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Unbeaten Mayfield scores TKO, but under radar as usual

Karim Mayfield showed his firepower against Christopher Fernandez.
Karim Mayfield showed his firepower against Christopher Fernandez.
CHRIS FARINA -- TOP RANK

San Francisco junior welterweight Karim Mayfield remained unbeaten Saturday in what amounted to a tune-up fight in Carson, Calif.

Mayfield (18-0-1, 11 knockouts), in his first bout in 11 months and his first under the Top Rank Boxing banner, scored an eighth-round TKO over Christopher Fernandez (21-16), whose other conquerors include Devon Alexander, Paulie Malignaggi, Keith Thurman, and last, but not least, Danny Garcia.

Mayfield knocked Fernandez down twice in the fourth round and again in the eighth to seal the deal, meaning his victory over Fernandez was roughly as impressive as that of Garcia, the current darling of the 140-pound class after his victories over Amir Khan and, Sept. 14, Lucas Matthysse.

Mayfield was overshadowed Saturday, as tends to be his fate. He was on the undercard of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr’s highly controversial victory over journeyman Bryan Vera, a bout for which Chavez first failed to make the 168-pound weight limit, then failed to make the revised weight limit of 173 and then didn’t make much of a case for the unanimous decision victory he was awarded.

You’d like to think Chavez Jr. is a potential opponent for Andre Ward, but now the only drama in that bout would be the extent it would be enjoyable to see Ward slap the brat around a bit.

A more formidable opponent brewing for Ward, who fights unbeaten Eduardo Rodriguez on Nov. 16, is Adonis Stevenson, who stopped credible light heavyweight contender Tavoris Cloud in seven rounds in Montreal, a bout which, like Chavez-Vera, was shown Saturday on HBO.

Mayfield’s originally scheduled opponent, Pavel Miranda, might have made the bout promotable for an HBO tripleheader, but Mayfield still gained some traction Saturday by showing some pop, and there is still reason to believe he’ll get a world title shot at 140 yet.

Alas, it probably won’t be against Garcia, a Golden Boy Promotions fighter. Just another irony of Garcia’s somewhat under-the-radar appearance in June 2009 in San Jose on a card that starred Robert Guerrero, is that Mayfield was in the house that night and would have been a worthier opponent even then for Garcia than the man he fought --none other than Pavel Miranda.