Jared Anderson: Boxing’s Most Safety-Obsessed Fighter

By Jeepers Isaac - 04/14/2024 - Comments

Heavyweight Jared Anderson says he doesn’t want to get brain damage, so he needs to change his game. He got hit a few times in his showcase mismatch against Ryad Merhy last Saturday night at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas. He says fans won’t want to take care of him if he gets brain damage from his fights.

A Match Made in Boredom Heaven

Anderson wants to get hit even less than he was last by the 32-year-old night (32-3, 26 KOs), who barely landed anything because of his reluctance to throw and the pull-back move that Jared used.

The man got hit a few times, and it seems to have triggered an existential crisis. I think Top Rank will have some problems with Anderson, trying to turn him into a star, given his attitude about not wanting to get hit and his fights being boring to watch.

Top Rank’s headache. Paying Jared Anderson good money who:

  • Fears being hurt
  • Avoids taking risks that would make his entertaining

Last night, it wasn’t all Merhy that made that fight dull. A lot of it was Anderson using that pull-back move, stepping back every time Merhy would attempt to punch him.

Anderson (17-0, 15 KOs) won the fight by a 10-round unanimous decision. The scores were 100-90, 100-90, and 99-91. Both fighters were booed during and after each round.

In defense of his fight being boring, Anderson (17-0, 15 KOs) said after the fight that the fans can’t take care of him if he gets brain damage, so his focus is on not getting hit.

Top Rank’s Problem: The Unsellable Star

“The fans, as much as I love them, they can’t take care of me if I get hurt, or I get brain damage,” said Jared Anderson to ESPN.

I see this as a real pickle for Top Rank. They’ve got a fighter, Anderson, who is afraid of brain damage and doesn’t want to mix it up to make his fights entertaining for fans.

Whether Top Ranks acknowledges it or not, they have a problem because they’re paying Anderson good money, and ESPN can’t be happy putting on events that are booed like what we saw last night.

The Shakur Effect: A Blueprint for Avoiding Action

Anderson’s attitude towards fighting is similar to his close friend, Shakur Stevenson, who he appears to copy with his pull-back fighting style. That could be a reason for Anderson being so boring, and being booed the way Shakur does.

“I wanted to give the fans a better show, but what can you do when they don’t want to show up just to fight?” said Anderson.

“Ten rounds, that’s the biggest takeaway,” Anderson continued, putting a positive spin with him going the distance against a walking punching bag, Merhy, who wasn’t throwing back.

“I got to make some changes. I made some mistakes. I got hit with a few punches, but I shouldn’t have gotten hit at all. He didn’t even come to fight, so I shouldn’t have gotten hit at all,” said Anderson.

Anderson chose to be a boxer, and getting hit is part of the game. If he’s too skittish about getting brain damage from his fights, he needs to think about retiring and living off of the money that he’s made from the handful of fights he’s headlined for Top Rank on ESPN.