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April 25, 2015, New York City  Heavyweight champ Wladimir Klitschko defended his title last night at the “World’s Most Famous Arena” Madison Square Garden, with a unanimous decision over challenger Bryant Jennings. The three judges scored the fight 118-109, 116-111, and 116-111. PureSportsNY scored the fight 117-110. In other action, up and coming welterweight Sadam Ali won a unanimous decision over tough and durable Francisco Santana.

In the main event, Klitschko used his familiar jab and ring experience to nullify Jennings’ herky-jerky style. The fight followed the same pattern throughout with Jennings using lots of movement to avoid Klitschko’s big power shots but showing very little in terms of offense.  Throughout the fight, Jennings showed great stamina and movement, especially for a heavyweight. Unfortunately, Jennings’ lack of experience, having only boxed for six years, wasn’t enough to upset the champ who has 63 professional fights, 54 knockouts, and a ton of amateur experience (140 fights 134 wins).

Jennings appeared to be content to go the distance and was in survival mode from the opening bell. His lateral movement wasn’t being utilized to set up an attack but instead was used to survive. Throughout the fight, Klitschko was the aggressor looking to engage Jennings who continued to move and occasionally attack the champ with an awkward rush. The champ easily defended these attacks by smothering Jennings and tying him up. According to one of Klitschko’s trainers, the venerable James Ali Basir, “You win this one, look good the next time because styles make fights always has and always will”.  Bashir went on to say, “It was an ugly fight because Jennings came from a sense of preservation.” Bashir added that, “Klitschko’s next fight will be with Dontay Wilder or Tyson Fury.  One of those guys will be next.” When asked if the fight will take place in the United States, Bashir stated, “That it’s a possibility, but it could also take place in a huge stadium in Europe such as Wembley Arena.”

In the other fight televised by HBO, Sadam Ali continued his climb up the welterweight division with a hard fought win over Francisco Santana. Ali showed growth as a fighter as he was able to outbox Santana who came forward and pressure him throughout the fight. As former middleweight champion Bernard Hopkins stated, “In this fight, Ali graduated from high school and entered his first year of college.”

At 39 years old and quickly approaching the end of his career, the question becomes how much longer will Klitschko fight. James Ali Bashir answered, “The champ feels good and plans on at least three or four more fights.”

Whenever Klitscko finally retires, he will have plenty of options.   The “Ukraine Brain” has a Ph.D. in Sports Science and will have a stream of potentially lucrative opportunities awaiting him.  But until that time comes, he is two wins away from tying former heavyweight champion Larry Holmes for second on the all-time list for consecutive title defenses, at 20.  The fight showed there were a few chinks in the Klitsko armor, and the Wilders and Furys of the world can’t wait for their title shots.

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