The Barclays Center was the center of the boxing universe this past Saturday night as two of the alphabet soup Heavyweight titles were on the line a-top a full nine bout boxing card promoted by Lou DiBella and Dibella Entertainment. Showtime broadcast the main fights as Charles Martin faced Vyasheslav Glazkov for the vacant IBF belt and WBC Champion Deontay Wilder made his third title defense against Artur Szpilka of Poland.
Glazkov and Martin fought first, and though Glazkov remained clear and focused, the size difference between the two was noticeable, with the Russian being the smaller man.
Both men entered the fight having come from different paths. Galazkov is undefeated as a professional at 21-0-1, and he was a decorated amateur who was in the title picture with the WBC as a potential opponent for Wilder in the main event. His manager Kathy Duva elected to turn down the Wilder fight to pursue the vacant IBF belt. Martin is also undefeated at 22-0-1 and he fought as an amateur as well, but his story is that of a street kid who is trying to make it big.
The first round saw the fighters engage in a feeling out process as Glazkov entered cautious against the larger southpaw Martin. Slowly the pace picked up, and things were tense by round three when Glazkov went down due to a slip. Martin landed a punch that sent Glazkov to the canvas shortly afterward, and though Glazkov got up and was clear-eyed he stated he could not continue as it appeared he hurt his ankle. The ringside doctors examining Glazkov stated it was a potential "torn ACL". Charles Martin now holds the IBF World Heavyweight title with a third round TKO/RTD of Vyacheslav Glazkov.
The Barclays Center was electric for the main event as a reported crowd of 12,668 were in attendance making it the second higherst boxing attendance at the Barclays Center.
Szpilka entered the ring first to wild support from a large Polish contigent in the audience. The reception for Wilder, who came out with his customary gold mask, was more mixed, but the champion was calm as he entered the ring at a measured pace.
The first round saw some wild swinging but no real definitive shots were landed as both men tried to establish themselves. The crowd was singing in between rounds in what was a great atmosphere.The next three rounds saw the men start to close the distance, and Szpilka succeeded in keeping Wilder's punch count low while landing more power punches himself. By the end of the fourth round however, Wilder landed the best series of punches of the fight. Szpilka had a more active fifth but Wilder landed the best punch of the round at the end when he scored with a right uppercut. Through five rounds, it appears to be a difficult fight to score.
The sixth round was hotly contested, as Wilder landed a big shot at Szpilka when he got sloppy throwing an uppercut. By the end of the round, Szpilka had started flashing an additional hook at the end of his combinations that seemed to work. The crowded was chanting Szpilka's name during the last minute of the round.
Szpilka followed with a strong seventh round. The eighth round was sloppier, with Wilder falling forward to his kneed as he lunged throwing big punches that caught air. Szpilka was finally begining to show some wear and tear, bleeding from the nose and breathing from the mouth.
The ninth round saw Wilder get backed up, until he landed a crunching blow to Szpilka who was knocked out cold. The doctors attended to Szpilka in the ring while the emotional crowd took it all in. In the end, Deontay Wilder is still the WBC World Heavyweight Champion with a KO at the mark of round nine.
The bout for the vacant WBO Womens Featherweight title between Amanda Serrano and Erika Kalderas was cancelled when Kalderas failed to board her plane from her native Hungary.
Heavyweights Tyson Fury, Alexander Povetkin, Lennox Lewis and Mike Tyson were all in attendance in what was a celebrity filled crowd. Overall, a fan pleasing night of boxing that saw five of the seven bouts on the preliminary card end before the scheduled limit. The complete results from the undercard appear below.
January 16th, 2016 – Barlcays Center
Brooklyn, New York
Heavyweight 12 Rounds: Deontay Wilder defeated Artur Szpilka by KO in RD 9 @2:24.
Heavyweight 12 Rounds: Charles Martin defeated Vyasheslav Glazkov by RTD in RD 3@1:50.
Middleweight 10 Rounds: Maciej Sulecki (1-0) defeated Derrick Findley via TKO in RD 7 @1:29.
Heavyweight 8 Rounds: Adam Kownacki defeated Danny Kelly via UD.
Light Heavyweight 8 Rounds: Mike Lee defeated Joe Gardner via TKO in RD 3 @:43.
Welterweight 8 Rounds: Ivan Golub defeated Juan Rodriguez via TKO in RD 1 @2:41
Light Heavyweight 6 Rounds: Carlos Gongora defeated Derrick Adkins via KO in RD 4 @ 1:58.
Middleweight 4 Rounds: Botirsher Obidoy defeated Ramil Gadzhiev via UD.
Welterweight 4 Rounds: Julian Sosa defeated Bryan Timmons via TKO in RD 2 @1:48
Who will win the Sergey Kovalev vs Andre Ward fight?