The headline act of Saturday evening's showdown in Macau saw Manny Pacquiao claim a classy unanimous-decision win over Chris Algieri, but an entertaining undercard helped set the scene for the main event.
As ESPN's Dan Rafael shows, we came close to seeing a shutout performance from Pacquiao, who dominated from the opening bell:
Zou Shiming and Kwanpichit OnesongchaiGym clashed to help draw in the southeast Asia audience, the former proving too hot to handle for his Thai opponent en route to his unanimous-decision triumph.
One-sided affairs would prove to be a theme of the night, too, as Vasyl Lomachenko and Jessie Vargas also dominated the judges' scorecards against Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo and Antonio DeMarco, respectively.
Read on for a full breakdown of Saturday's undercard results, along with further discussion of those high-profile meetings in Macau.
|Pacquiao vs. Algieri: Undercard Results|
|Weight Class||Boxer 1||Boxer 2||Winner|
|Flyweight||Kwanpichit OnesongchaiGym||Zou Shiming||Shiming (Unanimous Decision)|
|Featherweight||Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo||Vasyl Lomachenko||Lomachenko (Unanimous Decision)|
|Super Lightweight||Antonio DeMarco||Jessie Vargas||Vargas (Unanimous Decision)|
|Super Flyweight||Fadhili Majiha||Jerwin Ancajas||Ancajas (KO, Rd 3)|
|Super Flyweight||Espinos Sabu||Rex Tso||Tso (Unanimous Decision)|
|Super Welterweight||Stephen Attard||Kuok Kun Ng||Kun Ng (Unanimous Decision)|
Key Undercard Results
Jessie Vargas Defeats Antonio DeMarco
Vargas took his unbeaten career record to 26 consecutive wins on Saturday, sealing a comprehensive defense of his WBA light welterweight belt despite coming under some intense fire from DeMarco.
With Roy Jones Jr. in his corner, the 25-year-old stuck with his usual method of working the body before slipping in vital blows to the head. HBO showed all three judges scored in favour of Vargas, but DeMarco earned praise for his display from broadcaster Jim Lampley:
In a struggle between two combatants who at times looked tightly matched, Vargas seemed to have an answer for anything DeMarco could throw at him.
The challenger had a wise figure of his own in the corner, but Freddie Roach was quoted by Top Rank Boxing after the defeat saying his fighter simply got strategy wrong in choosing not to fight with a faster tempo:
DeMarco found himself at a firm deficit midway through the bout and was left to chase the scorecard in the latter stages, but Vargas ultimately took that in his stride and kept to the same tactics throughout.
In the end, the calmer head prevailed and Vargas' reputation received its latest boost, with Ryan Songalia of Ring Magazine showing that a fixture opposite Pacquiao himself is next on Vargas' list of priorities:
Vasyl Lomachenko Outclasses Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo
If the manner in which "Pac Man" went about his business against Algieri was seen as uncompetitive, Lomachenko's demolition of Piriyapinyo was even more so after what proved to be little more than a sparring session for the Ukrainian.
Winning back-to-back fights for the first time in his professional career, Lomachenko was clearly shown to be the better of the two, as shown by the judges' scorecards:
Halfway through the fixture, Songalia questioned the quality of the tie, such was the lack of defence that Piriyapinyo managed to put up:
What was most impressive for Lomachenko, however, was that despite appearing to severely injure his left hand, he persevered and saw out the bout with just the right in his arsenal.
Lance Pugmire of the Los Angeles Times confirmed that Lomachenko's corner advised him to use his left as a means of diversion, but later announced it was not broken as first feared:
The European enjoyed one-way traffic until the final bell was rung and defended his WBO featherweight belt as a result, taking his record to 3-1-0 in the process.
Zou Shiming Overcomes Kwanpichit OnesongchaiGym
Another fight, another fixture one would be right to argue shouldn't have gone the distance as Zou Shiming emerged as victor in front of a home crowd.
The three-time Olympic medallist went into Saturday's fight against OnesongchaiGym as the far less experienced of the pair in professional terms, but again his class was a cut above, per ESPN's Dan Rafael:
Shiming claimed an early sway in momentum during the opening rounds, landing the more telling blows no matter how his foe tried to keep pace.
As HBO illustrates, the difference in accuracy between the two was telling when it came to power punching through the second round:
The most significant obstacle in Shiming's path came when an accidental headbutt opened up a cut over his left eye, which Round By Round Boxing shows could certainly have impeded his progress:
OnesongchaiGym looked to take advantage of the knock, but it proved to be a futile pursuit.
Welterweight Amir Khan did find some fault in the victor's approach, however, noting that Shiming may still be a little rough around the edges, this being just his sixth professional outing:
Just as he did when winning gold in back-to-back Olympic Games, the Chinese champion moved ahead of his opponent and should be seeking a title shot in the near future.