Judah vs. Clottey: Bad Blood Equals Blood Spilt
By Bob Carroll, Doghouse Boxing (Aug 3, 2008) DoghouseBoxing.com (Photo © German Villasenor)  
Saturday night, at the Palm Casino in Las Vegas Nevada, two top welterweight contenders took center stage for the IBF Welterweight title. Jab Judah (36-6, 25 KO's) and Joshua Clottey (35-2, 21 KO's) had sincere heat between them going into this match-up, with Judah even reporting to Doghouse's Johnny Benz that he had challenged Clottey to a street fight, only to have Clottey back down. This fight had all of the makings of a blood bath, and certainly did not disappoint the true boxing fan. Judah stated that he would fight a smart fight, not go for the quick knockouts that he had tried for in the past few years, Clottey never let on how he would fight, he would just win.

Clottey seemed to win most of the early rounds, being the harder, more accurate puncher, but Judah kept the fight close on my very unofficial score card, winning rounds 2, 5, 6 and 8. Judah entered the ninth round, bleeding from both the mouth and the nose, down by a score of 77-76 to Clottey on my score card. The round was going the way of Clottey, when Referee Robert Byrd noticed a severe cut over Judah's right eye and ruled it from an accidental clash of heads, stopped the action and brought Judah over to the fight doctor for a closer look at the cut. Judah was checked by the ringside doctor, failed the vision test performed, and Ref Robert Byrd stopped the fight at the 1:22 mark of the ninth round.

The Nevada rules state that a fight stopped due to a cut by an accidental clash of heads, goes to the score cards after the fourth round. I had Clottey winning round nine, so my scorecard equaled out to a 87-84 victory by Joshua Clottey. Minutes later the ring announcer read off the judges scorecards, giving Clottey a victory by 87-84 and 86-85 twice, also delivering the IBF welterweight championship to Clottey.

In a post fight interview by HBO's Max Kellerman, a visibly upset Zab Judah complianed of Clottey's head butts and kidney shots all through the fight, and that the cut that ended the fight was absolutely caused by a Clottey headbutt. Video replays showed adnauseum, that the cut was caused by a solid punch, so in my eyes, and the eyes of the HBO crew, Judah's claim was unfounded.

The bad blood shown before this fight, in pre-fight press conferences and interviews, proved to make for a great fight for true boxing fans. On a side note, Doghouse Boxings lead writer, "THE Big Dog" Benny Henderson Jr. told me before this fight started that Joshua Clottey would win this fight by late stoppage or by unanimous decision. I doubted him, thinking he was just overly giddy due to HBO sports "Hard Knocks Training Camp" featuring the Dallas Cowgirls, is starting this week. I guess I need to start giving the Big Dog more credit, but me being a Philly Eagles fan, I doubt that I will.

For more on this fight and the latest news in boxing, listen to Fightin’ Words Radio Show, airing Wednesday nights, 6-7pm on http://1490wwpr.com (The show will be in re-run on August 6th). The show is co-hosted by Doghouse's Bob Carroll, Doghouse's Lead Writer “THE Big Dog” Benny Henderson Jr. and "Boxing's Unofficial Historian" Butch. For more information on the show, go to http://www.fightinwordsonline.com.



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