By Dave Spencer at ringside
Denton Daley reaffirmed his monicker of ‘Dangerous’ Saturday night at the Hershey Centre in Mississauga as he made short work of Italian based Giulian Ilie (20-10-2 6KO), stopping the Romanian fighter at 1:25 of the second round, the referee making a full count of ten.
The 8th ranked cruiserweight (WBA) wasted precious little time as a double jab set up a right to the chin that deposited Ilie who if nothing else came in with a label of durable in his previous fights.”I can honestly tell you I wasn’t expecting anything,” Daley told Fightnews after the fight talking about the advertised durability of his opponent who had gone into the 10th versus top-ranked cruiserweight and Olympic Gold Medalist Rakhim Chakhkiev amongst others. “My coach, however, knew it was going to go that way from the way we were training and that is the only result he would have accepted from that fight. I hit him with a shot, and I just didn’t know the devastation of it until I saw it afterwards on replay. It all just felt natural.”
It was the first fight for Daley under new trainer Chris Amos and for the time being the move has paid immediate dividends. “The change in style was drastic,” claims Daley who also knocked his man down at the end of the first round. “I’m use to be elusive, running around, all that stuff that wastes energy, and my coach said, we’re going to change these things. We worked at hard every day and at the end, we got it done. I was trying to show aggression, but that’s just what’s been instilled in me since day one. It was just automatic to go out and do that tonight.”
Daley believes he made a statement with the knockout victory, his first stoppage in over two years and five fights. “I can punch, I think people knew that but just hadn’t seen it of late. But the way we’re at camp I think you can expect more of that.”
Trainer Amos agreed after their maiden journey together, “We knew he was heavy handed but we wanted him more grounded. It’s time we bring him to the next level.”
While it had been a while since Daley has had an early night, he didn’t feel that he needed the stoppage to boost his confidence in any way. “It’s never one particular fight, every fight is needed. There’s the same level of satisfaction whether I go the distance or a couple of rounds.”
In the night’s co-feature, Kevin Higson picked an opportune time to score his first stoppage victory as the Hamilton fighter moved to 7-0 and captured the vacant Canadian junior middleweight title as Frank Cotroni had his corner wave off the fight after the fifth round. Higson dominated after the first round as he was definitely the stronger of the two and was able to find the mark with every punch thrown. Hinson was cut over the left eye in the first but quickly turned the tables in the second, taking down his Quebec opponent to end the round. “I was happy we were able to adjust in there,” Higson told Fightnews afterwards, wiith Red NCC belt proudly around his waist. “He’s a sneaky guy who throws awkward shots and I got hit with a couple but we made the adjustments and I’m happy how we came out. I think we were stronger and used it to our advantage. We just wanted to keep chipping away at him, piece by piece.”
The Canadian belt has propelled more than one fighter to world title opportunities and Higson is hopeful that it takes him a similar direction. In the meantime he told Fightnews he will be more than willing t defend it. Promoter Don MacDonald of United Promotions also wants the belt to be in heavy rotation “154 will probably be our stable weight class for the next couple of years. Brandon Brewer is in the mix, that definitely would be a fun bout, Ryan Young wants to fight for it, a win for Junmar (Emon) puts him right back in contention for it. There’s definitely a lot of excitement there.”
In undercard action, super welterweight Ryan Young scored eight knockdowns before his bout was mercifully halted at 2:38 of the 5th round versus Krisztian Santa of Hungary. Young scored a trio of knockdowns in the 3rd, another pair in 4th, and hit with another trifecta in the 5th. Most were right hands to the temple as the equilibrium of the Hungarian was definitely off. The Oakville junior middleweight moves to a perfect 9-0 with his 7th stoppage. Santa drops to 11-6-2.
Lightweight Steve Wilcox (12-1-1 5KO) scored a 5th round knockdown on his way to a decisive 80-71, 80-71, 78-73 whitewash of Luis Juarez (19-10-2 4KO) of Argentina. Juarez was somewhat elusive at first but ‘The Piranha’ kept things simple,using his long reach against a shorter opponent and jabbing effectively. As the contest wore on, Wilcox started finding his range and was more able to effectively put his punches together, frustrating Juarez who had little in his tool chest to counter the hometown fighter. The fifth round knockdown was every bit a frustrated off balance fighter lunging as it was the connect from Wilcox that caught his left shoulder.
Light-heavyweight Tim Cronin won a wild and ugly majority-decision over Francois Miville, final scorecards reading 58-54,58-54, 56-56. Cronin (6-1 2KO) survived knockdowns, takedowns, backhands and bullrushes from the tough but highly unpolished Miville who drops to 7-4 with his third consecutive defeat. Miville scored a first round knockdown with a big left hand that he left his feet to deliver. Miville was responsible for initiating most of the action on the night, but most of it was illegal. Cronin somersaulted down across the ring in the second round from what was a backhand, something that Miville would eventually lose a point for in the 4th. Miville walked a fine line all night between being penalized and also getting disqualified and was responsible for cut over Cronin’s left eye via a headbutt. Cronin did deliver punches along the way but was usually countered with something from outside the Marquess of Queensbury rules. It’s the 6th win in a row for Cronin since losing his pro debut via split decision.
Aurey Cox (2-0) won every round in an all-Ontario matchup over Steve Rainford (1-2) in the opening bout of the evening, sweeping the scorecards 40-36.