The most recent chapter in the bizarre adventures of Roy Jones Jr. met with the former pound-for-pound champ being brutally knocked out by Enzo Maccarinelli in Russia this past Saturday. The last time Jones appeared in the media, he had just received his Russian citizenship, so this fight goes down as his first official loss as a card-carrying member of the Soviet Union.
In the ring, Jones last appeared in Connecticut against the unheralded Eric Watkins, and while at no point did he show any signs of being in trouble, there was plenty of evidence that his speed, strength and overall skill had deteriorated. It didn’t leave much for promise if Jones was to step up his competition to anything beyond a journeyman.
And journeyman Enzo Maccarinelli certainly was not. By no means was the Welshman a world-beater, but he was a former cruiserweight champion, and at age 35, held an 11-year age advantage over the aging Jones. His most notable feat was probably a loss to David Haye in 2008 and another loss to fellow Jones conqueror Dennis Lebedev a year later. This made Maccarinelli a step up in Jones’s recent outings, but no way a caliber of opponent to lose to in such devastating fashion had Jones had any real hope of reclaiming championship glory in his dwindling career. The Roy Jones of old would have of course disposed of such competition within rounds.
For those that have not seen the fight (you can see if in the video above), the fight was difficult to watch for any Roy Jones Jr. fan. Jones spent the majority of the fight pinned against the ropes and there was noticeable deterioration in his speed and footwork. It also appeared that Jones no longer carried the punch at this weight or age to keep Maccarinelli off him, and while he tried throwing his signature leaping-left hook that used to land with lightning accuracy and power, the punch seemed to have lost significant steam over the years. Maccarinelli put Jones down hard in the middle of the third and it’s bit of a miracle that he managed to get back up. Seconds afterward, Maccarinelli finished the bout in troubling fashion as Jones fell over sideways after taking a hard right hand from the Welshman.
The loss sets Jones’s record back to 62-9, breaking a 4-year win-streak against mediocre opposition, and also adding to a list of brutal knockout losses against the likes of Antonio Tarver, Glenn Johnson, and Dennis Lebedev. Maccarinelli boosts his record to 41-7. The way in which Jones fell during the bout indicated that the Pensacola native is probably in need of retirement before getting seriously hurt. I’ve mentioned before of my admiration for Jones being one of the last remaining boxers who still advocates and supports the handicapped Gerald McClellan after his life-altering loss to Nigel Benn more than 20 years ago. If only there was someone who cared about Jones as much as he cared about McClellan to stop him from meeting the same fate. Let’s hope that person appears soon.
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