3 More Rounds

Walters TKOs Donaire in 6

Photos: Chris Farina / Top Rank

Photos: Chris Farina / Top Rank

Nonito Donaire was stopped by Nicholas Walters in the sixth round on Saturday night, in an action-packed showdown from round one.

Both fighters were willing to go toe to toe, electrifying the crowd with late flurries at the end of some of the early rounds.

Battling for the WBA featherweight title, Donaire (33-3, 21 KOs) hurt Walters badly at the end of the second round, but it would be the last Walters would be in any kind of trouble.

In the third round, Walters caught Donaire with a clean uppercut that floored Donaire for the first time in his career.  Though he quickly got up, it was a taste of what was to come.  As the fight wore on, Donaire’s face continued to get busted up, with a cut over his right eye bleeding and both eyes swelling up.

“I’m sorry I fell short tonight of my goal,” Donaire said after the fight. “He’s an amazing fighter, amazing champion, an amazing guy. I was at my best. I never trained this hard. I take nothing away from Nicholas Walters. He came out as tough as I thought he would be. The size he had over me I couldn’t deal with. He overwhelmed and knocked the shit out of me.”

Walters (25-0, 21 KOs) baited Donaire to get on the inside and was able to land a devastating equilibrium punch that ended matters in the sixth round. Though Donaire landed face first, he narrowly beat the 10-count, but was on shaky legs, convincing the referee to waive it off.

Could this be the end of Donaire's career?

Could this be the end of Donaire’s career?

“I invited him into me. It’s like fishing,” Walters said. “I gave him the bait and I reeled him in. But he is a great fighter and a great person.”

Promoter Bob Arum liked what he saw from Walters, who would like to match the Jamaican against Vasyl Lomachenko.

“I have never seen a featherweight with as much power as Walters,” said Arum.

“I’ve seen featherweights with a lot of power but nothing with the concussive power this kid has. The one question I had was could he take a punch and he proved he could.”

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