LONDON, Wembley Stadium–Asses in seats, no fighter does that better than Anthony Joshua.
AJ re-proved that fact on Saturday, Sept. 22, at Wembley Stadium when he edges a step closer to Lennox Lewis as UK fight icon.
This time the muscled hitter took on veteran Russian Alexander Povetkin, 34-1, in a battle of the best heavyweight in the planet till proven otherwise and a legit top fiver who was a bit last his prime.
Could the 39 year old turn back that clock and make up with guile what he lost in reflexes?
No, it turns out. Povetkin made it interesting early in front of some 80,000 rooters but once AJ got warmed up and his scouting kicked in, his adaptations were put into effect, the end was near for Alex.
In round seven, the hammers dropped. AJ raked Povetkin, who went down, righted himself and then succumbed. The time of the finish according to Michael Buffer, 1:59 of the seventh. “The fighting pride of the United Kingdom” had a rough start but he gave the masses their pound of flesh. Just as he did against Wladimir Klitschko. The guy now and again finds himself buzzed or in a legit danger zone, and then scraps his way out of the hole. It makes for a good helping of drama, doesn’t it?
In the first, the 28 year old AJ, entering at 22-0, jabbed to the body. He had a good four inches and close to 30 pounds over Povetkin, who crouched and kept his chin tucked. The AJ jab looked snappy. AJ got wobbled by a left before the bell, though, in case he needed to know if Povetkin had or had not slipped precipitously.
In round two, Povetkin’s right had his corner pumped. The blood from AJ’s nose bolstered that. Alex was sharp and aggressive. AJ wasn’t so much.
In the third, did we see a strength and power edge start to form for AJ? He was now warmed up and moving better. He was now in a better rhythm.
In round 4 AJ scored a cut and in the fifth Alex was less busy.
In the sixth, AJ threw a lead hook, then again. And he was seeing Povetkin’s long rights. Then one landed…The lead left hook AJ so wanted to land. Tight round…
Down went Alex in round 7; he got up, got basted and the ref was stepping in as his corner did the same.
The hurting punch was a right to the body, left hook to the head, left and right hand to drop Povetkin on his tush. The end came via a left hook, left jab, two clubbing rights, left hook, nasty, and right hand to the chin…and the loser’s corner knew their soldier was done.
This scrap topped the first DAZN card in America, and the executives their are hoping to snag subscribers at $9.99 a month. Not a bad start, I’d say, with the main event delivering. Okolie owes Hearn a sweet holiday basket, but all in all, that main event offered sweet bang for the buck.
My three cents: I don’t know, but maybe I do…I think the folks who are opining that this thing won’t work should look into the funders and see this a slow build situation, and not expect 0 to 60 right away. I think these guys are still in business in 3 years, and doing OK.
NOTE: DAZN offered promotional consideration to NYFIGHTS and TALKBOX, for the record, before this fight card.