It was another busy and eventful week in boxing, so let’s run down some of the notable results.
ESPN+ (Saturday, Las Vegas, NV)
- Tyson Fury’s introduction to a wider American audience — well, in theory, they stuck this fight behind a $5 paywall — was a showcase for his personality and for arguably the worst, most outrageously over the top commentary I’ve ever heard on a boxing broadcast, and we live in a world where Mauro Ranallo has worked in boxing for years. Fury smoked the pitifully, woefully overmatched Tom Schwarz in two in front of a relatively sparse and mildly enthusiastic crowd, which the ESPN team would have you believe was akin to the army that followed Ricky Hatton over for the Mayweather fight in 2007. As for the commentary, as Michael Woods wrote already, it is what it is. I get it. It’s pretty much the ESPN standard for any sport, and it was inevitable that this style fully made it to boxing. It has now. I just hope they remember that LINEAL is what matters and alphabet soup belts mean nothing the next time they present a Top Rank main event for an alphabet soup belt on June 28 when Richard Commey faces Ray Beltran.
- Jesse Hart moved up from super middleweight to light heavyweight for a decision win over Sullivan Barrera, a longtime contender at 175 who appears as though he’s really never going to get over that hump. I mean, he’s 37, it hasn’t happened yet. Barrera still looked OK in spots, but Hart deserved the W, pretty clearly. This was a sloppy fight, entertaining at times, dirty at times.
- Mikaela Mayer got the prime prelim spot on ESPN2 and won pretty easily over Lizbeth Crespo. Also on the prelims, Albert Bell “upset” Andy Vences in a 130-pound fight, Isaac Lowe outboxed Duarn Vue, and heavyweights Guido Vianello and Peter Kadiru both won.
DAZN (Saturday, Riga, Latvia)
- In no doubt the weirdest fight of the weekend, Mairis Briedis stopped Krzysztof Glowacki in the third round of a chaotic mess. The fight was originally supposed to be for Glowacki’s WBO belt and the vacant WBC title. Then the WBC yanked their belt at the last minute. The fight itself was bananas. In the second round, Glowacki punched Briedis in the back of the head, and Briedis retaliated immediately by elbowing Glowacki in the chin. Then Briedis caught Glowacki and put him down, and then the bell sounded and referee Robert Byrd apparently didn’t hear it for the 10 seconds that it was ringing, loudly, and Glowacki got dropped again, and Byrd counted it. This led to a ton of confusion, but Byrd let the fight go on like he hadn’t completely screwed the whole thing up, and a still-hurt Glowacki was finished 27 seconds into the third. The Glowacki team probably have plenty of reasons to protest.
- In the other WBSS tournament semifinal, Yuniel Dorticos won the vacant IBF title by knocking Andrew Tabiti smooth out with a right hand in the 10th round. Briedis and Dorticos will meet at some point later this year, with the Ali Trophy and at least the WBO and IBF titles on the line — well, probably, I suppose something could happen with Briedis’ WBO belt if Glowacki protests.
ESPN+ (Saturday, Leeds, England)
- Josh Warrington retained his IBF featherweight title with an ugly split decision win over Kid Galahad. The clash of styles was awful, with Galahad clinching and muting Warrington’s offense. Meanwhile, Galahad didn’t do a lot himself and Warrington couldn’t really seem to figure out any other plan of attack. Really an awful fight. I had it even, but if Galahad had been docked a point, as he probably should have been, Warrington would’ve edged it for me.
- Zelfa Barrett and JJ Metcalf won Commonwealth titles at 130 and 154, respectively. Barrett won a wide decision over Lyon Woodstock, while Metcalf stopped Jason Welborn in eight.
ESPN+ (Saturday, Tweed Heads, Australia)
- Twins Jason and Andrew Moloney won handily on Saturday, with bantamweight Jason stopping Goodluck Mrema in the third round, and super flyweight Andrew stopping Selemani Bangaiza in two. Mrema and Bangaiza both came in from Tanzania and were both way out of their depth. Bangaiza just spit his mouthpiece out from a standing position and quit, but Mrema at least tried before he got knocked out. Reagan Dessaix and Mose Auimatagi Jr picked up stoppage wins on the card, too.
Thompson Boxing (Friday, Ontario, CA)
- It was another fun Thompson Boxing show on Friday from the Ontario Doubletree, with 5’10”, 21-year-old southpaw welterweight prospect Angel Ruiz smashing veteran Miguel Zamudio in 93 seconds, an impressive showing. Richard Brewart, Mario Hernandez, Oscar Torrez, and Tito Sanchez all won on the card.
Facebook (Thursday, Hollywood, CA)
- Junior flyweight contender Seniesa Estrada stopped Gretchen Abaniel after four rounds in a Golden Boy main event, and says she’s aiming for a world title shot next. On the undercard, Azat Hovhannisyan routed Glenn Porras and Carlos Caraballo stayed undefeated with a second round knockout of Esteban Aquino.
Odds & Ends
- Kiev, Ukraine: WBA flyweight titleholder Artem Dalakian retained his title with a 10th round stoppage of Dennapa Kiatniwat, aka Sarawut Thawornkham.
- Ekaterinburg, Russia: Congo cruiserweight contender Junior Makabu put Dmitry Kudryashov away in five in what was reportedly an action-packed fight, which is what was expected of these two. Cruiserweights Aleksei Egorov, Evgeny Tishchenko, and Yury Kashinsky also picked up wins, as did heavyweight Evgeny Romanov.
- Juarez, Mexico: Mariana “Barby” Juarez retained her WBC bantamweight title with a narrow win over Diana Laura Fernandez on scores of 96-95, 96-94, and 97-94.
- Buenos Aires, Argentina: Two women’s world titles were on the line, and neither changed hands. Yesica Yolanda Bopp retained the WBA 108-pound title with a decision win over Gabriela Sanchez Saavedra, while Jorgelina Guanini kept the IBF super flyweight title after a draw with Micaela Milagros Lujan.
- Caguas, Puerto Rico: Former flyweight title challenger McWilliams Arroyo got a decision win over former 105- and 108-pound title challenger Carlos Buitragon on scores of 95-93, 96-92, and 96-92.
- Cherbourg, France: Estelle Mossely, who had replaced Katie Taylor as the dominant lightweight in women’s amateur boxing in 2016, winning gold at the Worlds and the Olympics, went to 5-0 (1 KO) as a pro with a 10-round decision win over Lucy Wildheart. Mossely beat Taylor in the semifinals of the 2016 Worlds, so there’s a story with Taylor vs Mossely in the pros if it ever comes up.
- Schwerin, Germany: Tyron Zeuge, who got stopped in five by Rocky Fielding in July 2018, thus making Fielding a “world champion” and thus treating us all to Canelo-Rocky in December, knocked out Adan Silvera in the 10th round. Jack Culcay and Juergen Braehmer were also in action on the card. Culcay won an eight-round decision over Stefano Castellucci, and Braehmer knocked out Erdogan Kadrija in two.
- Shawinigan, Quebec, Canada: Heavyweight Simon Kean avenged his Oct. 2018 loss to Dillon Carman, stopping Carman in the third round of their rematch.
- Grumello del Monte, Italy: Longtime amateur standout and three-time Olympian Domenico Valentino won a decision over Ciprian Albert. Valentino is 8-0 (1 KO), but he’s also 35 and showing no great desire to do anything other than box in Italy.
- Worcester, MA: Jose Antonio Rivera made his pro debut in 1992, won a welterweight title in 2003, and on Friday night, at age 46, he fought for the 50th and final time, coming off the canvas to win an eight-round split decision over Travis Scott. Rivera retires with a career record of 43-6-1 (25 KO).