It was as eye-catching as it was record-breaking. Justis Huni, perhaps the most hyped young heavyweight Australia has ever seen, has captured the national heavyweight crown on debut with a seventh-round stoppage of Faiga Opelu in Brisbane on Thursday night.
No fighter has ever achieved the feat but Huni, an amateur sensation who can still fight at the Tokyo Olympics next year, looked at ease as he picked apart the inhumanely tough Opelu, who wore some fearsome shots before his corner wisely reached for the towel in round seven.
Prior to that, he had been taunting Huni and daring him to unleash. Unfortunately for Opelu, his opponent did just that, although he refrained from the temptation to get too loose and went back to his technical background when things started to get a little wild in the fourth and fifth rounds.
In any case, Huni didn't need to veer too far from the game plan. He had broken down Opelu (15-13-1-1) with relative ease from the first round, showcasing quick hands for a big man as well as impressive footwork. He switched stances regularly as the fight wore on and showcased an impressive set of skills he insists is only scratching the surface of his talents.
"He tried to unsettle me but I went back to boxing which is what I'm good at. That was only a little bit of my skills, I have a lot more to show the world," Huni said after the fight.
"This is only the beginning and you will be seeing a lot more of me."
There was always the feeling that Huni could pick up the pace whenever he felt the need and, in the seventh, he stepped on the pedal. Opelu found himself up against the ropes, eating shots from all angles before his trainer Steve Deller launched the towel towards the unfolding carnage.
"I was ready, I felt ready to pick the tempo up. He wasn't doing much so my corner told me to it's time to pick up the tempo," Huni said.
Huni's promoter Dean Lonergan firmly believes he has a genuine heavyweight contender on his hands. That's a long, long way from Brisbane on Thursday but he did little to suggest that the hype about his talents was completely overblown.
He will fight again in December, then March as he moves towards the Tokyo Games. Already a bronze medallist at last year's world championships, Huni wants Olympic gold, which would be the perfect launchpad for an expanded climb up the international heavyweight ladder.
Huni wasn't the main event on Thursday. That fell to cruiserweight star Jai Opetaia (20-20-0), who stopped Ben Kelleher in the sixth round with an exceedingly sharp display of southpaw boxing.
Opetaia hopes to win a world belt in his current division before a possible move up to heavyweight, where he could even run into Huni should their trajectories continue to trend upwards.
The performance had even more appeal given Opetaia had a flare-up of the hand injury that has plagued him on and off throughout his career. But he remains one of Australia's best talents and looks every bit a player in better fights than the one he commanded on Thursday night.