Floyd Mayweather furious as Jack-DeGale ends in majority draw
Floyd Mayweather Jr. called it a bad night for boxing. Badou Jack seemed to agree. James DeGale had a much different opinion.
A night that was supposed to crown the top super middleweight in the division ended with Mayweather, who promotes Jack, furious as Jack-DeGale was scored a majority draw, setting the scene for a rematch, even if Jack and Mayweather didn’t think it should have been necessary.
Jack dropped DeGale with a slicing uppercut in the 12th round and appeared to control the second half of the bout. Still, the judges thought DeGale had enough success to warrant a standoff and a compelling fight resulted in no one winning, leaving Mayweather frustrated, saying the decision marred a celebratory night for the sport.
Glenn Feldman scored it 114-112 for DeGale while both Julie Lederman and Steve Weisfeld had it 113-113 as boos rained down from an announced crowd of 10,128 Saturday at Barclays Center. Jack retained his WBC title and DeGale his IBF belt. It was also for the RING super middleweight title, which remains vacant. DeGale was taken to a local hospital for precautionary reasons, a publicist said.
“Badou Jack has got too big for 168 pounds,” Mayweather said afterward. “We had plans after this fight to move up to light heavyweight. This is the second time in a row Badou has gotten a bad decision. James DeGale is a hell of a fighter, but tonight he didn’t win. At the end of the day, I don’t know what the judges are looking at.” He added, “It was a bad night for boxing.”
DeGale (23-1-1, 14 knockouts) didn’t look like the winner, his face badly bruised and his mouth missing a tooth after it fell out in the ninth round with his mouthpiece. Jack (20-1-3, 12 KOs) rose from a
first-round flash knockdown to press the advantage in the later rounds, when he seemed to take over. “He was doing a lot of running, he was throwing a lot of (nonsense) at my guard,” Jack said. “I thought I won the fight. I finished stronger. His knockdown was a flash knockdown. I won the fight.” He added, “Let’s do it again at light heavyweight. It’s time to move to light heavyweight.”
DeGale dropped Jack with a straight left in the first round. A replay showed that DeGale stepped on Jack’s foot as he landed the punch, causing Jack to go down. Jack rose and seemed fine as DeGale flashed a smile. DeGale had success early on with his speed and combination punching as Jack appeared to be biding his time, waiting for his opportunity. DeGale thought he deserved to have his hand raised.
“I’ve got huge respect for this man, but I thought I won that,” DeGale said. “I landed the cleanest shots. Let’s do it again. Let’s do it again in London. He hit me (in the 12th), but I was more off balance. I respect him. He’s a good, (all) round fighter. Let’s go again.”
Jack appeared to stun DeGale with a pair of rights in the eighth round, as DeGale spent the rest of the round back-pedaling as Jack applied pressure. Jack landed a left in the ninth round that caused DeGale to lose his mouthpiece and a tooth. Jack began to bust DeGale’s mouth up with some thudding shots in the tenth. DeGale tried to stand his ground and trade shots but Jack appeared to be the stronger fighter, his punches carrying more power. Jack went to the body well in the 11th, slicing a right hand to his midsection, as DeGale struggled to mount a vigorous attack.
Jack dropped DeGale in the 12th round with a right uppercut with 1:45 left in the round. DeGale toppled backwards, nearly summersaulting into his own corner. He rose but was wobbly, his face crimson red as he fought on, even mounting an attack to end the fight.
“It was a sensational night,” promoter Lou DiBella said. “They were two freaking men. DeGale’s balls in the 12th round is a monument to who he is. I thought Jack was way down and he climbed back into the fight. I think it was a great night for boxing.”
Referee Arthur Mercante Jr. absorbed an accidental left hand from Jack as the fifth round ended. Mercante stumbled as Jack grabbed him. Mercante seemed more upset than hurt, though he did grab a water bottle from Jack’s corner to gulp down some fluids. The shot left a reddish bruise on the left side of his face for the rest of the fight.