LIVERPOOL — Tony Bellew was dominant on Saturday in dispatching BJ Flores in three rounds to retain his WBC cruiserweight title.
Bellew played the role of counter-puncher while Flores was the stalking aggressor. In the first round, Flores was able to capitalize and catch the champion with wide right hands.
The momentum turned suddenly when a Bellew counter left strayed low. Flores turned to complain to the referee about the non-call, allowing Bellew to pounce with hooks for the first knockdown.
An enraged Flores pressed Bellew for the rest of the round as both men were stunned with haymakers. The American challenger would get the worst of the damage as Bellew’s better accuracy put Flores down twice more to conclude the round.
Flores would futilely attempt to drag Bellew into a brawl in round three. But the champion remained calm and moved away to create space when needed. A short exchange resulted in Flores crumbling to his knees from a left hook counter. The challenger was not up fully at the count of 10 and did not protest the referee stoppage.
The real fun happened seconds afterward with Bellew storming from the ring to confront David Haye. Did Bellew sell this potential fight for you?