The End for Zab Judah?

by Madra Uladh: After tonight's performance, it has become clear that Zab Judah has no future at the upper echelons of the welterweight division. After a modestly promising first round, he was already fading. Clottey adjusted and took the next four rounds in a row, busting up Zab's face and breaking him down along the way. Zab may have stolen the sixth and eighth rounds. I gave him these as much from pity as merit. But he was on the way to a late rounds stoppage when he was caught with an uppercut that opened an ugly gash above his eye..

Inexplicably, the referee ruled that the cut was caused by an accidental clash of heads. Subsequent replays found no evidence of such, but did show that the cut was fist-induced.

The fight doctor felt that Zab could continue, but Zab claimed he couldn't see (shades of Rahman), so the doctor allowed the fight to go to the scorecards, depriving Clottey of his TKO. The judges had it closer than it probably should have been, but they got it right and Clottey got the UD.

In the post fight interview, Zab was less than classy when he falsely claimed a clash of heads, even in the face of replay evidence to the contrary. He made matters worse by insisting that he should have been awarded the decision. Finding an excuse to quit was perhaps understandable in light of how the fight was unfolding, but the subsequent slandering his opponent and failure to take responsibility for losing indicated a lack of class and, more importantly, character. These are traits, which have frequently handicapped Zab's career.

If Zab is to have any future in boxing, it needs to be at 140. This is a weight he can make (He weighed in for tonight's fight at 143.) and his power, which was ineffective against Clottey, would be more formidable at the lower weight.

Clottey has put himself in line for a rematch with Margarito. His loss last time was partially due to hand trouble. This should be a very exciting and competitive bout.

And Zab needs to think hard about his future.

Article posted on 03.08.2008

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