Jared Anderson withstood Johnnie Langston’s initial attack Tuesday night and spent the rest of their heavyweight bout battering his exhausted opponent.
Referee Jay Nady decided he had seen enough in the third round, when he stopped their scheduled six-rounder with a vulnerable Langston still on his feet. The 20-year-old Anderson (4-0, 4 KOs) was declared the winner at 1:55 of the third round at MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas.
The 30-year-old Langston (8-3, 3 KOs), who also has fought at cruiserweight, lost by knockout for the first time in 11 professional fights.
Anderson’s win was the co-feature of ESPN’s five-fight show Tuesday night because a 10-round, 130-pound bout between Mikaela Mayer and Helen Joseph was scratched from the card Sunday due to Mayer’s positive test for COVID-19.
Anderson switched to a southpaw stance in the third round and continued to unload on Langston. A fatigued Langston wasn’t throwing punches back, which prompted Nady to step in and stop their fight.
A right uppercut by Anderson made Langston stumble with 35 seconds remaining in the second round. Anderson spent much of that second round unloading power shots on an exhausted, retreating Langston.
Langston aggressively went after Anderson in the first half of the opening round. He landed several left hands, but none of those punches hurt Anderson.
Anderson landed a right to the body and then a right uppercut with about 50 seconds to go that made Langston take a deep breath. Anderson continued hammering a fast-fatigued Langston with head and body shots until the first round ended.
Bob Arum, Anderson’s promoter, told BoxingScene.com before this fight that the Toledo, Ohio, native was a huge factor in helping Tyson Fury prepare to beat Deontay Wilder in their rematch February 22.
“Jared Anderson is the unsung hero of Fury’s victory against Wilder,” Arum said. “Because Fury told me that this kid was unbelievable, that he’s largely responsible for how well Tyson Fury performed in the fight. ‘Sugar Hill’ Steward had this plan for Tyson Fury, and he needed a guy who could move, who’s big and so forth, and could give Fury a battle. Virtually every day, Jared sparred with him. I saw at least four sparring sessions with the two of them, and he really earned his stripes with Fury.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.