Tito Mercado, touted as one of boxing’s premier international prospects, delivered a jaw-dropping first-round knockout against Carlos Manuel Portillo from Asuncion, Paraguay. The explosive bout unfolded on Saturday night, captivating a packed house at Ontario, California’s Lumcolor ‘Phoenix Center.’
Mercado, a Pomona native boasting an unblemished 12-0 record with 11 KOs, unleashed his power right out of the gate. Using his jab as a piston, Mercado floored Portillo with a bone-crushing left hook in the bout’s early moments. Not resting on his laurels, Mercado sent Portillo back to the canvas with a sledgehammer right to the cranium. Referee Thomas Taylor had seen enough, declaring Mercado the undisputed victor at just 1:36 into what was slated to be a ten-round junior welterweight showdown.
“Everything we drilled in the gym came together tonight,” beamed an elated Mercado post-fight. “I’m chomping at the bit to take on the big fish in the division; whether it’s Arnold Barboza or Jose Ramirez, bring them on. And as for William Zepeda, if he’s game, I’m ready to step into the ring with him this instant.”
Adding to the jubilance of his triumph, the 21-year-old Mercado remarked, “There’s nothing like the rush of fighting in my hometown, feeling the energy from my family and supporters in the stands. I aim to give every fan their money’s worth, every time they see me lace up my gloves.”
The event was an offering from Fight City Promotions and was live-streamed to a global audience via their YouTube channel.
Fans should keep their ears to the ground as details regarding Mercado’s next bout are expected to be released shortly.