TJ Doheny [22(16)-1(0)] returned to winning ways in Chicago last night.
‘The Power’ dispatched Jesus Martinez [26(13)-10(6)] of Colombia in five rounds on the undercard of Oleksandr Usyk’s eagerly anticipated heavyweight debut.
The Portlaoise fighter pressed and dominated from the off and sent his opponent to the canvas early.
Come the fourth round the Columbian was struggling under constant pressure and seemed to be looking for a way out.
The 32-year-old former super bantamweight champion of the world gave him every excuse after an impressive fifth.
The Boston trained Australia based Laois fighter scored a knockdown when a backhand left sent his foe crashing to the ropes and piled on more pressure after the count.
Right on the bell he wobbled Martinez with a uppercut and he failed to emerge for the sixth ensuring Doheny registered stoppage victory on his return to DAZN.
It was the first time the southpaw was seen in the ring since his world-title unification fight defeat to Danny Roman.
In the build up to his return he revealed he carried the weight of reverse in an early 2019 Fight of the Year contender around with him for six months – and will be happy to put some distance between himself and his sole career defeat.
Doheny also revealed he was keen on a rematch with Roman, who was forced to withdraw from a scheduled September. 13 mandatory title defense against MJ Akhmadaliev in New York due to a shoulder injury.
However, he didn’t limit himself to the American. WBC champ Rey Vargas and WBO title holder Emanuel Navarrete are also options.
Rey Vargas, like Doheny, is DAZN-affiliated, Navarrete is with Top Rank and ESPN, which suggests Vargas would be the most likely, but Doheny isn’t picky he just wants a return to world champion status
“Which route I take to getting back on top doesn’t concern me, but I’m very confident I will secure another title fight in the next 6-8 months.”