Eddie Hearn reports Michael Conlan is concious & stable
By Matt Lieberman: Eddie Hearn reports that Michael Conlan is conscious and stable at the hospital following his 12th round knockout loss against WBA featherweight champion Leigh Wood on Saturday night at the Nottingham Arena in Nottingham, England.
Conlan (16-1, 8 KOs) was knocked out of the ring in the 12th round by the champion Wood (26-2, 16 KOs), who was in a desperate situation needing a knockout to win the fight.
When Conlan fell through the ropes, his brother was there to catch him to prevent him from falling on the hard floor outside of the ring. Although Conlan had 20 seconds to get back in the ring, he was in the condition to climb back in.
Subsequently, referee Steve Gray waved it off at 1:25 of the 12th, and paramedics were summoned to attend to the badly hurt Conlan.
Conlan in stable condition
“We’re told that he’s conscious and stable at the hospital. We’re waiting for some further news,” said Eddie Hearn to Matchroom Boxing on Michael Conlan’s condition.
“We hope that he’s okay. We’d love to be celebrating right now, but it just doesn’t feel right. Our thoughts are with Michael Conlan after what was the best fight, the most dramatic fight,” Hearn said.
It was one of the most incredible comebacks this writer has ever witnessed from a fighter. I mean, Wood looked like he was on his way to an early defeat after being dropped in the first round by Conlan, and hurt in the second, third, fifth, ninth, and tenth rounds.
It seemed like whenever Wood would enjoy a degree of success, Conlan would tag him with a jarring shot that would cause his legs to wobble.
“I’m speechless with what we witnessed tonight, and that’s boxing,” Hearn continued about Wood’s performance. “We know it’s brutal, but we just hope that Michael Conlan is okay.
“Once we find out he’s okay, no. We need to respect the performance of Leigh Wood, and the guts of Leigh Wood,” said Hearn when asked will the ending of the fight take away from the performance by Leigh Wood.
“We need to respect the performance by Michael Conlan, I thought he was brilliant tonight. It was a brilliant fight. How Leigh Wood was even standing in the second and third, body shots ripped in the fourth, fifth, sixth.
“He comes back in the fight and starts to hurt Michael Conlan. Knockdown in the 11th, was it or wasn’t it? I said to Leigh Wood after he got up off his stool in the 12th round, ‘You have to knock this kid out. Go for it, let your hands go.’
“I would love to tell you that I knew he was going to do it. I thought after everything he’d [Wood] gone through in the fight, how could he summon up the strength to win this fight by knockout? But he turned the lights out on Michael Conlan standing up,” Hearn said.
Michael’s brother caught him
“He came through the ropes at our feet and his dad and brother caught him. There was no way he was going to get back up in the ring and the fight was over. I knew the fight was over because he was out.
“We haven’t played a lot of the footage yet because we want to make sure he’s okay, but the fight was over before he went through the ropes. You get 20 seconds to get back in, but there was no way he was going to get up, let alone get back in.
“As I said, it would have been nice to celebrate, jump into the ring and hug everyone. Although not everyone gets on in boxing, it’s a really tight-knit close community.
“It doesn’t matter what fighter you are and what gym you train at, what promoter you don’t like, at moments like this, everyone prays for the fighter. It shows you how brave these fighters are and how much respect they deserve.
“Like I said, when the time is right, we’ll celebrate and at the moment, this is not the time. It was just the heart of Leigh Wood, and Conlan was brilliant.
“I was sitting here, Jaime Conlan was next to me and his dad was next to me. I was up and he was saying, ‘Shut up’ and I was saying, ‘Shut up,’ and we were having great banter backward and forwards.
“I was ready to say to his [Conlan] in 90 seconds, ‘congratulations, your son boxed a masterclass tonight.’ I just wanted Leigh Wood to end the fight safely and on his feet at times in that fight,” said Hearn.
Hearn doubted Wood could win
“When he knocked him [Conlan] down in the eleventh, I actually think it was a knockdown because it was a punch, whether he tangled his feet or whatever he did. A punch landed and he went down. It’s irrelevant now anyway, but the momentum started to change a little bit.
“I just felt that Leigh Wood wouldn’t have the power in his hands after what he’d been through to score a clean knockout. It’s just amazing. His next fight if it’s in Nottingham, it’ll be in the City Ground. We promised him that, and he’s a hero in my eyes.
“I mean, what he’s come from. People have to remember that Leigh Wood was boxing for nothing. He got beat by Gavin McDonnell on the undercard in Hull for the British title.
“I thought his career was over. He never stopped looking for opportunities, grinding away. He always had good support in the city, but tonight, he made an absolute fortune and changed his life forever. But it’s just a start for him.
“When you see what the guys go through in the ring tonight, they deserve absolutely everything they get. We got to push for Leigh Wood to get the biggest fights now and make sure he gets what he deserves.
“That planning comes once we know Michael is okay, and obviously a huge fight in two weeks’ time. Josh Warrington against Kiko Martinez. More on the line for that than ever,” said Hearn.
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