His grandfather was not known as a heavy hitter, yet Nico Ali Walsh may well develop into one. Last night, in his Las Vegas debut, the middleweight scored an impressive lights-out KO in winning his fifth pro fight.
(Photo credit: Mikey Williams / Top Rank via Getty Images)
Matched with a 7-1(2) Alejandro Ibarra, Muhammad Ali’s grandson flicked the switch in the opening round when he uncorked a left-hand/right-hand combo that landed flush on Ibarra’s head.
Ibarra went down on his back hard, the fight instantly over. Time was 2:50 and chants of “Ali!” “Ali!” “Ali!” filled the air. 21-year-old Ali Walsh is now 5-0(4) and though he is clearly in need of tougher, more demanding tests, the next generation Ali is well on his way. Trained by Richard Slone, who worked with Muhammad Ali’s grand rival Joe Frazier, Ali Walsh is level-headed and he is keen to keep on learning in the gym.
Promoted by Top Rank, Ali Walsh now has his first highlight-reel KO on his record and he will doubtless be eager to pick up more. The immense pressure on Ali Walsh must be quite incredible (imagine being a fighter who is compared, either consciously or subconsciously, to the greatest of all time!) but so far he is handling it well. All ‘Boxing Juniors’ have it tougher than other young fighters, in as much as the fans expect them to do what their fathers (or in this case grandfather) did in the ring before them.
Ali Walsh figures to have a busy and active 2022 and we fans are eager to see more of him. It’s way, way, way too soon to be able to accurately predict how far Ali Walsh can go in the sport, but if he can accumulate additional KO’s similar to the nice job he did last night, he will certainly be on the right path.
“This is just a testament of all the hard work I put in,” Ali Walsh said of last night’s handy work. “This is what happens when you put in the work.”