Parker Blitzes Dimitrenko

By Robert Ecksel on October 4, 2016
Parker Blitzes Dimitrenko
The Russian writhed on the canvas like a wounded animal. (Fiona Goodall/Photosport)

Joseph Parker knocked out 6-foot-7-inch Alexander Dimitrenko to retain the WBO Oriental heavyweight title…

Joseph Parker may be the real deal.

Saturday night at the Vodafone Events Centre in Manukau, New Zealand, Joseph Parker (21-0, 18 KOs) , the undefeated heavyweight from Auckland, New Zealand, knocked out 6-foot-7-inch Alexander “Sasha” Dimitrenko (38-3, 24 KOs), from Hamburg, Germany, by way of Yevpatoria, Crimea, to retain the WBO Oriental heavyweight title.

Dimitrenko, fighting out of the red corner in red trunks with black and gold trim, is the former WBO International and EBU (European) heavyweight champion. He has had a respectable career, if not the stuff of which boxing legends are made. But he was a live underdog coming into the fight, not picked to win, but picked to acquit himself nobly if not successfully.

Fighting out of the blue corner in white trunks with gold fringe, Parker, ranked #1 by the WBO and IBF, #4 by the WBC, and #9 by the WBA, is making his mark as he punches his way through eligible contenders on his way to a world heavyweight title. Small at 6-foot-4 by today’s standards, he is fast and athletic, mobile and precise.

But best of all he is aggressive.

A right to the head dropped Dimitrenko halfway into round one. He was up quickly. He smiled and shook his head no.  He wasn’t hurt. A left hook nailed Dimintrenko just before the bell to end the round. He shakily made it to his corner

Dimitrenko was no more successful in round two. He walked into a counter right hand from Parker. A big right at 2:00 followed by a left to the body wobbled the challenger. The fighters traded right hands—and Parker’s got there first. Dimintrenko started to fall. He tried to hold on as Parker landed a series of combinations to the body and moved out of the way.  Dimitrenko stumbled forward and fell to his hands and knees. He was up at the count of five, ate more punches, and went down the second time in the round, the third time in the fight. He was up at four and the bell rang.

Parker could smell blood and the blood he smelled wasn’t his. A jab hurt Dimitrenko at the start of round three. Stumbling around with no legs to speak of, the final body shot put him down, following by the second body shot that no one saw coming.

All three judges had it 20-15 at the time of the knockout.

Dimitrenko had not lost a fight since 2012 and was seen as more contender than steppingstone—until Joseph Parker got to him.

Heavyweight boxing is synonymous with controversy and Parker-Dimitrenko had its share.

Dimitrenko had been down three times in two rounds. The fight was never his and what was left of it was fast slipping away. Dimitrenko absorbed a body shot in the fourth and headed down another time. He grabbed the champion as he descended to the canvas, at which time Parker, according to Dimitrenko, pushed him down to the ground and punched him in the body. It was the kind of punch that breaks a man’s ribs, and after repeated viewing it’s hard to argue with his assessment.

The Russian writhed on the canvas like a wounded animal for good measure.

“I am angry because I was down with my knee on the ground and he hit me,” said Dimitrenko, reports Duncan Johnstone on “He pushed me and then he hit me.”

Referee Marlon Wright failed to see what looked like a blatant foul in the heat of battle. Dimitrenko might have been dead meat, technically speaking, but he should not have been counted out when and as he was.

“I didn’t see this punch,” said Dimitrenko. “If you don’t see the punch, it is even more dangerous.

“Of course I am angry and I told this to the referee. He told me, ‘I didn’t see, sorry, it’s okay.’”

It is not okay. The rules exist for a reason. If they are not upheld, it stops being boxing and becomes something else.

When asked if he intended to protest the decision, Dimitrenko said, “I will. The supervisor (Leon Panoncillo) is here and I will do this, it is my right. I’m disappointed the way the fight ended.”

The WBO is taking it under advisement.

Dimitrenko regrets the loss, a well he might, but he does not blame Joseph Parker.

“He is a human being like me,” said Dimitrenko. “He is a professional boxer like me. When you fight you have too much adrenalin and you [want to] win.

“He reacted automatically ... it was a reaction.”

Asked about the punch that ended the fight, Parker’s trainer Kevin Barry was disbelieving. “Which punch?” he said. “Because I think he was finished when he (Parker) knocked him down in the first round. For me, that was the end of the fight, it was just a matter of time after that.

“I said to Joe after the first round, ‘This guy will keep trying, you have to keep beating him down.’ But I felt comfortable after that first knockdown that the fight was ours and it was only a matter of time.”

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  1. Darrell 02:41am, 10/23/2016

    Andy Ruiz? That fat fuck gets his cheque and headache for his troubles…..Parker will get the W.

  2. Blair 03:53am, 10/08/2016

    Joe showed both his speed and immaturity in this fight. He’s been taken along a riskier route than many of the current top 20 HW’s (when you consider he’s only 24) and so you’ve got to admire them for that (whether they had any choice or not). In contrast, Andy has been a little more protected until this stage. At 27 years old, waistline getting wider he’s got a great opportunity here. He has a better pedigree and has a hand picked opponent in JP. I can’t wait for this fight!

  3. tuxtucis 11:31pm, 10/07/2016

    It was not a kidney punch, as you can see easily on where Dimitrenko holds the glove after being hit…It was for sure after he was on knees..

  4. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 08:02am, 10/04/2016

    Weak knees or not it was a kidney punch not a shot to the short ribs and Dimi was clearly down and no he wasn’t faking it. The only good thing here is that Andy Ruiz will KO him in front of 20,000 howling fans in Auckland.

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