows that Moreno has an inch on Darchinyan in height but an eye-popping five inches in reach. However, Bernstein feels he doesn't always use his length to his full advantage.

Jimmy Lennon Jr. does the formal introductions for both boxers, so it's showtime: 12 scheduled rounds of boxing for Moreno's WBA belt.

Round 1

Vic comes charging out of his corner, hoping to intimidate Moreno. They leap at each other to land jabs. Moreno is quick to back away, true to his reputation as a defensive fighter. Moreno is able to touch Darchinyan with light punches to the body and head before backing out of danger. Vic gets the left hand going for a second. Moreno lands two jabs and a quick left before ducking Vic's left. Darchinyan is really coming up empty with his wild swings.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Darchinyan

Round 2

The stat guys say all of the punches Moreno landed in Round 1 were jabs. Vic lands one shot coming in but can't find the range with anything else. Moreno touches him twice from range, followed by a sharp left hand. Darchinyan tries to track Moreno down, but he ends up back on the defensive from Moreno's left. Moreno jabs and gets out of the way of an incoming left. Both men land as they come together. Moreno lands another left that Vic just walks through. Darchinyan resumes swinging and missing down the stretch.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Moreno

Round 3

Moreno jabs and circles around Darchinyan. Vic takes an uppercut and delivers a counter left. The referee is busy telling the boxers to fight instead of grab on the inside. Moreno lands a left as Vic charges in. Moreno literally jumps backward to avoid being cornered. Moreno lands a left and a right, then an uppercut on the inside.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Darchinyan

Round 4

Darchinyan is out in the center of the ring before the bell even rings. It's not helping him connect any better. Moreno jabs and follows with a left. Body shot by Moreno and a counter left from Vic. They struggle in the corner until the ref steps in. There's a left from Darchinyan that grazes Moreno's head. Moreno flashes quick hands on the inside. Vic keeps throwing and coming up empty. Moreno lands a body shot and a one-two to the head. Vic wrestles Moreno to the ground right at the bell, and the referee docks him a point.

Tylwalk: 10-8 Moreno

Round 5

Moreno's corner told him he needs to win the rounds more clearly. That's interesting. The fans try to urge the boxers into more sustained action. More clinches keep the ref earning his pay. Moreno lands jabs to the body and head. He does a complete lap around Darchinyan, jabbing as he goes. I don't think Vic has landed even one telling punch in this frame. Body shot by Moreno finds the mark. A frustrated Darchinyan applies a headlock. Ugly last 10 seconds, though Vic finally landed a few power shots.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Moreno

Round 6

Darchinyan lands a jab and is quickly tied up. Moreno goes to the body with his right hand. Vic lands a nice left hand, his cleanest head shot in a while. Moreno lands his own left that looks like it stunned Drachinyan. There's another one as Vic comes in. A body shot strays too low, and the ref gives Darchinyan time to recover. Darchinyan comes back swinging but still coming up with air. Moreno digs to the body, but Darchinyan answers in kind. Moreno goes down, but it's correctly ruled a slip.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Moreno

Round 7

Vic mugs his foe with a left hand from very close range. One-two by Moreno, then a wild charge into the corner from Darchinyan. Moreno lets his hands go in combination. Darchinyan chases into the corner but not effectively. Moreno unloads with strong body shots. Those look like they hurt. Vic finally smacks Moreno's head with a left. They wrestle and try to work on the inside, but Moreno is just too elusive.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Moreno

Round 8

Moreno jabs as he retreats. The fans are trying to will Darchinyan back into contention. Moreno lands a series of head shots that stun Darchinyan, even though he tries to play it off like he's not hurt. Moreno loads up his right hand and keeps dodging Darchinyan's bull rushes. Moreno is able to connect almost at will while frustrating his opponent at the same time. There's a left from Darchinyan, but it's too little, too late.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Moreno

Round 9

More matador stuff from Moreno, effortlessly making Darchinyan miss. The champ sticks his left hand in Vic's face from range. Darchinyan is nailed by another left hand. He tries to come back with two right hands. Both men connect with power shots in the middle of the ring. Moreno lands a left and a right after dodging a punch. Vic comes in firing hooks, one of which lands flush. Darchinyan comes up empty again in the closing seconds.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Moreno

Round 10

Darchinyan has some swelling around both eyes and looks discouraged as he sits on his stool between rounds. Moreno jabs several times and follows with the straight left. Darchinyan lands his own left and Moreno is wobbled. It looks like he simply lost his balance. Two-punch combo for Vic before Anselmo moves to his left. Three-punch combo by Moreno, and they all land. Body punch by Moreno, and they clinch several times.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Moreno

Round 11

Moreno works the jab and bounces on his feet. Looks like he has plenty of spring left in his step. Darchinyan lands a left, but one shot is all he gets. Moreno throws a combination before concentrating on the body. Three shots in a row by Moreno. A right to the body lands for Anselmo, but Vic is still chasing. CLubbing overhand left by Darchinyan.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Moreno

Round 12

One round to go, and one suspects Darchinyan will need a knockout to win. Moreno tries to follow his trainer's advice and stay away from his opponent. Vic keeps chasing, and he pushes Anselmo down to the canvas hard. That seemed like pure frustration. Vic lands a grazing left, but he needs more than that. Body shot by Darchinyan and some counters from Moreno. Vic clubs with the left, desperately trying to land a home run shot. Moreno lands a straight left. That's it, and we'll go to the scorecards.

Tylwalk: 10-9 Darchinyan

Tylwalk: 117-110 Moreno

The judges score it 115-112, 117-110 and 120-107, all to the winner by unanimous decision... and still WBA bantamweight titleholder... Anselmo "Chemito" Moreno.

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