Photo: HBO Boxing

Trending up is WBA Light Heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol (13-0, 11 KO). This continued Saturday night as he took on his biggest challenge thus far crafty boxer Sullivan Barrera (21-2, 14 KO).

Before the fight most saw it as being too high a step up for the champion. Was seen as the underdog to many thinking he’d be outclassed by Barrera. This was his day to change the narrative completely.

Bivol known as a knockout guy would start the fight on the defensive end. In the first round, he would counter punch for the majority of the round. Found to be fairly successful. Out of the gate, he surprised me.

In the second round, he’d win it in the same fashion as the first. The key to this round at the moment was a head butt that caused a cut. This cut was discovered to be the first in the young career of Bivol.

In the third round Bivol set a standard of a fight he’d keep up for the rest of the fight. He would bounce back and forth, side to side avoiding punches. He started to hit at will with his jab in the round.

Bivol would come out in the fourth with his jab setting up amazing combinations. His hand speed being significantly faster than Barrera, Barrera could not keep up. This would be the case for the rest of the fight.

The middle rounds, although the same Bivol would read Barrera. Defensively made adjustments each and every time he’d get hit seemingly. Even becoming the aggressor in the fight during the period of time.

The aggressor usually isn’t the better defensive fighter in the fight, he was. The aggressor usually isn’t the better counter puncher in the fight, he was. Bivol did it all in any position and at any time.

Round after round I thought Bivol would finish him. Was wrong round after round, but he kept dominating Barrera.

This was all until the 12th round when Bivol hit Barrera with a solid jab to back him up. After the jab Bivol would throw a flurry of punches that would end up leaving Barrera open for a perfect right hook. Bivol had dropped Barrera! Barrera being the tough guy he is would give up, but slowly. Once he got up, he was wobbly and the referee has seen enough.

Bivol looked impressive in this fight. His next fight may be Sergey Kovalev, who also won impressively in the main event of this card. Exciting fighter to watch. Keep your eye on him.

Official result:

Bivol TKO Barrera 1:41 into the 12th round.

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