Conor Benn outpoints Adrian Granados over 10 rounds, Maxi Hughes upsets Jovanni Straffon
LEEDS, England – There was no spectacular knockout this time.
Fiery British star Conor Benn scored a 10-round unanimous decision win over Adrian Granados at Headingley Stadium on Saturday, but it was not the type of emphatic showing that he would have hoped for. The official scores were 100-90, 99-91 and 97-93.
Benn (19-0, 12 knockouts) was aggressive from the start, forcing the Mexican on to the back foot with a savage and relentless attack. When the bombs landed they were impressive, but Granados frequently timed the right hand and made the Englishman look very wild.
With 13 years of professional experience under his belt, Granados was cute enough to make Benn miss and his jab was quite effective at times. However, he couldn’t put a serious dent in the home fighter and winning rounds away from home – anywhere – is a difficult task, never mind doing it off the backfoot.
Frustrated by the flow of the fight, Benn beckoned his man to stand in front of him in the seventh but Granados, a savvy veteran, simply smiled and shook his head. The visitor also had a good eighth round, although Benn struck with one memorable right hand bomb.
The action was limited in the closing sessions and overall the fight was disappointing.
In April, Benn made the type of statement that sends shockwaves through the sport when he scored an emphatic first-round stoppage of Samuel Vargas. Subsequently, there was talk of huge domestic dustups against former world titleholders Amir Khan and Kell Brook, as well as suggestions that the 24-year-old power-puncher could challenge the current 147-pound elite.
Khan , Brook or even former four-weight world titleholder Adrien Broner are realistic targets for now.
Granados drops to 21-9-3 (15 KOs).
In an all-southpaw matchup at lightweight, Maxi Hughes boxed beautifully to claim a 12-round unanimous decision over prohibitive pre-fight favorite Jovanni Straffon. The official scores were 120-107, 120-107 and 119-109
From the opening bell Hughes (24-5-2, 5 KOs) exploited the Mexican’s defensive deficiencies, scoring with a sharp right jab and some nice combinations before locating the escape routes with ease. Straffon’s left hand dropped continually and it was a mistake that almost cost him dearly.
A massive left counter landed flush early in the fifth and it was a near-miracle that the visitor survived. The Yorkshireman was guilty of smothering his follow-up assault and was a bit arm weary when the session ended, but there was only going to be one winner.
Straffon (24-4-1, 17 KOs) punched holes through the air and Hughes boxed off the target effortlessly.
At bantamweight, Ebanie Bridges (7-1, 3 KOs) overcome what may be a broken right hand to claim a close eight-round decision over Mailys Gangloff. The lone scorecard by referee Steve Gray read 77-76 in favor of the popular Australian.
Bridges, 34, was landing power punches with authority in the early going but backed away in clear distress after landing a big right at the end of the second round. Her French opponent sensed an opportunity and raised the tempo for the remainder of the bout, but it wasn’t enough to pull the upset. Bridges caught a lot of punches but battled back gamely despite the injury.
Gangloff drops to 5-3-2 (2 KOs).
Tom Gray is Managing Editor for Ring Magazine. Follow him on Twitter: @Tom_Gray_Boxing