Popular welterweight Josesito "The Riverside Rocky" Lopez stopped Aron Martinez in round five at the Agua Caliente Casino, Rancho Mirage, California.
The bout was the headliner of a special Thursday night edition of ESPN2 Friday Night Fights series.
Lopez (32-6, 19 KOs) had the heard the whispers. His victory over Mike Arnaoutis last December had been harder than expected.
Martinez (19-3-1, 4 KOs) lost a decision to world ranked Jessie Vargas 19 months ago. He's used to being the underdog.
The rangy Lopez started with an edge. He popped Martinez in the face with jabs. He pushed Martinez into the ropes and went to work. Martinez sustained a cut on his forehead near the end of the opening stanza.
Lopez worked the body consistently throughout the bout. Martinez tried to lull Lopez into position to fire his right hand. The strategy worked at times, but Martinez is not a big puncher. Lopez was able to land sharp combinations. His volume of punches remained consistent. By round four, Martinez had a cut over his left eye.
The end came suddenly in round five. Lopez cornered Martinez and fired a combination. A big left hook caused Martinez to sag into the ropes and turn his back. A right hand banged against his side. Referee Jack Reiss stepped in and waved the fight off.
"Aron (Martinez) got hit with a thunderous left hook, turned his back and covered up," said Reiss seconds after the fight ended. "He abandoned the fight under the rules of the California State Athletic Commission. I had no choice but to stop the fight at that point."
The time was 1:19 of round five.
"I set him up with some left hooks to the body," said Lopez. "I connected with a good shot. I just wish the fight had gone a little longer."
"I'm just disappointed right now," Martinez said. "I wasn't hurt."