Badou Jack and James DeGale each scored a knockdown apiece as the two super-middleweight champions fought out a majority draw in New York.
In an early contender for Fight of the Year, Jack and DeGale produced a spectacular contest to begin 2017 with a bang.
DeGale dropped Jack in the first round, whilst the Swede returned the favor in the final session, and what transpired inbetween was a back and forth blockbuster.
In the end, the judges couldn’t split them, although one of the officials did have DeGale winning 114-112 as the others had it 113-113 (as did WBN).
After the bout, DeGale asked Jack’s promoter Floyd Mayweather for a rematch, although ‘Money’ wasn’t initially receptive to his advances as his fighter is too big for the weight.
Callum Smith, the mandatory challenger sitting at ringside, will be hoping Jack moves up to 175 to allow him to contest the vacant belt as the WBC title holder could be in for a second clash with DeGale should he remain at 168.
Earlier, Floyd Mayweather’s newest star Gervonta Davis gave a performance beyond his years as the young Baltimore fighter won the IBF super-featherweight title in style.
The 22 year-old, who went into the fight with a big-punching reputation, proved his strength was no joke as he pummelled the Puerto Rican into submission.
Davis took the first three rounds before giving ground in the fourth and fifth but managed to land a crunching body shot to turn the tide back in his favor.
Softening Pedraza up in the sixth, a massive flurry culminated in a crushing blow dropping the champion hard and referee Ricky Gonzalez called the fight off when ‘Sniper’ got to his feet.
On the evidence provided by Davis at Barclays Center, Davis could reign for some time and potentially move through the weights to become a superstar of boxing in the future.
With Mayweather backing him all the way, a run on Pay-Per-View could be in the blueprint for the latest world title holder to grace ‘The Money Team’ stable.
After the fight, Floyd was asked by Showtime if Davis was the future of boxing, to which the former pound for pound king replied bluntly: “Abso-f***ing-lutely.”
Mayweather won his maiden world title at the age of 21 back in 1998 in the same weight category and Davis looks to be on a similar path in the initial stages of his title run.
Other results from New York:
Immanuwel Aleem dropped Ievgen Khytrov twice in their middleweight contest on his way to a sixth round stoppage victory. Aleem ended Khytrov’s 14-bout winning streak as the 23 year-old claimed the vacant WBC Silver title in a real barnstormer of an encounter.
The fight swung one way and then the other as the pair traded blows from the off, with a second helping later in the year most welcome after six enthralling sessions.
The Women’s WBO Super Bantamweight title was on the line as Amanda Serrano recorded a ten-round triumph over Yazmin Rivas on the cards. Judges came back with scores of Judges came back with scores of 99-91, 98-92 and 97-93 as Serrano kept a firm grip on her title
Former Floyd Mayweather sparring partner Thomas Dulorme dominated Brian Jones for the duration of their contest before the referee finally stepped in during the sixth. Jones took a mass of punishment and could have been halted in the third before eventually going down to a seventh loss. Dulorme is now 24-2.
Heavyweight Adam Kownacki halted Joshua Tufte in the second round to take his C.V to 15 wins without loss. The 27 year-old New Yorker has now stopped 12 opponents early as Kownacki continues his push towards titles.
Noel Murphy improved to 8-0 with a six round decision win over previously undefeated Max Sainvil at welterweight, whilst in the same division, Kenny Robles made a successful debut by out-pointing Latorie Woodberry over four.