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  • Shannon Briggs collects another quick KO; Why top 10 heavyweights should worry (Video)

Shannon Briggs collects another quick KO; Why top 10 heavyweights should worry (Video)

Lee Cleveland Updated
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Forty-two year-old former WBO heavyweight champion Shannon Briggs (57-6-1, 50 KOs) defeated overmatched 26 year old, Richard Carmack (12-6, 10 KO) tonight in a scheduled 10 round bout at the Isle of Capri Casino, in Lula, Mississippi, USA.

The knockout came in the opening round.

Sixteen years younger and 47 lbs heavier, the 308 lb Carmack couldn't keep Briggs from recording his 50th knockout. Shannon floored his foe three times in the opening stanza en route to the 35th first round knockout of his career.

The official time was 2:59.

Now, 6-0 (5 KOs) since he launched his comeback campaign in April, Team Briggs may look for another victim... er... opponent to face by year's end.

Like Roy Jones, Jr, Briggs, to the untrained eye, appears to be padding his resume and picking non-threatening opponents who can make him look good but there's a method to his madness. 

Although both Jones and Briggs are criticized by many in boxing for fighting perceived 'tomato cans,' this is how aging and comebacking fighters hone their conditioning, timing, speed and accuracy and, above all, build confidence.

A 'Senior's Tour,' if implemented properly, can be extremely effective in creating the groundswell for a superfight.

Most fail to realize George Foreman and Larry Holmes took similar paths on their comebacks as did Roberto Duran and Hector Camacho among others in comparable situations.

Who remembers when a spry, well-conditioned 43 year old Larry Holmes, fresh off of fighting 'nobodies' for eight months, outboxed, outslugged and simply embarrassed then Top 5 heavyweight Ray Mercer (30) in 1992? The latter had just knocked out Tommy Morrison.

While today's top 10 heavyweights are fighting once every 6 or 7 months, Briggs is keeping active by engaging in tune-ups every 6-8 weeks. 

Just as a comebacking bodybuilder has 'muscle memory,' Briggs has 'boxing memory' and it'll pay massive dividends should he stay focused.

Nevertheless, Briggs will have to 'take it up a notch' sooner or later if he wants to continue progressing. Tonight's opponent entered the bout on a five-fight losing streak.

If Shannon, who stepped in the ring this evening as BoxRec's No. 18th ranked American heavyweight and No. 56 overall, can remain disciplined while slowly increasing his level of opposition, there's no reason why he wouldn't have what it will take to defeat a top 10 heavyweight by the end of 2015.

And while he may not be on Foreman's level, Briggs, like George, is a fighter with underrated skills and a strong amateur pedigree.

In addition, unlike nearly all of today's top 10 heavyweights, Briggs boasts considerable professional experience against top opposition - and blistering punching power.

Combine his technical proficiences with his strength, punching power and vast amateur and professional experience, and a focused, disciplined, well-conditioned Briggs could spell T-R-O-U-B-L-E for a top contender as early as 2015. After all, how many of today's heavyweights have shared the ring with the likes of George Foreman, Lennox Lewis, Frans Botha and Vitali Klitschko?

Briggs is ridiculed today just as Foreman and Holmes were in the 1990s. In the end, Larry and Big George had the last laugh. And, again, maybe Briggs isn't quite on their level but, unlike the 1990s, the heavyweight division isn't exactly a bastion of worldbeaters these days.


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