David Morrell, unofficial PBC artist-in-residence at The Armory in Minneapolis, delivered his third knockout in three appearances there with a dominating fourth round TKO against Alantez Fox.
Morrell (6-0, 5 KO) started out strong, unloading on Alantez Fox with both hands at the end of the first round.
Morrell only got better from there, landing power shots on Fox (28-3-1, 13 KO) consistently. As the fight went on, a suffering Fox tried to tie up more and more, with less and less success. Fox’s trouble escalated significantly in the fourth round, when he found himself on the receiving end of a Morrell left hand that left him hanging off the ropes by his neck.
Fox found his feet at the count of nine, but his legs were gone. Within a minute, his father was screaming “STOP! STOP!” from the corner to get the ref to end the fight.
Canelo Alvarez was mentioned as a possible future Morrell opponent at the start and end of the show, and many points in between. That seems like a tall order for a 23 year old with just six fights in his pro career. But, Morrell does hold the WBA “regular” belt at super middleweight, so he could theoretically push for mandatory status as part of the WBA’s belt consolidation plan. Worst case? Canelo vacates to chase unification at Bridgerweight, and Morrell steps up to “super” status.
Jose Valenzuela TKO-4 Austin Dulay
In the co-feature, Jose Valenzuela put on the sort of show that should make him mandatory future viewing for die-hard boxing fans. Valenzuela (11-0, 7 KO) scored three knockdowns in the first round, two of them putting Austin Dulay (14-3, 10 KO) on his stomach.
Dulay survived that three knockdown start and kept throwing bombs in return. But, he couldn’t hurt Valenzuela the way Valenzuela was hurting him, and took another knockdown in the second, with two other potential knockdowns in the second and third rounds being waved off as ruled slips or shoves.
Investing to the body heavily in RD1 is paying off as @rayoboxing puts together a beautiful combination to send Dulay to the canvas for the fourth time in 2 rounds. #ValenzuelaDulay #PBConFOX pic.twitter.com/mQy9E4qWr0— Premier Boxing Champions (@premierboxing) December 19, 2021
The referee paused the action right after the opening bell of round four, and a very quick visit with the ringside doctor led to a stoppage. Dulay was furious about it, but the fact is that he was taking an absolute beating that a less proud or durable fighter wouldn’t have kept getting up to endure.
The timing of the stoppage was debatable, but the reasons were not controversial, as Dulay had to be down 30-23, at best, on the cards. He wasn’t showing concussion symptoms, but referees and fight doctors get paid in part to protect men in his circumstances from their own pride in situations like this. Dulay is a fun fighter to watch, and obviously tough as hell. Nothing that happened tonight makes me any less excited to watch him in whatever fight he books next.
Alberto Puello UD-10 VeShawn Owens
In the opener, Alberto Puello notched a clear and unanimous decision win over VeShawn Owens. Owens started nicely, using aggression well in the first two rounds until an accidental headbutt from Puello (20-0, 10 KO) caused a cut to the right eye of Owens (13-3, 12 KO) midway through round two.
Puello stepped things up from there, landing crisp jabs and power shots consistently and winning every round from the third through the end. Owens continued to charge ahead like a bull, but Puello managed sharply, countering and landing the smarter, more damaging punches.
Final scorecards were 98-92, 100-90, 99-91 in favor of Puello, with BLH scoring the fight 98-92 the same way.