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Maurice Hooker retains 140-pound title with one-sided win over Mikkel LesPierre

Anthony Cocks

Australian-based boxing journalist Anthony Cocks has been covering the sport for over 15 years for various print and online publications. He refuses to believe that Roberto Duran ever lost to Tommy Hearns and says that Jeff Fenech would destroy Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali on the same night.

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WBO junior welterweight champion Maurice ‘Mighty Mo’ Hooker 26-0-3 (17) had little trouble outpointing southpaw Mikkel LesPierre 21-1-1 (10) over 12-rounds in the second defence of his world title at the Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, New York on Saturday night.

The 29-year-old Texan, who initially missed weight by half-a-pound but returned to the scales within the two-hour window to make 140-pounds, controlled most of the action during the 36-minutes of combat.

Judge Eric Marlinski awarded him every round of the fight 120-107, while judge Don Ackerman found a single round for LesPierre at 119-108 and judge John McKaie gave two rounds to the challenger 118-109.

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At 5-foot-11 and with a listed reach of 80-inches, Hooker was able to control the action from the outside and punish LesPierre when he managed to close the distance. In the fifth round a Hooker right hand had LesPierre in trouble at the bell. A left hook to the body from the champion had LesPierre on the deck in the ninth with the challenger lucky to beat the count.

Hooker praised LesPierre after the fight while admitting he wasn’t pleased with his own performance.

“He’s good guy, a good fighter and I mean he stood up to the level. He’s good people, him and his team. But you know is all love and we all do this to feed the family. We’ve got people that depend on us. Hats off to him and his team and he will be back soon,” Hooker said.

“I give myself a C- in my performance. I wasn’t good but I had to push. Look, you live and you learn. If you judge me from this fight, you better not get in the ring thinking the same thing because I am coming for you.”

Hooker reflected on missing weight, shouldering the blame for coming in slightly heavy.

“No, I mean yesterday making weight was my fault. I was in the room messing around. That was my fault. I’m learning as I go. I’m not done yet,” he said, before calling for a unification bout with WBC counterpart Jose Ramirez.

“I want the WBC title. Everyone come to DAZN! Anybody. Come to DAZN. Where’s Jack Catterall? He came all the way over here to watch me fight. Just wait young grasshopper, you will get your turn.”

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