Tony 'The Bomber' Bellew returned with an impressive display up at cruiserweight in his home-city of Liverpool.
Bellew aged 31 came into this fight with a record of 20 wins, two losses and one draw on the back of a crushing defeat to the heavy-hitting hands of WBC light-heavyweight world champion Adonis Stevenson.
Bellew was never really able to settle into his work against Stevenson and never looked comfortable. The contest ended via a sixth round TKO leaving Bellew considering his future in the light-heavyweight division.
Bellew decided to make the huge jump up to cruiserweight in search of regaining the power that he had lost in recent fights. Bellew was always able to make the light-heavyweight limit but it was not something which came easily or naturally to him.
Standing at 6 foot 3 inches he was a massive light-heavyweight but he appeared to be drained of his power as the years went by. He was known to be a big-puncher in the amateurs when he fought as a heavyweight and Saturday night he rediscovered his power.
Bellew was faced with veteran Russian fighter Valery Brudov who held a good record of 41 wins and four losses and had been in with the likes of Ola Afolabi, Guillermo Jones and Firat Arslan.
Bellew looked comfortable at the weight and knocked down Brudov three times in the fight. Bellew used his jab well early on and landed the upper-cut effectively on occasions. His main strength was his straight right hand which he landed with real force.
Bellew was really troubled in the seventh with a big right hand from the Russian which wobbled his legs. He looked dazed and some say that he was saved by a low-blow from Brudov giving him time to recover.
Trainer David Coldwell tore into Bellew in the corner at the end of the 7th and told him that he was at risk of throwing away the fight and all the good work that he had done. This seemed to kick Bellew back into action.
The fight ended in spectacular fashion with a perfectly placed left-hook in the 12th round. Brudov was in no position to continue and Bellew had finished the job in emphatic fashion.
In terms of what's next for Bellew there are talks about fights against the likes of Nathan Cleverly and WBO Champ Marco Huck. Bellew would relish either fight but it is most likely that Bellew will be put in with another good, experienced cruiserweight to help him settle into the new division.
Bellew looked strong and comfortable at the weight and it could be exciting times ahead for 'The Bomber'
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