"MAGIC” Mike Plania somehow did his magic and scored a huge upset over one of the world’s top bantamweights, Joshua Greer Jr., by a convincing majority decision in the main event of Top Rank’s closed-door boxing show on June 17, 2020 (PH time) at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Plania, who dropped down in weight, came in as a three-to-one underdog against Greer Jr., who was ranked No. 1 in the World Boxing Organization (WBO) and the No. 7 best bantamweight by the Ring Magazine.
However, he showed no signs of being an underdog as he dominated the fight early with his quick hands and power.
Plania shocked Greer Jr. with a lunging lead left hook that dropped him flat on his back to the canvas in the opening round.
The 24-year-old native of General Santos City dictated the fight and forced Greer Jr. to backpedal most of the fight.
In the sixth round, Plania once again caught Greer Jr. with another solid left hook to the head for a second knockdown.
Greer felt the sense of urgency of being way behind on the scorecards and started to adjust in the seventh round by moving inside. He finally found his success in the eighth by fighting inside and landing punches up close. However, it was a little bit too late and he failed to beat Plania on the scorecards.
Judges Tim Cheatham and Patricia Morse Jarman had Plania up ahead by a mile with scores of 96-2 and 97-91, respectively. Judge Dave Moretti apparently saw it differently and scored it even at 94-94 despite the two knockdowns.
“I’m ready for anything. I’m just going to wait for the decision of my manager (Sanman chief executive officer JC Manangquil),” Plania said after the fight.
Plania, ranked No. 11 by the World Boxing Association (WBA) and No. 12 by the International Boxing Federation (IBF) as a super bantamweight, should break into the WBO bantamweight rankings. He improved to 24-1 with 12 knockouts, while the 26-year-old Greer Jr. dropped to 22-2-1 with 12 knockouts.
Meanwhile, Filipino-Hawaiian Cameron Krael (17-16-3, 4 KOs) dropped a unanimous decision against Bobirzhan Mominov (11-0, 8 KOs) in an action-packed six-round fight.
All three judges saw Mominov ahead with scores of 58-55, 58-55 and 57-56.