Ruslan Provodnikov (23-3, 16 KOs) knocked out Jose Luis Castillo (66-12-1, 57 KOs) in the fifth round of a scheduled 12-round Welterweight fight in Moscow, Russia.
The fight was the main event of an embarrassing card which also featured 62-year-old Mickey Rourke in a fight as the co-main event.
Provodnikov, 30, of Beryozovo, Russia, backed Castillo to the ropes with ease in the opening round and landed several left hands on his iron-chinned opponent.
Castillo, 40, of Mexicali, Mexico, tested Provodnikov’s power in the first round before engaging with him at close range in rounds three and four.
Castillo’s chin allowed him to stay in the fight until the fifth, but he is no longer the fighter who gave Floyd Mayweather one of his toughest fights in 2002.
Provodnikov, as if suddenly realizing that struggling to stop Castillo would lower his stock as a fighter, finally stopped the fight with vicious flurries that sent Castillo to the ground twice: one via sheer force and a second via Castillo’s recognition that there was nothing left he could do.
Needless to say, Provodnikov needs to fight a better 140-pounder and we will have to see if possible fights with Danny Garcia, Lucas Matthysse, and Lamont Peterson are even possible to make.
In 1994, Mickey Rourke (7-0-2, 5 KOs) participated in his last fight as a professional boxer.
And, like a terrible sequel you hoped would never happen, Rourke made his comeback tonight against Eliot Seymour (1-9).
Rourke “stopped” his opponent with shots to the body in the second round.