Last night in Rzeszow, Poland, unbeaten Lukasz Rozanski scored a crushing first-round stoppage win over former WBC heavyweight title challenger Artur Szpilka – but not before being knocked down himself. 35-year-old Rozanski, fighting in his hometown, dropped Szpilka three times to end the short but exciting affair, this after Szpilka had decked him in the opening ten seconds.
It was an explosive, entertaining little slugfest, one that was contested in new weight division, bridgerweight. Last night’s fight was actually a bridgerweight elimination showdown and now Rozanski is in line to fight for the WBC belt. Rozanski improved to 14-0(13). 32 year old Szpilka, who really should be looking seriously at calling it a day, falls to 24-5(16).
Fans love to see the kind of short and explosive action Rozanski and Szpilka put on last night (check it out on YouTube), a fight where both guys come out slugging. It’s tough to know how good Rozanski really is, as Szpilka is a faded force these days (although “The Pin” had won his last two going into last night’s fight, this over decent, not great opposition). At age 35, Rozanski doesn’t figure to have too much time in which to get the big fights. Maybe, at 6.0” tall, the new bridgerweight division – the weight limit 200 to 224 pounds – will suit him fine.
Rozanski can punch some and if he can give us more thrilling action the kind he gave the fans last night we will want to tune in to see him in the future. As far as the bridgerweight division goes, it will almost certainly be some time before fight fans are ready and willing to accept the weight class, if ever. Who will become the first bridgerweight champion? Rozanski is certainly in with a shout.
On last night’s card, cruiserweight veteran Mateusz Masternak won a ten round decision over the previously unbeaten Adam Balski. Masternak won via scores of 98-92 and 99-91 twice and he is now 44-5(29). Balski is now 15-1(9).