Post by Lookout! Boxing on Apr 26, 2019 17:36:09 GMT -6
Yvonne Strahovski vs. Blake Lively
(Words: Front Street / Results: Lookout!)
Pair of former champs meet in a main event-caliber match that should leave the winner well-positioned in the title picture. Lively coming off a 4-1 2018 knows well what a big opportunity this fight is...for both fighters. "Yeah," says Blake with a smile. "I want the belts back. And, beating Vonnie? That's a good way to make sure your name is front and center when title shots are being handed out."
As for Straho, she's long proven 2018's mid-year slump was just a blip on the radar, having put together a long, Strahovski-like winning streak over the last six months. And, while she has plenty of respect for Lively, well. Yvonne knows she's Yvonne. "She's a top contender at this weight," the Aussie blonde says. "No question of that. But. When she climbs into the ring with me, one of us will be the best lightweight on the planet. And, the other will be Blake Lively."
Ladies settle in at range early, and that's no surprise, as both have length and both box very well. Vonnie begins to get the better of the exchanges almost immediately, getting the range down very quickly and forcing Blake to cover up several times. BOOM! Right hand, Lively! Blake staggers the Aussie with a perfectly-placed right cross and the American is all in! Blake firing everything she has at the listing Strahovski, looking to shock the world and take the five-time champ out of there in the first round. Vonnie backed to the ropes and taking in the final minute. Ref looking in. But, Straho holds him at bay with excellent defense and well-timed counters. She's not doing much, but she's doing enough, and it gets her to the bell. When it rings, Blake's taken the points wide and leads 10-9, but Yvonne's gotten off the hook.
Second begins with Blake on the attack. Vonnie retreating, trying to slow her rival with the jab, but it mostly doesn't work. Instead, Lively lining Straho up, landing hard flurry after hard flurry. After a minute or so, though, Yvonne firms up. She's able to hold ground and fire back. From then on, the fighters box on relatively even terms. Both are finding the range now, getting the jab on and building combinations off it. Excellent foot, hand, and head movement being shown, as we see the tactical abilities of both blondes on full display. Final minute sees the work rate pick up, as both blondes are in rhythm and able to get the geometry down very well. Several SHARP exchanges take place before the bell finally rings, ending the stanza. And, while the last two minutes were close, the edge Blake built up in the first minute plays. It's Lively's round and the American leads 20-18.
Ranged boxing continues. Both blondes are comfortable on these terms, so there's no reason to adjust. Vonnie just so slick with the head and hand movement, punches out and back quickly, head always in motion, making her a difficult target. But, Lively's sharpshooting in a big way. She's finding Yvonne, getting her offense on. Result is a good, two-way round that sees both Aussie and American scoring well. It's entertaining stuff with plenty of action. Nobody's hurt, but both fighters are taking punishment as heavy leather gets tossed, and heavy leather gets landed. Final thirty seconds sees a ramp up in aggressiveness. Both fighters know the round is close, and both want to steal the points. Neither really gains much in the final exchanges, but, when the bell rings, it's Vonnie who's done just a bit more. Straho takes the round and cuts Blake's lead to 29-28.
More boxing at range, but, now things take a turn. Strahovski getting it rolling, beginning to take control. Blake thrown onto the defensive again and again, forced to cover up in the face of hard, accurate flurries from the Aussie. Lively reduced to countering in spots, as most of her offense is being preempted. By the latter stages of the round, Yvonne's backing Lively up with hard right hands. Straho stepping into the breach to exploit the breakthrough, then firing more hard shot to back Blake up again. American game, firing back when she can, but she's taking a thumping in this stanza. Lively's never hurt, but she's getting punished, and Strahovski's piling up points. When the bell finally rings, the points go to the Aussie and by a wide margin and we're all even at 38 after four.
Yvonne continuing to roll. She's in rhythm now, and that's bad news for the American, who's gone from not being able to get out of neutral to not being able to get out of reve...BOOM! Right hand, Lively and DOWN. GOES. YVONNE! Blake with a brilliant right hand counter and the Aussie is blown to her back. Lively quickly to a neutral corner to watch and wait. Count gets to eight before Straho makes it to her feet. Ref gives Vonnie the mandatory and ON COMES LIVELY! Blake hammering away with both hands, driving all before her, pinning a wobbly Yvonne to the ropes and then absolutely BATTERING her. Straho taking hard shot to both head and body, looking ready to go. Ref looking in, also ready to go. But. Yvonne hangs on, makes it to the bell. When it rings, though, Lively's grabbed the round 10-8 and gone back to a two-point lead, 48-46.
Blake rampant. Lively's got Yvonne on wobbly legs and takes full advantage, getting her clean up on. She backs up Strahovski repeatedly with hard flurries to the head, thumps her to the body, generally abuses her fellow blonde in every way possible. Yvonne in survival mode, playing for time, trying to get those great legs back, but she's taking quite the beati...BOOM! Right-hand counter, Yvonne and Blake is HURT! Lively stumbles backward, Vonnie lets the hands go and DOWN GOES BLAKE! Now it's Yvonne heading for the neutral corner and Blake staring up as the referee counts. Lively's up at seven, and, after the mandatory, Strahovski gets busy, pummeling the American back into the ropes and then letting her have it for the last 45 seconds of the round. When the bell rings, Lively's still on her feet, but, Straho's not only stolen points, but won the round 10-8 and evened the fight again, this time at 56.
Straho pressing, backing up Lively with hard combinations. Blake playing defense, firing back in counter here and there. American seemingly still buzzed for about 45 seconds, but then begins to stabilize her front, hold ground, fire back. Yvonne responds by getting back to ranged boxing. Next minute sees the pair working on even terms, getting back to tactical stuff. Both fighters getting their offense on, and neither gaining much of an edge while doing so. BOOM! A perfectly-placed right cross from Yvonne and DOWN GOES BLAKE! Lively splashed to her back by a THUNDEROUS right. Vonnie to a neutral corner again to watch the referee count, but, this time it's academic. Blake isn't just down, the American is OUT! It's OVER! And your winner by KO7 in comeback fashion is Yvonne Strahovski!
Vonnie complimentary in the post. "There's no doubt," the Aussie says with a nod, "That what I said in the pre-fight is true. She's a top contender at this weight. But, as I ALSO said, she was in with the best lightweight in the world tonight. And, that was the difference."