Michael Conlan wasted no time in his fight with Karim Guerfi, knocking out the Frenchman in the first round in Belfast.
A flurry of unanswered punches from the Irishman saw Guerfi go down and not recover in round one.
Conlan always brings in big crowds for his fights, and once again his ring walk produced a cacophony of noise as the Irish hero entered the ring in front of his home crowd.
Michael Conlan Ring Walkout pic.twitter.com/zot3AgqC3k
— Scott Oneill (@scotton49489131) December 10, 2022
From the first bell, Conlan proved that he was levels above Guerfi, as he controlled the fight with his right hand, leaving Guerfi bewildered.
Two-and-a-half minutes passed in what was a dominant first round for Conlan before the Irishman pounced. A big left hand wobbled Guerfi, seeing him retreat towards the ropes.
Conlan would follow up with a barrage of punches, ending with a left hook, sending his French opponent to the canvas.
— ESPN Ringside (@ESPNRingside) December 10, 2022
Guerfi attempted to get back to his feet but would sway and stumble about, leaving the referee with no choice but to stop the fight.
Following the bout an elated Conlan made it clear that he wants to fight any world champion:
“I feel good. I feel like I could go tomorrow again, in fact I could go right now because I didn’t really get started and I had a lot more to give.
“Every shot I seemed to land I saw that it was hurting him. It was just a matter of time, I didn’t think it would be done in round number one, but it is a nice early Christmas present to myself.
“It’s my first first-round stoppage so Merry Christmas everybody. The support I had was special. Fingers crossed there will be a world title fight back here on St Patrick’s Day.
“It is nice when a 10-week camp pays off that quickly. I’ll fight any world champion. We just want to fight for a world title again.
“We know what happened in my last one [when Leigh Wood knocked Conlan out of the ring in the final round], it was a challenge, I was a minute-and-a-half away.
“I can’t let that sit in my memory forever, I need to get in and rewrite that and face either Leigh [Wood] or another world champion as soon as possible.”
The Irishman is ready to challenge for world titles, and got his job done early, which would have given him a chance to see a new world champion crowned in his division, as Luis Alberto Lopez defeated Josh Warrington on the same night in Leeds.
Conlan was torn on who would win that bout, but also hinted that if Lopez would defeat Warrington, it would not be a tough fight to make due to himself a Lopez both being under the Top Rank promotional banner.