Kostya Tszyu vs Diosbelys Hurtado – Highlights (Tszyu KNOCKS OUT Hurtado)


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November 28th, 1998. Nearly 21 years ago, “The Thunder from Down Under” Kostya Tszyu fought Diosbelys Hurtado aka “Black Money” for the vacant Interim WBC Light Welterweight Title with the winner set to challenge Miguel Angel Gonzalez for the vacant WBC Light Welterweight Championship.

Prefight records; Tszyu 21(17)-1, Hurtado 28(19)-1.

Entering the fight, Tszyu had commendable victories over Jake Rodriguez, Hector Lopez, Hugo Pineda & Rafael Ruelas. He also beat Calvin Grove, Roger Mayweather, Juan Laporte, Sammy Fuentes & Livingstone Bramble although they were past their primes when Kostya fought them.

On the other hand, Hurtado who had 4” height and 4.5” reach advantages had no notable wins at this point. However, his most significant fight was against Pernell Whitaker for the WBC World Welterweight Title back in January 1997 where he was stopped in the 11th round while ahead in all 3 scorecards.

In one of the best albeit underrated first rounds of boxing, both fighters scored a combined total of 3 knockdowns within 95 seconds of action; Hurtado was the first to go down when Tszyu belted him with several power shots on the ropes but he returned the favor with a counter right hand with his back on the ropes shortly after beating the count as Tszyu was too eager to go for the kill.

At the mid point mark, Hurtado floored Tszyu for the second time with another counter right hand while leaning on the ropes as Tszyu once again overcommited himself. Although Hurtado had 2 knockdowns, Tszyu connected with the harder and cleaner shots through the rest of the round on top of his 1 knockdown.

Between rounds 2 and 4, both engaged more cautiously but continued to connect with power shots at near even terms. However, Tszyu’s effective body punching eventually paid dividends in the 5th as Hurtado was apparently slowing down as Kostya seized the opportunity by doubling down on his body work to even up the knockdown count.

He then wasted no time going for the kill after Hurtado was on his feet; connecting with a jolting right hand to the head followed by a final left hook to the body that sent the courageous Cuban down for the 3rd time.

Referee James Jen Kin waved off the bout without a count.

After the win, Tszyu went on to bag the WBC Light Welterweight Championship via TKO11 over Miguel Angel Gonzalez in his next bout.

On November 3rd 2001, he became the first Undisputed Light Welterweight Champion in 34 years by stopping Zab Judah with a flush right hand with merely a second left in the 2nd round in one of the most memorable endings to a fight in the history of the sport.

Before Tszyu, Takeshi Fuji was the last fighter to have unified 2 major 140 pound world titles when he won the WBA & WBC World Light Welterweight Titles via KO2 over Sandro Lopopolo in April 1967.

Enjoy this simple highlight of an exciting bout, and remember to SUBSCRIBE! Keep punching.