Chris Algieri (21-3-0, KO8) couldn’t muster up much of a test for Errol “The Truth” Spence, Jr. (20-0-0, 17KO) at Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York. He promised fans he would be Errol’s toughest test, but he barely provided a “True or False” quiz. He tried to counter the odds makers low opinion of his chances by explaining he did his homework. He assured fans that he studied film of the young Texan, and saw areas he might exploit. Sure Spence was the power puncher, but he planned to tag Errol early in the fight and make him respect his own power. Errol was going to know that he wasn’t going to be able to walk through him.
Throw in a good portion of movement and you had a general idea of Chris’ game plan. With the first clang of the bell, Chris jumped on his bicycle and began pedaling around the ring. From the southpaw stance, Errol pursued at a calculated pace, ripping off body shots As usual, Chris wasted energy by moving too much. When he should have been slipping shots, he instead ducked at the waist, head down losing sight of his target. He tried to loop a left over the top, but he had no idea where his target was, and his wild left counter would loop over in a harmless arc.
Spence, on the other hand, knew where his target was. He kept unloading hard body shots while Chris performed his gyrations. As the fight progressed, Chris became more stationary, and Errol began mixing things up and down. Chris kept gloves in tight, but his head wasn’t moving, so more and more shots got through.
Errol knew his big chance would come. Chris wasn’t the only one who watched film. Errol watched too, and he knew Chris was vulnerable when coming up from his crouch. Errol;s punch wouldn’t be seen by Chris, and bingo that’s what happened in the fourth. Chris rose up unprotected, almost like he thought there was a time out. Errol’s straight left was on its way.
Chris didn’t see it, and the power of the punch was matched by Chris’ shocked surprise. He managed to survive the knockdown, but not for long. Errol’s passing grade came in the fifth with one final left that first sent Chris into the ropes and then down on the seat of his pants. Referee Benjy Esteves, jr. bent down and waived his arms in front of Chris, letting him know Errol was finished with the exam and was awarded with a perfect score.