This past Friday night at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, world ranked lightweight Denis “Genghis Khan” Shafikov, (36-2-1, 19KO’s) and undefeated cruiserweight contender Murat “Iron” Gassiev, (22-0-0, 16KO’s) were featured in separate fights telecast on Spike TV.
Both fights ended in less than satisfactory matters with Shafikov and Gassiev coming up short despite putting on dominating performances.
“Denis and Murat both deserved much better than the scoring and poor referee’s judgment,” said Leo Khorolinsky of Ural Boxing Promotions, manager of both fighters.
“Denis fought brilliantly against Rances Barthelemy, (24-0-0, 13KO’s), for the vacant IBF Lightweight World Championship, for almost the entire fight he drilled him with perfect combinations while the opponent looked confused.”
“Despite being badly cut in the 8th round, Denis still pressed the action until the end. Barthelemy knew he was in trouble in the second half and resorted to multiple low blows which the referee did nothing about.”
At the end of the twelve rounds, Barthelemy was declared the unanimous decision victor by scores of 116-112 twice and an appalling 119-109.
Continued Khorolinsky, “For a judge to be so completely wrong and only give Denis one round tells me he’s not qualified to assess scores on a world championship level. The other two were also off in only giving Denis four rounds as he clearly and effectively pressed the action and won the fight.”
Featured in the co-main event in an IBF Cruiserweight Title Eliminator, Gassiev faced the also undefeated Isiah Thomas, 15-0-0 (6KO’s) of Detroit.
Stalking Thomas from the opening bell, Gassiev controlled the action as he cut off the ring and displayed his full arsenal of heavy-handed power shots.
At the end of the third round, Gassiev drilled Thomas with a massive overhand right to the head followed by a second similar punch that landed just after the sound of the bell ending the round.
Thomas returned to his corner claiming that he could not continue and referee Jay Nady sighting his “diminished capacity” stopped the bout and declared it a no-contest as the fight did not reach four rounds.
“Thomas was looking for a way out, he knew Gassiev’s power was too much and that he was going to get badly hurt,” said Khorolinsky. “If there is a rematch Murat will waste no time in attacking him and going for a true stoppage.”
“I have full faith in Denis and Murat becoming world champions, after the holidays they will both return to Big Bear Lake, California to commence training camps with Abel Sanchez. We’ll get both of them in the biggest fights possible in 2016.”