HOLLYWOOD, Fla. -- O'Neil Bell won the vacant IBF
cruiserweight title Friday night, earning a unanimous decision over
Bell, from Jamaica, landed solid rights to Brown's head and was
effective with combinations to the body in the 12-round bout. He
led on all three judges' cards, 117-111, 116-112 and 115-113.
"I thought my nonstop aggression won the fight," said Bell,
who lives in Atlanta. "This is a great moment. I've worked so hard
to win this title."
Brown was cut between his eyes in the second round and sustained
another cut to the left eyebrow when Bell (24-3-1) connected with
rights to the head.
But Brown, of Calgary, Alberta, tried to rally in the middle
rounds, connecting repeatedly with lefts to the head and
maintaining his distance from the power-punching Brown, who had won
22 of his previous 23 bouts by knockout.
"He surprised me with his boxing," Bell said.
Brown (32-4-1) had Bell on the ropes several times in the final
rounds as he connected with solid lefts to the head. However, he
could not follow up the lead shot with effective combinations.
"Those were opportunities when I needed to take a chance and go
after him," Brown said.
For Brown, it was his third unsuccessful bid at a cruiserweight
title, previously losing against Vasilyiy Jirov and Jean-Marc
The IBF title became vacant after former champion Kelvin Davis
was stripped of the belt for not fighting Bell, a mandatory
Bell weighed 199 pounds for Friday's bout, while Brown weighed
In another bout, former WBO junior-welterweight champion Randall
Bailey earned a unanimous decision over Colombia's Roberto Ortega.
Bailey (29-5) outpointed Ortega (17-14-2) with a left jab and
rights to the head and body in the 10-round welterweight bout.
Bailey, of Miami, won on all three judges' scorecards, 100-90.