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Mike Jones destroys Irving Garcia; Tyner stops Smith

By Dan Ambrose: Unbeaten welterweight contender Mike Jones (22-0, 18 KO’s) kept his unbeaten record intact with an impressive over-powering 5th round knockout win over Irving Garcia (17-5-3, 8 KO’s) at the Boardwalk Hall, in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Jones, 27, the NABA, WBO NABO welterweight champion, unloaded with a flurry of power shots in the 5th round to put Garcia on the canvas. The finishing blow was a hard left to the body. Referee Randy Neumann halted the bout at 1:22 with Garcia still on the canvas and hurt. The finishing shot appeared to be low, but referee Randy Neumann was partially shielded from the view of the punch and didn’t consider it low.

Jones, ranked #2 WBO, #3 WBA, #7 IBF and #7 WBC, dominated the fight, landing powerful combinations and huge right hands to dominate the action in rounds one through four. Although Garcia landed some tasty shots of his own, he kept getting hit with some really hurtful shots in each round and was unable to keep Jones off of him. Trying to negate Jones’ power is really hard to do, because he loads up with basically everything he keeps coming.

Garcia tried vainly to stand up to Jones’ shots tonight, but eventually it was too much for him and he folded. After the fight, Jones said that he’d like to fight WBC welterweight champion Andre Berto next. That would be a great fight given Berto’s excellent hand speed and good power. It would be interesting to see what Berto could do to keep Jones off of him. However, we still don’t know how good Jones is at this point.

Garcia was stopped in the 4th round in his last fight against knockout puncher Luis Carlos Abregu in May. What Jones did with Garcia has to be seen in the light that Garcia was stopped a round earlier by Abregu in his prior fight. But Jones does have big power and it would be a great fight if Berto chooses to defend his WBC title against Jones.

In the undercard of the Jones-Garcia fight on Friday, welterweight contender Antwone Smith (18-2-1, 10 KO’s) was shockingly stopped in the 9th round by 34-year-old Lanardo Tyner (24-3, 15 KO’s). This was a fight that Smith, 23, was supposed to be able win, as Tyner had already been soundly beaten in the past by Lamont Peterson, Saul Alvarez and Mike Arnaoutis. However, Smith got off to a fast start like he always does, throwing a lot of punches but lacking the power to put Tyner away.

By leaving Tyner in the fight, it gave him the opportunity to come back in the 9th round and land a perfect left to the body that sent Smith to the canvas. The fight was stopped at 1:15 by referee Earl Morton, as Smith looked too hurt to continue.

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