At the Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Andres Cortes (20-0, 11 KOs) got one step closer to a world title shot by defeating Xavier Martinez (18-2, 12 KOs) via seventh-round TKO to defend his US WBC silver junior lightweight belt.

Cortes opened the fight by landing bombs on the taller Martinez. However, Martinez was not deterred and used his reach to connect with straight shots in the third and fourth.

Martinez’s forward momentum, though, made it easy for Cortes to land his overhand right, which caused Martinez to swell below his left eye. By round seven, another right hand opened up a gash on the swollen area.

Veteran trainer Robert Garcia deemed the cut too severe for him to continue, and Martinez was not allowed to come out for the eighth round.

Cortes said, “I was feeling myself, and I started finding a groove. When that happens, the fight’s over. It was a good stoppage. His eye was messed up. He was having trouble seeing with the eye because he kept blinking.

 “I want the winner of Emanuel Navarrete versus Oscar Valdez. I want any champion at 130. If not, I’m going to move up 135 and get all of those champions there.”

Also on the card, Philadelphia's Nahir Albright (16-2, 7 KOs) scored an upset eight-round majority decision win against U.S. Olympian Karlos Balderas (14-2, 12 KOs).

Balderas boxed calmly from a high guard and had success with his jab. However, his lack of punch output allowed Albright to win rounds as he threw and landed more consistently. Scores: 76-76 and 77-75 2x.