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Lipinets wins vacant IBF junior welterweight belt over Kondo

November 5, 2017
Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — Sergey Lipinets won a unanimous decision over Akihiro Kondo for the vacant IBF junior welterweight title Saturday night, a decision that was lustily booed by the crowd at Barclays Center.

In a bout featuring lots of action but lots of missed punches, the 28-year-old Lipinets of Kazakhstan won despite dealing with a cut on the forehead that bled for the final six rounds. He won 118-111 on one judge's card and 117-111 on two others even though Kondo, fighting outside of his native Japan for the first time, carried much of the action in the second half of the bout.

The AP scored it 115-113 for Lipinets, who is 13-0. Kondo fell to 29-7-1, losing for the first time in nine fights.

Lipinets was sharp early, using his right lead to score and landing uppercuts. He opened a cut on Kondo's nose in the second round, but it was the gash on Lipinets from a head butt in the sixth round that had more effect in the fight.

"The head butt really impaired my vision and it led to me walking into some stupid shots," Lipinets said.

The Showtime bout took place on the undercard of Deontay Wilder's defense of his WBC heavyweight crown.

"It was a fair decision," Kondo said. "He hit me with a lot of hard punches and I felt like I needed at least a knockdown in the last round."

In what was billed a heavyweight eliminator, Dominic Breazeale (19-1, 17 KOs) stopped Eric Molina after eight rounds. Molina, exhausted after taking a battering in the eighth, had his arms hanging over the ropes when the round ended. A ringside doctor then stopped it.

Molina (26-5) previously has lost to both Wilder and to WBA-IBF champion Anthony Joshua. Breazeale also has lost to Joshua.

"Deontay is who I want to face," Breazeale said. "I have to see him. We have some personal business that we need to square up, man to man. I'm not even going to stick around for the main event, I'm going to get some pizza and catch the highlights later."



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