It was described as a dangerous and unnecessary risk with so much on the line. Yet, once Josh Taylor (17-0, 13 KOs) stepped into the ring against Apinun Khongsong (16-1, 13 KOs), none of those words rang true.
With an undefeated record and barely any tape out on his performances, Khongsong walked into his mandatory title shot as an enigma. He looked the part as he was tall and rangy, and as his record indicated, had more than respectable power.
But with this contest marking the first time in his career that he fought outside of his home country, he simply crumbled under both the pressure of fighting under new circumstances and of course, the power of Taylor.
Things started off like any typical contest. Both men came out pushing their jabs out and feeling each other out. Then, after wrestling a bit on the inside, Taylor landed a sneaky left hand to the body that saw his man roll around on the ground immediately.
Thanks to the lack of fans and noise inside of arenas due to COVID-19, the screams of Khongsong was easily heard. The referee’s long 10 count was pointless as he waived the contest off all together.
Following his quick knockout win, which took only 41 seconds, Taylor began taking a bow. Ironically enough, the real show is just about to begin.
The win for Taylor didn’t just give him another highlight reel stoppage, but it also removed the final roadblock between Taylor and his path to undisputed against Jose Ramirez.
For roughly one year now, both unified champions have spoke about each other at nausea. Ramirez, 28, held up his end of the deal with a closer than expected majority decision win against Viktor Postol earlier this year. A showdown between them was solely predicated off a Taylor win, something he just did emphatically.
Final Grade For Josh Taylor: A
Can you give anything lower than an A to someone who destroys an undefeated opponent within a minute? Of course not.
Taylor looked impressive against an unheralded opponent. He’ll have a much tougher time against Ramirez in his next contest, but for now, he can take some time to admire the job he did tonight.