Edinburgh boxer Josh Taylor made it six professional wins out of six at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, on Saturday night with another devastating display against American Evincii Dixon.
The 2014 Commonwealth Games gold medallist was a cut above his opponent from the first bell, leading with the jab before landing a punishing left shot towards the end of the second round that left the Pennsylvania native flat out on his back.
Despite retreating to his corner to recuperate, the American failed to return for the start of the third round, giving Taylor his sixth consecutive knockout since switching to the paid ranks last July.
The 25-year-old Scot, who is managed by Cyclone promoter and former WBA featherweight champion Barry McGuigan, is yet to be taken beyond the second round by any opponent and is now certain to be stepped up a level in the coming months.
“I felt really good but took my time to suss him out,” Taylor, pictured right, said. “It’s a great end to my first year as a professional. I started and finished my first year in America with six fights and six knockouts.”
Taylor was fighting on the undercard of his Cyclone stablemate Carl Frampton, who claimed the WBA featherweight belt by outclassing holder Leo Santa Cruz to win a majority verdict.
That made him the first Northern Irishman to claim a world title in two divisions, crowning the 29-year-old as a star name of the sport and one of his country’s most decorated athletes.
His manager Barry McGuigan won the same belt 31 years ago and did not hold back in his assessment of Frampton’s status.
“I genuinely believe this kid will go on to be the greatest Irish fighter there’s ever been,” he said.
“Tonight was the greatest night of his life. It was a spectacular performance.”
A badly bruised Frampton, on his first outing at 126lbs, beamed with pride after winning 116-112 and 117-111 on two of the judges cards and drawing the other.
“I don’t know if it’s sunk in yet ... that’s going to be a fight that defines part of my career,” he said.
“I’ve just made history. I’ve beaten an unbelievable fighter in Leo Santa Cruz.”