This fight is sure to end definitively for Lopez—in victory or defeat—because “Juanma” will have it no other way. The former Olympian from Rio Piedras began his career 24-0, with 22 knockouts, and cut down his opposition like sugar cane on the Hacienda Mercedita. But that approach began demanding a stiffer price. Outgunned, but with cunning to spare, Gerry Penalosa tagged Lopez repeatedly before yielding to youth and size. Two fights later, Rogers Mtagwa took untold punishment before sending the exhausted Lopez reeling in the final round. Then Bernabe Concepcion floored him, and a faded Rafael Marquez provided Lopez with more harrowing moments than the script called for.
Read All That Matters: Juan Manuel Lopez Returns Against Daniel Ponce De Leon on the Cruelest Sport.