Dominic Breazeale claimed an eye-catching win over Eric Molina in a battle of two former world heavyweight title challengers at Barclays Center.
Breazeale, who is on the road back from a loss to Anthony Joshua, took the fight out of Molina before putting him on the canvas prior to the contest being halted after the eighth round.
Rated highly in the WBC rankings, Breazeale has been tipped as a potential opponent for Deontay Wilder in 2018 after winning what was an eliminator for the green and gold strap.
The World Boxing Council had been quoted as stating the fight was for mandatory status, although British contender Dillian Whyte, who is chasing a bout with Wilder after winning the Silver title last week, confirmed promoter Eddie Hearn has been informed the bout was only a ranking eliminator.
Commonwealth champion Lenroy Thomas warmed up for his rematch with Dave Allen with an eight round points win over late replacement Ed Fountain.
Thomas made heavy weather of it for the duration, putting his clash with Allen in doubt, before edging a 77-74 and 76-75 (twice) decision on the cards.
The Allen fight was due to happen on the undercard of Anthony Joshua v Carlos Takam last week but was rescheduled when Thomas accepted the New York encounter.
Promoter Eddie Hearn will be happy to learn of Thomas’ victory as Allen is set to challenge for the title on the December 17 undercard of Tony Bellew v David Haye II.
Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay