By Keith Idec
LAS VEGAS – Albert Bell came to MGM Grand Garden Arena on Saturday night unbeaten, but unproven.
Bell changed all that by upsetting 130-pound contender Andy Vences in their 10-round fight on the Tyson Fury-Tom Schwarz undercard. The 26-year-old Bell (15-0, 5 KOs), of Toledo, Ohio, landed the cleaner punches more consistently, hurt Vences in the seventh round and won by the same score, 97-93, on all three cards.
The 28-year-old Vences, of San Jose, California, suffered the first defeat of his pro career (22-1-1, 12 KOs). He also lost the WBC Continental Americas super featherweight title to Bell.
“I worked so hard for this,” Bell said. “In my first 10-rounder, I went out there and put my undefeated record on the line against a top guy. You don’t see that too much anymore. I’ve been counted out, and this shows that I’m a fighter to be taken seriously at 130 pounds.”
Vences disagreed with the decision and didn’t give Bell credit for his work.
“I fought someone who didn’t wanna fight,” Vences said. “I was looking for the action the whole fight, pressuring him. I thought that I hurt him and connected on the bigger punches. This is the hurt business.”
Vences mounted a comeback in the 10th round, but it was too little, too late.
A left hook by Vences snapped back Bell’s head 25 seconds into the 10th round. Referee Tony Weeks warned Vences for hitting Bell behind his head when Weeks called for a break with just over a minute remaining in the fight.
Vences and Bell drilled one another with vicious power punches during an entertaining stretch in the final 30 seconds of their fight.
A right hand by Vences knocked out Bell’s mouthpiece just following the halfway mark of the ninth round. Vences continued to land right hands once the action resumed, but Bell absorbed those shots well.
Bell blasted Vences with a hard, overhand right at about the halfway point of the eighth round.
Bell buzzed Vences by landing a right hand just before the midway mark of the seventh round. Vences wobbled backward and Bell pounced on him.
Vences took numerous power punches for the remainder of the seventh round, but Bell couldn’t finish him off.
Bell got full extension on a right hand that landed with around 30 seconds to go in the sixth round. Vences trapped Bell in a neutral corner toward the end of the sixth and connected with a hard right of his own.
Vences blasted Bell with a right hand approximately 35 seconds into the fifth round. Bell took that shot well and moved out of Vences’ corner.
Toward the end of the fourth, Bell hit Vences with four straight right hands. Vences battled back eventually, but it was impressive sequence for Bell.
An overhand right by Vences hit Bell on the side of his head about 1:10 into the fourth round. A combination by Bell initiated a solid exchange in the final 10 seconds of the fourth.
Two left hooks by Bell caught Vences with just over one minute to go in the third round. A few seconds later, an accidental clash of heads knocked Bell to the canvas.
Weeks called for a break with 47 seconds to go in the third round, so that Bell could recover.
A left-right combination by Bell early in the second round got Vences’ attention. Vences connected with a straight right hand later in the second.
Bell landed two hard left hooks to a reckless Vences’ head within the first 45 seconds of the fight.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.