BROOMFIELD, Colo. -- Maxim Vlasov was supposed to be a tough test for up-and-coming Mexican super middleweight Gilberto Ramirez, who might not have looked explosive, but he surely learned a lot as he won a clear unanimous decision on Saturday night at the 1stBank Center.
Ramirez, a southpaw, hammered Vlasov with body punches throughout the fight -- he landed 112 total, according to CompuBox statistics -- en route to the victory in the co-feature of the much-anticipated third fight between welterweight rivals Mike Alvarado and Brandon Rios.
Fighting at a contact weight of 171 pounds and with super middleweight world champion Andre Ward -- a man he aspires to challenge someday -- sitting ringside doing commentary for HBO, Ramirez outlanded Vlasov in every round but one (the fifth).
All three judges had it for the 23-year-old southpaw 97-93, 97-93 and 96-94. ESPN.com also had it for Ramirez 98-92.
Ramirez went after Vlasov's body from the start of the fight and began to do damage in the third round as Vlasov's face showed his displeasure, and he tried to move more than he had earlier in the fight.
Ramirez (31-0, 24 KOs) was warned by referee Curtis Thrasher for a low blow in the fifth round, although the punch appeared to land on Vlasov's waistband. The warning did not deter Ramirez, who continued to grind away at Vlasov's body.
By the sixth round, Vlasov's face was marked with redness and bruising and Ramirez had a little bit of blood in his nose as the pace of the fight slowed. But Ramirez, whose left eye was black and blue, outlanded Vlasov (30-2, 15 KOs), 28, of Russia, whose 11-fight winning streak ended.
"It was a very hard fight, but the difference was my body shots," Ramirez said. "Every time I threw a combination, I always ended it with a shot to the body, and that was the difference in the fight. He was a hard fighter for me. I'm glad I got the win."
Olympic medalist Gvozdyk crushes Cummings
Ukrainian light heavyweight prospect Oleksandr Gvozdyk (5-0, 4 KOs), who claimed a bronze medal in the 2012 Olympics, blew out Baltimore's Cory Cummings (18-8-1, 13 KOs), dropping him three times in the second round for the knockout. Gvozdyk, 27, easily won the first round and then did major damage in the second. He dropped Cummings, 35, with a left hook, then unloaded during the follow-up attack to drop him face first. Moments later, Gvozdyk unleashed a three-punch combination -- jab, uppercut, clean right hand -- that dropped him hard to his rear end. He came to rest against the ropes and referee Stephen Blea immediately waved off the fight at 1 minute, 10 seconds.
"Next to the 'Krusher' [unified titleholder Sergey Kovalev], he's one of the best light heavyweights in the world," said Robert Garcia, Gvozdyk's trainer.
• Junior welterweight Abner Lopez (20-4, 17 KOs), 24, of Mexico, pulled the upset by winning a well-deserved, eight-round decision against Aik Shakhnazaryan (15-1, 6 KOs), 21, of Russia. All three judges had Lopez winning 78-73, 78-73 and 76-74. He salted away the win in a dominant sixth round in which he scored two knockdowns. The first came on a left hand to the midsection that badly hurt Shakhnazaryan. He looked a bit unsteady when the fight resumed and was quickly down again from a left hand to the head.
• Russian junior welterweight Konstantin Ponomarev (27-0, 13 KOs), 22, survived an all-out assault from Steve Clagget (20-3-1, 14 KOs), 25, of Calgary, to win a unanimous decision in a violent fight. They spent most of the fight trading at close quarters, but Ponomarev, who took some heavy shots, landed more punches during the action-packed fight. In the fourth round, both guys unloaded everything with nonstop punching throughout. In the end, Ponomarev won 78-74, 77-75, 77-75.
• Denver junior middleweight Jeremy Ramos (7-1, 3 KOs) pounded Rene Marquez (4-2, 2 KOs), of Scottsbluff, Nebraska, into a third-round knockout. Ramos, 27, and the 25-year-old Marquez put on a spirited fight, but Ramos whacked the outgunned Marquez around the ring. In the third round, he hurt him with a pair of left hooks, and when he nailed him again a few moments later, referee Jay Nady stopped the fight at 1 minute, 51 seconds.
• Toronto junior middleweight Zsolt Daranyi (3-0, 3 KOs), 19, needed only 41 seconds to stop Luis Marquez (0-1), 19, of Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Daranyi went right at Marquez, backed him into his own corner and landed three-punch combination that sent him sagging into the ropes. Referee Blea ruled a knockdown because the ropes were holding Marquez up, but after administering the mandatory eight-count, he waved off the fight.