Lucas Matthysse has two losses on his resume, and if you ask anyone with vast boxing knowledge, they will tell you he was robbed on two different occasions.
Last at night at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, Matthysse was not going to take his chances with the judges, and turned a potential fight of the year with heavily regarded Junior Welterweight champion Lamont Peterson into a three round destruction that has everyone about Matthysse’s next opponent, and his potential to become a superstar.
Matthysse has earned the right to face WBA and WBC titlist Danny Garcia later this year.
It was a small crowd of 4,215 who showed up to Boardwalk Hall, but those not in attendance missed a dominant show by the hard punching Argentinian.
Matthysse dominated Peterson from start to finish, dropping the skilled Junior Welterweight Peterson three times, and leaving the arena with the nickname of the new “Manny Pacquiao,” because he reminded people of when young Manny was a knockout machine.
“We have a new Manny Pacquiao. He’s from Argentina, and his name is Lucas Matthysse,” Golden Boy promoter Richard Schaefer said. “What he just did, he did at the highest level of the sport. Nobody has ever done that to Lamont Peterson. I am speechless.”
Now we all know who the best 140-pound fighter is,” Matthysse said through a translator. “No one has dominated Peterson like that.”
Matthysse won his sixth consecutive fight by knockout, and gained the 32nd stoppage of his career.
Matthysse and Peterson used the first round to feel each other out, and Peterson seemed to try to stick to the game plan of throwing his jab, and using movement to avoid a big shot from the machine.
Things quickly heated up in the second round, as Lucas Mattysse landed a solid right hand that drove Peterson back toward the ropes.
That punch may have thrown Peterson’s night all off, because his game plan went out the window, and Peterson stopped throwing punches and moving his head.
Matthysse then hit Peterson with a clean left hook on the temple, that was so hard, that Peterson went down on a delayed reaction.
“In the first round, I was feeling him out, and by the second round, I started connecting,” Matthysse said. “I was working the distance, but once I dropped him, I knew he could tell how strong I was.
“I got a lot of experience with the two losses, to Zab Judah and Devon Alexander, and now I know I have to win by knockout.”
The third round started, and Peterson at that point figured the only way he could survive was to try to trade with Matthysse, so he was able to get in some shots, but the machine kept coming forward.
The challenger would eventually land a beautiful thunderous left hook to Peterson that dropped him square in the center of the ring.
The referee, Steve Smoger, contemplated stopping the fight then, but allowed Peterson to fight on.
Matthysse went right after Peterson and landed another left hook that dropped him for the third time. Smoger then stopped the fight at 2 minutes, 14 seconds.
Peterson seemed content with the fact that he was dominated by a better fighter.
“I feel good, but I’m a little upset that I lost, but I feel good,” said Peterson, who can take solace in the fact that he still holds his belt. “I got a little lazy with my jab in there. He hit me in the back of my head. I kept telling the ref he hit me in the back of my head.
“I felt as if I could have kept going, but he hit me with some good shots. But tonight I guess he was the better fighter.”
It was Peterson’s second fight since beating Amir Khan in December 2011.
Lucas Matthysse now seems headed for stardom and is now reportedly working with manager/adviser, Al Haymon. You can expect Matthysse to now get main event status after working hard to dispel the notion that he was simply a gritty opponent.
Matthysse will now get spotlight on Showtime, and the world championship opportunity he’s coveted for so long. Next for the 30-year-old Matthysse is a probable fight with unified titleholder Danny Garcia, the opponent he wanted to fight even more than facing Peterson.
“I’ll fight him if that’s what Golden Boy and [newly signed adviser] Al Haymon want,” Matthysse said.
Golden Boy Promoter Richard Schaefer seemed ecstatic about having Matthysse in the fold.
“Words can’t describe how good this guy is, how hungry he is, how exciting he is. Now let’s see him and Danny Garcia. I was told before the Peterson fight that [Garcia] would take it, and that’s the fight I want to make.”
Danny Garcia was ringside and even though he was fully aware that he’d be facing the winner of last nights matchup, Garcia was not all smiles and gleam after watching such a destruction.
Schaefer said he has September 7 on hold at the Verizon Center in Washington, D.C., for the fight. He also said he hopes to match Peterson, a D.C. kid, with Zab Judah in the co-feature in consolation match in the unofficial tournament to crown a junior welterweight king.
“Danny is the kind of fighter people bet against, but every time, he steps up to the plate and delivers, and delivers big,” Schaefer said. “Nobody should count out Danny Garcia, but this guy [Matthysse] is one of the best and most exciting fighters in the sport. What he did to Lamont was incredible.
“It’s coming to the point where you don’t question if he’s going to knock his opponent out, you only question when.”
It is Lucas Matthysse’s time right now, and if he can get by Danny Garcia in September, expect Golden Boy to put on a full court press to make a match up between the “Machine,” and Floyd Mayweather Jr., in what could be deemed the biggest fight in years.