By Tom Donelson / Member Boxing Writers Association of America (BWAA)
Adrien Broner faced Shawn Porter in a battle of former world champions and this was declared the battle of Ohio as both fighters were from the Buckeye State. Broner only loss before this fight was in the Welterweight division against the hard punching Marcos Maidana and Broner lost to another hard punching Welterweight. While the fight was fought at a 144 pound catch weight, it was obvious that Porter swarming unorthodox style troubled Broner.
Broner spent most of the first eleven rounds countering and holding Porter while Porter simply kept pressing the action. Porter connected on nearly double of the punches and Broner forced to hold the onrushing Porter. Broner tried to force the fight in the middle but Porter pressure force Broner to the rope or to grab Porter to reduce his combinations. Broner even lost a point for holding and it could be argued that he could have been deducted even more. Broner nearly proved that in boxing, a fighter can win a fight that he is losing on the scorecards with one punch when he nailed Porter with a left hook and sent him down He failed to follow up as Porter regained his legs to remain standing and win a decision.
Porter won a unanimous decision and this put him in place for Welterweight title while Broner has some serious question on whether he should stay at 140 pounds. In two matches at welterweight, Broner has fallen short to swarming attackers like Porter and Maidana. Broner never could get untracked against Porter and it was not until the twelve round before Broner nailed Porter with a solid left hook. Broner is a talented fighter but he may not be a Welterweight. I had the fight 116-110.
Eric Spence dispatched Phil Lo Greco in three rounds as he remained undefeated in the Welterweight division. Lo Greco was a late replacement but he was supposed to give the undefeated Spence trouble but Spence nailed Lo Greco with vicious body shots and sent Lo Greco down in the third with a right hook before ending the fight with combinations leaving Lo Greco helpless and unable to strike back. The referee stopped the fight.
Andre Ward came back from nineteen months out of the ring due to promotional and legal problems and routed Paul Smith in a battle of Super Middleweights in a catch weight at 172, leaving questions is Ward ready to move up to light heavyweight division? He has beaten most of the better fighters in the Super Middleweight division and his option for a bigger money is fight with Middleweight champion Triple G’s Gennady Golovkin or light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev.
Big punching David Lemieux won a unanimous decision against Hassan N’ Dam. He knocked down Hassan N’ Dam twice in the second, once in the fifth and seventh round. Lemieux slowed down over the last four rounds but D’ Ham did not exert enough pressure to take advantage and now Lemieux owns a portion of the Middleweight, the IBF version.
Rances Barthelemy won an easy unanimous decision over Antonio DeMarco in his 140 pound debut. He knocked DeMarco in the fourth round and never allowed DeMarco to pressure him or could DeMarco land any punches of significant.
Barthelemy left his IBF super featherweight title and now he is looking to join a crowded junior welterweight division that includes Terrace Crawford, Lucas Matthysse, Ruslan Provodnikov, and Jessie Vargas.
This weekend, Porter continued his search for a big fight and title shot at the welterweight division while Broner is left asking what to do next, Ward is back fighting and David Lemieux now has a piece of the middleweight title and he might even have a shot at Golovkin.