GOOD – Let’s start with Sergey ‘Krusher’ Kovalev showing that he can be disciplined enough to work to a specific game plan. There were times against Eleider Alvarez on Saturday night where I got the feeling in the pit of my stomach that he may resort to type like he did against Ward and Alvarez previously whereas a glance for the exit signs would be prominent in his thinking but on this occasion, I may have just have been suffering from indigestion.
After twelve rounds I was left pleasantly surprised to see him revert back to what had previously been an underused jab in order to dictate the pace and distance, looking like a fighter reborn under the guidance of Buddy McGirt.
Now I’m not saying that he is ready to return to his era of dominance but would readily admit that it was pleasing to see from a fighter who adds a great deal to an already stacked division.
Teofimo Lopez’ star continues to shine brightly, more so than any prospect in the world today, so much so that after Saturdays fight some were left to talk up the possibility of him facing Vasyl Lomachenko, although I feel that would be jumping the gun a bit prematurely at this juncture.
It does however remain impossible not to get carried away when mentioning the New Yorker, Just twelve fights into a professional career which yields boundless possibilities, He was on this occasion matched with Diego Magdaleno who came into the contest a veteran of 33 contests, losing just one in that time to former world champion Terry Flanagan.
Well, to say he was comprehensively beaten would be an understatement, Lopez was aggressive, forceful and spiteful as he put away the Las Vegas fighter in the seventh round.
On reflection maybe it wasn’t such a good idea to taunt him at the weigh-in after all Diego.
Richard Commey is a fighter who I have never heard anyone in the boxing community say a bad word regarding, so it was with a smile on my face to see him finally get his hands on the IBF world title after first he put hands on Russian Isa Chaniev, following quite a remarkable stoppage win.
Commey got his second bite of the cherry following his unsuccessful attempt first time around in his split decision loss to Robert Easter Jr.
But on this occasion he was not to be denied, taking another controversial decision away from the judges at ringside, the Ghanian made quick work of the rugged Chaniev who himself was on a three-fight winning streak in beating the likes of Ismael Barroso, Juan Martin Elorde and Jean Pierre Bauwens.
Well done Richard from us all at TopClassBoxing, as well I’m sure from most of the boxing community.
Last but certainly not least, WBO featherweight champ Oscar Valdez showed improvements in a defence that it wouldnt be unkind to state was otherwise lacking beforehand, performing the teaching of his new trainer Eddy Reynoso to great effect.
It’s no secret that Valdez is very good on the offensive which was again showcased, landing thudding shots, one after another that dropped Carmine Tommasone twice in the fourth before sealing the deal with a big right uppercut in the seventh, as we look forward to more action-packed contests in the year to follow.
BAD – Unfortunately It wasn’t all good news for Richard Commey who may have found himself out of contention for a lucrative matchup with Vasyl Lomachenko, admitting to reporters following his title win that he had injured his right hand.
“When I hit him I felt my right hand moved. I’m going to have to look at it,”
Commey added that his hand wasn’t swollen, but that he “felt something pop”.
Trainer Ismael Salas and referee Gregorio Alvarez both find themselves in the bad section for the woeful job they did of not protecting the health of a fighter.
Diego Magdaleno was given a severe beatdown from Teofimo Lopez on Saturday night all whilst Salas looked on from the corner with no intention on calling a halt to proceedings, even in the knowledge that one of those shots could have been the fighters last.
Bad corner work is one thing because as we know fighters will plead their case at the end of each round to sway their decision to allow them to continue but referee as no excuse.
The job requires him to make sure a fighters health is paramount, but he was prepared to allow the one-sided nature of the contest continue, knowing that there was no chance of Diego turning the contest in his favour. He was also found wanting in not getting close enough to the fighters in exchanges, too far away to ever really see the damaging shots Magdaleno was taking.
This, in my opinion, is unforgivable – sure the fighter wouldn’t thank either at the time a contest is stopped but its always safer to stop a fight a punch too early than a punch too late. The fighter will one day thank them for it when he is able to hang up the gloves with his faculties intact.
UGLY – N/A – There is nothing to report here with the action being either good or bad but nothing to warrant putting in this section of the article.
This wraps up this weeks review, let me know which additions I may have left out by tweeting me @TOPCLASSBOXING or commenting below.