Despite a relatively long layoff, Callum Smith needed little time to get back in the groove and easily win his first title defense.
Smith retained his WBA “Super” super middleweight world title by taking out former secondary middleweight titlist Hassan N’Dam in the third round of their fight. The title bout took place at Madison Square Garden on the undercard of Andy Ruiz Jr.'s upset win over Anthony Joshua to win the unified heavyweight titles.
The fight was one-sided from the start as Smith dropped N’Dam with a check left hook in the first round and N’Dam struggled to get back up. The second round was almost a mirror image of the first round with N’Dam getting knocked down by Smith from a hook and N’Dam having trouble in getting up.
N’Dam recovered in the third round by fighting better than in the first two rounds and having some success landing punches on the inside. But with just seconds remaining in the round, Smith connected with a straight right hand to the side of N’Dam’s head and the challenger dropped to the canvas and his head bouncing off the mat. Although N’Dam managed to will himself back up, the referee decided to step in and stop the fight, awarding Smith the win.
This was Smith’s first title defense since winning the title last September in Saudi Arabia where he defeated George Groves to also win the World Boxing Super Series super middleweight tournament. Smith entered the fight against N'Dam as Fightful’s third-best super middleweight on its official rankings, which can be seen at this link.