Murodjon Akhmadaliev stops Kevin Gonzalez in eighth round – Boxing results

By Tim Compton - 12/16/2023 - Comments

Former IBF/WBA super bantamweight champion Murodjon Akhmadaliev (12-1, 9 KOs) was too much for Kevin Gonzalez (26-1-1, 13 KOs), knocking him down four times en route to stopping him in the eighth round in a WBA 122-lb title eliminator on Saturday night at the Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale, Arizona.

The 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Akhmadaliev, 29, dropped Gonzalez twice in the seventh & two more times in the eighth round to get the knockout.

In the eighth, Akhmadaliev nailed the previously unbeaten 26-year-old Gonzalez with a left uppercut that dropped him. The southpaw Gonzalez was dipping down to throw a right-hand body shot at the time that he was caught.

After Gonzalez got up, Akhmadaliev went for the finish, throwing a series of slapping shots, ending with a right to the head of the Mexican fighter that put him down for the final time. The time of the stoppage was at the 2:49 mark.

The fight had been competitive in the first three rounds. In the fourth, Akhmadaliev hurt Gonzalez with hard left uppercuts and punished him through the round. From that point on, the fight was totally one-sided, with Akhmadaliev punishing Gonzalez.

After the sixth, Gonzalez’s trainer began talking about wanting to stop the fight if he didn’t win the round because he was absorbing too much punishment.

Unlike in his last fight against Marlon Tapales, which he lost last April by a twelve round split decision, Akhmadaliev had too much firepower and conditioning for Gonzalez. That was the difference in this fight.

Gonzalez, with his 50% KO rate, didn’t possess the power to do what Tapales had done to Akhmadaliev, and he was smaller.

Akhmadaliev is now the mandatory for WBA 122-lb champion Tapales. However, he’s fighting WBC & WBO champ Naoya ‘Monster’ Inoue on December 26th for the undisputed super bantamweight championship.

If Inoue wins, he’s expected to vacate all four belts and move up to featherweight to take on WBO champion Rafael Espinoza. Akhmadaliev can then fight for the vacant WBA belt against the highest-ranking contender.

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