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NAILED: Gvozdyk Retains WBC Light Heavyweight Title

Oleksandr “The Nail” Gvozdyk nailed down the first defense of his WBC light heavyweight world title, knocking out Doudou Ngumbu in the fifth round.

Ngumbu (38-9, 14 KOs) injured his right calf and could not continue, forcing referee Eric Dali to stop the fight.

Gvozdyk (17-0, 14 KOs) controlled the action and was well on his way to victory when Ngumbu’s injury occurred. He landed 47 of 204 punches, while Ngumbu landed 18 of 108.

“It wasn’t what I expected, but I did my best,” Gvozdyk said. “Sometimes this happens in the sport of boxing. It is what it is.

“My goal is to unify titles. I will wait to see what my team tells me to do next.”

MEAN MACHINE AND ROBINSON FIGHT TO DRAW

WBO No. 1 welterweight contender Egidijus “Mean Machine” Kavaliauskas maintained his unbeaten record — and kept himself in the running for a shot at champion Terence “Bud” Crawford — although it was not the outcome he wanted. A 10-round majority draw against the upset-minded Philadelphia native Ray Robinson left both fighters unsatisfied.

Kavaliauskas (21-0-1, 17 KOs) pressed the action, but neither guy was hurt in what was largely a tactical contest. The scorecards (97-93 Robinson, 95-95 2x) reflected a fight with numerous swing rounds.

For Kavaliauskas, he still hopes this bout leads to a title opportunity.

“I won the fight, and I won it clearly,” Kavaliauskas said. “The judges did not agree, and I can’t control what fight they were watching. I still want to fight for a world title because I consider this fight a victory. I am still undefeated, and I know I can beat all of the champions in the welterweight division.”

Robinson (24-3-1, 12 KOs) believes he should be in line for a shot at the pound-for-pound king.

“I think everyone in Philadelphia knows I won this fight,” Robinson said. “At the end of the night, I know I beat him. I’m the last person to beat Terence Crawford in the amateurs, and that’s the fight I want.”

In other action:

Kudratillo “The Punisher” Abdukakhorov (16-0, 9 KOs) made his United States debut a successful one, notching a 12-round unanimous decision (118-110, 117-111, 115-113) over Keita Obara (20-4-1, 18 KOs) in an IBF welterweight world title eliminator. Abdukakhorov, a native of Uzbekistan who now calls Malaysia home, was the aggressor throughout the fight and moved closer to a title shot against IBF world champion Errol Spence Jr.

Christian Mbilli (14-0, 13 KOs) was taken the distance for the first time as a pro, pounding out an eight-round unanimous decision over Humberto Gutierrez (33-8-2, 22 KOs) in a super middleweight bout. Scores were as followed: 80-72 and 79-73 (2x).

Jose “Chino” Lopez made quite the statement, forcing fellow 140-pound prospect Askhat Ualikhanov to retire on his stool following the sixth round. Lopez (12-1, 10 KOs) reignited his career, as he rebounded from a second-round knockout loss last August. Ualikhanov (4-2, 2 KOs) saw his four-fight winning streak come to an end.

In one of the biggest upsets of 2019, Juan Ruiz (22-4, 14 KOs) scored a fourth-round stoppage over longtime welterweight contender Fredrick Lawson (27-2, 21 KOs). Ruiz knocked Lawson down once and ended matters with a follow-up flurry.

Philadelphia-born heavyweight prospect Sonny Conto (2-0, 2 KOs) knocked out Omar Acosta (1-6, 1 KO) with a left hook in the opening round. Acosta got to his feet, but he was in no position to continue.

Jeremy “Magic Hands” Adorno was victorious in his professional debut, shutting out Sebastian Baltazar (1-4, 0 KOs) via four-round unanimous decision (40-36 3x) in a super bantamweight bout.

Super featherweight prospect Joshafat “Truth” Ortiz (6-0, 4 KOs) made quick work of James Thomas (6-5, 6 KOs), knocking out Thomas at 2:53 of the opening round.

Philadelphia native Donald Smith (9-0, 6 KOs) knocked out Jose Antonio Martinez (11-18, 6 KOs) in round four of a super featherweight fight.

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