While Bernard Hopkins made boxing history with his remarkable performance against Jean Pascal, another aging boxer had one of the worst nights in his career. Roy Jones Jr. suffered another humiliating loss, getting knocked out by Denis Lebedev in the 10th round.
Like Hopkins, Jones has refused to bow out of the sport of boxing, taking his career into his forties. However, Jones has not been fortunate enough to enjoy the kind of success Hopkins has. Jones, who was once considered the pound-for-pound best in the sport of boxing, seemed invincible until his mid-thirties when Antonio Tarver took away his aura. Ever since, Jones has been unable to return to his previous form, losing six of his next eleven fights (including a loss to Bernard Hopkins who Jones dominated in their first encounter).
Jones tried to put on a show for the Russian fans, who were enjoying the rare treat of a big name fighter performing on their soil. Jones tried his best to go the distance, but the accumulation of punishment he had taken all night finally caught up to the boxer, when a right hook capped flurry sent him to the canvas.
After the fight, Jones still wasn’t ready to announce his retirement from the sport of boxing, saying he would need more time before coming to a decision. Hopefully, Jones can swallow his pride and walk away from the sport before more damage is done to his legacy. Besides, getting knocked out at 42 can’t be good for anyone’s health.
It’s always hard to tell when a fighter should walk away from a sport, but Jones clearly needs to do just that. While I give Denis Lebedev credit for his win over Jones and his accomplishments as a boxer, I’m not so sure he would have been able to do the same against Roy Jones in his prime. After remaining undefeated for a majority of his professional boxing career, it is sad to watch Jones acquire multiple losses at the end of his journey.