Russia boxer Dmitry Pirog was an unknown middleweight when he stepped into the ring on Saturday night against favored Daniel Jacobs. After four rounds of boxing excitement and a devastating right in round 5, Pirog was declared winner of the WBO middleweight championship.
The 30-year old Russian now has a 17-0 win-loss mark with 14 knockouts to his credit. Pirog was an amateur standout in Russia before moving up to the professional ranks. His fighting style was appreciated by the Las Vegas crowd as if he was their own.
The first four rounds gave observers the impression that Pirog was no pushover. With Danny Jacobs the favored fighter to prevail, Pirog showed he can match up evenly in the first four rounds until that heavy right straight sent Jacobs flat on his back.
Referee Robert Byrd signaled the end of the fight even before he could finish the count. It was obvious that Jacobs was badly hurt with the right overhand. Jacobs recovered but was too late as Byrd has signaled a stoppage.
For Pirog, this is a dream come true. As for Jacobs, it would be back to the drawing boards for another title chase.