Former heavyweight contender Andrew Golota shrugged off a warning for the low blows he's known for and knocked out journeyman Terrence Lewis midway through the sixth round Friday night for his second straight victory after a two-year layoff.
Golota, now 35, nailed Lewis with a flurry of punches early in the round and knocked him down in the bout at Turning Stone Resort and Casino. When the fight resumed, Golota pinned Lewis against the ropes, then slammed the back of his head with a right hand, sending him to the canvas in a daze.
Referee Bob Fenocchi stopped the fight at 1:25. It was Golota's 31st knockout and boosted his record to 38-4. Lewis, 30, of Philadelphia, fell to 31-13.
Golota, who fled his native Poland for Chicago in 1990 after a bar brawl in Warsaw, came close to beating former heavyweight champion Riddick Bowe twice in 1996. Golota was winning each fight, only to lose on disqualifications for hitting low.
Despite a layoff of 2 1/2 years, the low blows haven't disappeared from his repertoire. He was penalized for them in the third round Fenocchi halted the action with Lewis wincing in pain.
"Everybody's trying to claim it [low blows] now," said Golota, who knocked Lewis down once in each of the first two rounds before Lewis slipped to the canvas in the third. "It wasn't a low blow. What am I to do?"
Lewis, who left the ring unmarked, expressed disgust at the outcome.
"He was punching, and he took the back of my head," Lewis said. ``I stepped away and he hit me with a chop to the head and the momentum made it look like I was sliding into second base.
"I was dizzy in the right eye for a minute and the referee just stopped the fight," said Lewis, who weighed 115.2kg. "I took his best. If that was me, they would have stopped the fight and disqualified me."
Golota fought Mike Tyson in the last fight before his layoff, and that ended in a no-contest after marijuana was detected in Tyson's blood. In the first fight of his comeback, Golota knocked out Brian Nix in the seventh round of their August bout.
Golota said he hoped to fight again in January.
"After Tyson, I was upset by my performance and didn't want to think about boxing," said Golota, who weighed 109kg for the Lewis fight.
"But I was born for boxing. I just need to get in real shape. I'm not in typical shape."