On Saturday night at Barclays Center, Errol Spence Jr. demonstrated why he’s the best in his class as he dominated Lamont Peterson with an eighth-round TKO.

There are three welterweight champions and all are undefeated. But there is one who has separated himself from the rest and that includes a highly regarded newcomer.

IBF titleholder Errol Spence Jr. has been considered one of boxing’s best for a while, but in the main event Saturday night at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y., he proved why he’s the most feared, most avoided fighter at 147 pounds with a dominating TKO victory over former champ Lamont Peterson.

“I want to thank Lamont Peterson,” said Spence, who improved to 23-0-0, 20 knockouts. “A lot of people turned down the fight, but he took it like a real champion, a real warrior.”

From the opening round, Spence was in charge in every aspect of the fight. He punished Peterson, a close friend and ex-sparring partner, with hard shots to the head and body. Making matters tougher for Peterson [35-4-1] was Spence’s solid defense.

In addition to overwhelming Peterson offensively, Spence always had himself in position to protect against counter punches.

Spence had the advantage in every category: spacing, power, jabbing, counterpunching, defense. By Round 5, the lopsided affair had begun taking a serious toll on Peterson. A left landed flush to Peterson’s temple and sent him to the canvas.

Where most fighters would have become more aggressive when the action resumed, Spence maintained his composure and for the next two rounds, the onslaught continued.

After seven rounds, both of Peterson’s eyes were swollen and cut. Peterson’s trainer/father figure Barry Hunter had seen enough and waved the fight just one-second into the eighth.

Peterson had no issue with Hunter’s decision to stop the fight and offered his opinion of where Spence ranks among the welterweights.

“He stayed composed and was able to get his shot off at any time,” Peterson said. “As far as class, he’s a step ahead of the rest.”

Franklin McNeil is a longtime sports journalist. Before joining the EliteSportsNY.com staff, Franklin covered boxing and mixed martial arts for The Star-Ledger and ESPN.com. He's also covered the NBA and Rutgers men's basketball. In addition, Franklin's has also been on the sports staffs of the New York Post, Akron [Ohio] Beacon Journal and South Florida Sun-Sentinel.