Barrera Shakes Off Early Knockdown, Coasts Past Smith

By Marc Livitz on July 15, 2017
Barrera Shakes Off Early Knockdown, Coasts Past Smith
Barrera connected almost at will with power shots and superior technique. (Hogan Photos)

Sullivan Barrera kicked off a night of HBO televised fights with a resounding unanimous decision win over Joe Smith, Jr….

Sullivan Barrera kicked off a night of HBO televised fights on Saturday evening with a resounding unanimous decision win over Joe Smith, Jr. at the Fabulous Forum in Inglewood, California. The ten-round contest for Smith’s WBC International light heavyweight title began with Barrera hitting the deck due to an overhand right from Smith in round one.

This would be the only time that Smith, who gained notoriety last December for knocking Bernard Hopkins out of the ring in the very same arena, would hold the upper hand. Barrera would box brilliantly from that point onward and perhaps look to make his landslide loss to Andre Ward last year appear to be a distant memory.

What should have been a twelve-round contest was shortened to ten at the behest of each man’s promotional company, Main Events for Barrera and Star Boxing for Smith, respectively. In any case, Cuban defector Sullivan (20-1, 14 KO’s) utilized his deep amateur background to top a fighter in Smith (23-2, 19 KO’s) who looked to land one clean difference-maker all night long. Once Joe knocked Barrera to the canvas, he ran to his corner, propped himself up on the bottom ropes and raised his hands in victory.

Sullivan adjusted. It seemed as if this would be a case of accuracy against power. Barrera was the more technical fighter and Smith clearly possessed the greater strength in terms of a single shot. Sullivan was able to connect almost at will with power shots and superior technique.

Referee Jack Reiss approached Joe’s corner before the eighth round and asked him if he was fit to continue, as the trained eye may have seen the bout turning into a shutout. CompuBox numbers showed a near one hundred punch advantage in terms of connected effort for Sullivan Barrera at this point. In the end, he outlanded his Long Island, New York opponent 187 to 61, with a 129-46 advantage in power shots. Two scorecards read identically at 97 to 92, while the third was compiled to 96-93 to award the win and the title to Sullivan Barrera.

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  1. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 05:31pm, 07/17/2017

    No flashback….he actually sustained another broken jaw in the second round!

  2. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 08:28am, 07/16/2017

    Aside from the vast skill deficit Smith was acting gun shy especially after receipting for those nasty uppercuts. Maybe he was flashing back to that nasty double jaw fracture he suffered.

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