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Looking back at ‘ESPN’s Friday Night Fights’
IOWA CITY (BASN) — There was a time that Lionel Butler had dreams of winning a Heavyweight title but those dreams died long ago.
Now he is an opponent, a fighter other young prospects fight on their way up.
At the age of 42 and weighing nearly 280 pounds, Butler came into his fight with Russian Andrey Fedosov overweight and out of shape.
His only option was for the Russian to fight him on the inside, so he didn’t have t chase his opponent and hope that lightening can strike early.
In a competitive first round, Butler did very little chasing but he didn’t have to for Fedosov was perfectly willing to stand in front of the bigger Butler.
He outweighed his opponent by over 50 pounds and having Fedosov exchanged punches fit right into his game plan.
Both punchers laid into each other as nearly 140 punches were thrown in the first round .
Butler’s punches were wider and Fedosov’s punches were straight, short and crisp.
Both fighters were equally accurate, but Fedosov had the slight advantage in a close round but certainly, one could have easily given Butler the first round. It was that close of a round.
In the second round, Fedosov’s accuracy became a factor as Butler acted the part of a punching bag.
As the round progressed, Butler’s punch rate slowed down and he merely took Fedosov punches.
With a minute left, a right hand sent Butler down for the count.
Butler barely got his 270-plus pound up but it didn’t really matter. Fedosov found his mark and another combination sent Butler down for good.
Fedosov looked impressive in the second round but at 6-foot and 220 pounds, he is not a big heavyweight and he is not one punch knockout artist. Despite his knockout win over Butler, it came after nearly 50 punches connecting on Butler’s head.
Small heavyweights either need a powerful punch, a la Mike Tyson, or quick hands like Chris Byrd or Eddie Chambers. Fedosov has neither.
The main event featured two Middleweights looking for a shot a title.
Roman Karmazin, a former junior Middleweight champion, faced knockout artist Dioniso Miranda.
In the first round, Karmazin maintain his distance and tried to slip a right or left hook over Miranda’s left.
Miranda showed himself to be a one handed puncher.
If he used his left, he kept Karmazin off balanced and his right nailed him . Miranda did not use his left often except to stick it out as a range finder.
In the opening minutes of the third round, several Miranda rights shook Karmazin.
He became weak knee as he retreated. Miranda nearly had Karmazin out, but he managed to stay up and survived the round.
Over the next five rounds, Karmazin occasionally countered Miranda with rights and occasional left hook whereas he would nail Karmazin with his right.
Karmazin looked like he solved the mystery of Miranda in the eighth round as his countered started to show its effect.
He didn’t seem able to throw his right with accuracy and with four rounds left, Karmazin was behind but looked liked momentum changed in his favor.
The ninth round replicated the third as Miranda right nearly stopped Karmazin again. Miranda sent him down for an eight count. Like in the third round, Miranda failed to close the show and allowed Karmazin to stay in the fight.
Champions have the abilities to change defeat into victory.
Miranda attacked in the opening minutes of the tenth round but with a minute left, he ran into a Karmazin right. He threw another right but the delayed reaction from the first right finally sent Miranda down. Karmazin summoned all of his experience as he nailed Miranda with one more right.
The left side of Karmazin’s face was reddened by Miranda constant right hand but he found a way to win a fight that he was losing. Karmazin survived as he defeated a worthy opponent and Karmazin wants to be the first Russian to win titles in two different weight classes and this is the first step.
Does he have enough to make that final push?