There was a time when Jermain Taylor was a great fighter, a big star, and a role model to millions; there was even a time when the Arkansas native met and spent time with the president! But those days, days that saw Taylor become the only man to twice defeat the legendary Bernard Hopkins, are a long, long time ago now.
Yesterday distressing news broke of how Taylor, retired from the ring since 2014, was arrested for, get this – allegedly biting a woman in the face. Taylor, who, it seems has taken his “Bad Intentions” fighting nickname to new heights outside of the ropes, fell foul of the law back in 2015 when he was involved in a shooting incident for which he is still serving parole.
Taylor’s latest, alleged, discretion took place in the early hours of Tuesday this week, when the former world middleweight king supposedly bit the woman in the face and arm and threatened to kill her. The alleged victim told police she was trying to escape the house from Taylor.
Sad stuff indeed and a reminder of how far any athlete or celebrity can fall. Taylor was a fine boxer, with natural talent and skill and an at times exciting style. The big wins over Hopkins (twice, and back to back in 2005) proved to be Taylor’s career highlight/peak, and shortly after these victories he struggled to a draw with the much smaller Ronald Winky Wright and failed to shine against Kassim Ouma and another much smaller foe in Cory Spinks, both decision wins failing to please the fans.
Then came a series of nasty stoppage losses; to Kelly Pavlik, Carl Froch and Arthur Abraham. It really was quite shocking to see Taylor fall from grace, in the ring, so quickly. Now, his ring defeats seem to be the least of the 39 year old’s problems.
Taylor, 33-4-1(20) last boxed in October of 2015, when he actually returned to defeat Sam Soliman to win the IBF middleweight belt. It really is to be hoped Taylor can sort himself out and get the help it appears he needs.