By Jake Donovan
KISSIMMEE, Fla.—In a career filled with thrilling moments, Koki Eto finally has a big win on which to hang his proverbial hat.
The all-action slugger from Japan stormed his way back into the super flyweight title picture with a stunning 1st round knockout of Jeyvier Cintron. A right hand functionally ended the night 2:03 into the opening round of their ESPN+ streamed super flyweight bout Saturday evening at Osceola Heritage Park in Kissimmee, Fla.
A nervous energy came over the capacity crowd, mostly in support of Cintron (10-1, 5KOs) who made his pro debut in this building in Oct. 2017 and returned in hopes of entering the title fray.
What he instead received was a violent introduction to big time boxing.
On a night filled with one-round knockouts and stunning endings, Eto's was one to remember given the magnitude of the fight. The streaking contender—who hasn't lost since a hard-fought decision at the hands of then-unbeaten 115-pound king Carlos Cuadras in 2015—willingly accepted the role of bully against the slick-styled Cintron who looked outgunned from the opening bell.
The night came to an end when Eto crashed home a right hand that not only floored Cintron, but left him clueless as to his whereabouts. Cintron bounced up and staggered abound the ring before the referee even had a chance to issue his count, insisting he was initially clipped with a headbutt before Eto landed the right hand. His claim was dismissed by the referee, who waved off the contest in a verdict which prompted Eto to mount a corner post in celebration as the crowd was stunned in silence.
Eto improves to 25-4-1- (19KOs) with the win, his 10th straight since the loss to Cuadras.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox