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JOSHUA STOPS TAKAM FOR 20-0, 20 KO'S; TAYLOR AND YAFAI WIN TITLE FIGHTS IN THE UNDERCARD


PhilBoxing.com




Anthony Joshua extended his 100% knockout win streak Saturday night, but it was marred with controversy when referee Phil Edwards stepped in to halt the fight against Carlos Takam at 1:34 of the 10th round, which drew some boos even from pro-Joshua fans in a sellout crowd of approximately 78,000 at Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. Takam had cuts on both eyes and had been bombed by a thundering Joshua right hand to his jaw just before Edwards stopped the punishment.

* * *

Takam was not at all happy about the disputed stoppage. Joshua was listed as a 50-1 betting favorite by several Internet sports books. “As you can see, it was a good fight up until the ref stopped it,” Joshua told Sky Sports. “So up until then, I have the utmost respect for Takam for putting on a good show. As I said, I have no interest with what’s going on with the officials. That’s not my job. My job is to worry about my opponent.“ Takam hit Joshua with a strong right hand about 45 seconds into the seventh round.

* * *

Nevertheless, Joshua defended his IBF, IBO and WBA heavyweight titles and kept his perfect knockout record intact (20-0, 20 KOs). Takam (35-4-1, 27 KOs) did not win several rounds, but displayed enough courage and boxed ferociously until the stoppage of the fight. Takam lost by knockout for only the second time in his 12-year pro career. Before the fight, only former WBA champion Alexander Povetkin had knocked out Takam, who lost in October 2014 by TKO in Moscow.

* * *

Ireland's Katie Taylor won her first professional world title by outpointing Argentina's Anahi Sanchez in Cardiff in the undercard of the Joshua-Takam heavyweight championship. Taylor floored her rival with a left shot to the ribs in the second round. Sanchez, who already lost her title after failing to make weight, took heavy blows to her head but survived the punishment. Even with a cut above her right eye, Taylor fought firmly to win 99-90 on all of the judges' cards and claim the WBA lightweight title.

* * *

Kal Yafai retained his WBA world super-flyweight title against Japan's Sho Ishida in Cardiff at the undercard of Joshua-Takam title fight. The British boxer claimed a unanimous victory 118-110, 116-112 and 116-112 that leads to a possible unification in the United States next year. Yafai's extreme speed was seen against Ishida who entered the contest undefeated with 24 wins in 24 fights. Yafai is frequently working on Ishida's body and landed good combinations.

* * *

Former world champion Antonio Margarito is targetting one fight since he came back in 2016. He had wanted a third fight with four division champion Miguel Cotto, who faces Sadam Ali on December 2 at Madison Square Garden, New York City. Cotto says he will retire after the fight and Margarito will not be his last opponent. Margarito (41-8, 27 KOs) had two fights with Cotto and they won apiece in a dramatic rivalry which will always be long remembered in boxing history.

* * *

In 2008, Margarito won the first fight as Cotto suffered his first setback in a heart throbbing war in Las Vegas, where the Mexican brawler blasted Cotto stopping him in the eleventh round. The referee for the bout Kenny Bayless called it "the best fight I've ever done." There was a rematch in 2011, which Cotto dominated right from the opening bell and stopped Margarito in the ninth round when the doctors were worried over Margarito's worsening damaged eye.

* * *

"I think I'll be back in the ring for 2018, maybe in the month of March or in April. And the truth is I would have loved the third fight with Cotto to get revenge, but now it can't happen anymore," said Margarito to ESPN Deportes. "The one opponent that I really wanted, the one I was looking, after everything I won't have the trilogy fight with Cotto, which is what I wanted." Margarito said he was advised to rest for three months due to the cuts he suffered in his win over Carson Jones.

* * *

UFC President Dana White hit former world champion Paulie Malignaggi who has been involved in a heated exchange of words with the UFC superstar Conor McGregor. “Do you think people really want to see Conor vs. Paulie Malignaggi? People want to see Conor fight in MMA. That’s what they want to see. The Mayweather fight was a ... crazy deal. This is where he belongs ... this is the sport he excels in ... where he’s a world champion," White told the “Real Quick with Mike Swick” podcast.

* * *

Malignaggi was hired as a sparring partner by McGregor, to help him prepare for the Mayweather clash. Malignaggi quit after McGregor's team released images of their second sparring session on social media with him being punished by the MMA star. He challenged McGregor to a boxing bout after he left his camp. White claims Malignaggi took a real bad beating and says the punishment was the real reason he left the camp early and not because of what happened on social media with leaked images.

* * *

Several seven-footers are now shooting three-pointers in the NBA. The rate of 23% of all the field goals attempted by 7-footers through Wednesday’s games were 3-pointers, an increase from 14.6% last season and 8.9% in 2015-16. Less than 1% of 7-footers’ shots were 3-pointers not too long ago in 2000-2001, according to NBA Advanced Stats. The 7-3 New York Knicks rookie Kristaps Porzingis is attempting to shoot just as many threes this season as Larry Bird did in any season of his career.

* * *

New Orleans Pelicans forward-center Anthony Davis and Portland Trail Blazers forward-center Meyers Leonard are each firing 1.6 more threes per game this season than they did last season. Timofey Mozgov, 7-1, is trying to join the trend of the modern game by launching 3 pointers. “If you don’t shoot,” he said after a recent practice, “you don’t make.” Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo run the floor and release very far jumpers, changing defensive game plans inside to spread out.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Maloney L. Samaco.


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