Jojo Diaz endures brutal cut to defeat Tevin Farmer for IBF title

Tevin Farmer fought uncharacteristically, and it cost him his IBF super featherweight title against Jojo Diaz on the Thursday before the Super Bowl.

Tevin Farmer was extremely confident heading into his IBF super featherweight title defense against Jojo Diaz. Diaz did his job in robbing Farmer of that confidence is an impressive performance on Thursday, Jan. 30, in Miami during the build-up to the Super Bowl.

Farmer got the early jump on Diaz in round 1. He peppered Diaz with jabs and used his fast hands to pile up points. Diaz’s punches were slower but more powerful. He snuck in several left crosses that landed squarely on Farmer’s face. It was a classic speed vs. power matchup.

In between rounds, Farmer complained about his right hand. Farmer was shot in that hand in 2017. Leading up to the fight, he told FanSided that he has a history of hand problems. That played a significant role in his bout with Diaz.

The tide briefly turned in round 2. While letting his hands go and looking comfortable, Diaz suffered a large cut over his left eye. Farmer rolled his head into Diaz’s, which caused the wound. It was unintentional but caused significant damage to Diaz’s eye.

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The doctor looked at Diaz before the start of round 3 but allowed the bout to continue.

Somehow, Diaz’s cutman controlled the bleeding of the cut and kept it from inhibiting Diaz’s vision. His performance excelled as the fight continued.

Around round 5, Farmer started to blink in an odd fashion, which continued throughout the contest. He periodically winked his right eye and looked up with each wink. It almost looked like a nervous tick. Something wasn’t right with Farmer, and his position in the fight continued to backslide.

Instead of utilizing his typical defensive style, Farmer fought at close quarters with Diaz, which was a major mistake. Diaz took the fight to Farmer and systematically wore him down.

By round 8, Farmer’s energy level looked depleted. He couldn’t avoid Diaz’s best punches but bravely ate them time and time again.

Diaz easily won the remaining rounds. After the fight, the ring announcer read off two scores of 115-113 and one of 116-112 all for Diaz. The later score more accurately told the tale of this fight. Diaz is the new IBF super featherweight champion.

During the post-fight interview, Diaz said of his cut, “I just pretended it wasn’t there.”

Farmer offered up praise to Diaz in his post-fight interview.

“He put up a hell of a fight,” said Farmer “That’s all I can say.”

When asked about his right hand injury, Farmer said, “I couldn’t use my jab how I wanted to use it, but he capitalized on it.”

Farmer does have a rematch clause in his fight contract and said that he plans to exercise it.

“Yes, absolutely,” said Farmer on his intention to initiate his rematch clause. “Hopefully, we can go back April or May.”

Farmer never commented on his strange blinking, but promoter Lou DiBella told DAZN reporters that he was concerned with the blinking and would make sure that Farmer would be taken to the hospital.

Hopefully, Farmer gets a clean bill of health and is available for a rematch with Diaz in the near future.

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