Last night in Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Hollywood, Florida we had two bouts featuring Asian fighters on a card on DAZN. Going in both were heavily fancied to pick up wins and that's exactly what they both did.
The first of the two was hard hitting Azeri Heavyweight Mahammadrasul Majidov (3-0, 3) who continued moving forward in his career with a TKO win against Puerto Rican Puerto Rican Sahret Delgado (8-1, 7).
On paper this looked like an intriguing match up, but it was essentially over when the two men stepped on the scales yesterday and Delgado weighed in at close to 300lbs. Due to the excess weight Delgado looked slow and clumsy and was using a lot of gas to do anything.
After winning the first 2 rounds the Azeri close the show in round 3 when he had Delgado out on his feet, forcing the bout to be stopped.
The second, and more notable, Asian on this show was 2016 Olympic Gold medal winner Daniyar Yeleussinov (10-0, 6) [Данияр Маратұлы Елеусінов] . Th talented Yeleussinov was up against former unified Light Welterweight world champion Julius Indongo (23-3, 12) and was looking to do 2 things. He was looking to claim the IBF Inter-Continental Welterweight title and he was looking to score the biggest win of his professional career.
From the opening round it was clear Yeleussinov had a point to prove and be dropped Indongo in opening 3 minutes with a left hand. He came close to stopping the Namibian, but credit to Indongo who showed good survival instincts. This instincts however couldn't help him forever and a second knockdown in round 2 broke his spirit. Indongo beat the count but was a beaten fighter, suggesting to the referee that enough was enough.
For Yeleussinov, who had seen people complain about how he'd adapted to the professional ranks, this was the perfect performance and the type of win will should convince his team that he's a genuine talent and that he needs big chances. This was a fantastic performance and something that showcased exactly what Yeleussinov was about. A world title fight in 2021 seems unlikely, but he could end up impressing again next year and getting himself right in the mix by the time we begin 2022.
Later today we'll see 2016 Olympic Gold medal winner Daniyar Yeleussinov (9-0, 5) [Данияр Маратұлы Елеусінов] take a huge step up in class as he takes on former unified Light Welterweight world champion Julius Indongo (23-2, 12) in an IBF Inter-Continental Welterweight title bout on DAZN.
Yesterday the two men took part in their weigh in for the contest and both men came in under the Welterweight limit, and did so with some room to spare.
On the scales the unbeaten "Kazakh Thunder" was 146.6lbs for the bout, comfortably under the Welterweight limit for the biggest bout of his professional career. Indongo was even lighter on the scales, coming in at 146.2lbs for the bout, almost a full 1lb under the 147lb limit.
Despite neither man pushing the scales both looked in great condition and it was clear that both had put in the hard work in training.
Sadly not everyone put work in in training and the heavy weight bout between unbeaten Azeri Mahammadrasul Majidov (2-0, 2) and hard hitting Puerto Rican Sahret Delgado (8-0, 7) certainly seemed like one man didn't really care about his shape.
On the scales Majidov was 232.6lbs, marginally heavier than he was last December against Tom Little, where Little came in heavy at 251lbs. Delgado on the other hand wanted to really see what weight the scales could handle and came in at 291lbs, a career heaviest. This isn't just a career heaviest for Delgado, but smashed his previous heaviest by some margin, with his previous heaviest being 269lbs back in 2016. Amazingly Delgado was 198lbs on his debut, almost 100lbs lighter than he is here.
Given that both of the Heavyweights are 6'3" this is going to look like an in shape athlete against....someone who looks like a tub of lard.
On Friday night in the US we'll see 2016 Olympic Gold medal winner Daniyar Yeleussinov (9-0, 5) [Данияр Маратұлы Елеусінов] battle former unified Light Welterweight world champion Julius Indongo (23-2, 12). The bout is a big step up in class for Yeleussinov and his first genuine test since turning professional following his success in Rio.
Despite being the man taking a very clear and significant step up in class Yeleussinov, an unbeaten Kazakh, is regarded as the very clear betting favourite here and is 1/9 to pick up the win by any method. Indongo on the other hand is the very clear under-dog at 5/1 to pick up the win and get his career back on track after some recent set backs to top names, Terence Crawford and Regis Prograis.
The draw, for those interested, is 25/1.
As well as the "To Win" market there is also a "Method of victory" market.
The preferred outcome here is a stoppage for Yeleussinov, at 1/2, which would see him becoming the third man to stop the Namibian former world champion. A decision win for the Kazakh is priced at 12/5, which would make him the first man to decision over the "Blue Machine". For backers of Indongo he is 8/1 to win inside the distance and a huge 12/1 to win on the scorecards.
For fans wanting to watch this one it will be shown live on DAZN.
Earlier today Vesti.Kz reported that 2016 Olympic Gold medal winner Daniyar Yeleussinov (9-0, 5) [Данияр Маратұлы Елеусінов] would be returning to the ring on November 27th as he takes on former unified Light Welterweight world champion Julius Indongo (23-2, 12).
According to Vesti the bout will be part of a card headlined by a clash between former Gennady Golovkin opponents Daniel Jacobs (36-3, 30) and Gabriel Rosado (25-12-1, 14).
The talented Yeleussinov has had a frustrating year, seeing the bout with Indongo slip from March to November, slowing any kind of momentum he had. It wasn't helped with various dates slipping, including potential dates in September and October.
Aged 29, and with his 30th birthday coming next March the potential of Yeleussinov is slipping away and the Matchroom promoted fighters will know that he needs to kick on in 2021, if he gets past Indongo in November. He turned professional with high expectations, and although it took a while for him to adapt to the professional ranks he has been looking good in recent bouts. Last year he managed to fight 4 times, the year before he fought 5 times. Sadly fighting just once in 2020 is a complete momentum killer, even if we do understand the reason why he was so inactive.
Fingers crossed that in 2021 we'll see Yeleussinov matched harder so that he could, potentially, get a world title fight before the end of next year. If not it could be too late for the talented Kazakh to ever make the most of his abilities in the professional ranks.
It's fair to state the obvious sometimes and admit that 2020 has been a bad year for pretty much everyone. Among those fighters who have had a particularly frustrating time is 2016 Olympic Gold medal winner Daniyar Yeleussinov (9-0, 5) [Данияр Маратұлы Елеусінов].
The talented Kazakh was originally supposed to fight former unified Light Welterweight world champion Julius Indongo (23-2, 12) way back on April 17th. That was postponed due to the on going global situation with the plan then being for Yeleussinov to fight in September. Those plans have failed to materialised and now Vesti.Kz have been told that it will be November before Yeleussinov will be back in action. And even then it's expected to be in late November!
The Kazakh's manager, Ziya Aliyev is quoted by Vesti as saying:
"Daniyar will fight in November. Towards the end of November"
Given the on going issues with DAZN, who don't have a great deal of shows scheduled for their service, it seems very much like fighters are being caught in the cross fire. Something that hasn't been helped, at all, by the wider issues affecting people in every part of the world. Sadly for a talent like Yeleussinov, who isn't yet a big enough deal to headline a card, his career is pretty much at the behest of so many others.
We really hope that this will be the last delay for the "Kazakh Thunder", though we can't help thinking that we'll see more wasted time in his career.
Although he's only 29 it's close to a year since he was last in the ring, and with only 9 fights to his name he's not yet approaching a world title fight. A win over Indongo will open up doors at that level, but there's no guarantee that his next bout will still be the former unified champion, who is heading to his 38th birthday.
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