Football’s loss may be boxing’s gain. With the NFL in labor limbo, Ravens safety Tommy Zbikowski returned to pro boxing Saturday and produced a first-round technical knockout over less-fit opponent Richard Bryant. The 25-year-old Zbikowski pounded a left hook to the 235-pound Bryant’s belly, and the big man lost his breath and slumped to the canvas. Bryant was so out of wind referee Russell Mora stopped the fight at the 1:45 mark of the first.
Zbikowski was able to strike a $10,000 deal to fight Bryant with bout promoter Top Rank as the Ravens’ restricted free agent awaits signing a tender with the team.
Top Rank Chairman Bob Arum said he projects another Zbikowski event March 26 in Atlantic City, and also in late April in a casino-resort outside Dallas.