Adam Kownacki had the honor of headlining the last primetime boxing telecast in the United States, live from his hometown of Brooklyn, New York.
The downside to that distinction, of course, is how the night turned out—along with having nothing but time to continue to reflect on the outcome.
The previously unbeaten and top-rated heavyweight contender suffered a shocking 4th round knockout loss to Robert Helenius atop the March 7 edition of Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) on Fox live from Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. Kownacki was a perfect 9-0 at the venue and in control through three rounds versus Finland’s Helenius (30-3, 19KOs) before getting dropped early in round four and stopped on his feet soon thereafter.
“It’s been tough,” Kownacki (20-1, 15KOs) revealed during the most recent segment of PBC’s Time Out With Ray Flores on Instagram Live. “First of all, I was ranked top five in all the (sanctioning bodies). All of a sudden, you lose, you know. And especially to an underdog. Robert caught me with a good shot.
“It was a new situation for me, being hurt. It taught me how recuperate. Instead of taking a step backwards and trying to move around, I stepped forward trying to bang with him. That shot got me hurt, I was hurt for a little bit and he got me down. I got up but he came with a lot of shots and the referee stopped the fight. It was a lesson to be learned from.”
The event came less than a week before the first wave of boxing shows and sporting events around the world were shut down in the wake of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Kownacki has remained at home with his family, doing their part to remain healthy in a New York state which has recorded more than 250,000 positive cases for COVID-19.
The 31-year old Poland-born heavyweight is also doing his part to remain ready for whenever the sport is given a full reset.
“I ended at the last major event for boxing when all this happened,” notes Helenius. “Hopefully I’m the first one back as well, and to show everyone it was just a simple mistake. Robert Helenius is a guy I beat nine out of ten times, and that was the one night that happened.
“What happened that night was a mistake. I’m still one of the best heavyweights in the world. We’ll prove it in my next fight.”
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox