The CBZ Newswire

Thoughts on ESPN Fights

by on May.26, 2010, under Boxing News, CBZ Columnists

by Tom Donelson
May 22, 2010 — South Korea’s J. Hoon Kim had a deceptive record as he lost three of his first five fights.  He learned his trade in the ring but he proved to be a quick learner.  He came into his fight against Panama fighter Ammeth Diaz with a twelve fight winning streak, eleven of those by knock outs.
Diaz’s MO was to box and move, using his jab while following up with an accurate straight right.  Diaz had one flaw, a weak chin, as he has lost seven fights by knockout and he was facing one of the lightweight divisions’ bigger punchers.  Kim attacks and come straight forward. 
The first round started fast as Kim did what Kim loves to do, straight forward attack.  This made him vulnerable to Diaz’s left jab.  In the opening minutes, Diaz’s jab landed straight into Kim’s face and he followed with rights, but Kim continued his assault.  ESPN’s Ted Atlas observed that Diaz had a habit of moving his head to the right and this made him vulnerable to right hand counters. 
Diaz made one mistake, as his jab came in low and Kim countered with a sledge hammer right over the jab just as Ted Atlas predicated.  Diaz legs went wobbly and Kim connected with a second right in the side of Diaz head.  Diaz went down and while he beat the count, his leg quivered as he rose. The referee stopped the fight and Diaz did not protest.  Kim won his thirteenth fight in a row with this exciting one round knockout.

Emanuel Augustus is one of those fighters who would fight any place and anywhere.  Call Augustus in the morning and he will be there that night.  This explained why his record of 38-31-6 was deceptive.   He had lost his share of controversial decisions and there wasn’t a fighter he hadn’t challenged. Floyd Mayweather rated Augustus one of his toughest opponents.  He could box and he could bang as his classic fight with Mickey Ward showed.  In 2001, these two men participated in the fight of the year as they went toe to toe in one of the more brutal fights of the decade. 
After 75 professional fights, Augustus career  has provided boxing fans exciting fights for fans but this grizzly veteran is close to the end to his career.  This fight was typical of Augustus’s previous 75 fights: he took the fight on four day notice and he was fighting a tough young undefeated Russian, Ruslan Provodnikov.  Augustus’s strategy was to build up a lead early in the round and hope to hang in the second half.  The first round showed Augustus’s challenge as he succeeded throwing nearly 100 punches but his punches did little to stop Provodnikov’s frontal attack, whereas Provodnikov punches showed their effect when they connected. 
Ruslan Provodnikov pressed Augustus in the second round as he consistently threw his right whereas Augustus threw combinations to the body and head.  Augustus worked angles as he tried to be difficult to hit but he often found himself the target of Provodnikov own stinging punches. By the end of the third round, Augustus eyes started to swell.
The first half of the fight was close as Augustus threw punches in volume but Provodnikov punches proved more accurate.  In the second half of the fight, Provodnikov youth took hold as he continued to press Augustus, who was getting nailed by shots that he would have avoided in the past.  Augustus had his moment like the first minute of the seventh round as he flashed combinations that looked like the Augustus of old.  He went back to the corner with a bloody nose and possibly broken as Provodnikov came back in the second half of the round. 
Augustus attacked with one last flurry but with a minute left, Provodnikov nailed Augustus with a right and sent Augustus to the canvas.  Augustus survived the rest of the round but there was no doubt who was going to win the fight. It was a question on whether Augustus would survive.  Provodnikov jumped on Augustus and threw lefts to the body and rights to the head.  Augustus was in survival mode but minute and half into the round,  Provodnikov trapped Augustus in the corner and Augustus went down for the second time.  Augustus flapped to the canvas and barely got up. The referee gave the veteran one more chance but this chance would soon dissipate as Provodnikov trapped Augustus in the adjacent corner and this time, Augustus did not escape.
What made the fight unusual was how easily Provodnikov hit Augustus and Augustus only hit Provodnikov a quarter of the time.  Provodnikov controlled most of the fight and showed that he will be threat for a title in the junior Welterweights.    As for Augustus, he held up his end as he gave Provodnikov a tough fight but he showed that age has caught up to him and after seventy six fights, the time may have come to say good bye.  Augustus was one of those unpredictable fighters who do anything in the ring from showboating and grooving to brawling with brawlers.  He entertained many of boxing audiences and provided ESPN Friday night fights with some of the program memorable fights.   He won’t be a Hall of Fame but he showed himself to be a true professional, always ready to fight anyone, anywhere.

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