When he slipped between the ropes in Canada last weekend, Adonis Stevenson only had one loss on his record.
After going undefeated for the better part of a decade Stevenson fought Badou Jack, last May…and barely escaped a second loss.
One judge saw it in favor of Jack and the other two scored it 114-114, for a majority decision draw.
Coming off that “close-call” Stevenson put his WBC World Light Heavyweight title on the line for the tenth time, and faced undefeated Oleksandr Gvozdyk.
Gvozdyk’s last fight was on St. Patrick’s Day.
Now a lot of us fought on Saint Paddy’s but Gvozdyk got paid for the fisticuffs, it was sanctioned, and it wasn’t fueled by Bushmills or Jameson.
Gvozdyk took on Mehdi Amar in an entertaining but lopsided match and won by unanimous decision.
Although southpaw Stevenson sported a slight reach advantage, Gvozdyk is four inches taller and 10 years younger, which made a difference.
Gvozdyk has a bad habit of camping out directly in front of his opponent. Stevenson faux pas include dropping his guard (lead right) and attempting to throw bout-ending bombs.
All those faults were evident in the first two frames while they got their range.
At the top of the 3rd, Stevenson overextended on one of those bombs. Gvozdyk countered with a straight right that found face and Stevenson hit the seat of his satins. The referee mistakenly ruled it a slip.
Gvozdyk dominated most rounds but the fight remained close until midway into Round 11.
Stevenson’s lead arm was dangling by his side. Gvozdyk stepped in with a 1-2 combination and landed a solid right.
Stevenson was in trouble but continued to fight. Gvozdyk pressed the action.
With 20 seconds left Gvozdyk unloaded a right to the face and Stevenson was out on his feet. He staggered to a corner where a final flurry sent him south.
The referee waved it off without a count.
Oleksandr Gvozdyk (16-0, 13 KO’s) remains undefeated and becomes the new WBC champion.
Fists were flying at the Staples Center, too.
In the eighth defense of his WBC world Heavyweight title, Deontay Wilder (40-0-1, 39 KO’s) mixed it up with Tyson Fury (27-0-1, 19 KO’s) in a fight that came off much better than expected, and serves as the reason for a rematch.
Neither of these two bruisers is a good boxer…but they’re both good fighters.
In a bout that went the distance, Fury controlled more rounds but Wilder knocked him down, twice.
The first one didn’t matter much. Fury was ducking low when Wilder hit him in the back of the head (not on purpose) and as Fury twisted away from another punch, he toppled over.
However, in Round 12 Wilder dropped Fury with hooks to the head from both hands.
Fury went down hard but managed to beat the count. He came back strong, landing a thunderous right that dazed Wilder.
The scorecards reflected the action: Judge 1 had it 115-111 for Wilder, Judge 2 gave it to Fury 112-113, and Judge 3 scored it 113-113 to make it a split decision draw.
The accuracy of the scores was confirmed when the decision was announced…because both fighters looked relieved.
The Los Angeles Rams clinched their division on Sunday defeating the Detroit Lions, 30-16.
The Rams started slow, punting out of their first possession and settling for a field goal for the only points of the first quarter.
Quarterback Jared Goff moved the team 71-yards for a touchdown on a pass to wide receiver Robert Woods in the 2nd Q.
Goff (207-yards) was good on 17 of 33 for the TD and an interception.
Running back Todd Gurley (132-yards) carried the ball in twice and Kicker Greg “The Leg” Zuerlein put up three field goals.
Defensive Tackle Aaron Donald distinguished himself with 2-sacks and a forced fumble.
The Rams play the Bears in Chicago on Sunday evening.
God Bless and enjoy the game.
Mark Felicetti would like to hear from you. Reach him at email@example.com.