Saturday, December 18, 2021

Boxing Challenge: Beterbiev rolls over Browne

    Artur Beterbiev survived a vicious cut to his forehead from a fourth-round double headbutt and stalked Marcus Browne like a hunter stalking a fleet antelope in finishing the former Olympian in the ninth round and kept his WBC and IBF light heavyweight titles in Montreal, Canada.

Browne had won the first two rounds easily on my card and the third as well, although the third was close before the clash of heads that left Beterbiev with the worse of the cuts although Browne retreated with a cut alongside his right eye for the remainder of the fight.

One could instantly see Beterbiev processing the situation as the blood spurted from his gash and the fight could go to the scorecards once the fourth round (the one that the fight was currently in) and almost certainly would go to Browne at that point, costing Beterbiev his titles.

Beterbiev then immediately shifted into tank mode to finish the round but still at best if the fight was stopped then and there, Beterbiev would have a draw (and he trailed on the cards and would have lost under those conditions).

Before the fifth, the doctor entered the ring, checked both fighters, and told them one more round would be all that given.

That didn't turn out to be the case as Beterbiev was winning each round so decisively that stopping the fight would have been ridiculous and when Beterbiev sent Browne to his knees in the seventh after a left to the body followed by a right hand, the fight was essentially over as Browne's early scorecard edge was now erased.
Beterbiev continued to punish Browne in the eighth and finished in the ninth as he alternated between headshots and punishing the body before a left uppercut sent Browne to his knees where he took the ten count.
Beterbiev led 77-74 on my card after eight rounds.

For Beterbiev, I don't see anyone stopping him in the near future.
Canelo Alvarez does have the boxing skills to perhaps bother Beterbiev but can he handle what could be a more relentless bigger punching Gennady Golovkin for twelve rounds?

WBA champion Dmitry Bivol also has the boxing skills but in recent fights has seemed reluctant to engage against second-tier fighters, let alone a Beterbiev.
Will twelve rounds of running be rewarded on the scorecards?

WBO champion Joe Smith might make a fun fight between two huge punchers but unless Smith lands the home run bomb first, I don't think he stands up against this attack.

Gilberto Ramirez and Callum Smith are rangy fighters but naturally smaller in weight (remember Beterbiev was a heavyweight in the amateurs, losing a close decision in Olympic action to Oleksandr Usyk) and I am dubious that either can hold Beterbiev off any better than Browne did.

Beterbiev is the best light heavyweight in the world without a doubt and I'm hoping that he can be more active in 2022.

In Uzbekistan, another wacky boxing incident occurred as Ismail Madrimov stopped Michel Soro in the ninth round to win his WBA junior middleweight eliminator and would become the mandatory challenger in the organization- BUT maybe not.

Madrimov had Soro badly hurt near the end of the round but the bell rang.

Referee Salvador Rodriguez stood there like a bump on a log as my aunt used to say and watched Madrimov land between seven and ten shots on a stunned Soro before jumping in and awarding the fight to Madrimov!

Chaos ensued for ten minutes while the issue was decided for Madrimov by stoppage but I'd be surprised if this stands and will likely be changed to a no-contest, and if it does stand as a win, I think the WBA will order a rematch between the two before a title shot against the Charlo-Castano winner.

I would have had Madrimov ahead by one point had the ninth round been scored and Madrimov was beginning to take command but still fair is fair and this should be ruled a no-contest. 

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