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Azad Championship Report: Banks Shocks Mitchell in Two

By Alec Kohut

Immediately following his stunning upset of Seth Mitchell, heavyweight Johnathon Banks told Maxboxing, “they say if you give a man a fish you feed him for a day, but if you teach him how to fish you feed him for a lifetime.  Emanuel Stewart fed me for a lifetime teaching me the sport of boxing.  I love him and I miss him.”

Jonathan Banks dropped formerly undefeated Seth Mitchell three times en route to a technical knockout at 2:37 of the second round.  The trouble started after a Mitchell right to the body seemed to have stunned Banks.  Banks responded with a sharp straight right that momentarily staggered the former Michigan State linebacker.  Mitchell held on, but Banks again landed a hard right hand sending Mitchell to the canvas for the first time his 27-fight career. 

Although not quite recovered, Mitchell engaged Banks in a toe-to-toe brawl before Banks’ right hand again found its mark on Mitchell’s chin, and Mitchell went down for a second time and was in obvious and serious trouble.  Following the eight count by referee Eddie Cotton, Mitchell was desperate to survive the second round.  However, Banks realized his opportunity to score the upset and again pounced on the still dazed Mitchell dropping him for the third time and forcing Cotton to call a halt to the bout.  

Banks also told Maxboxing that the right to the body that Mitchell landed didn’t hurt as much as he made it look but knew from his studying Mitchell in previous fights that coming forward Mitchell had a tendency to leave himself open for well-aimed straight right hands.  

Mitchell began the fight with a much more measured pace than we have been used to in previous fights.  He looked to establish his left jab and was patient with his right hand.  Mitchell did land enough punches to win the round and landed one right to Banks’ head as Banks was crouching that seemed to momentarily stun the Detroit native.  

Immediately following the loss, Mitchell admitted to Maxboxing that he had made a mistake throwing a lunging punch at the smaller Banks following the right to the body.  Despite the knock out, Mitchell said he was fine and plans to continue his career despite the setback.

Despite giving up over 22 pounds to Mitchell, Banks improved to 29-1-1 with his 19th knockout and now must be considered a legitimate contender among the sports most glamorous division.
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