We begin with a live shot of the crowd gathered in the Staples Center. Steve and Grady, our finalists of this tournament, are in their locker rooms. The intro is a recap of the 16 fighters and the many matches we’ve seen throughout the season. Our commentator tonight will be Brian Kenny. He shows us some old footage of Sugar Ray vs. Tommy Hearns from 25 years ago. The ringside announcers are introduced. They are Joe Tesitore and Kenny Atlas. The two talk about the strengths of each of the four boxers. The bronze match will be between the two guys who lost last week, Norberto Bravo and K9 Bundrage. We are shown scenes of how those two boxers got to this point in the tournament and some of their confessionals along the way.
Storm Large, from Rock Star: Supernova sings the national anthem because it has been her lifelong dream to sing at a professional sporting event, so even though she didn’t win her show, she’s gets a prize! The fighters are introduced and we are reminded of their current records. Bravo is 22-11-3 with 12 KOs and Bundrage is 23-2 with 13 KOs. When K9 is introduced, it sounds like the crowd is booing, but maybe they were barking. I dunno. The announcer tells us he is dedicating this fight to his sister Denise, who was murdered on August 6th.
The fight begins with K9 coming out punching. We can see how he pretty much towers over Bravo. K9 dominates this round, getting Bravo on the ropes and holding him. K9 is warned. In round 2, K9 continues to dominate, Bravo shows some life, K9 continues his holding strategy, then gets Bravo on the ropes again and K9 gets a knock down. Bravo stumbles a bit and K9 lands a bunch of combos. Round 3 is much of the same and K9 leads the bout 3 rounds to none so far. In round 4, More of the same continues, but K9 pushes Bravo down and gets another warning. Round 5 comes and we see much of the same thing. K9 dominating, getting Bravo in the ropes and tying him up. In round 6, Bravo actually falls down, but the ref rules there is no knock down and K9 gets a penalty. Bravo shows some energy, but K9 is too strong for him. In round 7, it’s more of the same, but then Bravo stumbles a bit and the ref calls the fight with 2:22 left to go in the 7th. K9 wins! His son is so happy, of course. He is shown with K9 in the post fight interview bouncing around in front of his dad.
Next we see Grady and Steve at the Toyota plant watching the winner’s truck being made. Grady tells us he thought they weren’t made in the USA, but now that he’s seen it made here, he would be proud to drive that truck. Brian Kenny talks with Sugar Ray about K9’s win and about the upcoming main event between Steve and Grady. They discuss their backgrounds and each of their assets. Kenny Albert is outside the center and shows us what each of the two fighters need to do in order to win. Peter Manfredo and Alfonso Gomez help him demonstrate.
…and we’re back, ringside, where the two fighters are introduced. Steve’s record is 32-3 with 9 KOs and Grady’s is 21-11 with 12 KOs, but we’re told most of Grady’s losses stem from him taking fights at the last minute just to get in the ring and have a payday. Round 1 starts a little slow as they are feeling each other out. Grady lands a few and takes the first round. Grady is much bigger than Steve as he has usually fought at the lightweight and featherweight divisions, but he beefed up for this tournament. Round 2 sees Grady doing well and he takes the round. In round 3, Steve shows some life and finally lands more punches than Grady as he takes this one. Round 4 is pretty even and I found it too close to call. Rounds 5 and 6 have Grady dominating and taking both. Round 7 and Steve shows some more life here while Grady is doing the same things. I’d say this one was Steve’s. Round 8 looked pretty even to me, round 9 looked like it belonged to Grady and round 10 looked fairly even as well. Of course, at this point, I was really tired because I had no idea the show was going to be 2 hours, so don’t quote me on the results.
The scores are in: 97 – 93 Grady, 96 – 94 Forbes and 96 – 94 Grady. Wow! It was that close! Grady wins by split decision. Sugar Ray presents the Contender belt. Brian Kenny interviews the winner. Grady thanks everyone for the chance. Steve is also interviewed.
…and on that note, I call it a night and we can call this a season!