Photos by David Martin Warr
In a clash for the vacant WBC cruiserweight title, #1 rated Noel Mikaelian (27-2, 12 KOs) stopped former champion Ilunga Junior Makabu (29-4, 25 KOs) in round three on Saturday night at Casino Miami Jai Alai in Miami Florida. Mikaelian dropped Makabu in round two with a right hand. Mikaelian tried to finish Makabu but Makabu weathered the storm. In round three, Mikaelian floored Makabu again. Makabu beat the count but the referee waved it off. Time was 1:00.
“I didn’t expect the knockout so early, but I knew my hand would be raised (in victory) at the end of the night,” said Mikaelian. “I’m so happy. I waited two years. I was so close to winning that belt and this time I didn’t want to leave any doubts.
“I had a great camp…I’m the first German to win a world championship on American soil in 90 years, since Max Schmelling.”