WBC World Middleweight Champion and Houston native Jermall Charlo couldn’t have been happier to be fighting at home—and the love was reciprocated. A raucous, sell-out crowd of 6,408 at NRG Arena watched Charlo overcome a fearless Brandon Adams to win a wide 12-round unanimous decision.
This was Charlo’s first fight at home since March 2012, when he scored a fifth-round TKO over Sean Wilson. Adams, who won the series five championship of The Contender series, was a far stiffer challenge. Yet Charlo still won comfortably in the main event of the PBC on SHOWTIME Championship Boxing card.
“[Adams] had a chin,” Charlo said afterward. “The contender was real, but this is a different level.”
Indeed. The combatants spent much of the first sizing each other up. A Charlo right uppercut snapped Adams’ head back toward the end of the round, but the challenger simply smiled after tasting Jermall’s power.
Charlo (29-0, 21 KOs) won the early frames via activity but appeared to be pressing, hoping to score a statement KO in front of fellow Houstonians. His eagerness worked against him in the fourth as Adams landed a series of lefts—both jabs and hooks—throughout the round.
“I hurt my left hand in like the second round but I kept throwing it,” Charlo revealed. “It was obvious my jab wasn’t flowing.”
Yet Charlo bounced back in the fifth, working that stick, which has knocked down several previous opponents.
Charlo began timing Adams’ onrushes in the middle frames. Adams briefly halted the momentum with a hard right to begin the ninth. But the champion took over, boxing well behind the jab and unloading combinations once he closed the distance.
A right hand in the 10th stunned Adams and brought the crowd out of their seats. The Los Angeles, California resident used his legs to survive. Still, Charlo dominated the championship rounds to win by scores of 119-109 and 120-108 twice.
“He came out to box. I came out to fight,” said Charlo. “It was a good fight. The city of Houston, I’ll be back. I worked for this. H-Town, I love you all.”
Adams, 21-3 (13 KOs), was gracious in defeat.
“I was coming up here to win. I was coming to try to take him out in his hometown. He did what he was supposed to do, he’s a champ for a reason and I take my hat off to him.”
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