Rahman Wins Decision

13.08.05 -By Chet Mills: Hasim "The Rock" Rahman (41-5, 33 KOs) won the WBC Interim heavyweight title with a dull unanimous twelve round points decision over his friend, Monte "Two Gunz" Barrett to win the interim WBC heavyweight title on Saturday night at the United Center in Chicago, USA. Rahman now will most likely meet (barring further injury) WBC champion Vitali Klitschko. Judge William Lerch scored the fight for Rahman 116-112, while judge Mauro DiFiore and judge Nobuaki Uratani both had 118-110.

The fight itself was awful to look at, with neither fighter appearing to want to mix it up in the early rounds. The fans were officially sick of the fight by midway through the 1st round due to the lack of action. They showered both fighters with a chorus of boos that essentially lasted the entire fight. However, their boos did little to cause either fighter to want to engage and make it a fight.

Rahman, for the most part, was content to jab and throw an occasional right hand, but he looked slow and very predictable throughout. At times, Rahman fought as if he were somehow muscle bound, as his movements more resembled a slow moving body builder than an actual fighter. He didn't always fight like this, so perhaps it may be due to improper training techniques on his part. Letís hope, for his sake he makes changes before his next bout with Vitali, because he would likely be destroyed if he came out like that against Klitschko.

In the fourth round, Rahman tagged Barrett with a wild right (31-4, 17 KOs) that cut Barrett's left eyelid. Rahman's right also did damage in the final minute of the fifth round, when he trapped Barrett against the ropes.

In rounds six through eight, Barrett kept his distance by dancing and moving on the outside. However, Barrett suddenly came to life in the eightth round when he tagged Rahman with a big left hand, followed by a right near the end of the round.

Some of the blame for the bad show could be put on Barrett, who seemed to be content to just get through the fight without being knocked out. He stayed on the outside for the most part until the final 3 rounds, when he suddenly came to life and pressed the attack against the slow moving Rahman. I gave the final three rounds to Barrett based on his activity, yet he lacked the power to put any serious hurt on Rahman. Lucky for Hasim, because his lack of any real defense, combined with his slow reflexes, made him an easy target for any punch Barrett had the inclination to throw.

ďI donít think Klitschko (Vitali) will move around as much as Monte did, but I showed I can go twelve rounds,Ē Rahman said afterwards.

It's somewhat hard for me to believe that it's only been 4 years since Rahman beat Lennox lewis to win the heavyweight title. I say this because Rahman is nowhere near the same fighter he was back then. Yes, his body looks as good good as then, perhaps better since he trimmed off a lot of excess weight. However, he no longer puts his punches together like he did then, and his handspeed is gone. The fact that Rahman has won 6 consecutive times in his comeback, says more to me to be a general statement on the lack of real talent in the heavyweight division than any indication of how well Hasim is fighting, in my opinion.

Lets hope for Hasim's sake that he works on his speed and flexibility before his bout with Vitali, because if he fights like the way he looked tonight, it will be another easy win for Vitali.

Article posted on 12.08.2005

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