Image result for jack vs degaleLast Saturday night January 14th 2017, Badou Jack “The Ripper” (20-1-3, 12 KO’s) and James “Chunky” DeGale (23-1-1, 14 KO’s) battled to unify The WBC & IBF Super Middleweight titles, and to win the vacant TheRing Super Middleweight title.  The Ring title would stay vacant, and Jack and DeGale would both retain the WBC & IBF titles respectively, due to the fight ending in a Majority Draw.  In the co-featured bout, Gervonta “Tank” Davis (17-0, 16 KO’s) defeated Jose Pedraza (22-1, 12 KO’s) via TKO victory in the 7th round to become the new IBF Junior Lightweight champion, and the youngest current American champion at age 22.  Davis started of strong, but lost some momentum in rounds 4 and 5.  In the 6th, Davis hurt Pedraza badly with a liver shot that he would never fully recover from.  Guarding his body tightly, Pedraza left his face open and got his head taken off in the 7th, with a vicious right hook that knocked him into next week.

The main event started off with a bang.  DeGale, known as a fast started that sometimes fades late into fights, did indeed start off quickly.  In the first round, Badou Jack walked right into a sneaky left hand from DeGale, and it put him down on the canvas.  Jack wasn’t really hurt and pooped up immediately, but was already down on the scorecards.  DeGale would also take the second round pretty easily, with his slick boxing and movement around the ring.  Jack would improve his defense in the 3rd, and in the 4th, his terrific left hook made its first appearance, as he nailed DeGale with it a few times.  The 5th round was a swing round, and probably the reason that the fight ended in a draw.  Jack ripped DeGale’s body with vicious combinations in the first half of the round, but James DeGale would take over in the second half of the round, with his movement and punch output.

Image result for jack vs degale

Badou Jack would go on the attack again in the 6th round, pinning DeGale into the ropes and ripping to the body, but in the 7th, DeGale would come back with some good body work of his own, and back and forth they went.  Jack would clobber DeGale with a hard straight right hand in the 8th that knocked out DeGale’s mouthpiece.  Jack would then try to finish the badly hurt DeGale, but was unsuccessful.  In the 12th round, Badou Jack nailed James DeGale with a huge left hook/right uppercut combination that put DeGale down for the first time in his career.  Jack evened out the knockdowns, and apparently the judges scorecards as well, and the fight ended in a Majority Draw.  Personally i believe that the 12th round knockdown should have won Jack the fight as i scored it 114-112 in favor of Badou Jack.  Judge Glen Feldman scored the fight 114-112 for DeGale, and judges Julie Lederman and Steve Weisfeld both scored the fight 113-113.  The final punch stats read a slightly different story though, and corroborated with my scorecard.  Badou Jack landed 231 of 745 (31%) punches, while James DeGale landed 172 of 617 (28%) punches.

 

-David Jukic, INSIDE RINGSIDE

 

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