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KJ Noons loses in boxing return

Former EliteXC lightweight champion KJ Noons dropped a six-round decision to James Countryman in a middleweight bout Saturday at TKO Boxing Promotions' "3 The Hard Way" at the US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio.

The judges scored it 59-55, 58-56 and 58-56.

Noons's boxing record fell to 8-2, while Countryman improved to 14-1.

Noons, 7-2 in MMA, was offered a title shot against Strikeforce lightweight champion Josh Thomson at Strikeforce "Shamrock vs. Diaz" on April 11 but turned down the fight to concentrate on his boxing career.

Noons is also scheduled to box on April 18 against Matt Vanda (39-9) at "Fight Night at Target Center" in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

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