Elvis Rodriguez bounced back nicely from his first loss.
The Los Angeles-based Dominican knocked out capable Juan Pablo Romero in the third round of a scheduled 10-round welterweight bout on the Canelo Alvarez-Caleb Plant card Saturday in Las Vegas.
Rodriguez (12-1-1, 11 KOs) was upset in his most-recent fight, a majority decision against Kenneth Sims Jr. in May, which put a halt to the momentum he had built.
He didn’t choose a pushover in his comeback bout, as Romero (14-1, 9 KOs) was unbeaten and a 2016 Olympian for Mexico.
And Romero looked like a threat to take down Rodriguez in the first few rounds, in which the fighters went back and forth in what seemed to be an evenly matched bout.
However, Rodriguez, a southpaw, took over in Round 4, when he put Romero down with a straight left with about a minute remaining in the round. Romero got up and seemed to recover but there was more to come.
Round 5 was competitive until the final seconds, when another left put Romero flat on his back. He sat up but decided to stay on the canvas as the referee reached a count of 10.
The fighters agreed to a 142-pound catch weight but Rodriguez is a junior welterweight, which has a limit of 140. His victory puts him back into the thick of the title hunt.