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Mielnicki Jr. splashes in pro debut


Mielnicki Jr. splashes in pro debut

Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Mielnicki Jr. splashes in pro debut

Vito Mielnicki Jr. lived up to the hype as he blasted out Tamarcus Smith in just 76 seconds in what was an historic professional debut on Saturday night at The Prudential Center in Newark.

The 17 year-old Mielnicki became the youngest boxer ever granted a license in The Garden State, and the Roseland, New Jersey native thrilled a crowd of nearly 1,000 of his own supporters who came out to witness the fight.

Mielnicki landed a booming right-left combination that sent Smith face-first into the bottom rope, and the fight was waved off by referee Shada Murdaugh at 1:16 of the opening frame.

The fight, which was streamed live on ESPN+, and the knockout earned the number-seven spot on ESPN SportsCenter Top 10 that Saturday Night.

The fighter nicknamed “White Magic” was very happy with his performance.

“It was exactly how I envisioned it.  With the crowd and everything, it made it a lot more electric,” Said Mielnicki.  “I worked for this my whole life, and I knew everything was going to payoff tonight.”

On the finish, “I waited for the right moment to throw the overhand right.  We worked on it all camp.”

Mielnicki, who will be entering his senior year at West Essex High School, is looking to get back in the gym and start preparing for his school year.

“I go back to school in September. I will consult with my manager Anthony Catanzaro and see what the best fit is for me in terms of a promoter and platform.  I just want to thank all of my trainers who were with me all camp. I want to thank Top Rank especially Bob Arum and Carl Moretti who put me on their card, commissioner Larry Hazzard for believing in me.  I also want to thank all of my family friends who came out tonight.”



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Marquis Johns is a unknown humorist and avid boxing fan. His love for the sweet science goes back to when matches were 15 rounds and has been covering fights since closed-circuit pay-per-views. Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth is not only a quote by Mike Tyson, it's also a pretty good reminder to keep your guard up.

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