By Jake Donovan
In a battle of Davids, it was David Price who managed to avoid again becoming Goliath.
The 2008 Olympic Bronze medalist from Liverpool kept his career afloat after forcing Doncaster's David Allen to retire on his stool after 10 rounds Saturday evening at O2 Arena in London, England.
Price was well in control of the contest at the point Allen requested to trainer and former middleweight titlist Darren Barker to stop the fight prior to the start of the 11th round.
The fight played out to the pre-fight scouting report in the opening round, with Price using every bit of his 6’9” frame to establish his desired distance. Allen spent most of the first three minutes feeling out his much taller foe, feinting and fighting behind a high guard until getting caught with a couple of clean right hands which prompted a late response.
Allen picked up the pace in round two, landing a right hand which briefly stunned Price whom has never been known for his punch resistance. It proved to be an isolated moment, as Price regrouped to reestablish his desired pace—slowing the action to a crawl.
Both boxers had their moments in a slightly more engaging round three. Allen scored to the body along with a right hand, while Price enjoyed success with the classic one-two combination after connecting with a right uppercut which helped bloody Allen’s upper lip.
Fatigue proven to be an Achilles heel in the career of Price, who began breathing hard in a spirited round five that saw the fight’s first genuine two-way exchange. Both fighters scored with right hands, Allen over the top and Price straight through the guard only for the action to come to a halt when Price’s gumshield was dislodged.
The break proved to be a momentum killer, with Price returning to jab-and-grab and Allen failing to get off his punches. The sluggish affair prompted referee Marcus McDonnell to discipline both heavyweights in round seven, which actually helped provide a spark. Nothing would follow that suggested a Fight of the Year contender but would see both boxers throwing far more purposeful power punches.
Price was caught with enough right uppercuts to plant his feet and offer his own firepower in return. His power surge helped produce a cut over the right eye of Allen, who sought to step up the pace in round nine as he was seemingly down on the cards by that point.
It wasn’t meant to be for the charismatic Doncaster pug, as Price responded anytime Allen was able to let his hands go. A combination upstairs by Allen was met with a flush left hand which immediately shut down his attack. Price wisely covered up anytime Allen moved forward, answering the incoming with a sharp right hand to reestablish distance.
Another round of more of the same was enough to convince Allen that the night wasn’t going to get any better. Something felt off internally, prompting the resurgent heavyweight to request that his corner stop the contest.
Price picks up third straight win, improving to 25-6 (20KOs). Allen snaps a four-fight win streak in falling to 18-5-2 (14KOs).
The bout served in supporting capacity to a heavyweight-themed Pay-Per-View in the United Kingdom (and also streamed live on DAZN in the United States), headlined by an interim title fight between top-rated contender Dillian Whyte (25-1, 18KOs) and unbeaten Oscar Rivas (26-0, 18KOs).
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox