It seems as though the Light Heavyweight division has a new contender.
Jesse Hart (26-2, 21 KOs) made his debut in his new weight class on June 15, 2019 against former title challenger Sullivan Barrera (22-3, 14 KOs). At age 37, Barrera was essentially facing his last stand as a true contender.
Prior to his bout against Hart, Barrera was defeated only by two of the biggest names in the sport. First at the hands of the now retired, but surefire hall of famer Andre Ward, and current WBA Light Heavyweight belt holder Dmitry Bivol.
Barrera would surely provide Hart with a measuring stick as to where he currently stands in the division.
As the contest got underway it was Hart who found success early and often. He punished Barrera on the outside for the first two rounds.
It took the former title challenger a few rounds to get used to the larger Hart but once he did, the complexion of contest began to change. In Round 3, Barrera found his range. He began to land big shots, especially in Round 4 where he seemed to have Hart in trouble.
To the credit of the new Light Heavyweight contender, he regained his composure and began to chip away at Barrera round after round. The eighth was his best as he landed a short left hand that floored his man. Barrera easily beat the count but couldn’t do enough to climb back into the matchup.
The final two rounds saw very little action. The judges were all in agreement that Hart did more than enough to earn the victory. Scores for the contest were 99-90, 97-92 and 96-93, all in favor of Hart.
With the Light Heavyweight division jam packed with tremendous talent, Hart has etched his name among the best that the division has to offer.