by Johnny Walker
If there was a difference of opinion amongst some in boxing circles (not to mention the boxers themsleves) as to who was the winner of the first meeting between German cruiserweights Firat Arslan and WBO champion Marco “Captain” Huck, those differences were settled today during an exciting, all-action brawl at the Hanns-Martin-Schleyer Halle in Stuttgart, Germany
Huck, out to prove not only his cruiserweight superiority, but to also add credibility to his stated desire to soon move up to heavyweight, had to make sure he didn’t leave any doubt when it came to domestic cruiserweight rival Arslan. The two went the distance back in 2012, with Huck winning a unaninmous decision that Arslan, who had bloodied Huck’s nose and repeatedly landed his left uppercut, thought he deserved to win.
Huck (37-2-1, 26 KOs) had come on after round seven in that fight and seemed to take that bout over, but there were lingering questions repeatedly brought up by Arslan (33-7-2, 21 KOs) as to who really won their meeting. The controversy wouldn’t dissipate, so both fighters decided to do it again.
This time, though Arslan started out on the front foot as he did in their first meeting, Huck did far more in the way of making his opponent pay for getting too close, and as a result, Arslan’s left uppercut wasn’t as effective, even though Huck’s nose was reddened by the end of the fight. Arslan was repeatedly met with effective jabs from Huck as he tried to press the action in round one.
In round two, Huck caught Arslan coming in and landed some hard left hooks, including some thumping body shots that would soon pay big dividends. Arslan did come on strong near the end of the round, launching some flurries and possibly doing enough to even it up.
Arslan’s aggression saw him edge round three, but a focused Huck nevertheless continued to pound his opponent to the body, even as he warded off Arslan’s attacks. From then on, Huck took over the fight, landing hard left hooks and another withering shot to Arslan’s body. Arslan, still game, responded with a good combination, but Huck responded with a straight right that drove his foe back into the ropes as the round ended.
Round five saw Huck take over the fight. Hard lefts, right hooks, and voluminous body shots saw Huck taking the steam out of his much older (43 years old) opponent. Arslan was withering as the round ended, and one had the feeling that the next round might be the last.
Indeed, Huck, obviously feeling he had now softened up Arslan sufficiently with his body attack, launched an all-out assault early in round six. A wicked series of power shots sent Arslan to the mat, but the game challenger got up and even attempted to fight back. Huck gathered his resources and then nailed Arlsan with a vicious right hand that sent Arslan back to the canvas for the second time.
Arslan tried gamely to hold on, but Huck launched another flurry with two more big right hands, and Arslan was now helpless in the corner of the ring. Referee Mark Nelson had seen enough, and stopped the fight at 2:55 of round six.
In an interview in German after the fight, Huck expressed his desire to enter the heavyweight division by 2015.
In an earlier bout, British heavyweight David Price (16-2, 14 KOs) launched his comeback from two losses to American Tony Thompson in 2013 with a win over late replacement Istvan Ruzsinszky, (12-10-1, 8 KOs), subbing for the more accomplished Konstantin Airich, who failed his medical.
Price knocked his foe down with a couple of routine right hands, and though Ruzsinszky beat the count and wanted to continue, the fight was waved off by referee Joerg Milcke at 2:00 of round one. This “fight” might have given the comebacking Price some confidence, but accomplished little else.