Azat Hovhannisyan reflects on latest victory, hungry for world title shot at 122 pounds
Earlier this month, world rated junior featherweight Azat Hovhannisyan widely outpointed tough Mexican Jose Santos Gonzalez over 10 rounds on the undercard of Gilberto Ramirez’s win over Sullivan Barrera at the Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles.
Hovhannisyan, who is rated No. 8 by The Ring at 122 pounds, had mixed emotions when it came to his performance.
“I really wanted to knock him out,” Hovhannisyan (20-3, 16 knockouts) told the Ring through his manager Egis Klimas. “I know that’s what the fans want.
“At first, [I was] not very happy, but after seeing the fans and [knowing] that they were still pleased with the performance, I felt a lot better. I’m very critical of myself, so it’s hard sometimes in the moment to appreciate the good work.
“I’m happy I got the win and happy I went 10 rounds. It has been a few years since I have had good rounds in a fight.”
The big-punching Armenian-born fighter, who will turn 33 in mid-August, has won six consecutive fights since dropping a spirited 12-round unanimous decision to then WBC titlist Rey Vargas in May 2018. He is hungry for a second world title shot.
“Anyone with a fucking belt,” Hovhannisyan said excitedly when asked who he wanted to face next. “Or at least a premier fight on a big stage so people who don’t know who I am and how I fight can see me get to work. I think everyone will enjoy my fighting style.”
Manager Egis Klimas, who is famed for his work with Sergey Kovalev and Vasiliy Lomachenko among others, thought his fighter put on a crowd-pleasing effort against Gonzalez.
“His last performance was good,” said Klimas. “He went toe-to-toe with a tough fighter and won every single round.
“As far as what is next, we have to discuss with [our] promoter [Golden Boy]. Azat is ready to face anyone in his weight class.”
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