Belts on The Line
Tape rankings @ Featherweight
Who won Santa Cruz vs Rivera?
Leo Santa Cruz beat Rafael Rivera by unanimous decision in their 12 round contest on Saturday 16th February 2019 at Microsoft Theater in California.
The scorecards were announced as 119-109, 119-109, 119-109 in favor of winner Leo Santa Cruz.
The fight was scheduled to take place over 12 rounds in the Featherweight division, which meant the weight limit was 126 pounds (9 stone or 57.1 KG).
This contest was for the vacant WBA featherweight championship of the world.
Also, on the undercard Omar Figueroa Jr was victorious over John Molina Jr and Cesar Juarez lost to Ryosuke Iwasa for the IBF World Junior Featherweight belt.
Santa Cruz vs Rivera stats
Back in February 2019, Leo Santa Cruz stepped into the ring with a record of 35 wins, 1 loss and 1 draw, 19 of those wins coming by the way of knock out.
Rafael Rivera made his way to the ring with a record of 26 wins, 2 loses and 2 draws, with 17 of those wins by knock out.
The stats suggested Rivera had advantage in power over Santa Cruz, with a 65% knock out percentage over Santa Cruz's 54%.
Leo Santa Cruz was the older man by 6 years, at 31 years old.
Both Leo Santa Cruz & Rafael Rivera fought out of an orthodox stance.
Santa Cruz was the more experienced professional fighter, having had 7 more fights, and made his debut in 2006, 5 years and 6 months earlier than Rivera, whose first professional fight was in 2012. He had fought 141 more professional rounds, 277 to Rivera's 136.
Rafael Rivera was ranked number 11 by the WBA in the 126lb division.
Santa Cruz vs Rivera form
Santa Cruz had beaten 4 of his last 5 opponents, stopping 2 of them, going the distance twice.
In his last fight leading up to this contest, he had won against Abner Mares on 9th June 2018 by unanimous decision in their WBA Super World Featherweight championship fight at Staples Center, LA, United States.
Previous to that, he had won against Chris Avalos on 14th October 2017 by technical knockout in the 8th round in their WBA Super World Featherweight championship fight at StubHub Center, Carson.
Going into that contest, he had beat Carl Frampton on 28th January 2017 by majority decision in their WBA Super World Featherweight championship fight at MGM Grand, Las Vegas.
Before that, he had been beaten by Carl Frampton on 30th July 2016 by majority decision in their WBA Super World Featherweight championship fight at Barclays Center, New York.
He had defeated Kiko Martinez on 27th February 2016 by technical knockout in the 5th round in their WBA Super World Featherweight championship fight at Honda Center, Anaheim.
Santa Cruz's last 5 fights had come over a period of 2 years, 11 months and 20 days, meaning he had been fighting on average every 7 months and 5 days. In those fights, he fought a total of 49 rounds, meaning that they had lasted 9.8 rounds on average.
What time did Santa Cruz vs Rivera start?
The fighters were expected to ringwalk at around 11:00 PM EST / 8:00 PM PST at Microsoft Theater, California, United States, which was around 4:00 AM GMT in the UK.
Who broadcast Santa Cruz vs Rivera?
Santa Cruz vs Rivera was broadcast on FOX in the US.
What were the odds on Santa Cruz vs Rivera?
Leo Santa Cruz was a 1/100 (-10000) favourite going into the contest, while Rafael Rivera made his way into the ring at 16/1 (+1600) with oddsmakers.