With the snooze-fest that was Klitschko vs. Povetkin still fresh in many fans’ minds it’s easy to understand why fan’s haven’t exactly been clamoring for another heavyweight bout. In the November 2nd HBO World Championship Boxing broadcast, fans were treating to a ten-round heavyweight tilt that was not only memorable for all the right reasons, but exciting. Featuring a pair of undefeated fighters, Mike Perez (20-0, 12 knockouts) took on Magomed Abdusalamov (18-1, 18 knockouts) in a 10-round bout for the WBC United States Heavyweight title.
From the get-go it was clear that both fighters were looking to make the most of their HBO debuts. As the opening bell rang, both fighters came forward and immediately began exchanging heavy, wild blows that saw few of the many punches actually land. As the two fighters continued going blow-for-blow, it was clear that Perez was getting the best of these early exchanges as Abdusalamov seemed rocked at times during the opening round. Pereze continued to diversify his attack and attacked the body of the European before badly hurting him again with a left hook.
Abdusalamov would often try to close a round with his own flurry offense, but it would tend to be too little too late as it was hard to ignore all the previous work Perez had done. After a couple of rounds it appeared that Perez was finally beginning to tire after such a wild opening. This led to a brief swing in momentum that saw Abdusalamov beginning to mount a strong offense based on the fact that his shots were much more poweful than Perez’. With Perez right eye already beginning to show damage it seemed that Abdusalamov was beginning to seize the reigns on the bout.
Things took another turn in round five after Perez began setting up his power shots and landing them with some consistency. Abdusalamov did his best to avoid Perez’ flurries, his badly swelling cheek/jaw suggested that he wasn’t doing very well in his tactic. With Perez now targeting the badly damaged left-side of Abdusalamov’s face, it was obvious that the gameplan in the European’s corner centered more on scoring a knockout rather than trying to survive.
As the later rounds approached, Abdusalamov did his best to turn his bout with Perez into a brawl. Still, Perez managed to keep his composure and remained patient in his attack of the bigger Abdusalamov. With a chopping body attack, looping punches, and better movement it was obvious to even Perez that although the fight was close, the decision was his.
After ten rounds of back-and-forth action, Mike Perez was awarded the Unanimous Decision victory on scores of (97-92), (95-94), (97-92). It’s clear that neither is any type of world-beater in the division, but if there is one thing that these two proved it is the fact that they are more than capable of making exciting match-ups in an otherwise stale division.