It was the Prince's first defense of the WBO Featherweight title.
In 1995, the rambunctious Hamed moved up in weight to defeat then WBO Featherweight champion Steve Robinson. He did so in stunning fashion, knocking out the durable Robinson in the eighth round and winning his first major world title.
Although undefeated leading up to the first defense of his belt in 1996, Hamed was thought more showman than boxer, and his 15 minutes of fame were nearly up.
Hamed proved that he was both a showman AND a boxer.
It took only three right hands from Naz, a southpaw, to defeat his first challenger WBC Featherweight champion Paul Said Lawal.
Before the camera could even zoom in on the fight, Lawal was knocked down and never recovered. He stood up, but was hurt by another right. After faking with a left, Hamed delivered a right uppercut which snapped Lawal's head back and landed him on the floor again.
The ref had seen enough, and the contest was stopped 35 seconds into the first round. It was a tremendous performance, trumping even Mike Tyson's knockout of Frank Bruno on the same night.
The KO was important because it signified the beginning of Hamed's dominant reign over the featherweight division. He would remain undefeated until his legendary bout with Marco Antonio Barrera in 2001.