Muhammad Ali’s grandson Nico Ali Walsh stole the headlines after he beat Alejandro Ibarra in the first round of his bout against the Denver-born star at the MGM Arena in Las Vegas – and did the ‘Ali Shuffle’ after the stoppage to emulate his grandfather’s trademark move.
Walsh, 21, has won all five of his professional bouts in his career. The middleweight’s last fight was only in January in Oklahoma when he knocked out Jeremiah Yeager in two rounds to emerge victorious with an unbeaten record.
He took on Ibarra in a bid to make that five from five on the undercard of Shakur Stevenson vs Oscar Valdez. And after stopping the star with a one-punch, first round knockout, the star did the Ali shuffle in celebration.
A strong right-hand blow knocked Ibarra to the canvas and sent the crowd wild. But Walsh knew the fight was destined to go in his favour, claiming ‘stuff like this happens’ when hard work is put in.
“This is just a testament to all the work I put in,” he said. “Stuff like this happens when you put the work in.
“I’m bringing my grandpa back to life, and that’s why mom gets so emotional because she’s seeing her dad again and hearing her dad’s name. I was setting him up with the right hand. I noticed his left hand was going down when he threw the jab. I was trying to counter it, and that’s what I did.
“I wish the best for him and his team. He’s a true warrior. But I just waited for that setup, and I saw it and I took advantage.” The 21-year-old only made his debut eight months ago, but has five wins to his name with four of those being knockouts.