MIAMI — “Another one bites the dust…”
To steal a line from the Queen rock anthem, Ivan “The Beast” Baranchyk decisioned Keenan ”Killer” Smith on Friday, July 14 at Buffalo Run Casino Resort and in the process, made Smith the 166th fighter to suffer his first defeat on Showtime’s “ShoBox: The New Generation.”
This was first action in five months for a key member of the Four State Franchise, and it showed.
“I was trying too hard,” Baranchyk said through translator Alex Frolov. “I was trying to knock him out in the first round. I didn’t box at all. I was disappointed.”
According to Showtime statistics, Baranchyk landed just 21 percent of his jabs and 29 percent of his total punches.
Smith landed just 22 percent of his total punches in the 10-round super lightweight bout.
“I took some shots and he took some shots,” Smith said. “I was tying him up, but that is boxing. He was clenching too.
All three judges scored the fight in Baranchyk’s favor. Don Griffin had it 82-71, Brett Miller, 79-72, and Jerry Griffin, 78-73.
The fact that Smith was docked a point for constant clinching in the first five rounds.
“He was very physical and strong, holding all the time,” Baranchyk said. “I couldn’t get out of it.”
At times, it looked like a mixed martial arts match as Smith threw Baranchyk to the canvas twice.
There even was a little extracurricular activities between a couple of the rounds with referee Gary Ritter having to step between the two fighters.
Baranchyk said he tried to block out the chatter from Smith and his delegation during Thursday’s press conference and Friday’s fight.
“I don’t even listen to that,” he said. “It is what it is.”
Smith didn’t agree with the verdict.
“The ref took a point. That is part of boxing,” Smith said. “I was tying him up at times, but when you come into someone’s hometown, you have to get him out of there. That’s what I didn’t do.”
Baranchyk, making his fifth appearance on “ShoBox,” improved to 15-0. This was his fifth straight win in his adopted hometown.
Smith, from Philadelphia, dropped to 11-1.
“It’s my first loss, I am taking it pretty hard,” Smith said. “I am definitely going to be back. I hope to fight him again in a different place.”
In the co-feature, Rolando Chinea of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, pinned the first loss on Kenneth Sims Jr., when he ground out a major decision in their super lightweight fight.
“I was very pleased,” said Chinea (15-1-1), who hails from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. “The new training regimen was coming in handy. I felt a lot stronger and a lot faster. My punches were hurting him.”
He said the top priority now is learning how to finish off an opponent.
“I just lack that extra step in my game to take him out,” said Chinea. He now has gone the distance in 11 of his 17 fights. “One thing that has always been my strength is my conditioning.”
An action-packed final round saw Chinea and Sims trade 291 punches, including 85 connects, according to the Showtime statistics.
This was the third time Chinea, from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, has pinned the first loss on an opponent. He suffered his first loss in 2015.
“I went through somewhat of a depression during that time. It wasn’t a good feeling,” Chinea said. “It’s a bitter taste in your mouth and it kinda brings a negativity to your team. It makes everybody point figures at everybody. Like anything in life, you’ve got to weather the storm.”
He bounced back and now has won five straight.
Sims, from Chicago, fell to 12-1.
In other action on the TV quadrupleheader, Glenn Dezurn and Adam Lopez battled to a split draw in in an eight-round bantamweight battle while Joshua Greer picked up a TKO win against Leroy Davila.
Both fighters were disappointed with the outcome. It was the second draw as a professional for Lopez (16-1-2) and first for Dezurn (9-0-1).
The outcome brought a smattering of boos from the sellout crowd at the Peoria Showplace.
"I thought I did enough to win," Dezurn told Showtime. "I'm just fortunate for this opportunity and hope (Lopez) and I can come back strong and fight again someday."
Judge Gerald Ritter had Dezurn winning the first two and last two rounds with Lopez taking the middle four.
Judge Brett Miller had Lopez winning five of the eight rounds.
Dezurn taking the first and sixth, seventh and eight rounds and Lopez won the second, third and fourth on Jerry Griffin’s scorecard.
"After the first round, I dominated the action," said Lopez, who was making his record-tying sixth “ShoBox” appearance. “Maybe (Dezurn) won the seventh, but I whipped him. I should have won the fight. This was a redemption for me. Once I got used to his speed, I feel I won rounds six to two. The whole fight, his back was against the ropes and I beat up his body.”
Greer picked up his 15th career win when Davila’s corner called the fight at the end of the fifth round.
A Chicago native, Greer dominated the action.
The beginning of the end for Davila came in the fourth when Greer landed shots that left Davila bleeding from the nose.
He wobbled through the final 90 seconds of the fourth and throughout the fifth.
Davila’s corner told referee Gary Ritter to stop the fifth just after the fifth round bell sounded.