In an exciting fight to start the HBO televised card, heavyweight prospect and former college football player, Seth Mitchell was stopped in the second round by Emanuel Steward’s protégé, Jonathon Banks, after being knocked down three times.
It has been quite the week for Banks, who resumed training duties over Wladimir Klitschko when Steward, who recently passed away, became ill. Klitschko defended his heavyweight championship a week ago against Mariusz Wach in Germany. Banks was then on hand in Detroit, Michigan on Tuesday to honor Steward at a memorial service held in his honor, and then it was on to Atlantic City, New Jersey for fight week.
Going into a fight where he was widely touted as the underdog with very few members of the boxing community picking him to win, he came into the ring with a goal in sight. Dedicating the fight to the memory of his departed mentor, Banks the trainer seemed to pick apart the mistakes that Mitchell made, and Banks the fighter was ever so skillful in taking advantage of them.
The first round was a feeling out round with Mitchell dominating the CompuBox statistics. The second round was nothing of the sort. Banks came out of the corner at the sound of the bell and held nothing back, reining down some huge shots on Mitchell. He appeared to easily hurt Mitchell early in the round, putting him down twice before the referee called a halt to the bout at 2:37 of the second round.
Some will say that this fight is proof that Mitchell, the late bloomer, who started his career at age twenty-five, does not have what it takes to make it in the heavyweight division. Others will say that it was simply the case of the veteran taking advantage of the new kid’s mistakes. I think we can all agree that Emanuel Steward would say thank you to his protégé for making him proud.