Taylor Over Spinks In Sleeper, Pavlik Makes Miranda Pay

Jermain Taylor vs Cory Spinks Two weeks ago fight fans around the globe had a chance to see two of the best pugilist in the world bring the fight game to center stage. Although in that affair the talented little man (Floyd Mayweather Jr.) outfought the stronger big man (Oscar Dela Hoya), last night’s fight between Cory Spinks and Jermain Taylor would go closer to the script as the bigger man clearly did enough to get the “W” against a smaller, slicker foe. Cory Spinks (36-4, 11KO’s) started out well against the undefeated Jermain Taylor (27-0-1, 17KO’s), but in what was a very on point pre-fight prediction of mine, it would take Taylor a few rounds to measure his opponent and adjust to his timing and the onslaught would begin. The fight took on a very slow pace and due to Spinks’ quickness and slick southpaw stance, Taylor seemed a bit cautious throughout the fight but he did manage to do just enough to get a majority decision – then again it depends on which judge you believe – as the score cards were very wide in opinion. The final score cards gave way to a strong speculation that I’ve had for a while that debates whether every big fight pins three judges with three vastly different approaches to their style. One who scores based on aggression, one who scores based on punches landed, and one who scores neutral between the three. Final score cards read 117 – 111 (Taylor) – (the obvious aggressor in the fight), 115 – 113 (Taylor) – (Barely edging Spinks on points in this card), and 117 – 111 (Spinks) – (which appeared to give Spinks credit for his hit and not be hit style). How Spinks won so widely on one card and lost the way he did on the two others leaves many questions unanswered but the end result itself is one that most fight fans had no problem with as Taylor clearly did enough to remain undefeated. Where Taylor goes next could have a lot to do with the under card match which lived up to the hype most felt it would. Kelly Pavlik vs Edison Miranda For all the fight fans in the world who didn’t ‘feel’ the recent tactical performances by Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Cory Spinks, this fight was ‘made to order’ as these two bruisers punched the hell out of each other until they could barely punch any more. From the first round these guys came out trying to ‘pepper’ each other with everything their arsenals contained but it was obvious that the usually very vocal Edison Miranda (28-2, 24KO’s) was not himself and had very few answers for the stalking Kelly Pavlik (31-0, 28KO’s) who delivered a very soul-stirring performance. Kelly Pavlik came with the perfect gameplan and executed flawlessly. He said before the fight in an interview that because of Miranda’s power, no one has ever stayed consistent when it comes to backing him up but that the few who have tried were fairly consistent while they did. His plan was to take that blueprint and stick with it, and sure enough, it worked like a charm as Miranda would fall victim to the punishing powershots that he is the one to typically deliver. Miranda did put up a great effort but the culmination of powershots was too hot to handle as Pavlik cemented his #1 ranking which sets the stage for a showdown with Jermain Taylor – or so it seemed. For Taylor, Money Talks Although it seemed that the stage was set for a Taylor/Pavlik showdown, Taylor in so many ways said ‘Not So Fast’! In a post fight interview he stated that he’d love to fight Pavlik but he’s gonna sign the biggest money offer, no matter who it’s from. The undefeated Joe Calzaghe continues to call Taylor out and remains a great option so once again, Pavlik may be on the outside looking in, or in a strange twist, Calzaghe reserves the right to entertain a showdown with Pavlik instead. This scenario could come into fruition because Taylor is less likely to go across the pond to face Calzaghe in England, wherein Calzaghe could pay Pavlik less and get him to entertain the offer in a fight that would be just as good to most boxing insiders. Should be interesting to see what unfolds but either scenario will definitely give fight fans a helluva fight to watch so stay tuned.

About Tim Starks

Tim is the founder of The Queensberry Rules and co-founder of The Transnational Boxing Rankings Board (http://www.tbrb.org). He lives in Washington, D.C. He has written for the Guardian, Economist, New Republic, Chicago Tribune and more.