Andy Lee makes successful return to the ring after 15 month absence
It's great to see Andy Lee getting back to winning ways.
The Limerick native returned to ring against KeAndre Leatherwood in Madison Square Garden on Saturday night on the undercard of Gennady Golovkin's world title defence against Daniel Jacobs.
Less than 24 hours after Michael Conlan's successful professional debut in the same venue, Lee claimed a unanimous decision win over Leatherwood in the eight-round bout, but he didn't have it all his own way.
Lee didn't look like he was firing on all cylinders in the opening rounds and Leatherwood had his moments, particularly in the second when he cracked the Irishman with a strong right hand. The former WBO champion was tentative and a bit sluggish, but the ring rust began to wear off as the fight progressed.
By round six, we saw snippets of the same Andy Lee we've all come to know ad love as his power shots began finding the mark. He didn't get the knockout he might have liked, but a win is a win, and this one was fairly comfortable once he found his groove. The judges scored the fight 80-72, 78-74, 79-73 in his favour.
Unanimous victory for @AndyLeeBoxing in New York pic.twitter.com/e3JTC4YFJw
— SportsJOE (@SportsJOEdotie) March 19, 2017
It marked Lee's first time fighting since losing his WBO strap to Billy Joe Saunders in December 2015. He had been added to the card as a back-up should GGG's opponent pull out of the main event.
This performance won't be the one that finally secures him that huge fight against the Kazakh knockout monster, but it's another one for the win coloumn, and it's a step in the right direction.
@AndyLeeBoxing shake off the ring rust and back to winning! Up the Irish!! pic.twitter.com/gl7WYzv9zj
— Adam Booth (@boxingbooth) March 19, 2017