LAS VEGAS – Cuba’s Guillermo Rigondeaux retained his World Boxing Association super-bantamweight world title on Saturday with a fifth-round technical knockout of American Teon Kennedy.
Rigondeaux, a two-time Olympic champion for Cuba now fighting out of Miami, remained unbeaten as a professional, improving to 10-0 with eight knockouts.
His dominant performance came on the undercard of Filipino ring icon Manny Pacquiao’s World Boxing Organization welterweight title defense against unbeaten American Tim Bradley.
Rigondeaux knocked Kennedy down with a punishing left in the first round and sent him to the canvas twice in the second round and again in the fourth.
When another left sent Kennedy reeling in the fifth, referee Russell Mora called a halt at 1:11 of the round.
Rigondeaux, 31, made the first defense of the title he won with a sixth-round knockout of Rico Ramos on January 20.
Kennedy fell to 17-2-2.
“All of my punches are great,” Rigondeaux said. “I have no bad ones.”
Kennedy said Rigondeaux’s speedy hands made the difference.
“Rigondeaux has the kind of punches you can’t see,” the American said. “He is real quick.”
Rigondeaux called it one of the best fights of his young pro career.
“But I have a lot of big fights ahead,” he added.
The Cuban has already complained that some of the talent-laden division’s best — including Filipino WBO champion Nonito Donaire, World Boxing Council champ Toshiaki Nishioka of Japan and International Boxing Federation champ Jeffrey Mathebula — are ducking him.
Donaire and Mathebula are slated to fight to unify their world titles in Los Angeles on July 7.
Also on the undercard, unbeaten Mike Jones took on fellow American Randall Bailey for the vacant International Boxing Federation welterweight crown.
Jones brought a record of 26-0 with 19 knockouts to the fight, while Bailey boasts a record of 41-7 with 36 knockouts.
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