Anthony Dirrell and Badou Jack may not have offered the most bang for your buck, but a fantastic curve in momentum led to a monumental upset on Friday night’s Premier Boxing Champions show from Chicago.
Few gave Badou Jack, 31, a shot at pulling the upset. He was too fragile, having been knocked out only fourteen months prior to this bout against arguably his toughest opponent, Derek Edwards, in the very first round. Jack was also one-and-a-half inches shorter than Dirrell and didn’t seem to have advantages in size or reach — two elements in which he has depended on in his biggest wins.
Alas, he was to lose this fight. Everything was going according to plan through three rounds as Dirrell broke Jack’s defensive shell at will, and landed the more thudding of blows. Jack would respond in the middle rounds and rattle the man from Flint, Michigan with short punches on the inside, while carrying himself by with jabs and straight punches in between.
Soon, this would become the new reality of the fight. By round seven, Jack no longer sat behind his jab and waited for Dirrell to make his move. He was the one cornering “The Dog” and, ideally, getting the bone in terms of rounds scored in his favor.
By the time the championship rounds rolled by, Jack had earned a lead on the scorecards and cruised to the end against the champion-no-more. Dirrell attempted a late rally but lacked in energy and assertion too much to make a comeback feasible.
Jack won the fight by majority decision, with two judges scoring the fight 116-112 and 115-113, while one was moved astray and turned in a 114-114 total. It didn’t matter, as Badou Jack was crowned an unlikely WBC Super Middleweight champion at the UIC Pavillion. A dream come true for the Gambian fighter from Las Vegas, by way of Sweden.
Jack has become the only titleholder actively reigning out of the Mayweather boxing gym and promotional stable besides Floyd Mayweather Jr himself. He is now 19-1 and will look to continue putting together wins en route to unification bouts, and all of the fortune and fame being the bearer of a so-called alphabet title may offer.
Catch video highlights of the fight below, courtesy of Spike TV: