Vanes Martirosyan defeated Ishe Smith by MD in Las Vegas tonight, in one of the best Junior Middleweight fights of the year. Leading boxing experts indicated that this fight would be boring. I predicted this to be action packed fight and turned out to be right. Vanes as always came to fight with his trademark entertaining style and Ishe Smith deserves a lot of credit for the performance that he delivered.
I haven’t been a big fan of Ishe’s comments during the week and he has also blocked me on twitter, but I’m staying neutral. Smith was fantastic tonight, he took the fight to Vanes and despite this the Armenian fighter found another gear and got the win.
The fight started slow in the first couple of rounds and Vanes clearly had the upper hand. But from round three onwards the fight came to life. Smith began to land damaging looping body punches and hooks and he went to war with Vanes. Smith got the better of the exchanges for large parts of the middle to late rounds, but Vanes dropped Smith twice. Smith got careless coming in and Vanes found the perfect counter punches, despite the Showtime commentators being incorrect and saying Vanes doesn’t counter punch.
The commentary was quite poor during this event. Despite numerous entertaining exchanges and fantastic rounds, no excitement was broadcasted to subscribers. Rounds 5, 6 and 7 were up there with the best from any Junior Middleweight bout for 2015.
Ishe backed up the talk at the press conference with this display tonight. Despite some brain snaps and concentration issues which are consistent with his fights. Ishe really did what he had to, he was down heavily on the cards and he was searching for the knockout. Smith hurt Vanes to the body several times and it seemed to slow Vanes down a little. But just as expected Vanes replied in a big way when he needed it and he dropped Smith twice in the middle to late rounds to do enough to get the decision.
The fight was reasonably close but Vanes won by 2-3 rounds. The win is meaningful as it will set Vanes up for a shot at the full WBC JMW title which is being held hostage by Floyd Mayweather Jr at the moment. Smith can also find himself in another meaningful fight after this gutsy performance.
Vanes got a MD, which wasn't right. But it was to be expected. Ishe Smith is part of TMT and this was a Floyd card. Leading boxing identity tweeted that this fight was "easy work for Vanes". I disagree and I'm sure Vanes does to.
Probably the best JMW fight of 2015 for me so far.