By: Sean Crose
DAZN took to America on Saturday, offering a packed card at the Wintrust Arena in Chicago. First off on the live stream, Daniel Roman, 25-2-1, defended his WBA super bantamweight strap against
the 20-1-2 Gavin McDonnell. The first three of the scheduled twelve rounds saw Roman apparently edge his high energy opponent. As the fight creeped into the middle rounds, McDonnell looked like he might be starting to take over the tempo. Roman, however, was ultimately able to assert himself through his more accurate punching and stronger footwork.
In the sixth, Roman really started to impact his man. It looked like the end might actually be near. McDonnell, however, was a game and brave opponent. By the final portion of the bout, it was clear that Roman simply had a stronger skill set than McDonnell. In the tenth, it was over, with Roman landing hard and furiously. The California native walked out of the ring with his belt and a TKO victory in tow.
Next up, IBF light heavyweight champ, Artur Beterbiev, 12-0, defended his belt against the 17-0 Callum Johnson. Beterbiev dropped his man in the first, after Johnson seemed to come out of getting caught in the ropes. Johnson got up and survived the round. Then, shockingly, Beterbiev went down from a left in the second. Like Johnson, Beterbiev got up and survived the chapter. The third round saw both men throwing slow and heavy. So did the fourth. Beterviev was able to send his man down again at the end of that round, however. Johnson got up, but the referee smartly stopped the bout.
Next up was Jarrell Big Baby Miller. The colorful heavyweight, 21-0-1, stepped in to face Tomasz Adamek, 53-5. Miller did what he was widely expected to do – and that’s wipe his opponent out quickly. The fight lasted less than two rounds, all of it controlled by Miller, who was so much bigger and stronger it’s perfectly logical to call the match a wipe out. Likable, as always, Miller showed respect to the largely Polish crowd, and once more expressed his interest in facing Anthony Joshua for heavyweight supremacy.
It was time for the main event. The well known 28-2-1 Jessie Vargas entered the ring to face the 24-3 veteran Thomas Dulorme for the WBC silver welterweight title. The first round was close, though Dulorme seemed to have tagged his man in the final seconds. Durlorme, perhaps surprisingly, continued to look good in the second. In the third, Vargas actually seemed to a little hesitant to pull the trigger when it came to aggressive punching.
Both men started trading hard in the fourth – yet, again, Dulorme seemed to walk back to his corner the better man. The middle rounds proved to be a tight, entertaining affair, with both men landing crisply, though Vargas may have entered the eighth with the tempo working into his favor. Yet the eighth showed both men slowing down a bit. The ninth was tight. So was the tenth…until Vargas was able to drop his man. Dulorme got up and survived, but it was a huge moment for Vargas.
Things remained close again in the 11th. The 12th saw both exhausted fighters giving it their all…but it was Dulorme who made Vargas’ glove hit the canvas with a clean knockdown that told the tale. It was a VERY good fight.
The bout ended up being called a majority draw.