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Seth Mitchell gets stopped in two by Banks

By Gareth Rees: American Heavyweight prospect Seth Mitchell (25-1-1) suffered his first defeat at the hands of Jonathon Banks (29-1-1) as he was stopped in the second round of their World Boxing Council (WBC) Heavyweight title semi-final eliminator. Mitchell went down three times in round two before the referee stopped the bout.

Mitchell looked good in the opening round using his jab and even hurt Banks with a big right hand. But then in the second round Mitchell went for a body shot, but Banks countered with a right hand of his own and from there let his hands go knocking Mitchell down three times. Mitchell did try to get up following the third knockdown but the referee decided that Mitchell was in no state to continue. Mitchell of course didn’t quite agree with the stoppage saying, “I could have gotten through the round, but the referee did what he had to do.”

Banks said that he used the memory of his long-time trainer and mentor Emanuel Steward who of course died a few weeks ago, as motivation in this fight. Banks actually took Steward’s place in the corner of heavyweight ruler Wladimir Klitschko last week in Germany. Banks said “This is dedicated to Emanuel for everything that he did for me since I was 15.”

Mitchell on the other hand was being described by some as the next top US Heavyweight who could possibly go on to win a world title, has now hit a massive bump in his career. Mitchell’s chin has been seen as questionable as he has been rocked before. What hasn’t helped is the fact he had faced some weak opposition in his previous 26 fights with 13 of them against fighters who had losing records. Furthermore he had faced only 3 top 100 fighters previously, which has seemed to be a pattern with the young American Heavyweight prospects with Golden Boy, such as Deontay Wilder. But of course having a suspect chin doesn’t always mean the end of a young heavyweight’s career, Wladimir Klitschko is a prime example, but it will be interesting to see where Mitchell goes from here as Klitschko was at least at world level and had an Olympic gold medal before his weakness was shown.

Mitchell didn’t seem to have let the defeat go to heart saying, “I’ll bounce back. It won spoil my dreams and it might set me back a little. Don’t feel sorry for me, feel sorry for my next opponent.” It will be interesting to see what Golden Boy do with Mitchell next, I’m sure they will give him a soft opponent but I’m hoping it will still be a top 50 fighter, and they don’t give him another easy walkover outside of the top 100.

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