MYAKININO, Russia — In what will undoubtedly go down as one of the more brutal fights of 2013, Guillermo Jones returned to the ring after a year and a half layoff to utilize body punching and curshing head shots to break down Denis Lebedev before his countrymen at the Crocus City Hall.
Lebedev found success landing hard, head-rattling hooks to the head, but Jones made him pay the price for those blows with slashing uppercuts to the body. As early as the second round, Lebedev’s eye area began to swell and cut in several places due to the hammer-down motion of the 6’4 Jones’s punches.
While Jones was much slower than Lebedev, he made up for the deficiency with accuracy and sheer brute strength. Lebedev couldn’t move him backwards, and Jones very methodically continued to focus on destroying his opponent’s eye by at times going southpaw to use his right hand to club the wound.
Equally demoralizing for Lebedev was the results of rounds seven and nine, two of the his best scoring rounds. Lebedev was able to tee off with flush hooks for good portions of the rounds. However, he would be forced to hold on late in both rounds due to Jones finishing strong with a debilitating body assault coupled with uppercuts and crosses through Lebedev’s guard.
By the 11th, Lebedev was on fumes and suddenly took a knee after being hit with a left hand. Jones, still moving on adrenaline, smashed Lebedev to the floor with another shot for good measure before the ref interceded. The fight was wisely called off with no protest from Lebedev, who got to his fee immediately and went back to his corner.
The win gives Jones the WBA World cruiserweight title. The loss is Lebedev’s first KO defeat.
It’s amazing to see a 41-year old fighter like Guillermo Jones be able to pull off what he did yesterday. The way he fights is how I imagine those old-timers like John L. Sullivan in late 1880s went about their trade. Nothing fancy, just brutal and efficient work.
Although Jones didn’t have much physical damage, these are the type of fights that take a pound of flesh out of you. He received many clean shots to the head. Lebedev’s eye was worse that what we saw inflicted on Antonio Margarito by Manny Pacquiao, the swelling on Fernando Vargas from Shane Mosley, and even Giovani Segura’s eye at the hands of Brian Viloria. What Sugar Ray Robinson did to Carmen Basilio’s eye is a good comparison.
This one is well worth the time to sit down and watch in full.