By: Hans Themistode
No matter who was placed in front of him, Conor Benn made it look incredibly easy whenever he walked through the ropes. With the British native taking care of business against Samuel Vargas earlier this year, knocking him out in the first round in what was supposed to be a step-up fight, Benn found a much more durable and sterner test in Adrian Granados.
The two squared off at the Headingley Rugby League Stadium on the undercard of Josh Warrington vs Mauricio Lara 2.
From the moment the opening bell rang, Benn attempted to have an early night. He rushed to the middle of the ring and began uncorking huge power shots in the direction of Granados. Seemingly caught off guard, Granados simply smiled as he avoided the oncoming onslaught of his man. In return, the long-time journeymen pumped out a strong jab which consistently snapped the head back of Benn.
As the following round kicked off, the aggression of Benn only increased. He stalked forward, dipped low, and fired several hard shots, most of which missed over and over again. Unwilling to stand toe to toe, Granados instead opted to box and move. The 32-year-old used Benn’s aggression against him as he made him miss then immediately made him pay.
Benn’s answer to the elusive Granados was to up his aggression until his man wilted beneath it. While Granados never appeared to be in serious trouble, Benn did find several moments of success. By the midway point of their contest, Benn abandoned his attacks upstairs and instead, went to the midsection of Granados. His willingness to invest in the body began paying off in the later rounds as Granados slowed down just enough for Benn to get his offense going.
In an attempt to give the fans what they wanted to see, Benn begged his man to stand in the middle of the ring and exchange shots with him in the waning seconds of the final round. Not interested in fulfilling the wishes of Benn, Granados mostly backed away with his hands in the air.
As the final bell rung, Granados was sure he had done more than enough to pick up the victory. Ultimately though, he was incredulous with the scorecards as he lost a wide decision. The three judges scoring the contest had it as followed, 100-90, 99-91, and 97-93, all in favor of Benn.
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