‘The Destroyer’ was sensational from the outset with crisp combinations that dazed the experienced Colombian-Canadian at the Copper Box in a statement performance.
After a thudding straight right was swiftly followed up with a clever uppercut, Benn immediately pinned a buzzed Vargas against the ropes before unloading to force the referee to step in for the stoppage.
In the quickest loss of Vargas’ lengthy career, with the 31-year-old also stopped by elite talent at 147 pounds in the shape of Errol Spence Jr, Danny Garcia and Vergil Ortiz Jr, Benn managed to take him out with just 1:20 left of the opening round.
And with barely a bead of sweat on his body, Benn’s attention immediately turned to Amir Khan, another former opponent of Vargas.
The former world champion, who was dropped on his way to a points victory over Vargas back in 2018, has not appeared in the ring since the middle of 2019.
And since his last fight, Benn has transformed himself from a raw novice that was not even on Khan’s radar to a feared contender that might not be worth the risk of meeting at this stage of Khan’s career.
In fact, Benn demonstrated he now has a legitimate arsenal of shots to earn respect from the entire division.
“Statement made, easy, easy, easy,” an elated Benn screamed. “Give me a proper test. Give me Amir Khan. If he wants it, he can get it. I know he’s too busy on reality shows.
“I didn’t learn much in there tonight, but I can live with the pressure. You know what they say about diamonds.
“I’m ready for the top names. Shawn Porter, Adrien Broner. I was expecting a hard night tonight. I’m the most rapidly improved fighter globally. I apply myself 100 per cent. Amir Khan, let’s go mate!”’
The temptation will be to leap several more levels now, with his entire team likely to be high on adrenaline provided by this highlight reel knockout.
But it will be hard to slow Benn down, with the 24-year-old adamant he is Britain’s best welterweight. But only time will tell if that statement can be verified, as both Khan and Kell Brook’s willingness to risk a passing of the torch at 147 pounds remains unknown.
Though there is no doubt now he is a bona fide talent, who has shed any skepticism surrounding the merit behind the opportunities that quickly came his way.
The lofty heights of his father, Nigel, remain out of reach for the time being due to the shallow collection of contenders at home, particularly in light of Josh Kelly’s recent defeat – which has scuppered a potential meeting between the pair for the time being.
But now he has solidified himself as a not only a skilful fighter on a sharp incline towards the fringe of the world scene, but the eye-catching style, combined with his brimming charisma, make him a genuine attraction.
So get ready for more of this, as this thrilling ride is just the beginning.