- The 38-year-old produced a typically dominant performance on Saturday
- Artur Beterbiev continued his dominant reign as light-heavyweight champion
- Callum Smith is likely to retire at 33, with dignity as a former world champion
Callum the younger asked a lot of questions before Artur Beterbiev effectively brought down the iron curtain on the unique era of the brothers Smith in Liverpool boxing.
Unfortunately none of them in the ring in a frozen Quebec City on Saturday night.
No, the only reigning world champion who has won all his fights by knock-outs is not losing his fearsome punching power as he approaches his 39th birthday.
King Artur answered that one with a seventh round stoppage as brutal as it was beautiful to behold.
No, the surgery for dental decay which delayed this world light-heavyweight title fight for a few weeks has not crumbled Beterbiev’s concrete jaw.
Artur Beterbiev produced a brilliant performance to beat challenger Callum Smith (left) in Canada on Saturday
38-year-old reigning light-heavyweight world champion Beterbiev produced a typically dominant performance
As his challenger discovered to his disappointment on the rare occasions he managed to land a significant blow of his own.
No, Smith does not possess the one-shot left hook counter punch capable of destroying a great world champion which he and his promoter had been trumpeting.
Manifestly so, since the Russo-Canadian owner of the WBC, IBF and WBO belts was not wobbled for one second on his unstoppable march to a 20th gladiatorial triumph.
No, Beterbiev’s monstrous powers as he edges closer to 40 are not the product of proscribed substance abuse to which his promoter’s mouthpiece, former world champion Tony Bellow, regrettably continued to allude when this massacre was over.
As the WBC made clear, atypical samples indicating a small rise in enzymes are naturally produced. The more certainly so when all previous and subsequent tests come back negative. Furthermore, Beterbiev owes his longevity to a strict Moslem lifestyle and all those knock-outs which have reduced the wear and tear on his body.
No, Beterbiev, is not just a devasting puncher.
There was non-stop evidence of his technical skills, blistering hand speed including a lighting jab, precision punching, ring intelligence, judgement of distance and all-round ring-craft as he won every round by a mile.
Yes, to the one question which Smith answered himself after a more valiant performance than the one against Mexican legend Canelo Alvarez by which he endured his only previous defeat.
Smith is now likely to retire at the age of 33 and with dignity as a former world super-middleweight champion
Beterbiev’s monstrous punching power was on show as he beat Smith in Quebec
He is likely to retire at 33, with dignity as a former world super-middleweight champion, saying: ‘I wanted to prove myself the best of all. It is hard accept I’m not but I always said I didn’t want to carry on too long in this hard game.’
That honestly said – with elder brothers Paul and Stephen already hanging up the gloves and Liam on the brink after losing his rematch with Chris Eubank Jr – the Honourable Chapter Of Fighting Smiths is about to be disbanded.
Which leaves one question to be answered. Who becomes undisputed light-heavyweight champion when Beterbiev and fellow Russian Dmitry Bivol, the WBC title holder, make their fortunes in Saudi Arabia this summer?
All we know for certain right now is that this is a fight the world of boxing is waiting to see.