Zab Judah: Back on Top Again
By Jeff Mayweather (February 7, 2005) 
Photo © German Villasenor
Saturday night in St. Louis, Zab Judah went into the lion's den, slaying Cory Spinks in front of 22,000 screaming fans. But then again Cory Spinks certainly isn't a lion, he's more like David, the slayer of Goliath. In the rematch David would lose in his own house.

Judah appeared to be more focused, and did not get caught up in showboating last night. That was Cory's department this time around as he had one of the best ring entrances in boxing history accompanied by Grammy Award winning recording artist Nelly, also a St. Louis native. It appeared to have been a rehearsed routine fit for a concert stage not a boxing ring, although it was extremely entertaining and had the crowd hyped and me too.

I really like Cory as a person, Zab Judah as well; they're both very nice young men. This time around Zab Judah went right to work, trying to establish who was the boss no matter where they were, as he tried early on to send a message to Spinks by taking the risk of landing that one shot that could end it early on. I saw that Zab Judah of old, the young reckless kid who was willing to jump in, hoping to find his target, not caring what was coming back at him because he was so brash and had the speed to get away with it. I haven't seen that Judah in a while, not since the knockout from Kostya Tszyu. (I'm not counting the nondescript opponents that were just glorified sparring sessions).

Judah established his jab, which in their last fight he seemed to forget about. Early in the fight he landed a big left-hand that seemed to set the tone, it had Spinks looking as though it was round thirteen from the previous fight, when in round twelve he got dropped and narrowly escaped from being separated from his titles and his faculties as well. Cory didn't look like a confident Champion, even though he would come back to steal a couple rounds throughout the fight; it was like he allowed Judah to become the bully. He fought like Judah had dynamite in his hands and if he landed clean it would be his demise.

Cory Spinks is a very crafty fighter but I didn't see him being focused and relaxed; it appeared as if he was just intent on making Judah miss, not taking the necessary chances to insure that he would keep his titles. There were very few counters from Spinks. Maybe Spinks knew a lot better than me because he was in there with Mr. Judah; and what seemed the case became a reality in the ninth round when Judah landed a left hand that started Spinks on his way of to handing over the title belts, later followed by a combination of punches that forced the referee to call a halt to the fight, making Zab Judah the Undisputed Welterweight King, putting him back on top again...

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