10 Reasons Why Antonio Tarver Will Defeat Roy Jones Jr.

14.05.04 - By Christopher Dawson: I personally believe that Antonio Tarver will beat Roy Jones Jr., this Saturday night at the Mandalay Bay Center and I have compiled my top 10 reasons why I believe so. I realized while writing this piece that there would be many critics. I still stand by my words. Here is the list:

1. Antonio Tarver is just way too big for Roy at Light Heavyweight. Antonio is near 6í3, Roy is listed as being 5í11, but from what I understand from people that have seen him face to face, he has no problem seeing men that are between 5í9 and 5í10 eye to eye. (if you know what I mean) Now dimensions do not always tell the tale. Looking at the two fighters during their first bout, it was obvious that Antonio was much larger and physically stronger. He was able to push Roy around and force him to the ropes at will.

2. Roy Jones Jr. is nearing the end of his prime, if not already past it. Some Jones fans will point out that he looked very impressive against John Ruiz, but to be fair, that fight was the worst of Johnís career, aside from the Tua destruction. By most accounts Ruizís divorce played as much of a part in his performance as anything Roy did. The people that will want to dismiss this, are the same hypocrites that will make excuses for Royís lousy performance in his first fight with Tarver. You canít have your cake and eat it too. If you look at the fighters Roy fought before Ruiz, it was clear that Jones was already on the decline and was simply picking of cannon fodder for minor paydays. The names like Derrick Harmon, Julio Gonzalez, Glen Kelly and Clinton Woods are not the resume of a legendary fighter. Roy beat all of these men easily, of course, he was suppose to! Then he fought a psychologically damaged John Ruiz, who is no skilled technician to begin with and out boxed him as he should have. Did Roy show us his dominant skills at heavyweight? No, because his number one challenger was Vitali Klitschko. Anybody that has followed Royís career knows he would never take a risk like that.

3. Antonio Tarver knows how to fight. This isnít a Clinton Woods or a David Telesco. Fighters that were defeated before they even stepped in to the ring. In Tarver, Jones has found a fighter just as cocky. Just as confident. Just as sure he will be successful as Roy. When was the last time Jones faced anyone like this? Maybe James Toney nearly eight years ago. Tarver clearly solved Jones over rated defense in their first fight. Had he kept up the punch out put he may have finished him.

4. Buddy McGirt. The hottest trainer in boxing. In the battle of trainers, Tarver has a clear advantage. Not only is Buddy the best corner man in boxing today, but he and Antonio clearly mesh. Tarver trusts Buddy, and pays close attention to instructions.

5. Roy canít hurt Tarver. If you looked at the two men at the end of their first encounter and had to guess who won their fight, Tarver would be the clear winner. Thatís because Antonio landed all of the meaningful punches. Roy landed some nice body shots, but even those couldnít do any real damage to Tarver. Heís just too big and he takes a punch really well. Roy canít knock him down, let alone out.

6. At this point in his career, Roy may not even possess a hand speed advantage. What is Roy without his legendary speed? Just a good fighter with terrible technique. He holds his left hand very low, and against the Clinton Woods of the world, thatís fine, but against a sharp southpaw like Tarver, itís a big mistake. Roy doesnít really know any other way to fight, so he will lose.

7. Antonioís only real mistake in their first meeting was that he took a few rounds off. He thought he was ahead enough in the score cards to be able to take a round or two off, but he learned the hard way, the house always wins and Roy is HBOís house now that Oscar DeLaHoya & Shane Mosely are major question marks. Antonio will not repeat this mistake. Buddy wonít let him.

8. Tarver wants it more. This kid is pure enthusiasm. He reminds me of a young James Toney with the way he talks and the way he backs up his words. He could be something really great. The next legendary Light Heavyweight. I am predicting that he defeats Roy by unanimous decision and that they fight a third time with Roy completely handing over the torch as he succumbs to a knock out loss at Tarverís hands. This guy has the goods.

9. Tarver has all of the momentum going in to this fight. He won over a lot of fans in the same way that Vitali Klitschko did in his losing effort against Lennox Lewis. The crowd may be in his favor this time around. Roy isnít going to like hearing the crowd boo him like they did at the end of the fight and after the decision was announced. The psychological advantage goes to Antonio.

10. The most important factor. No matter what those blind judges said last November 8th after their first fight. ANTONIO HAS ALREADY BEATEN ROY JONES ONCE AND ROY KNOWS IT!

Article posted on 14.05.2004

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