Mormeck wins back his belts by avoidance and with a little help from his friends

o'neil bell19.03.07 - By Evan Young - Frenchman Jean Marc Mormeck took back the WBA and WBC cruiserweight titles he lost to American via OíNeil Bell last Saturday night in France. As a 4-1 underdog Bell stopped Mormeck via 10th round stoppage over a year ago in Madison Square Garden. I picked Bell last year and I went with him again even though he was only a slight underdog this time and was fighting on the road in France.

The scenario I envisioned mostly played out except the part about Mormeck not making it to the final bell. The fight opened at a brisk pace and like the first fight, Mormeck was able to win most of the early rounds with punching volume and speed. But the thing with Mormeck is that heís an eight round fighter meaning that he fights like hell for 8 rounds and then hits the wall and runs out of gas. And that is clearly what happened here. Bell, on the other hand, is impervious to heavy shots on the chin and has tremendous stamina late in a fight..

The fight was playing out perfectly for Bell as Mormeck was exhausted after 7 rounds and Bell was now coming on. Mormeck was in survival mode from the eighth round for two reasons; he knew he was ahead by 4 points due to an open scoring experiment (the judges scores were announced after the 4th and 8th rounds) and he was used up and had nothing left. Mormeck seemed like easy pickings and Bell banged him around pretty good for the remainder of the fight but couldnít land the coup de grace to end Mormeck's night.

But in my view, this win for Mormeck was not without some shenanigans. You see, the fight was televised on television (Fox Sports) at the 11th hour and I noticed a disturbing happening. The French timekeeper was ringing the bell early in many of the later rounds when it appeared that Bell was about to vaporize Mormeck. And they did it in the 12th and final round when a full 20 seconds was chopped off the clock when Mormeck could barely stand up anymore.

Don King promotes Mormeck and to me it seemed like a hollow victory for Mormeck as they had to cheat to get it and Mormeck didnít fight at all for the last 4 rounds of the fight. I thought Bell should have won a decision because he won some of the early rounds and all of the late rounds. I though Bell deserved at least 7 rounds out of twelve. And to top it off, the Colonel Bob Sheridan did the telecast for Don King and he annoys me to the max. He sucks the ass of the house fighter and in this case it was Mormeck. For a guy that has called so many prize fights, his lack of acumen about boxing is shocking. He is a buffoon that only a more ignorant person will find credible.

But Bell has to take some blame here as well. He was fighting in a cavalier manner when he had extremely wounded pray in front of him. Bell was content to mock Mormeck frequently and walk him down but he wasnít fighting with enough urgency to get the job done. Still, Mormeck looked about as done as a chop cooked at 1000 degrees for an hour. He was toast but without Bellís urgency and with the timekeepers help, he limped across the finish line in the 12th round.

He looked like some of those triathlon athletes that literally crawl their way over the finish line. And Bell was surprisingly fresh at the end of the fight. And his reserve was evidenced by his desire to continue the fight at the post fight press conference. Apparently, Bell walked in on Mormeck when he was complimenting Bellís toughness but said he didnít like him as a person. Bell heard that part being translated and rushed the podium attempting to renew acquaintances with the victor but he was held back, luckily for Mormeck, who could barely lift his water glass at this point. If Bell added a bit of that intensity during the ďofficialĒ fight he would have certainly gotten himself a KO win.

Article posted on 20.03.2007

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