Light heavyweight ace Artur Beterbiev, out of the ring for 17 months, shed the rust and his foe, Adam Deines, in round ten of their clash in Moscow on March 20.
A left hand put Deines, a Russian living in Germany, to the floor and the ref pulled the plug. The lefty had hung tough, after getting smacked to the mat in round one. But Beterbiev, age 36, kept hacking away at him.
The clash screened on ESPN.
Beterbiev has dealt with injuries, and then a positive COVID test, so it's possible he was happy to stretch the fight a bit, to get some more rounds in.
His profile level had reached an apex when he handled Alexander Gvozdyk in a light heavy title consolidation match, in fall 2019, and he's eager, we presume, to kick-start the momentum back up.
It looked like maybe Beterbiev would pull away, and pile up too much punishment on Deines around round 5-6. But the loser hung in there, and answered.
Not with much pop, though, his power is quite average. He stayed in the game, though, with slight prospects for victory, because it was hard to picture him catching Beterbiev with a hard enough shot to really trouble him.
The end came when Deines (19-2-1) ate a left, went to a knee, stood up, and then looked at his corner. His corner was on the apron, indicating they didn't want the 30 year old pugilist to risk more punishment.
Here is the release Top Rank sent out after the win:
MOSCOW (March 20, 2021) —Boxing's preeminent knockout artist didn't disappoint his partisan fans. Russia's Artur Beterbiev, in his first bout in 17 months, knocked out Adam Deines in the 10th round to retain his WBC and IBF light heavyweight world titles Saturday at Megasport Arena in Moscow.
Beterbiev (16-0, 16 KOs) authored a fitting encore to his October 2019 TKO over Oleksandr Gvozdyk, the bout that solidified his place as the world's best light heavyweight. Three fight dates — one against Meng Fanlong and two against Deines — were postponed before Beterbiev finally returned to the ring. Beterbiev maintained his status as boxing's only world champion with a 100 percent knockout rate, returning home to the nation he represented at the 2008 and 2012 Olympics. At 36 years old, it appears “King Artur” still has plenty of time left to reign.
Beterbiev clipped Deines (19-2-1, 10 KOs) with a left hook in the opening round, knocking the German to the canvas. The steady pressure of Beterbiev wore down Deines, who was in retreat mode for most of the fight. Then, in the 10th round, a sledgehammer left hook put Deines down again. Deines' corner stopped the slaughter, and the crowd got the knockout they so craved.
Beterbiev now sets his sights on a potential unification matchup with the winner of the April 10 vacant WBO light heavyweight world title showdown between Joe Smith Jr. and Maxim Vlasov, which will air live on ESPN and ESPN+.