Mack emerged as the new USBA Light Heavyweight Champion with the win.
Light Heavyweights Put on a Show at Resorts Casino in Atlantic City
With the USBA Light Heavyweight Title on the line, Yusaf Mack (30-4, 17 KOs) and Omar Sheika (32-12, 21 KOs) gave Atlantic City boxing fans an absolute show on Friday night at Resorts Casino. The two veteran fighters were showcased in the main event of a card co-promoted by Nedal’s Promotions and KEA Boxing, and they did not disappoint.
The duo took the first couple of rounds to feel each other out and started to establish their game plans for this 12-round affair, with Sheika looking to slow his opposition with body work and Mack countering by using his heavy hands to deliver blows to the head. Sheika then found some success in the third round when he pressured Mack to the ropes and began to pepper him with shots to both the body and head. While he did toss some good work onto his opponent, Mack was able to withstand the aggression and get himself out of trouble.
By the time the fourth bell rang, it became clearly evident that both of these combatants came to fight, and there would be no backing off by either man. Knowing this is the type of bout that favored his style, Mack began to lure Sheika into the center of the ring in an attempt to start chopping down the New Jersey native. However, Sheika did continue to apply some good body work, but he saw himself on the receiving end of some sharp uppercuts that his Philadelphia counterpart began to find as a result. While Mack appeared to be getting a slight advantage in their confrontations, both men were finding their mark when it became available, and neither fighter was letting off the gas at all.
As the fight progressed, the condition of the two boxers continued to shine, displaying great will and non-stop motors. Each side kept the other in constant pressure, but Mack really started to loosen up in the eighth round and blast his opposition with some heavy handed blows. Regardless, Sheika still came forward and was able to create some opportunities with his right hand. Late in that eighth frame, Sheika rocked Mack with an overhand right that stumbled him back a bit, but he was able to recover from the shot by the time the bell rang.
This championship encounter then started to climb into deep waters, but you could not tell from the way these two fighters continued to apply pressure and give the highly entertained fight fans in attendance every bit of value possible. They constantly engaged in the center of the ring while showing incredible fitness and will, and the Resorts crowd was to its feet by the time the bell rang for the 12th and final round. Somehow, both men then found another level and unloaded on one another with seriously bad intentions. Seemingly well ahead on the cards, Mack finally solidified the win in the last minute of the bout. Sheika threw a left to the body, dipping and leaving his head low when he did it, and Mack retaliated with a perfectly placed left hook that dropped him to the canvas. Much like he had shown the entire fight, Sheika proved he had no quit in him and quickly returned to his feet. However, the final bell would come before he could mount any type of comeback from the knockdown.
With 12 frames in the books, the ringside judges would be needed to voice their opinions, and Mack found himself crowned the new USBA Light Heavyweight Champion when the officials revealed counts of 119-107 and 118-109 (twice).