CONOR BENN blasted out respected American veteran Chris Algieri with a KO of the year contender for his 20th pro win.
The 25-year-old had already dropped the 37-year-old with a cuffing blow in the second, almost knocking him out into the VIP seats.
But he waited until the fourth, after showing off his growing defensive skills, to obliterate the tough visitor with a rocket of a right hand.
The only three defeats on Algieri’s impressive record came on points against Filipino legend Manny Pacquio and Amir Khan, as well as a KO loss to heavy handed Errol Spence Jr.
So Benn has sent out yet another warning that he is rapidly approaching world title contention.
Algieri was booed into the ring by the UK crowd that has taken Conor to their hearts thanks to the exploits of two-weight world champ dad Nigel.
The taller veteran raced across the ring as soon as the bell started the fight but a couple of clubbing Benn rights soon had his boxing more cautiously.
The crowd loved it when the Brit sunk down onto his haunches and evaded punches like his father did in his pomp.
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But they were concerned for a split second when Algieri landed a flush left hook that would have impressed the judges but Benn’s chin has improved as drastically as his boxing skills.
In the second the Essex father-of-one slashed hooks into Algieri’s long torso but the New Yorker shook his head in defiance when Benn tried to ram a one-two through his high guard.
But a peach of a left hook at the end of the session almost knocked Algieri out of the ring.
The Destroyer caught him off guard with a perfectly timed dig and he barrelled into a forward roll that almost took him out of the ropes but he beat the count and made it to the bell.
Benn looked excellent in the third, landing three-punch combinations of straights and hooks and defending, at times, like a stand-out amateur.
Algieri was hurt in the fourth by a right hand to his gut but his incredible conditioning for a middle-aged man helped him handle the blow.
But the right hand that smashed into his skull seconds later could not be coped with.
The jab teed it up and then a piledriver of a straight right demolished Algieri’s guard and his senses.
The brave American went out on his feet and slumped forward.
And Benn showed great control in the split second where he had another chance to leather the stricken man as he fell to the canvas.
Thankfully for Algieri, Benn pulled that punch just at the right time, allowing him to fall to the floor without a follow-up assault.
And he was able to recover and exchange pleasantries once he had regained his shaken senses.
Speaking after his stunning victory, Conor growled: “These fights are not tests, it is not arrogance it is confidence.
“What more do I have to do? Maybe I just frustrate myself but you don’t get the rankings I have for nothing.
“I put him to sleep and you should not expect anything else. I knew the knockout was coming.”
And proud father and boxing legend Nigel added: “This is the fight where Conor made his own path, he is not in my shadow any more.
“I have watched him in training doing 15 x four-minute rounds with thirty-second rests so I knew it would not go the distance.
“It was unbelievable and he is going all the way.”