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Benavidez destroys Andrade by 6th-round TKO to retain WBC interim title

David Becker / Getty Images Sport / Getty

The David Benavidez era appears to be inevitable.

Benavidez took a huge leap toward superstardom Saturday night, defeating Demetrius Andrade via sixth-round TKO at Michelob ULTRA Arena in Las Vegas. Benavidez retained the WBC super middleweight championship and remained undefeated.

Andrade's corner stopped the bout at the end of the sixth after Benavidez dominated him for three consecutive rounds. Benavidez scored a knockdown in the fourth round, which proved to be the beginning of the end for Andrade.

Andrade, the former WBO middleweight and light middleweight champion, suffered the first defeat of his 33-fight career.

Benavidez called out undisputed super middleweight champion Canelo Álvarez after the victory. Benavidez remains the WBC mandatory challenger for Álvarez and has expressed interest for years in unifying the belts with one of the top pound-for-pound fighters and biggest stars in boxing.

"I think it was just a reminder of who the real champion at 168 (pounds) is," Benavidez said of his performance against Andrade.

"I want to see me versus Canelo. ... I'm the youngest super middleweight champion in the world. Three-time world champion. Now, just give me the fight that we all want to see."

Benavidez started the fight slowly and took over as time progressed. Andrade controlled the action early, landing flurries of punches and picking his shots well.

Benavidez turned his offense up a notch in the third round, but the fight really started to sway in his favor in the fourth. Benavidez stalked Andrade and landed punches - including an uppercut that backed him up - before flooring Andrade with a hard right hand late in the round.

Benavidez continued to dominate in the fifth and sixth stanzas. He showed brilliant hand speed while pummeling Andrade with a relentless attack. Andrade appeared hurt on multiple occasions but refused to go down.

Benavidez was winning on all three judges' scorecards before the corner stoppage.

"The Monster," who was coming off a unanimous decision win over Caleb Plant in his first interim title defense in March, improved his record to 28-0 with the victory over Andrade. Benavidez has 24 career knockouts.

A former two-time WBC super middleweight champion, Benavidez is 26 years old and already considered one of the top pound-for-pound talents in the sport.

"I'm gonna be a legend by the time my time is done," Benavidez said. "I don't care who they keep putting in front of me. I'm gonna keep knocking them down."

Andrade falls to 32-1 as a professional. This was the 35-year-old's first title fight since November 2021.

The bout between Benavidez and Andrade marked Showtime Boxing's final pay-per-view event following an illustrious 37-year run. Paramount is shutting down Showtime Sports, which aired some of the greatest fights in boxing history, at the end of the year. The final Showtime Boxing card takes place Dec. 16.

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