Former three-division champion Adrien Broner (29-1, 22 KOs) won a hard-fought 12-round unanimous decision over upset-minded Emmanuel Taylor (18-3, 12 KOs) at the U.S. Bank Arena in Cincinnati, OH. Saturday night.
The scores were 116-111 (twice) and 115-112.
Maxboxing and Doghouseboxing scored the fight 115-112 for Broner.
Taylor came out aggressively in the opening rounds. It was obvious that he had spent some time watching Marcos Maidana’s destruction of Broner last year.
He forced Broner, who was fighting in front of his hometown fans for the 11th time, back and landed a number of shots.
Broner countered with hooks and uppercuts.
Taylor, who resides in Edgewood Arsenal, MD, had said before the match that Broner can’t fight backing up. His pressure was making the former champion move.
Broner landed a check left hook in round three. He also found some success with shots to the body. A counter right uppercut in round four hurt Taylor.
The twenty-five-year-old Broner was mixing up his attack. He connected with numerous shots, but Taylor was hanging in.
Taylor, 24, clipped Broner with a long overhand right in round five. He also landed a clean hook to the midsection.
Broner rallied back in the last minute of the stanza. Taylor did well in round six--while Broner battled back with counter blows.
Through six rounds the fight was close. Taylor jumped on Broner in round seven, but the former champion found Taylor with multiple shots in the last two minutes of the heat.
Broner told his corner between rounds he was boxing. He was, but his occasional lapses in activity were allowing Taylor to steal some rounds. Broner landed more punches in rounds eight and nine. Taylor appeared to be tiring. Broner, the quicker fighter, was taking advantage.
Taylor landed a jolting right hand in round 10 Broner, who had been moving, stopped and returned fire. Taylor landed a triple jab in the next stanza. Had he found his second wind?
Broner went to the body, but Taylor opened up with blows at the end of the stanza.
Taylor connected with a straight right in the last round. Broner fought back, but Taylor walked through his shots. Both fighters looked stunned in the last seconds of the fight. A huge left hook knocked Taylor, who had been having a good 12th round, on his back.
“I want to give thanks to my man Emmanuel Taylor,” said Broner in the ring after the fight. “I was blessed to come out on top.”
“I put up a good fight,” said Taylor. “Everyone underestimated me.”
The bout was televised live on Showtime Championship Boxing.