Super middleweight David Morrell of Cuba (10-0, 9 KOs) will be part of boxing history forever as the winner of the final bout on Showtime Boxing. Morrell concluded the 37-year legacy of the network’s boxing coverage with a sensational second-round TKO win over Sena Agbeko, a Ghana native fighting out of Nashville (28-3, 22 KOs).
Referee Mark Nelson told both men before the significant and final opening bell, “This is the end of Showtime Boxing. Please end it with class.”
Morrell set out to impress the record crowd of 5,437 at The Armory in Minneapolis, his adopted hometown, and he succeeded. Morrell defies all stereotypes of fighters trained in the Cuban amateur school with his offensive skills.
After an energetic first round, Morrell pinned Agbeko against the corner ropes and let his hands go. A straight left followed by a hard right hook to the temple did the damage. Morrell kept throwing shots until Agbeko was ruled down by referee Mark Nelson and counted out for the first time in his career at 1:43 of the round. Morrell retains his WBA Super Middleweight world title.
“Now, I feel happy. Everybody gets a good knockout, a a good show for the last time.,” said Morrell.
Morrell said the fight shows who he is and that he’s ready to take on the top names. But in truth, only one is on his mind. “Next year, I’m focused on David Benavidez. One hundred percent … This is my time and my year. I’m ready for a good 2024.”
Rayo Valenzuela Gets Revenge Over Chris Colbert
Jose “Rayo” Valenzuela vowed he would get his revenge in his rematch with Chris Colbert after losing a close decision on the scorecards in March. Colbert granted Valenzuela the rematch, and he may now regret it.
Valenzuela drilled Colbert for six hard rounds, scoring a first-round knockdown on the way to a sixth-round knockout win in the WBA Lightweight title elimination fight.
Colbert of Brooklyn (17-2, 6 KOs) was outgunned by the renewed punching power and work rate of Valenzuela of Renton, Washington (13-2, 9 KOs). Extra fuel came from Valenzuela’s need to punish Colbert for winning over the judges. The knockout punch was a vicious right hook, leaving Colbert face down on the canvas. It was several moments before Colbert was sitting up and speaking with the ringside physician.
Valenzuela made it clear he had thought of nothing else for nine months but the victory. He thanked Colbert for the opportunity to make things right.
“As soon as I went back home, I went straight to work. I want to thank Chris. It takes two to tango.
“I gotta tip my hat to him, he brought out the best in me. He made me adjust, go back to work, and look for the openings … I was just teeing off on him, throwing my combinations to the body and the head.”
Valenzuela said he trained to go 12 full rounds, but there was no need.
“Everything happens for a reason. I beat him twice now. This was a title eliminator. I want to fight for the title. Tank Davis, let’s put on a show,” said the re-energized Valenzuela.
Colbert said after the fight he’d like a trilogy fight, saying the two were one and one. Valenzuela wasn’t keen on it, saying the fans didn’t want to see it.
Robert Guerrero Makes It Two Over Andre Berto
In a fitting flashback from Showtime Boxing’s past, veteran welterweights Robert Guerrero and Andre Berto staged a rematch of their original 2012 fight, which Guerrero won by unanimous decision with three scores of 116-110. Eleven years later, it was déjà vu as Guerrero of Las Vegas (38-6-1, 20 KOs) took the rematch over Berto of Winter Haven, Florida (32-6, 24 KOs) by scores of 98-93 twice, and 99-91.
Guerrero said, “I felt great in the ring. I said in the fighter meeting I was going to box a little more. Berto’s a tough character. I’m pumped, I’m excited, let’s see what’s next!” Guerrero said he needed to fight smarter this time than in the first bout. “Last time, I had a chip on my shoulder. This time, I used my boxing skills. That’s why I did today.”
Guerrero was the busier man, engaging Berto and landing solid counterpunches. In the fifth round, Guerrero appeared to Berto with a check hook, but referee Robert Hoyle ruled it a slip. Later in the round, Guerrero caught Berto with a body shot and a left hook to the head, rattling him.
Berto battled back as best he could in the following rounds, succeeding with uppercuts and trading shots with Guerrero. But Guerrero had more gas in the tank and more speed and gained the upper hand. But neither man embarrassed themselves as other veterans have in exhibition fights far past their prime. The two stepped on the gas and gave the fans 10 seconds of wild shots before the final bell, enjoying their return to the ring.
Guerrero seemed ready to resume his boxing career. “I want to see how far I can go. Maybe I can get back in a title fight!” laughed The Ghost. It’s hard to tell if he was serious.
Undercard Results: Puello, Davis, King Win
In a contest between unbeaten super lightweights, Alberto Puello of the Dominican Republic (22-0, 10 KOs) had little trouble with Ector Madera of Stockton, California (11-1, 6 KOs) in a fight that lacked excitement. Puello prevailed with scorecards of 80-72 twice and 79-73.
Kyrone Davis of Wilmington, Delaware (18-3-1, 6 KOs) and Cruse Stewart of Maple Grove, Minnesota (8-3, 6 KOs) both needed a win in early action. It was Davis who edged Stewart for the decision by three scores of 77-75. Stewart hurt Davis in the eighth round, but it wasn’t enough to turn the fight his way. Davis had only fought once since his loss to David Benavidez in 2021. Stewart has now lost three fights in a row, the last to rising middleweight star Elijah Garcia.
Light heavyweight southpaw Lawrence King of Stockton, California (14-1, 12 KOs) dropped Alex Theran of Colombia (23-13, 15 KOs) with a body shot in the third round and made it stick with his first punch in the fourth round, a lead uppercut that ended the fight without a count by referee Mark Nelson.