Boxing News – Dirrell Destroys Oganov

By Boxing News - 11/03/2008 - Comments

dirrel4454.jpgBy Jim Dower: Undefeated super middleweight contender Andre Dirrell (17-0, 12 KOs) put on an impressive display of power punching and speed against #6th ranked World Boxing Organization contender Victor Oganov (28-2, 28 KOs), stopping him in the 6th round of a scheduled 12-round bout in the WBO Super Middleweight Title Eliminator bout on Saturday night at the Home Depot Center, in Carson, California. Also on the line was the vacant WBO NABO super middleweight title. The fight was stopped in the 6th round after Dirrell, 26, nailed Oganov with a left uppercut followed by a powerful left hook that drove Oganov to the ropes where he covered up.

However, he appeared perfectly okay, making the ending of the fight seem rather odd to say the least. In fact, Oganov had been fighting well in the previous round, landing some power hooks and right hands to the head. The ending, though, seemed fitting with the strange way that the fight had been refereed. In the 4th round, Dirrell was dropped to the canvas by a left hand that seemed to be low. However, the referee failed to give Dirrell, who was wincing badly in pain from the apparently low blow, time to recover from the shot.

It looked from all appearances that the referee wasn’t buying the fact that the punch had been low, which seems to beg the question: if the punch wasn’t low, then why wasn’t it ruled a knockdown? If you rule out a low blow, then Oganov should have been awarded knockdown, because Dirrell clearly hit the canvas after getting hit with the big left hand shot.

Dirrell, a former bronze medalist for the U.S. in the 2004 Olympics, fought well on the inside using his speed and high volume work rate to pound the over-matched Oganov with shots. The fight was never close, despite Oganov’s impressive record going into the fight. Most of his wins had come at the expense of low quality third tier fighters, and in facing Dirrell, he was clearly in way over his head. Without the hand speed, work rate or size, the small 5’8″ Oganov found himself on the receiving end of a storm of punches in the first three rounds as Dirrell unloaded on him with everything but the kitchen sink trying to take him out.

Oganov proved to have an excellent chin, taking Dirrell’s flurries without getting hurt in the slightest. However, it was clear that he wouldn’t be able to continue to absorb this kind of terrible punishment if it were to continue for long. Unfortunately for him, it did. Dirrell threw well over 100 punches in the 1st round alone, and seemed to have punched himself out by the end of the round. Luckily for him, he was facing only Oganov, because I think Dirrell would have been in serious trouble if he had been in against a more skilled and powerful super middleweight like Jermain Taylor, Andre Ward, Lucian Bute or Mikkel Kessler, all of which I think would have taken Dirrell out in the early rounds with his sloppy fighting.

Dirrell threw slightly less punches in the 2nd round, as he was still tired out from the first. Oganov was finally able to land a few left hooks, but he mostly missed with his shorter, slower shots. Dirrell constantly backed up, throwing fast jabs and combinations, picking off Oganov as he would plod forward. In the 3rd round, Oganov was cut on the side of his right eye, with the blood dripping down into his eye making it hard for him to see out of it.

By the 5th round, Dirrell was beginning to show signs of tiring out from his high work rate and was starting to slow down enough so that Oganov was able to hit him with some powerful hooks to the head as he chased him around the ring. At the beginning of the 6th round, the referee suddenly stopped the fight after Dirrell landed two left hands, even though Oganov looked unhurt and ready to continue fighting. The crowd booed the stoppage. The fight was officially stopped at 0:28 by referee Ray Corona.

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