Artur Beterbiev retained his WBC and IBF light heavyweight titles in Montreal, knocking out Marcus Browne in a Montreal main event that saw both fighters bloodied, but only one truly battered.
Beterbiev (17-0, 17 KO) and Browne (24-2, 16 KO) both lost a good amount of blood starting in round four, as an accidental clash of heads opened a cut outside Browne’s eye and a deep gash on the forehead of Beterbiev.
With the doctor telling Beterbiev specifically at the start of round five that he only intended the bout to go for one more round, the titleholder turned on the gas. The fight had already seemed to be trending in his direction, as he’d started to take over the tempo and action following a good pair of opening rounds for Browne.
Once the blood was flowing and Beterbiev was put on alert of an imminent cut stoppage, Browne never really got back into the fight.
The bout was obviously not stopped after the fifth, and Beterbiev just kept putting the pressure on, with Browne running out of answers pretty rapidly. The challenger was down in the seventh round, and there was an argument for stopping the fight in the corner after, but he was sent back out.
In round nine, Browne was dropped on a body shot, and that time he took the 10 count, conceding defeat in a tough, hard-hitting fight where he’d just lost all control of what was happening. It had fully become an Artur Beterbiev fight, and Browne couldn’t do anything about it.
Beterbiev, 36, made no grand call-outs after all was said and done, though obviously a lot of people would love to see him fight Canelo Alvarez if Canelo goes back to 175, or face Dmitry Bivol in a unification bout, or really just about anything. Beterbiev is just someone fight fans are going to tune in to watch, because he is guaranteed excitement and entertainment.