Timothy Bradley’s unwarranted win over Manny Pacquiao Saturday wasn’t the only thing wrong with the show on HBO pay-per-view that night. On the undercard, we had a ritualistic slaughter of Teon Kennedy by Guillermo Rigondeaux, a 1.5 round match-up between Jorge Arce and Jesus Rojas that was shaping up nicely before it ended with an accidental foul, and nine rounds of Randall Bailey and Mike Jones making you wonder how two people punching each other could possibly be so dull.
Then came Bailey’s knockdown of Jones to shake things up in the 10th, and after that came a Knockout of the Year candidate from Bailey with that perfectly timed 11th round uppercut.
Bailey entered the ring in colorful gab, at least — wearing a ski mask on his face and a pair of hatchets strapped to his back, he looked like some kind of AD&D 4th edition firefighter/cat burglar, 3rd level — but fought most of the bout in a colorless fashion, searching for one big power shot, as he’s prone to do. Jones, a giant-sized welterweight with some talent, was happy to oblige a low-contact affair, because Bailey scores KO of the Year-style shots every few fights, and Jones could afford to box a bit from the outside and win rounds without taking risks. But Bailey found that one big power shot, then another, and it was goodnight Mike Jones, hello blood goatee.
Usually it’s the KO victim who turns to jelly, but Bailey simply lost it after getting the best win of his career at age 37, barely able to stand during an epic crying jag. At one point during his interview with HBO’s Max Kellerman, he answerd a question with six straight sniffs. It was funny and strangely touching. You could hold the first nine rounds against Bailey if you wanted. But man, was the payoff something to behold.
(As always, video stays up as long as YouTube allows it.)