‘Maximus’ dominates Malik Watson-Smith in Chicago co-main

‘Maximus’ dominates Malik Watson-Smith in Chicago co-main

Saturday, Feb 17 2018 by John O'Regan

Richard ‘Maximus’ Abraham won a landslide decision victory over Malik Watson-Smith in the co-main event of GLORY 50 CHICAGO.

His performance in the fight would have earned him a unanimous decision win anyway, but the emphatic nature of his victory was compounded by Watson-Smith having been deducted two points over the course of the fight.

The deductions came in the second and third round and both were for excessive clinching. Watson-Smith 

The first round was a blood and guts affair: blood from a cut over Abraham’s eye, caused by a clash of heads in the middle of the round, guts because from that point on, the fight became a war.

As soon as he felt his own blood running down his face, Abraham clicked things up several gears, crowding Watson-Smith with barrages of punches and forcing him onto the back foot. 

Watson-Smith spent nearly six years living in Thailand and competing as often as once a week in Muay Thai, in which the clinch is a core part of the fight. Under Abraham’s pressure he continually resorted to clinching, which is prohibited under GLORY rules, and soon attracted the ire of the referee. 

A verbal warning did nothing to stop him employing these tactics so in the middle of the second round the referee stated his position more forcefully by deducting Watson-Smith a point for excessive holding. 

Abraham likes to use his hands but usually tends to box in technical fashion. But by this point he was in bar-fight mode, constantly swarming Watson-Smith with flurry after flurry of punches from all angles.

Whatever hopes Watson-Smith had of winning the fight evaporated in the third round when, again at the mid-point of the round, he was once again deducted a point for excessive clinching. 

Two point deductions meant he had absolutely no chance of winning a decision. Neither did he look anywhere near being able to secure a knockout, his offensive capabilities being shut down by Abraham’s tactics. 

Even without the point deductions, Abraham would have won a clear decision. The deductions just skewed the scoreline even more heavily. He now rises to 2-0 in his last two and 6-2 in GLORY overall, a solid record in a turbulent division. 

The next test for Abraham now will be perhaps to fight on a European card against a European opponent. He did appeal for GLORY to bring him overseas for his next fight. 

Richard ‘Maximus’ Abraham def. Malik Watson-Smith, Unanimous Decision (30-25, 29-26, 29-26, 29-26, 29-26)