The clock probably struck midnight for Roberto Duran as a major boxing attraction when he lost a 12-round unanimous decision to Hector Camacho a few minutes after 12 a.m. Sunday at Trump's Taj Majal.
The 45-year-old Duran tried to pressure the faster Camacho throughout and actually came on in the final rounds to make the fight close in the eyes of some ringsiders. But the three judges gave the match to Camacho by from two to six points.The fight followed James "Buster" Douglas' return from a 51/2-year absence. The 36-year-old former undisputed heavyweight champion stopped outgunned Tony La Rosa after three rounds of a scheduled 10-round bout. Douglas said he hopes to be back in top shape by the end of the year as he strives to get back into the heavyweight championship picture.
Duran seemed to land the harder punches throughout the 12-round bout but the left-handed Camacho had more hand speed and scored with counters and right jabs.
"I thought I outboxed him, just like I wanted to," the 34-year-old Camacho said. "He put up a big effort. God bless him."
When the decision was announced, it was widely booed by many in the crowd of 5,200 in the Mark Etess Arena.
Judge Tim Figley scored it 115-113, judge Dana De Paolo had it 116-113 and Paul Venti had it 117-111, all for Camacho.
The AP card had it 114-114.
Douglas, the only man to beat Mike Tyson, dominated from the outset against the much smaller La Rosa, then almost closed his eye in the third round and knocked him down later in the stanza.
The referee stopped the fight after the third round on the advice of a doctor.
The 6-foot-4 Douglas, whose weight ballooned to over 350 pounds during his retirmement and who was seriously ill in a diabetic coma in 1994, weighed 244 pounds, 17 more than the 5-9 La Rosa.
Douglas won for the 31st time against five losses and one draw. His 21st KO since his title loss to Holyfield was greeted by mixed boos and cheers. La Rosa, from Chicago, is 24-6 with 16 knockouts.
Douglas earned $100,000.
Douglas wants to have three fights this year. If he does return to form, he could be back in the big-fight picture and possibly get a rematch with Tyson, from whom he took the undisputed title on a shocking 10-round knockout.