Mairis Briedis Nearly Gets Robbed in Defeating Yuniel Dorticos!
Following 12 rounds of action, Mairis Briedis (27-1, 19 KO’s) defeated IBF cruiserweight champion Yuniel Dorticos (24-2, 22 KO’s) by majority decision. This capped the second season of the World Boxing Super Series tournament for the cruiserweight division!
The bout snapped a 15 month stretch of inactivity for Dorticos and Briedis. When last in the squared-circle, Dorticos scooped up the vacant title in a hard to watch clinch filled prizefight with Andrew “Beast” Tabiti (17-1, 13 KO’s). While it appeared that the concussive punching Cuban was well up on the scorecards, he removed any need for the judges when he obliterated Tabiti with a missile straight right.
For his part, Briedis was riding high on a three fight win streak following his sole professional loss to former undisputed champion Oleksandr Usyk (17-0, 13 KO’s). He was also coming in off a knockout win. Although his bout with Krzysztof “Glowka” Glowacki (32-2, 19 KO’s) was riddled with controversy and poor officiating.
In fact, due to the knockout blows coming well after the bell, Briedis was ultimately stripped of the WBO cruiserweight title that was on the line in that bout.
A TALE OF TWO HALVES
Right from the start, both men fought at a rather lively pace. Dorticos pressed the action by moving forward behind a consistent jab and frequent body shots.
His opponent opted to make use of the huge ring by using his legs to move and constantly turn the Cuban. Briedis also capitalized on his jab and a sneaky left hook and right uppercut.
For the initial two rounds, the action remained neck and neck. However Briedis began finding a good grove during the second half of the third period.
The Latvian fighter was able to land a number of stinging combinations, most of which were punctuated with thudding hooks. While Dorticos was not overly buzzed, the sequences were eyebrow raising.
CREATING A GAP AND TAKING CONTROL
The fight continued to be a judge’s nightmare until Briedis presumably stole the sixth with a crunching uppercut in the final minute. With the coming of the seventh round Dorticos appeared to be wearing down.
His once snapping jab had devolved in a slow asthmatic liability. As a result, his fresher foe was able to land frequent hard overhand rights and hooks. Each of these shots sapped more and more of the Cuban’s energy and speed.
By the arrival of the tenth, things were looking extremely bleak for Dorticos. At this point, Briedis was connecting with just about everything that he threw. His menacing jabs, hooks and straight rights snapped the champions head around with regularity.
Even worse, Dorticos right eye was beginning to swell. Furthermore, his mouth bled and constantly hung open while he sucked in air.
The final two rounds did not have any overtly thrilling fireworks, but merely saw Briedis continue to dominate the action. When the cards were read, two judges saw the fight going to Briedis.
Although, in true Mr. Magoo fashion, one judge outrageously ruled the contest a draw. Despite the one bogus ruling the correct fighter won.
With the win, Briedis is once more a world champion, the winner of the World Boxing Super Series and claimed the Muhammad Ali trophy.
By: Bakari Simpson