VERONA, N.Y. – John Molina outpunched Ruslan Provodnikov in an all-action fight by revealing a new weapon in his arsenal, a sharp and steady jab. Molina captured a surprising unanimous decision in a 12-round junior welterweight bout that featured fierce exchanges throughout Saturday on SHOWTIME from Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, N.Y.
Molina and Provodnikov promised a war, and they delivered. But what surprised many was the volume of punches and effective jabbing from Molina (29-6, 23 KOs), a veteran more known for engaging in brawls than his boxing prowess. Molina threw nearly 1,110 total punches, including 643 jabs compared to just 265 for Provodnikov, who failed to close the range on his naturally bigger opponent.
The judges agreed on nine of the 12 rounds, a relatively high percentage according to SHOWTIME analyst Steve Farhood.
“Today the decision was the right one,” Provnikov said. “Molina won the fight – he was better tonight. Everything was scored the way it should have been.
“We expected that he was going to box, he was going to move. We expected him to do that. It wasn’t my night. Maybe I don’t have the same hungriness as before. I’m not going to make excuses, but it was hard for me to find my groove tonight.
“I don’t think it’s that (the layoff). There are no excuses. I lost the fight tonight. I couldn’t find the hungriness. I have to sit down and think of why that happened. I’m sorry if I disappointed.”