BACK TO K-9 KIM’S CORNER

By Steve Kim Updated on February 28, 2022

A Taylor Made Robbery?

Courtesy of Mikey Williams/ Top Rank

 

It's obvious that Jack Catterall didn't read the script. Or he just merely crumpled it up and threw in the trash bin.

Because what was supposed to be a triumphant homecoming at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland, for undisputed junior welterweight champion, Josh Taylor, instead nearly became one of the biggest upsets in recent memory.

And the consensus is that the unheralded Catterall, who had stepped aside for Taylor in the past(to allow him to face Jose Ramirez last year), should've had his hands raised in victory, and four belts around his waist.

It's not clear if haggis, fish n' chips or cullen skink was served, but there's no doubt there was a dose of home cooking here for 'the Tartan Tornado'.

At the end of 12 rounds, while Howard Foster had Catterall up 113-112, judges Ian John-Lewis (114-111) and Victor Loughlin (113-112) had Taylor in front.

 

Courtesy of Mikey Williams and Top Rank

 

From the very beginning of the fight, the much taller and bigger Taylor had trouble getting a bead on his fellow southpaw. Throughout the night, Taylor kept over-shooting his left hand, and when he'd move inside to enforce his size and strength on the challenger, he'd often smother his own work, and fall into clinches.

But Catterall was able to find a home for his left numerous times as he caught Taylor flat-footed from the mid-range. He was was crafty and slippery, oftentimes frustrating the highly regarded Taylor with his elusiveness. And while not a great puncher, Catterall had enough on his salvos that he caused swelling, and then a cut underneath Taylor's right eye. 

These weren't just 'Catt' scratches, Taylor was busted up by nights end. 

In the eighth frame, he sent Taylor down with a series of hard lefts. This was no flash knockdown, either. At this stage it was clear that Taylor was in grave jeopardy of suffering his first professional loss. It was at this stage the referee Marcus McDonnell (who Marv Levy would describe as an over-officious jerk) started to really interject himself into the proceedings.

The third man in the ring deducted a point from Caterrall for holding in the 10th, and then returned the favor by penalizing Taylor after the 11th for a blow after the bell. In-between all that, he was simply in the way all too often. They say that a good official is never seen or noticed. Well, McDonnell failed miserably to do his job effectively by those standards.

Taylor rallied in the late rounds, mauling Catterall inside as he pressed the action. Still it didn't seem like the cleanest work you'll ever see. But in this setting, activity was mistaken for achievement. 

 

Courtesy of Mikey Williams and Top Rank

 

 Coming into this weekend Taylor had been lauded as one of the elite prizefighters on the planet. Rightfully so given his accomplishments but on this Saturday he was a terribly one-dimensional boxer who failed to make the proper adjustments versus a spirited underdog. Before this fight, there was talk of him facing welterweight belt-holder, Terence Crawford. Afterwords, this match-up is viewed as a mismatch.

 Perhaps that's unfair to judge Taylor -- or any other fighter, for that  matter -- so harshly on just one fight. But in an era where they perform so infrequently (Taylor boxed just once in both 2020 and 2021) what else do we have to go by?

 So while Taylor won, it felt like a loss.

SHOWTIME

It was a very entertaining and eventful card from the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas presented by Showtime. This triple-header had a bit of everything.

The long title reign of IBF 115-pound titlist, Jerwin Ancajas, came to an end as he was beaten by rugged Argentine, Fernando Martinez. This was a pitched battle with plenty of back-and-forth exchanges, but over time Ancajas' lack of head movement and unwillingness to move his feet, made him a sitting target. He took a bit of a thrashing in the late stages of his bout. Martinez won a unanimous decision by the tallies of 117-111 and 118-110(twice).

 

Courtesy of Stephanie Trapp/Showtime Sports

 

 Then in a junior welterweight bout, Gary Antuanne Russell, scored a dubious 10th round TKO of the always difficult Viktor Postol. Russell, was marked up a bit from the long right hands of Postol, but he eventually began to wear down the Ukrainian, who obviously had thoughts on his homeland on this night. But he was really in no danger when referee Michael Ortega waved off the fight at 2:31 of the final round.

 In the main event, late replacement Hector Garcia bludgeoned the previously undefeated Chris Colbert over 12 rounds. The light hitting Colbert (who has just six stoppages in 17 bouts) simply couldn't keep the persistent Garcia off him. He was sent on the seat of his pants in the seventh, and by the late rounds Colbert was in full retreat.

 

Courtesy of Stephanie Trapp/Showtime Sports

 

This loss really showed that Colbert will have difficulties at the top rung of the 130 pound class. While fast and athletic, he's not that hard to find, and if you have a lack of power, you better have the ability stay clean and not get hit so often.

 

DAZN PPV

 There was a lot of reaction to the announcement that DAZN would be presenting the next few Canelo Alvarez bouts against Dmitry Bivol and Gennadiy Golovkin on pay-per-view. Back in 2018 as they began operations in the States, they declared the death to pay-per-view. It's something that they stayed steadfast to for a few years.

https://twitter.com/TheBoxingRant/status/1497688097684918278

But they were DAZN and confused about the realities of this business, and well...things change. (They are offering a discount to these upcoming pay-per-views to their existing subscribers).

Stephen Espinoza, the head of Showtime Sport, took great exception to a Tweet from DAZN explaining their about face.

 

screen shot of Espinoza's tweet

 

Of course, Showtime Sports which is aligned with PBC(who years ago trumpeted #FreeBoxing4All) is firmly in the pay-per-view business. They actually did Canelo's bout behind a pay wall back in November. 

 

Boxing Fans Believe In #FreeBoxing4All

 

Boxing Fans Believe In #FreeBoxing4All

 

I recall as ESPN+ launched a few years ago, they boasted that this was a new way to present the games elite in big bouts without having to pay anything more than the subscription for 'the Plus'. They also said they were putting an end to the pay-per-view model. Well, they did a pay-per-view back in November when Crawford faced Shawn Porter.

 

So in short, this is the best way to sum all this up...

 

 

FINAL FLURRIES

Is this finally the end of Guillermo Rigondeaux?....Lawrence Okolie retained his WBO cruiserweight title in a snoozer versus Michal Cieslak on Sunday....There is some chatter of junior welterweight prospect, Brandun Lee, facing veteran Zachary Ochoa on the Errol Spence-Yordenis Ugas undercard on April 16....Is there going to be a Major League Baseball season?....I can be reached at k9kim@yahoo.com...

About Author
A Taylor Made Robbery?
  • Hosted 'the Main Event' on KIEV 870, and then later XTRA AM1150 ( a three hour show devoted to boxing) from 1996 to 1999.
  • Joined one of the first boxing websites, 'House of Boxing' in 1999, and then later became one of the founders of Maxboxing, that started in 2001, till his departure in 2014.
  • From 2014 to 2018, he was the lead columnist for UCNlive.com.
  • Was a boxing reporter for ESPN.com from 2018 to 2020.
  • He has written for Ring Magazine, International Boxing Digest and Boxing News.
  • Is the co-host of 'the 3 Knockdown Rule' with Mario Lopez, which has become of the most popular boxing podcasts the past several years.
  • Steve has also served as an announcer and analyst for RingTV, Thompson Boxing, 360 Promotions and CBS Sports Network.