Russian amateur starlet Artur Beterbiev (6-0, 6KO’s) announced his arrival on the world scene at light heavyweight in Montreal, Canada last night with a two round demolition of former IBF world champion Tavoris Cloud (24-3, 19KO’s).
Beterbiev got right down to work in round one pressuring the former Adonis Stevenson foe and maneuvering him effectively to the ropes with apparent ease.
Cloud attempted to use his experience and guile on the inside by tying up the right hand of the dynamite novice puncher; what that left was a piston like left hand landing and landing repeatedly until Cloud let go of the clinch and Beterbiev smashed him with a right hand sending Cloud to the canvas.
The 32 year old Cloud made it to his feet only to be on the canvas again twice before the end of the round; however only two of the knock downs actually counted.
An end came to the whole one sided charade in the second round as Beterbiev again backed up his opponent to the ropes and landed a barrage of punches, ending with a left hand which left Cloud crumpled on his chest on the canvas.
Cloud only began to stir at the count of seven and the referee Michael Griffin rightly waved the contest off.
The sky is apparently the limit now for Beterbiev, who beat current WBO champion Sergey Kovalev in the amateurs; prospective match ups with the division’s leading contenders appear to be on the horizon for him.
As for Tavoris Cloud, it appears his gradual slide from the pinnacle continues. Beterbiev was good during the fight and Cloud’s performance was poor; it may have been just the case of an emerging talent catching a veteran at just the right time.
Cloud will have to reassess as to whether he wants to now just become an opponent to up and coming boxing champions or whether he still has major aspirations to be a world champion once more.