On Saturday night, former world champion Jean Pascal, (34-6-1, 20 KO’s), upset previously unbeaten WBA (interim) light heavyweight champion “Sir” Marcus Browne (23-1, 16 KO’s) with a TD 8 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

The 175-pound bout was part of the card that saw unbeaten heavyweight contender Adam “Babyface” Kownacki (20-0, 15 KO’s) win a UD 12 against former title challenger Chris “The Nightmare” Arreola (38-6-1, 33 KO’s) in a fabulous heavyweight slugfest.

When you are 36-years of age, a 23:1 underdog and coming into the fight off of a loss, you aren’t expected to upset the unbeaten champion – but that is exactly what Quebec, Canada’s Pascal pulled off on Saturday night.

Pascal showed he still has some serious pop left dropping Browne in round four. Then, Browne was down two more times in round seven. Now, this is where things got interesting. Browne was cut over the left eye, ruled an accidental head-butt, in round 8. Deemed unable to continue, the bout was stopped and sent to the scorecards where judges had it 75-74 across the board for Pascal. Obviously, it was a close fight on the cards but with the knockdowns Pascal was ahead and the fight went to the former WBC champion.

Pascal was about a hot a ticket as there was in Montreal, Canada after turning pro 2005. He racked up an impressive and undefeated record through his first 21 bouts before travelling to Nottingham, England and challenging undefeated Carl Froch for the world super middleweight title in 2008, losing a UD.

However, 6 months later, he captured the WBC light heavyweight title beating undefeated Adrien Diaconu by UD. He defended the title once before drawing with legend Bernard Hopkins in 2010. Hopkins would school Pascal six months later in the rematch with Hopkins taking away Pascal’s belt. After a few more wins, Pascal would lose a 2-fight series over 2015-2016 to rugged Sergey Kovalev getting stopped in both bouts. After going 2-1 over 2017 and into 2018, Pascal would lose in a challenge for Dmitry Bivol’s WBA light heavyweight title last November.

So, while Pascal was a respected, highly decorated, former multiple world champion, with a 4-4 record over his previous eight bouts, and at age 36, fans were wondering if the Haiti-born Pascal was edging into the gate-keeper category. But, the upset victory has him right back in the mix at light heavyweight in a division that also includes WBC champion Oleksandr Gvozdyk, WBO champion Sergey Kovalev, and fellow-Montreal resident Artur Beterbiev.

There are certainly some interesting matchups with the obvious one being an all-Montreal clash with Beterbiev or a possible third shot at Kovalev.

Whatever transpires, in post-fight interviews, Pascal was excited about his new career turn and future options.

“Two-time baby, two-time. I’m super happy, I’m back on top”, he said. “I am the veteran and he didn’t have the experience. He is still a novice. Experience means a lot in boxing. Don’t get me twisted; Marcus Browne is a solid fighter. But you need heart and guts and passion. He will come back better,” he said.

In regards to whom and what is next, that remains to play out over the next little while.

“I don’t know what is next. But I do know we have the best rapper in the game in Drake, we are the NBA champions and now I’m bringing the belt back to Canada”, he said. “I’m not hiding from anyone; I’ll speak to Al (Haymon) and see what is next. But, next time we will do it in Canada.”

Source: Bill Tibbs

www.sports24ghana.com

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