Jean Pascal vs. Adrian Diaconu II: Round By Round

The undercard is complete and we're just about set to watch Jean Pascal and Adrian Diaconu in a rematch for the WBC light heavyweight title that Pascal won in the first meeting back in June. The venue is the same, the Bell Centre in Montreal.

A video package shows us why Diaconu is known as "The Shark." The Romanian calls Montreal home now, and he is greeted warmly by the fans. Diaconu is 26-1 with 15 KOs and has not fought since his first bout with Pascal.

Originally hailing from Haiti, Pascal also resides in Quebec. He's made once successful defense of his WBC belt (stopping Silvio Branco in September), and he sports a 24-1 professional record with 16 KOs. The lights go out for his dramatic ring entrance.

The national anthems are done, and the ring introductions are given in both English and French by Christian Gauthier. Michael Griffin is the referee, and there are two American judges plus one Canadian scoring the fight.

We're ready to go, scheduled for 12 rounds.

Round One

Diaconu is the early aggressor, but Pascal throws out some jabs. He throws a quick left and ducks the counter. About 30 seconds pass with no punches connecting. Diaconu lands a nice right hand upstairs. Pascal has to hustle to avoid being trapped on the ropes. Diaconu flurries into Pascal's gloves. The ref warns them about leading with their heads, and there's some nice two-way action before the bell with The Shark getting the better of it.

Franchise: 10-9 Diaconu

Round Two

Pascal dances in circles, still a little tentative after eating a big left hook late in the first round. He charges forward to the body, but Diaconu whacks him with a counter to the head. Adrian flurries to the head and body,and Pascal returns fire with two left hands. Pascal scores with multiple jabs. Both men attack the body in turn. Pascal covers his face, then knocks Diaconu back with a speedy combination in the closing seconds.

Franchise: 10-9 Diaconu

Round Three

Gaby Mancini gave the second round to Pascal. He strikes first this time with repeated jabs. Diaconu gets clobbered with two right hands that may have stunned him. Pascal lures him into the ropes but gets hit with a right. Jean covers up int he corner and blocks multiple punches, then charges out with a three-punch combo. Pascal lands a counter right and a left, and Diaconu stumbles back. He gathers himself and comes forward again before the bell.

Franchise: 10-9 Pascal

Round Four

The fighters touch gloves to begin the round. Pascal is holding his hands up high much more often in this fight. He throws two left hooks around Diaconu's guard. The Shark misses a wild right hand. Pascal showboats a bit but he hasn't really found his rhythm yet. Now he unleashes a series of punches, including a hard left hook. Diaconu tries a clubbing overhand right. Pascal's hand speed is too much for Diaconu in an exchange along the ropes.

Franchise: 10-9 Pascal

Round Five

Diaconu is still coming forward as we start the fifth. Pascal tries to keep him at bay with his jab. Diaconu lands a right and immediately gets tied up. More jabs from Pascal, followed by a right hand. Diaconu rattles Pascal with a right hand and tries to take advantage. More rights form The Shark to the body and head. Pascal still has his legs as he circles to gain breathing room. Both men fire power shots before the bell.

Franchise: 10-9 Diaconu

Round Six

We've got another tight one thus far. Pascal opens up with several unanswered shots. He pounds his chest as Diaconu goes to work. Both fighters jab and circle. Pascal tries the hook but it's blocked. Lots of stuff getting picked off by the gloves right now. Pascal flashes the hook up high and tries the body too. Tough round to score with both men more defensively aware.

Franchise: 10-9 Pascal

Round Seven

Pascal gets very low to start the round. Diaconu strikes with a right-left combo upstairs. More jabs coming in both directions. Pascal reaches inside with a nice right uppercut. Left hook and another right uppercut from Jean. Vicious body shots are thrown by both men. Diaconu pounds his chest now to show he's not hurt. Another close round with each man having his moments.

Franchise: 10-9 Pascal

Round Eight

Pascal opens up quickly, scoring with a left hook and a series of body shots. He pours it on along the ropes and Diaconu gets battered. He hangs in, though, and now he comes forward. The Shark throws lefts to the head and body. Pascal covers up to block about six punches. Jean showboats again, drawing a mixed reaction from the fans. Uppercut from Pascal before he clinches. Diaconu digs in but gets smacked by a left hook.

Franchise: 10-9 Pascal

Round Nine

Mancini has it even through eight, and I could certainly see that. Pascal peppers Diaconu with lefts again. Adrian leans in and goes back on the attack. Jabs and a body shot by Pascal. Both men land as they trade in the center of the ring, though Pascal lands last with an uppercut. Diaconu tries the body; Pascal still likes the left hook. Pascal crouches again but gets nailed with a right as he stands up. Another right comes in from Diaconu before the bell.

Franchise: 10-9 Diaconu

Round 10

The pace slows just a bit. Pascal blocks some punches and the ref has to step in. Pascal tries a right hook and some jabs. Diaconu has been aggressive but not very effective. Now he lands a body shot. The ref warns Pascal for a forearm shot. Finally some power shots start flowing at close range. Pascal uppercuts and hooks. He knocks Diaconu back with a two-punch combo, but it looks like he hurt his hand near the end of the round.

Franchise: 10-9 Pascal

Round 11

I'm still not sure what happened to Pascal at the end of the previous round. He looks okay, but Diaconu does most of the damage in the first minute. Uppercut by Adrian and a bunch of jabs. Pascal finally comes to life with some left hooks. He lets his hands go and drives Diaconu back into the corner. The ref pulls them apart for some reason and they fight to the bell.

Franchise: 10-9 Diaconu

Round 12

The fans are into it as we head for home. Pascal tries to dig inside with his uppercuts again. He shoves Diaconu back but The Shark keeps coming. Pascal dances around with his jab. Diaconu works him over with rights in tight. Pascal delivers three left hooks. He goes to the body with 50 seconds to go. The fans applaud as both men go for broke in the center of the ring. Pascal flashes uppercuts and hooks, just trying to overwhelm Diaconu. It's a fitting conclusion to another great fight, and we'll go to the cards.

Franchise: 10-9 Pascal

Franchise: 115-113 Pascal

The judges score it 118-110 and 117-111 twice, all for the winner by unanimous decision... and still WBC light heavyweight titleholder... Jean Pascal.

Posted by The Franchise

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