There was no boxing, finding range, or any feel out rounds.
For Angelo Leo (20-1, 9 KOs) and Stephen Fulton (19-0, 8 KOs), it was a matter of who wanted it more. In the main event slot at the Mohegan Sun Casino, in Uncasville Connecticut, Fulton ripped away Leo’s super bantamweight title thanks to a combination of both will and punishing inside work.
In what was promoted as the boxer vs the brawler, Philadelphia’s Fulton proved that he was much more than a slick counter puncher. From the moment the opening bell rang, Fulton came straight ahead and made things a dog fight. With Leo not needing to chase his man, the former WBO belt holder welcomed Fulton’s aggression with open arms.
Giving an edge to either man during the early stages was fairly difficult considering both men dished out the same amount of damage. While banging it out in the center of the ring is a crowd-pleaser, it’s also conducive to head clashes, something Leo would quickly learn in the first round.
Despite suffering the gash, Leo kept plowing ahead.
Although the early rounds could go either way, it was Fulton who began picking things up as his corner screamed at him to switch up his game plan. In round six, he did just that as he began outboxing his man. With much of the steam now off his punches and his movement now laboring, Leo, in essence, became an easy target as Fulton began picking him apart from the outside.
Noticing that his world title was seemingly slipping through his fingers, Leo picked up the pace. While the punches were thrown with bad intentions, they seldom landed as Fulton proved to be way too slick for his man. As the championship rounds rolled by, Fulton banked enough of the early one’s to build a comfortable lead. That, however, didn’t stop him from attempting to close the show.
With that said, Leo proved to be as tough as they come as he made it to the final bell. Despite his resiliency, the 26-year-old found himself a few pounds lighter as Fulton relieved him of his title on the night.
With a championship title officially attached to his name, Fulton has taken aim at the rest of the division as he looks to clear house completely.
Final Grade: Stephen Fulton A
The boxing skills were already known for Philadelphia’s Fulton. The inside ability and overall relentlessness of him on the other hand, was not yet none.
Fulton was overall impressive from the opening bell and he’ll look to make some serious noise for the remainder of his championship reign.