Uzbek gold medalist wins pro debut after 1st-round knockdown
CARSON, Calif. (AP) Olympic gold medalist Fazliddin Gaibnazarov has bounced back from a first-round knockdown to win his professional debut in a second-round stoppage.
Gaibnazarov finished Puerto Rico's Viktor Vazquez 1:28 into the second round on Saturday.
Gaibnazarov won gold for Uzbekistan as a light welterweight at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics. He subsequently moved to Southern California and turned pro in the same gym where Ukrainian gold medalists Vasyl Lomachenko and Aleksandr Usyk are based.
Gaibnazarov hit the canvas roughly 20 seconds into his debut when Vazquez stunned him. Gaibnazarov says it was the first time he has been knocked to the ground in his entire boxing career.
He recovered later in the round. Gaibnazarov ended the fight with a brutal left hand that knocked down Vazquez, leaving him unfit to continue.