Though he was undoubtedly anxious to return to his newborn son in Glendale, Vanes 'Nightmare" Martirosyan seemed resigned to take the full time allotted to dispatch his opponent Saturday night.
In his first fight action since June, the unbeaten light middleweight and World Boxing Council Silver light middleweight champion went the full 10 rounds with Richard Gutierrez in a non-title bout at the WinStar Casino in Thackerville, Okla. to secure a unanimous decision victory and improve to 31-0.
"It was a good fight, I outboxed him," Martirosyan said. "I won every single round."
Technically speaking, Martirosyan was almost correct, as one judge scored the fight, 99-91, in his favor, while the other two awarded him every round with 100-90 scores. At any rate, though, Martirosyan thoroughly outpunched and outpointed the formerly promising prospect out of Miami by way of Colombia in a fight that may be Martirosyan's last before a major title shot by virtue of his status as a top contender within the WBC.
Fighting with his son's name, Andrew, emblazoned on the right leg of his blue trunks, Martirosyan used a steady jab and pinpoint combinations to stay a few steps ahead of Gutierrez (26-9-1) all night in the televised main event of the Top Rank Live card broadcasted live on Fox Deportes.
While it wasn't the knockout statement some may have expected from Martirosyan, who failed to score a knockdown against a fighter that came in on a three-bout losing streak, there was rarely a dull moment in the fight and Martirosyan fought the determined Gutierrez up until the final rounds when he had the fight all but wrapped up on the judges' cards.
"Not really," Martirosyan said when asked if he had expected to finish Gutierrez off earlier. "I know he is a tough guy and he's been looking better and better in his last couple of fights."
Martirosyan said Gutierrez came out with a different style than the straight ahead approach he had prepared for.
"He came out like a completely different fighter than what we saw in the videos," Martirosyan said. "He was waiting for me to jump on him, but I was just trying to do my thing. He seemed like a brawler, but in this fight, he tried to make me brawl with him. But I stuck to my game plan."
Martirosyan's game plan consisted of countering and mixing up punches, which he accomplished almost at will throughout the fight.
"It was good, it was different, I was working on some things in the gym because I'm not only getting ready for this fight, I'm getting ready for big fights," said Martirosyan, who is one of the top contenders to Saul Alvarez' WBC belt and was earlier being matched with Alfredo Angulo before that fight fell through. "I'm getting ready for the big one.
"It's a big week for me. My son was born and it's my cousin [Artin's] birthday. I want to dedicate this [win] to my son and my cousin."