Tonight at 10 pm ET on Showtime, Adonis Stevenson and Gary Russell Jr defend titles against Badou Jack and Joseph Diaz Jr from separate sites, with each winner establishing themselves as potentially the best in their division.
Stevenson (29-1, 24 KO) will defend the WBC light heavyweight title against Jack (22-1-2, 13 KO) in Toronto in the headline bout, with Stevenson taking a serious risk for, in the minds of many, the first time in a while. Jack has won a title at 168 and a minor belt at 175, and is a real threat to Stevenson, who is 40 years old and perhaps ripe for the picking.
In the opening bout from just outside Washington, DC, Russell (28-1, 17 KO) has home field and hand speed advantages over unbeaten contender Diaz (26-0, 14 KO), an underdog with a lot of grit and fire that he’ll try to make prove out against the more physically gifted Russell.
Wil Esco will be on the round-by-round call tonight. Join us!
- Adonis Stevenson and Badou Jack fight to MD (114-114, 115-113 Jack, 114-114)
- Gary Russell Jr. def. Joseph Diaz Jr. by UD (115-113, 117-111, 117-111)
ROUND BY ROUND
ADONIS STEVENSON vs BADOU JACK
Round 1: Stevenson comes out probing with some feints and half-hearted jabs. Jack taking his time and circling the ring a little as he feels out Stevenson’s power. Stevenson throws a few more jabs as a tentative Jack seems real hesitant in the opening round. Stevenson falls just short on a left hand down to the body. Not much to speak of in the opening round by Stevenson carried the pace. Stevenson 10-9.
Round 2: Stevenson presses forward behind a jab and Jack continues to circle the outside as he tries to let Stevenson blow off a little steam. Big left hand just misses for Stevenson, that was probably a close call for Jack. Stevenson tries three punches, finishing with a rather sloppy uppercut that doesn’t find the mark. Left hand lands for Stevenson this time but he didn’t have all his weight behind it. Jack has barely thrown any punches in these opening two rounds. Stevenson 10-9, 20-18.
Round 3: Stevenson looking for his big left hand by probing with his right. Jack throws a right hook to the body, then lands a jab soon after. Three punch combination thrown by Stevenson which partially lands. Jack still content to stay on the outside and circle away from Stevenson’s power. Still not a lot of action thus far, a tactical fight. Stevenson 10-9.
Round 4: Stevenson misses on a left hand to the body. Jack continues to circle to his left but he hasn’t found the range for his own offense yet. Now Jack lands a right hook to the body. Jack lands a jab but Stevenson comes forward looking to get something back. Two jabs come from Jack who is starting to pick it up a little more. One-two lands for Jack, followed by another right hand. Stevenson lands a uppercut. Right hand to the body lands for Jack. Jack 10-9, 37-39.
Round 5: Stevenson comes forward with a few punches but the fighters end up in a close quarters tussle until the referee calls a break. Stevenson tries a left hand lead that Jack catches on his guard. Stevenson working on the inside by most of everything is partially landed at best, but Jack isn’t throwing much back. Stevenson turning it on a little more, throwing more shots and trying to wear on Jack, who just holds on. Stevenson 10-9.
Round 6: Apparently, listening to Jack’s corner, they’re hoping for a late charge to overwhelm Stevenson. Stevenson comes out quick, trying to get into a tear-up with Jack. Stevenson walking forward and throwing shots but Stevenson walks into a right hand from Jack. Stevenson continues to come forward and both fighters land low blows on one another. Stevenson taunting Jack now, trying to strafe him up and downstairs. Jack keeps circling away from Stevenson’s left hand nicely. Right hand lead just barely misses for Jack. I’m going to give this one to Stevenson on his activity. Stevenson 10-9, 59-55.
Round 7: Jack looking to stand his ground a little more as he and his team believe Stevenson is fading. Right hook lands for Jack which looks like it got Stevenson’s attention. Right hand lead comes from Jack again, who is starting to let his hands fly. More right hands land for Jack as Stevenson’s defense is getting leaky. Jack lands a couple jabs to end the round. Jack 10-9.
Round 8: Jack lands a jab to the body. Jack comes forward with three punches which partially lands. Jack gets a firm warning for a low blow, Stevenson gets some time to recover. Jack throws a couple of quick shots followed by a nice right hand. Jack lands two right hands as Stevenson doesn’t have the vigor he did a couple rounds ago. Jack 10-9, 75-77.
Round 9: Stevenson is bleeding from his nose and Jack comes out quick, targeting Stevenson’s body. Two more hooks upstairs land for Jack. Uppercut on the inside lands for Jack. Right hand lead lands for Jack once again. Now Jack turns the straight right lead into a lead right hook. Jack walking on the inside and rocks Stevenson with a couple uppercuts which seemed to shake up Stevenson’s leg! Stevenson is fading quick! Jack 10-9.
Round 10: Stevenson’s body language is very telling at this point. He knows this is getting away from him down the stretch. Jack lands a jab. Both fighters trade a couple shots on the inside but Jack follows up with a short right hand down the pipe. Stevenson seems bothered by his bloody nose, he’s not breathing easily. Left hook lands for Jack. Stevenson tries to go downstairs but he has little power on his shots now. Stevenson is mounting a stand and trying to whack Jack at close quarters. Hard left hand to the body might’ve hurt Jack a little. He’s backing off fast now. I think that shot steals the round for Stevenson. Stevenson 10-9, 96-94.
Round 11: Jack lands a jav but Stevenson is rushing him and trying to land another hard body shot. Left hook to the head lands for Jack. Stevenson has found some energy and he’s really applying pressure to Jack with a late surge! Stevenson looks like he’s trying to end the fight right here! Both fighters exchange hard shots on the inside! Another body shot backs off Jack! Hard body shot lands for Jack who is trying to respond with one minute to go in the round. Two body shots on the inside land for Jack. Close round! I think Jack just barely edges it with a final shot before the bell. Jack 10-9.
Round 12: Jack comes out with a right hand lead but it falls just short. Jack flurries with several shots and Stevenson tries to answer back and ties up. Jack throws two right hooks that partially land. Jack presses forward with two more right hands. Stevenson holding on as he’s gassed. Jack digging to the body as Stevenson holds onto one arm. Jack flurries to end the final frame! Jack 10-9! I’ve got it a draw, 114-114!
GARY RUSSELL JR. vs JOSEPH DIAZ JR.
Round 1: Russell comes out with a few feints before flashing some fast jabs, applying pressure early. More jabs come from Russell and Diaz just covers up and absorbs the shots. Hard jab to the body lands for Russell. Three more jabs come from Russell and Diaz seems like he’s having some difficulty acclimating to Russell’s hand speed early in the fight. Even more jabs split Diaz’s guard. Now Diaz lands a left hook to the body. Russell dominates the opening round. Russell 10-9.
Round 2: Russell comes out pumping a few jabs but these don’t land all that clean. Now Russell flurries with a dozen punches and is clipping Diaz, overwhemling him with speed and activity. Diaz walks straight in now behind a tight guard and is trying to get inside of Russell. Russell digs a right hook to the body as Diaz stands in and gets in one of his own. Three punch combination lands for Diaz. Russell won’t take a backwards step and now both fighters are trading shots at close quarters. We have a war early! Russell throws a few punches to end the round but they don’t land clean. Close round. I’m going to slightly edge it to Russell but it could’ve easily gone the other way. Russell 10-9, 20-18.
Round 3: Russell tries to keep Diaz on the end of his jab to start the round as Diaz tries to walk forward and get inside. Diaz lands a nice right hook in between Russell’s shots. Now Diaz lands a right hook to the body. Russell is back to boxing more as he doesn’t want as much of that trading action right now. Hard left hand lands for Diaz, Diaz brings that left hand right back downstairs. Russell more active but I think Diaz landed the more damaging shots this round. Diaz 10-9.
Round 4: Russell comes out leading with a lot of jabs, keeping Diaz from getting off first. Russell tries more jabs to the body followed by a left hook to the head. Diaz lands a couple punches on the inside, including a couple nice body shots. A couple more hard body shots land clean for Diaz. Diaz warned for punching on the break. Russell lands a couple of clean counter shots on Diaz and Diaz tries to respond by Russell won’t stop throwing to give him an opportunity. Russell 10-9, 39-37.
Round 5: Diaz’s corner advises him to walk Russell down, right through his pitty pat shots. The start of the fifth is like the last few, with Russell throwing a number of jabs in an attempt to keep Diaz at arms’ length. Hard lead left hand lands for Diaz. Diaz lands a right hook to the body and the fighters get tied up. More body work comes from Diaz and Russell flashes some quick shots that mostly land on Diaz’s guard. Diaz continues to march forward and press Russell. Russell is under a lot of pressure and the amount of punches he’s throwing Russell’s face. Diaz 10-9.
Round 6: Russell’s corner tells him he needs to load up on his shots a little more to get Diaz’s respect. Starting the sixth Russell continues to keep a fast pace and lead with a number of jabs followed by a combination. Russell lands another combination but they’re mostly blocked by Diaz’s guard. Russell starting to hold a little more which is a sign that he’s getting a little distressed by Diaz’s constant pressure. Russell throws another flashy combination but Diaz remains calm and targets Russell’s body. Hard right hook lands to the body for Russell. Diaz is a little plodding in his forward movement and Russell’s lateral movement gives him the advantage. Russell 10-9, 58-56.
Round 7: Russell comes out quick with some jabs, per usual. Russell continues to poke to the head and body with shots, getting off first and keeping Diaz on the defensive. Russell tries to load up on a couple hooks but Diaz catches them on his gloves. Russell lands a nice left hand as Diaz walks forward. Russell throwing more and more combinations, taking the initiative in almost every opportunity. Russell throws several more punches to end the round. Russell 10-9.
Round 8: Russell lands a hard left to the body, followed by a right hook. Russell throws hooks to both sides od Diaz’s body and then ties up as Diaz gets too close for comfort. Russell dictating the apce as he’s keeping Diaz from throwing a lot in recent rounds. Russell catches and counters with a right hook upstairs. Russell is outworking Diaz who isn’t throwing in between Russell’s punches as much as he was in earlier rounds. Russell 10-9, 78-74.
Round 9: Russell throws a couple of jabs and then holds. Diaz tries to throw a couple of his own jabs but they don’t have much conviction on them. Russell lands a jab at center ring and then follows it with three more punches which partially land. Russell throws about six punches and all Diaz can do is cover up. More of the same in this round, Russell is thoroughly outworking Diaz. Russell 10-9.
Round 10: Russell lands a jab to the body right away. Now Russell throws a lengthy combination and Diaz just covers up again. Russell’s conditioning to throw this many punches is pretty impressive. Diaz tries to maul Russell a little bit as he gets him on the ropes but it’s short lived. Diaz is actually mounting an attack for the first time in a few rounds but walks right into a left cross from Russell. Better round for Diaz, that’s for sure, but it’s not good enough. Russell 10-9, 98-92.
Round 11: Russell is just dictating the pace of this fight for the last half-dozen rounds and Diaz hasn’t been able to turn the tide. Russell goes down on a push and it’s ruled as such. Now both fighters trade big shots at close quarters and it’s a tear-up again! Russell throwing more and more on the inside and Diaz is starting to cover up more again. Hard left to the body lands for Diaz, but Russell is throwing punches at almost a 5:1 ratio. Russell 10-9.
Round 12: Diaz needs a knockout to win this fight on my card, and his corner seems to know it. Russell starts with two punches which Diaz blocks. Russell still outworking Diaz in the final frame. Diaz pushes Russell down to the canvas again. Diaz looking for a big shot to put some real hurt on Russell and he lands a couple of good body shots. Diaz lands a couple of hard lefts downstairs again and he backs Russell to the ropes with several hard shots. Russell throws a quick combination but it doesn’t do much damage. Diaz is throwing a flurry to end the fight but it’s too little too late. Diaz 10-9. I’ve got the fight scored for Russell, 117-111.