The Battle of Britain: Ricky Burns vs. Kevin Mitchell
Eddie Hardon has alluded to a boxing renaissance in the United Kingdom. This is because the nation is brimming with talent. They have many good boxers (David Haye, Carl Froch, Kell Brook, etc.), but today I'll talk about someone I believe is the best British boxer: Ricky Burns.
What makes Scotsman Ricky Burns so special? It's that he doesn't seem very special at all. He's not fast. He's not the hardest puncher. Yet, when he steps into the ring, Burns is always that much better against very good opponents.
Last night, he fought Kevin Mitchell, an Englishman currently rated #4 at Lightweight by RING Magazine. It was commonly thought that Burns would either win by decision or Mitchell would win by KO.
Nobody thought Burns would win by KO in early rounds.
The first round started tentatively, with both fighters feeling each other out. It looked like Mitchell would be the better man in the first 3 minutes, having found his way through Burns' guard.
But in Rd. 2, the momentum shifted. Burns fed Mitchell with overhand rights. It was clear that Burns found his money shot.
Rd. 3 revealed something altogether new. Burns was hurting Mitchell, stopping him in his tracks in several occasions.
The end came in Rd 4. With one of the most beautiful hooks I've seen recently, Burns floored Mitchell. Somehow, Mitchell got up on unsteady legs, and Burns pounced — flooring him again. Mitchell got up once more, but it was clear he couldn't defend himself. The referee thankfully stopped the fight, probably saving Mitchell's life.
In the last two years, Ricky Burns has beaten Kevin Mitchell, Paulus Moses, Michael Katsidis, and Roman Gonzalez. He's captured two titles at two different weight classes. His next goal is to capture The RING championship.