Last night, with the brutality of a person on a vengeance mission, Ruslan Provodnikov, known as the “Siberian Rocky”, pummeled, battered, beat, Mike “Mile High” Alvarado, into submission for 10 rounds.
Mercifully referee Tony Weeks stopped the slaughter and did not allow Alvarado to come out for the 11th. round.
From the very first round before the bell you could almost see Provodnikov prancing in his corner like a horse at the starting gate at the Kentucky Derby waiting for the signal to “run” forward.
That is exactly what he did, stalking Alvarado and attacking him forcing him to change his plans not to slug, but to box and move, Floyd Mayweather, style, to survive the fistic onslaught.
Ironically, fighting this way and turning south paw slowed down Provodnikov and allowed Alvarado to score many punches backing him up momentarily confusing and hurting him.
The adage is you don’t slug with a slugger, you box him.
That was only short-lived since Provodnikov stated after the 10th round stoppage that his, “mission was to break him-Alvarado- down, round by round, destroy his will and knock him out.”
He further declared: “That was the battle plan Freddie Roach who is not here tonight had set up for me to follow, and this is what I did. Freddie is responsible for my victory.”
In the 4th and 7th round the battle was so vicious that I called both even; in the end, the 10th round, I had scored the fight, 96/94 for Provodnikov, with 2 rounds pending, while the assigned judges’, scores were, Robert Hoyle, 98/90, Levi Martinez, 96/92, and Dennis Nelson, 97/90, for Provodnkov.
Several times they stood toe to toe slugging it out with the advantage going to Provodnikov as Alvarado slowed down as he was getting hit more frequently forcing him to hold on.
This fistic mayhem occurred on Saturday, October 19, 2013 at the First Bank Center, Broomfield, Colorado, as Mike Alvarado, 34-1, 25 knockouts was defending his W.B.O. 140 pound crown against Ruslan Provodnikov, 22-2, 15 k.o.’s.
The fans a sell-out crowd of over 8,000 got their money’s worth although the only anguish and concern was etched on the faces of the families of the fighters, as they battered each other from round to round cutting each other, then Alvarado was knocked down twice in the 8th round.
From then on it was only a matter of time when the fight would be stopped since Alvarado was holding on for dear life as Provodnikov beat him viciously from head to body, slowing him down and closing his right eye.
There are times in writing that you actually feel guilty if you accurately predict the outcome of a fight when one of the combatants or both, is severely injured, but that is the nature of the business.
The oxymoron of this business of boxing is that these are family men who don’t know each other, are somewhat friendly and respectful towards one another and even shake hands after the referee’s instructions. Then after the first bell they go out to hurt each other like lifelong enemies, and at the end of the fight they shake hands and sometimes hug, and maybe even become life time friends like Arturo “Thunder” Gatti and Mickey Ward who fought a trilogy.
After the healing process takes place, a disappointed Alvarado indicated his interest in challenging the winner of Manny Pacquiao and Brando Rios’ fight in December/2013, or a rematch with Provodnikov. As for newly crowned 140 pound champ, The Siberian Rocky, Provodnikov, he stated that after a rest to heal his wounds he will go after all of the 140 and 147 pounders around like Danny Garcia, Marcos Maidana, Devon Alexander, Bam Bam Rios, Manny Pacquiao, Lucas Matthysse, or even go after Timothy Bradley at 147 pounds again, since he almost knocked him out, and he is sure that the next time they fight, he will knock him out.
He has maximum confidence.
“I am in the driver’s seat”, he stated, “and I am going after all of them.”
You have to believe the Siberian Rocky when he claims that and also when he says that his strength comes from eating raw fish in his Russian village of, Beryozovo, Russia, where he was born, and still lives there with his proud Mom who came to see him fight for the first time last night.