Eduard Gutknecht was able to retain his European light heavyweight title with a solid win over Vyacheslav Uzelkov today in Germany. (Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Our live coverage of the Hernandez vs Cunningham card continues here, with the main event yet to come, as well as the European cruiserweight title fight between Enad Licina and Alexander Alexeev.
Germany's Eduard Gutknecht was able to outwork and simply outbox rugged Vyacheslav Uzelkov today on the Hernandez vs Cunningham undercard, winning a 12-round unanimous decision to retain his European light heavyweight title. Scores were 115-114, 116-112, and 117-111 for Gutknecht. Bad Left Hook scored it 116-112 for the German.
Gutknecht (23-1, 9 KO) started the fight quickly and swept the first five rounds on the BLH scorecard, rather easily outboxing the slow and plodding Uzelkov. But in the middle rounds, the Ukrainian challenger started to build a bit of momentum with his relentless pursuit and his pure physical strength. His punching power began making a difference, and through eight rounds, the fight had become either dead even or very close to it, and momentum seemed to be going the challenger's way.
In the ninth, Gutknecht got back in it by any means necessary, pushing a tiring Uzelkov around the ring. It wasn't pretty, but it was a way to slow down Uzelkov's rhythm and get the fight going as it had earlier.
The 10th was the real turning point, as Gutknecht had a huge round and put his stamp on the fight. From that point on, Uzelkov (25-2, 16 KO) was pretty much out of it, having been hurt in the 10th frame by a series of big right hands to the body. If he hadn't been tired already, he certainly was after that one-sided round.
Gutknecht did face slight adversity in the 12th, when a ragged Uzelkov unloaded with everything he could muster up, but by that point he was throwing pure arm punches, and he never came close to the stoppage he needed to score in order to leave with the title.