This past weekend in boxing was one to be remembered. It is always news in the sport when a world title changes hands let alone three of them in the same fight. In an upset, unbeaten Brit heavyweight Tyson Fury did a bit more than long-reigning WBO, WBA and IBF champion Wladimir “Dr. Steelhammer” Klitschko to take a unanimous decision in Dusseldorf, Germany, to end the big man’s eleven year perfect run. The bout was broadcast live in the United States on HBO.
The anticipation for this fight brewed for a couple of months. Fury, who was reported three inches taller than Klitschko, actually weighed in a pound more on the official scale a day before the fight. With his weight and height advantage, it was believed it was the first time Klitschko was actually going to be the smaller man in the ring in his career. It turned out to be true. On actual fight night Fury looked and acted like the bigger man. He controlled what little action there was from the outside as he maintained Klitschko at bay with a jab. Fury, awkward and off-balanced for most of the fight, switched from right to left stances and back again while keeping his hands low. Klitschko wasn’t able to take advantage of it as he was kept to just a little bit more than two hundred punches thrown for the whole fight and averaging only four punches landed per round. Fury didn’t throw all that much more, 140 more, but it was enough to take the unanimous decision and the glory.
Surprisingly, that wasn’t the only upset of the weekend.
Earlier on Saturday and farther east, Mexican Pedro Guevara dropped a controversial split decision to Yu Kimura as well as his WBC light heavyweight title in Tokyo, Japan. As expected Guevara was the aggressor for most of the fight and despite Kimura wasn’t as technically sound as Guevara, the man from the rising sun did have his moments where he scored the better punches especially in the middle rounds. Guevara seemed to think he was winning the whole bout because he never really pressed on the action. That cost him. At the end, one judge saw it for Guevara with a wide score of 117-111 while two judges saw it for the Japanese for 115-113.
From Quebec, Canada, and on the undercard of James DeGale’s defense of his IBF super middleweight title against former champion Lucian Bute, unheralded Adrian Granados ruined every plan legendary Don King might have had for the twilight of his career as he stopped Amir Imam in eighth of a scheduled super lightweight ten rounder. The twenty-five year old Imam was the last shining bright star in a dark Don King stable. Imam was considered one of the top up and coming prospects to watch and was expected to make the jump to contender by early next year. Granados put an end to that with a masterful performance of controlled pressure. Granados was dropped in the first round but was able to recoup himself and give Imam the longest night of his young career.
Guess King will have to wait a bit more to have his last world champion.