—In a battle of undefeated repeat Olympians, both Rau’shee Warren and Juan Carlos Payano were hard chargers out of the gate, but it was Warren who landed the first significant damage, staggering Payano with a crushing right in the third round.
—With neither fighter showing any signs of slowing down—including Payano, who took a low blow in the fourth that left him writhing on the canvas—Warren lost a tremendous amount of momentum in the ninth when he was penalized for an intentional foul. The two-point deduction was assessed when referee Frank Santore ruled Warren pushed Payano to the ground and hit him while he was down.
—It was still bombs away into the 12th round, when Warren doubled up on rights that finally put Payano on the mat. Undaunted, Payano immediately kick-flipped back to his feet and weathered the storm to come away with a split decision.
One man had to lose their “0” at Full Sail Live in Winter Park, Florida, but between Rau’shee Warren and Juan Carlos Payano, you had the impression they’d have rather rolled around in steak sauce and wandered into a bear cave than give in to the other one.
Both former Olympians who tangled in the amateurs, Warren (13-1, 4 KOs) and Payano (17-0, 8 KOs) went toe-to-toe in an old-fashioned brawl that ended in a split decision for Payano, where the three judges could only find consensus in five of the 12 rounds.
Payano lost a point in third and was knocked down in the 12th, while Warren was flagged for an intentional foul in the ninth.
It was enough to affect the outcome of a narrow tilt that saw both fighters firing away with abandon. In the end, Payano did just enough. He came away with two 113-111 cards to a 115-109 tally for Warren on the third.
- Payano vs Warren