By Boxing Bob Newman at ringside
In a classic Mutt-n-Jeff affair, the 6’5” Apti Davtaev and 5’8” Garrett Wilson presented quite a scene in the ring during this heavyweight scrap. The fireplug Wilson’s only chance appeared to be landing a hay-maker on the bearded lumberjack Davtaev, but doing so would prove difficult due to the massive reach difference. Wilson did sting Davtaev on occasion and at times even pressed the action. When Davtaev sensibly employed his jab, he controlled the action. The fourth brought cheers from the crowd as the under-sized underdog Wilson caught Davtaev high on the temple with a looping right the left the Russian momentarily swaying in the breeze, visibly hurt. Wilson tried to capitalize, but couldn’t land a follow-up blow. Wilson had more success in the fifth, with several more right handed leads landing flush on Davtaev’s noggin, thrilling the crowd. It was more of the same in the sixth, Davtaev pressing at times and paying for it with sneaky counter bombs from Wilson. Suddenly at the end of the sixth, confusion arose as referee Gary Rosato, and the handlers for each fighter began conferring in the ring. Rosato then met with members of the Oneida commission. Both fighters were poised to come out for the seventh, but to everyone’s surprise, the bout was over as it was now a six rounder!
Who knew? Apparently Wilson’s corner did as they produced a photo from a cell phone of the contract, showing a signed-for six rounds. Thank you modern technology! All three judges, Glenn Feldman, John McKaei and Wynn Kintz saw it the same at 58-56 for Apti Davtaev, now 14-0-1, 13 KOs. Wilson falls to 18-15-1, 9 KOs. A look at Davtaev’s record shows why he was 13 KOs out of 13 wins. Garrett was by far his best opponent, if not by win/loss record, then in quality and fighting pedigree! This was the second time Wilson won the hearts of the Turning Stone fans. In 2013, he lost a hard fought decision to then top prospect Vyacheslav Glazkov.
What looked to be shaping up as an interesting super lightweight clash between streaking Bakhtiyar Eyubov and journeyman Maurice Chalmers, turned disappointing quickly. A clash of heads left Chalmers with a cut over his right eyebrow and the ringside physician suggesting an end to matters. Chalmers came out sticking and moving against Eyubov’s incoming pressure. Eyubov ate several helpings of leather but wasn’t deterred, landing his own share of counters before the unfortunate clash. Time was 1:59 of round 1, and ruled a “No Contest.” Eyubov remains 13-0, 11 KOs while Chalmers stays at 14-13-1, 8 KOs. From ringside, the cut itself didn’t appear fight ending, but Chalmers wincing and blinking may have played a part in the ring doc’s decision to recommend a halt.
Franchon Crews Dezurn and Tiffany Woodard got the fans into it with a rock-em, sock-em ladies super middleweight war in the second bout of the night, scheduled for six, two-minute rounds. Crews Dezurn came out socking, and Woodard was rocking with every landed shot, once being shoved to the canvas, which referee Benji Esteves correctly ruled no knockdown. Round three saw a Woodard tackle of Crews Dezurn and a sag to the canvas by Woodard- a sloppy affair to be sure. Crews did however find her rhythm in the fourth, displaying her full arsenal of hooks, crosses, jabs, uppercuts and decent defense. The fifth devolved once again into WWE tactics as both gals crashed to the canvas once, in full embrace of each other. The sixth saw Crews Dezurn penalized a point for throwing Woodard to the canvas. Both fighters made it to the final bell where the scores read: Wynn Kintz and Don Ackerman both had it 59-54, while John McKaie tabbed it 59-53, all for Franchon Crews Dezurn who now rises to 3-1, 1 KO. Woodard dips to 4-10-3, 3 KOs. Incidentally, Crews Dezurn was headliner Claressa Shields’ debut opponent.
In the opening fight of the night at Verona, New York’s Turning Stone Casino, over-the-limit cruiserweights Alexey Zubov and Lamont Capers waged a workman like battle against each other over six rounds. Capers almost sprung a massive upset when he caught Zubov with a big right to the temple moments into the first, causing Zubov to sag dramatically, rear end almost touching his heels. But the native Russian recovered and outworked Capers the rest of the round. Zubov kept up the work rate while Capers mostly relied on the occasional big right with moderate success. A cut over Zubov’s right eyes in the fourth did little to deter his aggression. Judges Don Trella, Glenn Feldman and Tom Schreck all saw it 58-56 for Zubov via unanimous decision. Zubov improves to 17-1, 9 KOs, while Capers sags to 8-11-3.