Provodnikov hammers Alvarado to capture WBO title
Ruslan Provodnikov (23-2) overwhelmed Mike Alvardo (34-2) to capture the WBO light welterweight title at the 1STBANK Center, Denver on Saturday night.
The Russian fighter nicknamed the 'Siberian Rocky' stalked forward and hammered the hometown man for 10 brutal rounds and Alvarado did not return from his seat at the start of the 11th round.
Alvarado was coming off a unanimous decision over Brandon Rios in March that was a rematch of a 7th round TKO loss from October of last year.
Provodnikov lost a unanimous decision to WBO welterweight champion Timothy Bradley, also in March, despite scoring a 12th round knockdown.
From the opening bell, Provodnikov was forcing the action, crowding, firing both hands and landing to the body. He landed a left hook to the body and a right to the head though Alvarado responded with two hooks but Provodnikov kept coming. Alvarado was trying to move away but took a left and a right. Alvarado came back with a right and a left prior to the bell.
It was more of the same in the 2nd, although Alvarado's jab and movement are more pronounced. Alvarado was using his height much better to create distance with his jab. Alvarado was getting off with both hands in the 3rd, switching occasionally to the southpaw stance.
Alvarado was out landing Provodnikov, getting off first behind his jab and movement but Provodnikov was edging the power shots, applying good pressure and landing the left well through the 4th and 5th.
At the midway point, Alvarado was busier behind his jab and hooks off the jab well. He delivered some nice rights from the southpaw stance that cut Provodnikov's right eye. Provodnikov, who was also bleeding from the nose, closed the 7th with a vicious volley of rights and lefts.
In the 8th, Provodnikov closes the distance and hammers Alvarado to the canvas with a body shot and a right, left followed by a right.
Alvarado rises but barely beat the count before taking another barrage of vicious punches from Provodnikov that sends him to the canvas again.
Alvarado showed tremendous courage to fight off Provodnikov enough to hear the bell.
In the 9th, Provodnikov continued to pursue Alvarado, who worked the jab and remained on the move. In the 10th Alvarado was attemping to get off his jab and fire back but was taking some hard shots to head and body. Provodnikov nailed Alvarado on the ropes with both hands and although Alvarado survived, after the bell he walked to the wrong corner, clearly dazed.
Referee Tony Weeks then went to Alvarado's corner and asked him multiple times whether he can continue. Each time, Alvarado answered "no". The fight was over.
Provodnikov could next fight the winner of Manny Pacquiao (54-5-2) and Brandon Rios (31-1-1), who fight on November 23 in Macao, China.