Montana Love had to just win on Saturday night to get into the conversation for a world title, but on a strange evening in his native Cleveland, he lost his undefeated record with a disqualification for throwing his rival the Australian Steve Spark out of the ring during the sixth round.
The local fighter came confident. He had gained at least 10 pounds in rehydration and he displayed his potential. All he had to do was watch out for his opponent's knockout punches.
In the first two rounds, Montana decided to talk to Spark - trying to mess with his head - but Spark delivered what he promised and as soon as he could, with a couple of powerful shots to the head, sent Montana to the canvas. Although Love managed to get up and continue with the fight, the first warning was delivered.
Montana learned the lesson and began to close his rival. He tried to outbox him and kept in a middle distance for a while, but Spark adjusted to continue with his work.
In the sixth round, a clash of heads resulted in a cut over Love´s left eyelid which had to be looked at by the ringside doctor. The threat that he could stop the fight a minute later, depending on the severity of the injury, was the gasoline Montana needed to go out and pressure the fight that he was losing on the scorecards.
But there was a problem, he knew he needed to end the fight before the injury worsened so he attacked his rival and, in a heated exchange, picked him up and threw him over the ropes.
Immediately the chaos began, Spark called for a disqualification and as the judges and referees were deciding the outcome, the Australian began to celebrate.
In the end, David Diamante announced the result, Love was disqualified and lost his undefeated status just when he was closest to a world title.
When both were asked if they wanted a rematch, Love readily agreed, but Spark said he would only agree if that makes sense.
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