Errol Spence Jr. defended his IBF Welterweight World Championship with a first-round knockout of previously undefeated mandatory challenger Carlos Ocampo in a homecoming fight Saturday on SHOWTIME at Ford Center at The Star.
A sellout crowd of more than 12,600 fans packed Ford Center at The Star in Frisco to witness Spence’s first homecoming defense as champion and his first fight in Dallas since 2015. The consensus top-5 pound-for-pound fighter did not disappoint, pounding the body from the opening bell with his trademark body attack and superb ring generalship.
Spence, who was making his second defense as a 147-pound champion, floored Ocampo with a brutal 1-2 body shot combo, the second punch landing flush on the challenger’s side and instantly flooring him as the opening round concluded. Ocampo (22-1, 13 KOs) crippled over in pain while on the canvas, was unable to beat the count and remained on the floor for more than two minutes while Spence celebrated his victory.
“I was a little disappointed. I wanted to give the crowd their money’s worth,” Spence said. “I wanted him to sustain a bit and give him some punishment, but the body shot got him and I dropped him.”
It was the ninth time Spence (24-0, 21 KOs) has floored an opponent with a body shot in his 24 professional fights.
“I knew if I hit him again he would probably drop,” Spence said. “That was my game plan. I’m the body snatcher. If he reacts weirdly, I just keep going to the body and I keep breaking him down.”
After the fight, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones joined Spence in the ring to congratulate him on the victory.
“This moment is a dream,” Spence said. “I wanted to play for the Dallas Cowboys and now I’m fighting in front of the Dallas Cowboys and Jerry Jones. Thank you to the whole Dallas Cowboys organization.
“We’ll definitely be back after I unify some titles. We’ll make this an annual thing where I fight here.”
Jones was thrilled with what was the first boxing event inside the Ford Center at The Star, the centerpiece of the 91-acre campus of the Dallas Cowboys World Headquarters and practice facility.
“This room was full of Dallas Cowboys football players supporting you,” Jones said. “They share your passion. I saw a guy in this ring who knew what he wanted. When you knock a guy out by hitting him once on the side of his back, you’re bad to the bone.
“I love his awareness. He had a plan from the beginning. He is exceptionally gifted. He has family that is behind him and our family, the Cowboys, want to be behind him as well.”
After the fight, SHOWTIME Sports reporter Jim Gray, who was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame last Sunday, asked Spence what he would like to do next.
“I want to fight the best,” Spence promised. “Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter are fighting each other (for the WBC title) and I definitely want to make that a unifying fight. We both have the same management, we both fight on SHOWTIME. Why not make that happen? I definitely want that fight whenever it’s available.”
Saturday’s SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast will re-air on Monday at 10 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME EXTREME and will be available via SHOWTIME ON DEMAND and SHOWTIME ANYTIME.