Ex-Olympian Brian Viloria exorcises demons, keeps WBO title by stopping Omar Nino

Kevin Iole

Brian Viloria had a long and frustrating history with Omar Nino, but as the member of the 2000 U.S. Olympic boxing team discovered, all's well that ends well.

Viloria stopped Mexican Omar Nino in the ninth round Saturday to retain his World Boxing Organization flyweight title in Pasig City, Philippines, finally putting to rest a long and frustrating six-year saga with the Mexican.

In 2006, the heavily favored Viloria lost his World Boxing Council junior flyweight title to Nino in Las Vegas. Later that year, they fought to a draw, but the result was changed to a no-contest when Nino failed a post-fight drug test, getting caught with methamphetamine in his system.

Even that drug test played a role in Saturday's fight. Nino had failed to pay an $11,250 fine to the Nevada Athletic Commission and, as a result, the WBO refused to sanction the scheduled March 31 bout. That pushed the bout back until Saturday in the Philippines.

Viloria was relieved to finally put Nino in his rear-view mirror, he told Roy Luarca of the Philippine Daily Inquirer.

It was a big psychological win; It got the monkey off my back.

Hopefully, the win will also lead to what should be a sensational bout with WBA flyweight champion Hernan "Tyson" Marquez. Viloria told GMA News in the Philippines that he's interested in a bout with Marquez, who defeated Luis Concepcion in the 2011 Yahoo! Sports Fight of the Year.

It will be a really great fight, the way his style is and the way my style is. The way I see it, it's going to be fun for the crowd and the boxing fans. It's going to be really marketable, the Mexican versus the Filipino.

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