“The Future Is Bright” | Jermell Charlo Stops Brian Castaño In Ten To Become First 154-Pound Undisputed Men’s Champion

CARSON, CA - MAY 14: Jermell Charlo (gold/red shorts) knocks down Brian Castano (white/pink shorts) during their super middleweight title fight at Dignity Health Sports Park on May 14, 2022 in Carson, California. Charlo won by knockout in the 10th round. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)

Jermell Charlo proved that he and his twin brother Jermall’s mantra and company name of Lions Only is what he is made of as he became an undisputed champion in crushing fashion.

“Ironman” took out Brian Castaño in ten rounds to become the first undisputed male boxer at 154 pounds.

“This is unbelievable,” said Charlo in the postfight interview. “I gave it my all. It was nerve-wracking. It felt like my first fight. I knew Castaño was going to give it his all. I wanted to make sure it was my fight. The future is bright.”

Leaving No Doubt

Charlo erased the split draw the two received in their first pairing last July for the undisputed light middleweight championship. However, although his performance was dominant enough to convince the judges that he was ahead 87-84, 88-83, and 89-82 entering round 10, he left no doubt making the tenth the final round when he sent Castaño to the canvas twice.

The fight was an instant classic, just like their first fight, showing how styles truly make fights in the squared circle. Although Charlo was just that much better than Castaño Saturday night, the battle was a war of attrition.

Charlo dominated the early rounds, sending a message to Castaño who was the initial conductor of the pace in their first fight. Charlo stopped headhunting and employed a strategy of body shots supported by a stiff leading jab, at least for the first three rounds.

The Flurried Fifth

Charlo began to take the bait from a flurry-heavy Castaño in the fourth, fifth and sixth rounds, engaging in a firefight that only saw Castaño catch up on the cards and make it an even fight. Then came the seventh round, where Charlo sat down on his punches, stuck to the game plan his trainer Derrick James reminded him of between rounds and stopped boxing Castaño.

Instead, he picked him apart, turning the tide back in his favor. He kept his foot on the gas from rounds seven through round nine, and it looked like he would cruise to at least winning seven out of the twelve rounds, enough to win the fight.

However, as he had stated in interviews during the entire build-up to the fight, Charlo had no intention of leaving the outcome in the hands of the judges.

Down Goes Castaño

Charlo discharged a right hand to the body and a pretty left hook to the head in round 10. Castaño made it to his feet before the count of 10, but it would not be sufficient to continue. Jermell Charlo made history in claiming his undisputed title by taking Castaño’s WBO belt to his unified collection of the WBC, WBA, and IBF light middleweight straps.

After a cantankerous build-up for the fight, both Castaño and Charlo were gracious in defeat and victory, showing respect for each other in the end.

“Everything that happened here, we showed we’re warriors tonight,” Castaño said next to Charlo during the postfight interview. “We both were fighting back and forth, it was power back and forth, and then his [left] hand ended the fight.”

One of the fighting Charlo twins has something to differentiate himself from his identical brother. An undisputed title and the first male to do it for the light-middleweight division.

Rhett Butler is a Boxing Writer Association of America Journalist, Play-By-Play Commentator, Combat Sports Insider, and Former Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing Promoter. The New York City native honed his skills at various news outlets including but not limited to: TIME Magazine, Money Magazine, CNN's Wolf Blitzer Reports, and more. Rhett hosts the PRITTY Left Hook podcast, a polarizing combat sports insider's take featuring the world's biggest names.