By Alexey Sukachev
Russia - Extremely active for his ranks cruiserweight contender Maxim Vlasov continued his domination tour by forcing the sixth consecutive stoppage win in an important cross-roader versus Dangerous Denton Daley. The Triple D was stopped in the ninth round when the towel was thrown in, in a mostly one-sided contest despite never going down in the fight.
Vlasov, 30, was very versatile from the very beginning. He pressed the action against WBA #5 and WBC #13 Canadian, mixing hard jabs with lightly-looking but annoying punches from both hands. Daley, 35, tried to counter Vlasov on his way in but found little success in doing so, while the Russian was pummelling him around the ring with ever-increasing intensity.
Daley briefly woke up in the midst of the fight - but mostly due to a little pause in Vlasov's actions. He did some local and very limited damage with his right hand. However, once the Russian got back to work, Daley found himself in limbo again. Vlasov's dominance continued to increase until another hard combination forced Daley into a shell defense and, simultaneously, his corner to throw in a white towel, prompting referee to wave it off.
Time of stoppage was 0:44 of the ninth. WBO #4, IBF #6, WBA #7 and WBC #10 Vlasov is now 40-2, 23 KOs. He is also 10-0, 8 KOs, since losing to reigning WBO super middleweight champion Gilberto Ramirez Sanchez in January 2015. The Russian also defended his WBA International 200lb title and is expected to take WBA #2 spot after this win.
Eight months into his pro career, former amateur star Artem Chebotarev (4-0, 3 KOs), 28, positioned himself for a possible entry to the middleweight ranks with a dominant unanimous decision over tough Nigerian Nuhu Lawal and also acquired his first career title - IBO International 160lb belt.
Chebotarev, who was Russia's top amateur middleweight for almost a decade, scored three consecutive stoppage wins from January to May, finishing off his opponents in less than two rounds. Meanwhile, Lawal was 23-0 by October 2016 but then suffered a hard-fought yet clear-cut decision loss to Martin Murray and was also stopped in ten by Michel Soro.
Against pressing Chebotarev the Germany-based Nigerian was mostly negative. Standing short at 5'8'' Lawal tried to duck as low as he could making for even smaller target for lanky (6'1'') Chebotarev. Fighting in front of his parents and townsmen in Saratov, Chebotarev was looking for a proper way to get the job done. Yet Lawal, 35, was wilting but standing in front of his bigger opponent. The Russian landed a number of blows but he lacked enough uppercuts to make Lawal pay a bigger price.
The fight was often interrupted by Lawal's clinches, ducking and his loose tape. However, he achieved what he had aimed for, and that's going the distance. No scores were announced but BoxingScene had it 119-109 - for the Russia. Lawal drops down to 25-3, 14 KOs.
Light middleweight Sergey Shigashev (7-0, 3 KOs) scored his second win this year and by far the most important in his career by outpointing capable and durable Mexican veteran Silverio "Chamako III" Ortiz over eight rounds.
Shigashev, 29, who debuted as a pro in January 2016, was very versatile, mixing uppercuts, right crosses, and left and right shots to the body. Ortiz was mostly defensive but easily weathered Shigashev's onslaught. The Mexican did himself little favour by being too lazy and inactive. However, he almost dropped Shigashev at the end of the eighth and final round.
No scores were announced but Boxingscene had it 79-73 - for Shigashev. Much travelled veteran upset artist Ortiz, 34, drops down to 36-20, 17 KOs.
Heavyweight power banger Rostislav Plechko has done it again. The 28-year old kayo artist scores his eleventh consecutive first-round TKO by evaporating overmatched Ghanaian veteran Inrahim Labaran (14-5, 12 KOs) with a combination of hard damaging blows midst into the first. Plechko is now 12-0, 12 KOs, his first bout lasting three extra seconds in round two. Plechko is a Russian national titlist, and this time he has also added a vacant WBA Asia 200lb+ belt to his list of achievements.
Heavyweight prospect and former amateur standout Evgueny Romanov improved his record to 5-0, 3 KOs, after a workmanlike decision over the Uzbek Murat Azimov (8-8-1, 2 KOs). Romanov, 32, easily controlled the fight over six rounds, landing huge right hand bombs time and again. Azimov was game and determined but his assets weren't enough to make Romanov uncomfortable. Neverteless, the Uzbek was able to survive it to the final bell, despite being rocked several times in the sixth. Romanov is best known for his kayo win over reigning WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder back in 2008 when both were amateur fighters.