Facing Timothy Bradley Ends Badly for Devon Alexander
By Alec Kohut at ringside, MaxBoxing (Jan 30, 2011) Special to Doghouse Boxing (Photo © German Villasenor)
In a bout that hardly lived up to its billing as “The Super Fight,” Timothy Bradley scored a unanimous ten-round technical decision over Devon Alexander after an accidental headbutt caused ringside physician Dr. Peter Samet to halt the bout at 1:59 of the tenth round.

Bradley now claims the top spot in a crowded junior welterweight division and will no doubt set his sights on a huge payday against Manny Pacquiao. Bradley was clearly the superior fighter as the fight progressed, and the outcome seemed clear even before the bout was called.

Both fighters began the bout tentatively with Bradley pawing his jab and neither man committing much to their punches. As the first round progressed, Bradley, 27-0 (11), became the busier fighter, landing two solid rights to the body and starting to throw combinations as the round came to a close.

Alexander, 21-1 (13), was unable to find the target with his left until the second half of the second stanza. Both men began to pick up their paces as the round continued, with Bradley starting to work to back Alexander to the ropes.

The third round saw both fighters let their hands fly and we started to see the types of exchanges the fight promised as Bradley continued to back up his southpaw opponent. The third round was a certain harbinger as we saw the first headbutt of the evening.

Alexander came out for the fourth round looking to use more movement, setting up angles from which to hit Bradley. Bradley maintained the pressure was able to land a solid right as the round was coming to its conclusion.

As the fifth round started, blood was clearly visible from Alexander’s right eye. Bradley showed good elusiveness as Alexander looked to narrow the lead his opponent was building. Bradley began showing greater confidence as the round elapsed.

Alexander again looked to use movement to counter Bradley’s pressure in round six, as it first seemed to appear like Bradley was wearing down the younger Alexander.

It began to look like vintage Timothy Bradley as the seventh round started. Bradley built a lead with solid, if not dominating, rounds and, of course, multiple head-butts. The tide of the fight was definitely moving in Bradley’s direction.

The eighth round saw both fighters seemingly more measured in their approaches and could’ve been either man’s stanza (depending on your criteria) when Bradley landed the best punch of the round with seconds remaining. The shot seemed to make the difference as all three judges ultimately scored the round for Bradley. There were also two more headbutts in the round.

Bradley was dictating the terms of the fight as the ninth round saw the best punches of the fight. The “Desert Storm” landed a hard right cross as Alexander had his back to the ropes. Soon after, Bradley connected on a solid left hook as Alexander was coming in. Understandably, Alexander started looking worn down.

The tenth and final round was more of the same as Bradley continued to land more frequently and effectively. Alexander looked defeated when the fateful headbutt occurred. While there was not a huge amount of blood, the ringside physician called an end to the bout after reportedly asking Alexander three times if he could open his eye, to which Alexander said no, complaining that his eye was burning.

As it became apparent that the bout had in fact been halted, a chorus of boos began raining down from the reported 6,247 in attendance. Dr. Samet feared that Alexander’s inability to open his eye could possibly cause temporary nerve damage and paralysis, forcing his actions.

The judges’ scores, which included the tenth round, were: Duane Ford 97-93, Tom Miller 96-95, and Omar Mintun 98-93. This reporter scored the fight 98-93.

Following the fight, Bradley remarked, “If that’s [Alexander] the best in the world, that’s weak.” Alexander said that his contract calls for a rematch and he wants one.

While the boxing world did not treated to the “super fight” we had hoped for, the result was hardly a surprise, given the sheer number of headbutts that are normally associated with Tim Bradley fights. Also, if it’s true that styles make fights, this fight could not have been expected to provide the type of contest we hoped. While these were the top two 140-pounders coming into the fight, much better fights can be made in the division.

As for the future of the fighters, Tim Bradley will no doubt try to position himself for a lucrative payday with Manny Pacquiao but talk of a match-up with Amir Khan is much more likely. As for Alexander, if he can’t get that rematch, there are many great fights to be made with names such as Marcos Maidana.

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