Artem Lobov was able to flip the script in the BKFC 6 main-event, outpointing the former boxer Paulie Malignaggi over five rounds to earn himself a judges’ decision.
For those who saw Lobov’s BKFC debut against Jason Knight and had perhaps expected more of the same this time around, the fight that we actually got could not have been further removed from the unhinged chaos that took place at BKFC 5.
After a tense and relatively quiet opening round, Malignaggi started to find his range and rhythm in the second and third, jabbing away at Artem’s head and body while using his clear advantage in the footwork department to tag The Russian Hammer repeatedly.
Once the fight moved into its later stages, however, Lobov reverted to what he does best – pressuring the boxer and by all accounts, making it an uglier fight than it had been.
There was no doubt over who had landed the bigger shots once the final bell had rung and while there was quite a bit of hype and tension surrounding this fight, it was clear that respect was forming between these two men as the rounds passed by.
For all the talk that had transpired in the leadup on his part, it was Paulie who dipped his head to bow to the Russian/Irish fighter before the pair shared some friendly words over smiles.
Lobov took to his official Twitter page to thank his fans for their support shortly after making his intentions to fight for BKFC gold clear.
Thank you all for your support, I couldnt have done it without you!! 👊🇮🇪🇷🇺 pic.twitter.com/6pbScPap7R
— Artem Lobov (@RusHammerMMA) June 23, 2019
As for Malignaggi, this fight, which was his first of any sort in over two years, briefly ended his retirement. Whether or not he opts to continue his run in BKFC is anyone’s guess but one would have to assume that his rivalry with the SBG crop is now running out of steam.
Artem Lobov just pulled off a pretty impressive upset, there’s no other way to say it.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena