By Chris LaBate
Family Arena, St. Charles, Mo. - Heavyweight contender Bermane Stiverne (21-1-1, 20KOs) knocked out Ray Austin (28-6-4, 18KOs) in the tenth round.
After Austin won the first round with a good jab and his boxing ability. Stiverne came back to rock the veteran in the second round. The third round was close, but Austin lost a point for hitting Stiverne with a shoulder shove after the bell. The fourth was also close. Stiverne had trouble with the taller Austin's jab. Another close fifth, Stiverne was allowing the rounds to be too close by letting Austin get comfortable and just stick his jab for three minutes. Not much work coming from Stiverne in the sixth and Austin continued to pump his left jab.
Austin was rocked a few times in the seventh, but he used his jab to hold Stiverne off from following up. In the eight, Austin was rocked again in the corner. He held on to get himself out of trouble. He was very defensive after that with Stiverne trying to land something big. They were trading punches often in the ninth round.
In the tenth, Stiverne landed a heavy combination that put Austin down very hard in the early seconds. Stiverne didn't appear to beat the count and got up around the count of ten but then the ref told him to step forward and waved it off after Austin appeared to be out on his feet.