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‘Lights Out’ in Iowa: James Toney vs. Michael Nunn Provides Dramatic Eleventh-Round TKO

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‘Lights Out’ in Iowa: James Toney vs. Michael Nunn Provides Dramatic Eleventh-Round TKO


‘Lights Out’ in Iowa: James Toney vs. Michael Nunn Provides Dramatic Eleventh-Round TKO

On May 10, 1991, Michael Nunn went up against James “Lights Out” Toney for Nunns IBF middleweight strap at the John O’Donnell Stadium, Davenport, Iowa, in what was an entertaining clash that saw “Lights Out” claim victory by eleventh round TKO, winning the IBF title.

James Toney Defeats Michael Nunn in Iowa

James Toney vs. Michael Nunn Recap

The build-up to the fight was full of trash-talking, but Nunn was first out the blocks on fight night as he let his crisp jab go at will during the early rounds. He was putting his combinations together and countering effectively. Toney was having success, but Nunn was impressing the most.

He also wobbled Toney in the middle rounds, with “Lights Out” only landing the occasional right hand. After some strong words from his corner, Toney came out in round seven and landed a big right hand, which seemed to drain the Iowa native, leaving Toney on top.

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Toney worked his opponent’s body later in the fight and switched impressively between the head and body, with Nunn slowing down. Round eleven saw “Lights Out” land some heavy shots, which all seemed to affect Dunn. During the round, Toney landed a beautifully timed left hook, which dropped Nunn for only the second time in his career. Toney pounced as soon as the action resumed and dropped his opponent again, prompting Nunns corner to jump in the ring and end the fight, crowning Toney the new IBF middleweight champion in a thrilling contest.

What Came Next?

Nunn went on to win a version of the Super Middleweight title, but unfortunately, the Toney fight seemed to mark the beginning of the end for the Iowa native, who in 2004 was sentenced to 24 years in prison for drug trafficking.

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Toney had an impressive career fighting through the weights up to heavyweight. Despite experiencing poor performances and having weight problems in the latter part of his career, he is without doubt one of the most entertaining fighters of his generation.

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Freelance Writer and Digital Marketer, spending most of his time waiting for the Tyson Fury vs Usyk announcement. Also watches YouTube videos of Lennox Lewis fights on a daily basis.

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