By Rudy Mondragon
Live from Brooklyn, NBC brought forth two unique fights. In the Peter Quillin and Andy Lee fight, we saw an early start from the one they call Kid Chocolate. Andy Lee weathered the storm after being dropped convincingly in the first round. Although Lee smiled as he got up, his spaghetti legs told another story. He survived, but Quillin kept coming and accurately catching Lee, making his opponent and the many people watching feel the power of a strong middleweight. Lee went down again in the third, but a closer look reveals a smart Quillin stepping on Andy Lee’s foot, which helped him scored the knockdown with another accurate punch.
The tide began to turn as we entered the middle rounds. Lee appeared to be warm and awaken. He started to box consistently, beating Quillin to the punch and eventually scoring a knockdown in the seventh round. Lee began moving with ease and looked comfortable while Quillin looked confused and regretful to the fact that he did not try to end the fight earlier.
The judges ended up scoring this fight a draw:
Guido Cavalleri 112-113 | judge: Glenn Feldman 113-113 | judge: Eric Marlinski 113-112
Can’t disagree with the call. Quillin, being the A-Side fighter, did not do enough in the second half to control the fight. Lee’s longer reach proved to be the difference as he controlled the range and kept Kid Chocolate at a safe distance. Had Lee not been dropped in the third round, this fight could have easily been his.
Let’s not forget that Kid Chocolate did not make weight. Shame on him for not taking advantage of the extra pounds as well as failing to make an argument that he deserved a high profile main event fight. A draw does not cut it in the sport. Although these two fought to a draw, can’t deny that these two put on a great show. The fans who tuned in were the real winners tonight.
The main event had to follow up an exciting match. Realistically speaking, the first half of the Danny Garcia vs Lamont Peterson fight appeared to be uneventful. Garcia missed constantly and Peterson moved too much. Although Garcia barely connected, the mere fact that he was the busier of the two won Danny most of the early rounds.
As the fight went on however, I noticed something. Lamont Peterson did not study the Mauricio Herrera vs. Danny Garcia fight. He studied the Zab Judah vs. Danny Garcia fight. The only difference was that Lamont played it real safe in the early rounds, protecting himself from an early knockdown or knockout.
After the first half of the fight, Peterson took his game to another level. He was beating Garcia to the punch. He was making Garcia look silly with wide haymaker misses. Garcia also looked tired, his punches did not have enough gusto as they would have earlier in the fight. Peterson’s plan was working. It was a smart plan since Peterson lacks power. With his saved up energy, Peterson was collecting points and taking more risks knowing that Garcia’s punches did not have much steam left. Peterson was able to reduce the Garcia threat and make a run for the win.
Unfortunately for Peterson, he turned it up two rounds too late. The judges gave the fight to Danny:
judge: Don Ackerman 114-114 | judge: Kevin Morgan 115-113 | judge: Steve Weisfeld 115-113
To beat the champion, you got to take it from the champion. Lamont didn’t do that. He did however, execute a game plan that was risky and he followed through with it till the end. That is respectable because it shows how much intellectual work Peterson and his team did prior to this fight.
It is tough when you are the B-Side fighter. Peterson was hand picked because the powers that be thought he was a beatable fighter that Danny Garcia could look good against and annihilate. Peterson disrupted those plans. What he lacked in the power department, he made up for it with his ring generalship, good defense, mentally outworking Danny, and drawing blood.
When you look at this fight from start to finish, you can appreciate Peterson’s effort. Danny has been exposed again. Boxer’s are taking note. Danny is a fighter who sits down on his punches and telegraphs them. If you time Danny, outwork Danny, neutralize his power, and get him in the later rounds, he is yours for the taking.