Eye of the Tiger Management’s Fight Club series was back at the Casino du Lac-Leamy last night for a showcase card featuring some of the rising talents in their roster. Among the fighters in action were Schiller Hyppolite, Simon Kean, and the Hussain brothers, Mian and Ayaz, and with David Lemieux watching from ringside, all of Camille Estephan’s fighters came away with the victory.
The card opened with François Pratte of Trois-Rivières earning a unanimous decision win over Santos Lira in a four round super featherweight match. Pratte proved to be more active than his opponent, working off combinations and effective movement. Pratte improves to 2-0.
Eye of the Tiger’s American prospect Will Madera notched his eighth win against no defeats with a decision victory over Randy Lozano in a hard-fought match. Following an exchange in the first round, Madera took a knee for a count and signaled to the referee he was missing his mouthpiece, a fact which had resulted in an unfortunate injury for Madera. For a moment things looked uncertain for the super-lightweight prospect, but he came back late in the fight to score a knockdown and secure a unanimous decision.
Ayaz Hussain, Mian’s younger brother, made quick work of over-matched opponent Michal Dufek. With a clear size and strength advantage, Hussain landed power shots at will on Dufek who was no threat and was staggered on numerous occasions. The fight was halted in the second round as the referee stepped in after another devastating right hand rendered Dufek helpless. Credit to the referee for making a decisive stoppage and saving Dufek from unnecessary punishment.
Danyk Croteau, from Buckingham, Quebec, made his pro-debut in front of a raucous crowd who came out in force to support their hometown fighter. Croteau won a four round unanimous decision over Rodrigo Almeida who did his best to make Croteau look bad with his awkward style. Almeida’s clinching and wrestling made for a sloppy match but Croteau’s superior abilities earned him the decision win.
In a heavyweight match, Eye of the Tiger’s new signee, Simon Kean scored a second round TKO over Tomas Mrazek. Kean was too big and strong for Mrazek who was clearly outclassed. Kean improves his record to three KO wins in as many fights.
Montreal’s Louisbert Altidore and Ottawa’s Roody René engaged in a close and competitive super middleweight bout. Altidore landed a right hook and scored a knockdown in the second round and made use of an effective jab while René found moments of success towards the end of the fight, staggering Altidore with a left hook. Altidore was credited the decision win after four rounds.
Jr middleweight prospect and former amateur Canadian champion, Mian Hussain, scored a six round unanimous decision over Mexico’s Juan Jesus Rivera. Despite his experience, Rivera was completely outmatched by the faster and stronger Hussain. Despite this, Hussain seemed unwilling to engage the action, instead relying on countering Rivera on his way in. Near the end of round three, a quick one-two from Hussain put Rivera down but the Mexican managed to beat the count. In round four, another knockdown scored for Hussain as he comfortably cruised to a unanimous decision.
In the main event of the evening, rising super middleweight Schiller Hyppolite scored an easy first round knockout in under a minute, an outcome that brought satisfaction to no one. About 30 seconds in, Hyppolite landed a hard right cross to the body, dropping Jukic to his knees. Jukic beat the count but when the action resumed, a left hook downstairs scored a second knockdown for Hyppolite. Jukic made it to his feet but signaled he was unable to continue. It was a quick night of work for Hyppolite, who improves to 18-1-0, which did nothing for his development as his opponent clearly had no interest in competing.
Eye of the Tiger Management’s next card is the return of David Lemieux, scheduled for March 12, at the Olympia Theatre in Montreal. In the chief support, rising prospect Steven Butler will fight for an IBF Youth title and back in action are the Hussain Brothers, Schiller Hyppolite, as well as Simon Kean. –Rene Ricardo Bernal