By William Lloyd: Conor ‘The Destroyer’ Benn (19-0, 14 KOs) put on a masterclass performance on Saturday night in defeating the durable Adrian Granados (21-9-3, 15 KOs) by a lopsided 10 round unanimous decision in front of 20,000 fans at the Headingley Stadium in Leeds, England.
The wide scores reflected Benn’s impressive performance, with the judges scoring 100-90, 99-91, and 97-93.
Benn, 24, would have likely gotten the knockout that he was hoping to get if Granados had chosen to fight him instead of fighting negatively for the entire 10 round fight.
To his credit, Granados did occasionally take the fight to the bigger man Benn but didn’t do it often enough for the fight to be exciting and for him to have had a chance to win.
Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn had to have had an inkling that they would see this type of fight from the 32-year-old Granados because this is his style at this point in his career.
Earlier in Granados’ career, he used to stand and slug with his opponents, but he stopped doing that after Danny Garcia knocked him out in 2019.
Against a weaker puncher, Granados would have mixed it up more, but not against a heavy-handed fighter like Benn. That would have been a crazy move.
Granados didn’t want to engage
“Conor Benn was sort of critical of himself. Granados went into his shell a little bit, but he’s a wily fox, Granados,” said Eddie Hearn to iFL TV. “He’s experienced and he didn’t want to engage. He wanted to frustrate him.
“That’s exactly what Conor Benn needs is that fight,” Hearn continued. “10 valuable rounds. He was too reckless early in the fight, and he was pumped. It was just a wild atmosphere.
“There’s nothing wrong going 10 rounds with Granados in a shutout and he can move on. Oh come on,” said Hearn when told that Granados thinks he won the fight.
“Every judge gave every round to Conor Benn. Actually, one gave it 97-93. I did give Granados two rounds. Could you have given him three? Maybe. You can’t win a fight purely on the backfoot, doing nothing.
— Adrian Granados (@ELTigreAG) September 5, 2021
“Listen, Conor missed a lot. He was throwing nonstop and hitting him to the body, hitting him to the arms. He won that fight comfortably,” said Hearn on Benn’s performance.
Eddie Hearn may be right about Granados tasting Benn’s power early on and decided that he didn’t want to mix it up with him and risk it.
If Granados had Errol Spence Jr.’s type of power, he gladly would have stayed in the pocket and went to war.
Hearn wants Khan vs. Benn in December
“We just did a five-fight deal with Conor Benn. We have a plan for him to become a world champion. I’ve said before that we just got to stay calm. Everyone is going, ‘Broner, Porter.’
“There’s a long way to go. I want him to fight Broner and Khan, but I still appreciate that there’s a long way to go. I would put him in with Amir Khan in December, no problem.
“I don’t think he [Khan] looks at those younger generation fighting, saying, ‘I want to fight them.’ But he might look at Conor after tonight and say, ‘Give me the money.’ If so, let’s do it.
“Yes, absolutely,” said Hearn when asked if Khan can make just as much money fighting Conor Benn as he would Kell Brook. “Yes, because I will pay up for that fight because that’s a fight that I want to see,” said Hearn.
Hearn has been talking about wanting Amir Khan to agree to fight Benn, but he hasn’t shown interest in the fight. Hearn is wasting his time talking up a fight between Khan and Benn because it will not happen.