Joseph Diaz during 2015 and 2018, held the WBC-NABF and WBO-NABO featherweight belts at the regional level. He competed in a bantamweight in the 2012 Olympics as an amateur.
Joseph Diaz competed for the United States at the 2012 Olympics and won his first world title when he faced Gary Russell Jr. at 126 pounds. Joseph Diaz lost that 2018 fight, but Joseph Diaz showed he could compete at the highest level.
In his second title defense against Farmer last year, Joseph Diaz left no doubt, yet he never successfully defended his crown. Joseph Diaz competed for the United States at the 2012 Olympics and won his first world title when Joseph Diaz faced Gary Russell Jr. at 126 pounds. Joseph Diaz lost that 2018 fight, but he showed he could compete at the highest level.
In his second title defense against Farmer last year, Joseph Diaz left no doubt, yet he never successfully defended his crown.
What Happened on Friday?
On Friday, at Casablanca Joseph Diaz Jr. made his division debut at 135 pounds to face Javier Fortuna in a fight between two former super featherweight champions.
Joseph Diaz was a highly plausible replacement opponent for Golden Boy stablemate Ryan Garcia, who backed out of his scheduled bout with Fortuna in April due to mental health reasons.
Joseph Diaz’s (32-1-1, 15 KOs) unexpected opportunity paid off, as the South El Monte native put forth a valiant effort and overcame adversity after suffering a cut over his left eye and a questionable point deduction to defeat Fortuna (36-3-1, 25 KOs) in his hometown at the Banc of
Joseph Diaz was rewarded for his efforts with the scoring of 117-110, 116-111, and 115-12 in an exciting, combative, and evenly-matched bout. Joseph Diaz instantly cradled his newborn son after celebrating in the middle of the ring.
Joseph Diaz Vacating WBC interim
With the win, Joseph Diaz also claimed the vacant lightweight WBC interim championship, and the sanctioning body is expected to order a title match with champion Devin Haney.
Joseph Diaz’s arduous last 12 months came to an end with the victory, as he battled numerous distractions away from the ring.
Joseph Diaz defense against Shavkatdzhon Rakhimov
Joseph Diaz threw away his 130-pound IBF gold in February after blowing weight during a forced defense against Shavkatdzhon Rakhimov. The fight resulted in a majority draw, but Joseph Diaz’s following battle proved to be more decisive, despite Joseph Diaz narrowly outstripping Fortuna in total punches (203 to 193).
Joseph Diaz & Javier Fortune
Joseph Diaz and Fortuna- A bloody Show
Joseph Diaz and Fortuna fought at a tit-for-tat pace in the first round, with both pugilists picking their punches one by one. Joseph Diaz won the fight by hitting the body with a pair of premeditated attacks in the closing 30 seconds, which he set up with a shot to the jaw.
The second round started slowly, as Fortuna tried to sling-shot jabs off his back foot using his speed. Joseph Diaz, on the other hand, was the one who was making the cleaner connections. Joseph Diaz received a cut over his left eye from a head butt in the third act, thickening the plot. Joseph Diaz had the same eye cut when he defeated Tevin Farmer for the world title in 2020.
Joseph Diaz started the fourth round with a three-punch combo to the body. After that, he landed a right uppercut and a straight left. However, before the intermission, Joseph Diaz hit Fortuna with a rabbit punch, and referee Raul Caiz Jr. deducted a point. Caiz Jr. made a hasty and questionable decision to deduct a point. Joseph Diaz seemed energized by the foul, charging forward and throwing as many punches as he could.
“Bumble Bee” – A Tough Fighter
In the fifth round, the fighter is known as “Bumble Bee” stung Joseph Diaz with a hard right to attract the 2012 US Olympian’s attention. Fortuna unleashed a ferocious attack that included a nine-punch combo.
Despite wearing a scarlet mask over his face, Joseph Diaz asserted himself. As they stood in the center of the squared circle and slugged away, the battle took on a phone booth-like atmosphere.
By the sixth round, Fortuna, who had been battling solely on his back foot, had reversed tactics and began walking down Joseph Diaz, throwing more blows. After taking three straight punches from Joseph Diaz, Fortuna pulled his tongue out and halfheartedly flicked his right hand in a bout of gamesmanship.
Joseph Diaz got a little more aggressive in the seventh inning, seeking for a clear home run swing, which he got 30 seconds into the inning. In the eighth round, Fortuna landed a seven-punch combination, but Joseph Diaz fended it off as he began to gain momentum.
A Competitive Fight with Fortuna
Joseph Diaz was becoming a little better in the exchanges, but it was still a competitive fight. It appeared to be a coin-flip competition going into the championship rounds after eight rounds.
In the ninth round, the 28-year-old Joseph Diaz began to injure the 32-year-old Dominican, who instead opted to dance around the ring for the final half of the round rather than continue the fast-paced action.
In the tenth, Joseph Diaz continued to dole up hard leather, but at a slower pace. Joseph Diaz had the finest 30 seconds of the fight to that yet, delivering three hard overhand left punches that brought the passionate audience to its feet.
Joseph Diaz began to pull away in the 11th, around which Fortuna arguably won.
Fortuna came forward and tried to force the action as the 12th round began, understanding he was losing the fight, but a theatrical ending was not in the cards, and the additional effort was a little too late.