Toney Defeats Rahman by Controversial Third Round TKO

david haye by Kent Appel, photo by Chris Farina - Top Rank: After two largely uneventful rounds in Temecula, California which saw former heavyweight champion Hasim “The Rock” Rahman holding a slight edge on the basis of a busier left jab over former multiple division champion James “Lights Out” Toney, it was determined that Rahman was unable to continue just one round later, after the third round, complaining he couldn't see clearly.

Toney was getting untracked in that third round clearly winning the round by landing several right leads to Rahman’s head, a good left hook, and the best punch of the fight up by either fighter to that point, a right hand to the head that punctuated a good left jab, however it was a clash of the heads of the two fighters that caused a cut above the left eye of Rahman, which the doctor ruled was not big enough to warrant stopping the fight, that appeared to cause the damage that ended the fight..

So I can't see how this can be ruled a TKO because Rahman’s blurry vision was almost certainly caused by the accidental head butt, not by the punches Toney had landed.

Apparently it was ruled a TKO loss for Rahman rather than a No Decision for both fighters because Rahman had indicated he couldn't continue due to his vision problem.

Pending a certain appeal by the Rahman camp to the California State Athletic Commission and to the NABO, which sanctioned the fight, Toney improves his record to 71-6-3, KO 44 while Rahman is now 45-7-2, KO 36.

My first impression of the two fighters was that neither fighter looked sharp. Toney, 226 pounds, looked a little sluggish as did Rahman, 244 pounds, and although Toney did land the best punches of the fight in the third round, no questions were answered by either fighter as to whether either of them can seriously challenge for the heavyweight title. Three rounds was just not enough time to see what these two veteran fighters have left.

Article posted on 17.07.2008

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