Our resident boxing writer Diego Morilla serves up a full weekend wrap-up of the most relevant boxing events in the worldwide scene. Every fight that matters is right here, in one place, and at one click away. Follow Morilla on Twitter at @MorillaBoxing
Quebec, Canada, Nov. 30
Adonis Stevenson TKO 6 Tony Bellew, WBC light heavyweight title
The promise of an emotional brawl was brushed aside in this one, with Stevenson (22-1, 19 KO) scoring a crushing stoppage against a tough mandatory challenger in England’s Bellew (20-1-1, 12 KO). The fight generated lots of expectations after a heated weigh-in on Friday in which both fighters jumped on each other following a furious stare-down. It was an entertaining and competitive affair through the fifth round, but as soon as Stevenson began to mount some pressure, Bellew simply surrendered to the power of his mighty left hand. One visit to the canvas and the ensuing pummeling on a corner prompted the third man in the ring to call a halt to the action at the 1:50 mark. Just another brutal performance by a true KO artist in search of bigger challenges.
The winner goes on to: if HBO gets its way, a fight with undercard winner Sergey Kovalev.
Sergey Kovalev KO 2 Ismayl Sillakh, WBO light heavyweight title
Forget about the title being disputed in this fight: the true prize was becoming a finalist for the title of undisputed 175 lb champion, and Russia’s Kovalev (23-0-1, 21 KO) got his wish in devastating fashion. He simply annihilated Sillakh (21-2 17KO) with frightening ease. A left hook bloodied Sillakh’s nose and sent him down on his rear seconds after the bell rang to start the second round, and the ensuing attack drove the Ukranian-born challenger through the ropes and onto the ring apron, where the referee stopped the contest at the 52 second mark without even bothering to start a count. Massive victory against a credible opponent for Kovalev, who establishes himself as the man to beat in the division for anyone wishing to claim an undisputed championship.
The winner goes on to: if HBO gets its way, a fight with main event winner Adonis Stevenson for all the marbles in the light-heavyweight division.
Ionut Dan MD 12 Kevin Bizier, IBF welterweight eliminator
A mild upset took place in this grudge match between two local fighters, as highly-regarded prospect Kevin Bizier got the first blemish in his record by dropping a majority decision against tough veteran Dan (32-2, 17 KO), a Romanian native living in Canada. One judge had it 117-110 for Bizier, but the two more appropriate cards of 116-111 and 114-113 for Dan ended up tilting the scale on his favor. Bizier (21-1, 14 KO) had already lined up a few future opponents, but he heads back to fringe contender territory after coming short on what was supposed to be a chance to display his talents. After dropping two debatable losses against 2004 Olympian Selcuk Aydin in the latter’s native country of Turkey, Dan has now vindicated himself, and it shouldn’t take long for him to secure another title shot, perhaps in front of his local fans for an extra measure of protection.
The winner goes on to: regaining some of the respect he should have never lost in his failed title shots to become a fighter to watch at 147.
David Lemieux TKO 7 Jose Miguel Torres, middleweights
Once considered a future star, Lemieux (31-2, 29 KO) dropped a couple of fights in 2011 to lose some luster, but he regained confidence with a string of inspired victories that hit an exclamation point with this unilateral drubbing of a heavy-handed Colombian fringe contender in Torres (27-6, 24 KO), after scoring a whooping seven knock-downs in a very entertaining fight. The last KD was a thing of beauty, as Lemieux reached Torres with a long, looping right hand that sent Torres down on the seat of his pants. A terrific win by a fighter who could become a factor at 160 if he finds the right matchups to continue growing into championship territory.
The winner goes on to: repositioning himself in the big picture at 160, where his KO power and his large following should secure him a few lucrative bouts.
Chester, West Virginia, Nov. 30
Johan Perez MD 12 Paul Spadafora, junior welterweights
Sometimes, trying to keep an undefeated record just for undefeatedness sake (yep, an XN exclusive neologism) is not the best idea, and Spadafora (48-1-1, 19 KOs) found out the hard way by dropping a spirited majority decision at the hands of Johan Perez (18-1-1, 12 KOs) with another one of the WBA’s pointless interim titles on the line. Spadafora was hoping to parlay his status as unbeaten former champ into a big payday, and he just needed a random piece of hardware to back up his claims. It would appear that he won’t get either one of those things, as Perez cruised in the second half to pull the mild upset by scores of 115-113 for Spadafora and 114-114, 117-111 for Perez. Spadafora, who always made a big deal about being one of boxing’s few unbeaten champs, is now facing an unexpected return to the drawing board, which at 38 years of age is never a good plan.
The winner goes on to: cashing in on his victory with a few lucrative bouts, and little more.
Carolina, Puerto Rico, Nov. 30
Thomas Dulorme UD 10 Hector Velazquez, welterweights
Orlando del Valle TKO 4 Jose Beltran, super bantamweights
Once regarded as shoo-ins for Puerto Rico’s rich list of world champions, Dulorme and Del Valle are now in an unexpectedly early comeback trail after being upset in their first attempts to improve their level of opposition. Dulorme (20-1, 14 KO) grabbed a ten round decision over Velazquez (54-20-3, 37 KO) in a good display of those great boxing skills that dazzled fans and press alike before his unexpected setback against Luis Abregu in 2012, having compiled a 4-0 record ever since. And in the co-main event, Del Valle (18-1, 13 KO) looked very solid in a fourth round TKO over Beltran (21-30-2, 12 KO). Not quite the best possible test for either of them, but two important victories nonetheless for two talented young guns looking to rebuild their careers in a country in dire need of a new generation of champions.
The winners go on to: getting a tougher test in their next assignment, and hopefully some exposure in a televised card soon.