Results: Avanesyan smashes Kelly in 6th round knockout

By Boxing News - 02/20/2021 - Comments

By Scott Gilfoid: Watching David Avaneysan make easy work of Josh Kelly tonight was something out of a war movie in a fight that ended with a white flag in the sixth round. When this fight got out of hand in the fifth, it was a pure slaughter from that point on.

Avanesyan (27-3-1, 15 KOs) retained his EBU welterweight title on Saturday night with his 6th round TKO over the game but limited Kelly at the Wembley Arena in London, UK. The fight was intriguing with how it swung Avanesyan’s way after Kelly got the better of him in rounds one through three.

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After three rounds, it looked Kelly was well on his way to a victory, but things changed rapidly from that point on, with Avanesyan going into a seek & destroy mode.

In the fourth round, Avanesyan looked like he no longer cared what Kelly hit him with. He was going to walk through the shots and hit him as hard as he could with every punch.

Once Avanesyan started doing that, Kelly looked like he fell apart mentally and physically. He became flustered and was bleeding from the back of his head and his right eye.

Image: Results: Avanesyan smashes Kelly in 6th round knockout

It didn’t help that Kelly’s trainer Adam Booth seemed to lose his senses completely, barking to Kelly with a wild-eyed look to him, ‘Just win rounds. If they stop it, we’ll win the fight.

That’s not what you want your trainer to be telling you after just four rounds. I mean, come on. Booth wasn’t instilling a sense of confidence the way he was talking.

Kelly (10-1-1, 6 KOs) found out the hard way what it’s like to be on the receiving end of a knockout artist and was brutal to watch. The previously unbeaten Kelly was covered with blood from head to toe at the end of the fight.

All you could think was, ‘What happened to the guy?’ The speed with which Avanesyan reduced Kelly to a bloody mess was incredible. Once second, Kelly looked normal, and two rounds later, he looked unrecognizable to the fighter that had started the match.

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Avanesyan dropped Kelly twice with his sledgehammer blows in the sixth round, and that all she wrote.

Kelly’s trainer Adam Booth hurriedly tossed in the towel to have referee Victor Loughlin stop the bout, which dutifully did, stopping it at 2:15 of the round. It took away the drama of the affair with the fight being stopped the way it was.

I mean, Avanesyan had devoted an entire year of his career trying to get Kelly in the ring, and then when he finally does, his trainer Booth throws in the towel at the first sign of trouble. How about letting Kelly go out on his shield?

I don’t know about you guys, but Gilfoid wanted to see Kelly go out on his shield. He may have been able to come up with a miracle knockout.

In the second round, Kelly had Avanesyan badly hurt after catching him with a perfect left hook to the head. If Kelly hadn’t missed his follow-up shots, we would have talked about him in glowing terms instead of Avanesyan.

On the positive side, Kelly showed amazing hand speed and looked top-notch on defense through most of the fight. He stayed off the ropes and occasionally put up his guard to block headshots.

Things went wrong for Kelly when he started to feel the power of Avanesyan in the fourth round, and he reacted in a way that showed that he was very, very afraid. Kelly looked more than flustered. He had the appearance of someone that was coming unglued at the seams.

Kelly refused to stand his ground from the fourth round, which forced Avanesyan to chase him. It was like watching a dog chasing someone. Kelly had lost it completely, and it stopped being a fight at that point.

In hindsight, you would have liked Kelly to show some courage and fight it out, but he chose the weaker path to run from the battlefield. As a result, his cornerman Booth threw in the white towel of surrender, and he went out weakly.

Image: Results: Avanesyan smashes Kelly in 6th round knockout

Kelly’s body language looked bad at the end, showing that he didn’t have the ability to stand and fight once Avanesyan started putting it on him.

I hate to say it but I’m not sure where Kelly can go after watching the way he was smashed to bits by Avanesyan. When Kelly started feeling Avanesyan’s power, he clearly didn’t have it in him to fight. The thing is if Kelly can’t handle Avanesyan’s power, how on earth is he going to be able to handle the power of the top welterweights?

Obviously, it’s completely out of the question for Kelly to fight at the world level after this.

These are the options for Kelly:

  • Retire
  • Domestic level
  • Exhibition fights