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Will Roy Jones Jr. Be Calzaghe’s Last Fight?

Joe Calzaghe Roy Jones Jr.By Scott Gilfoid: Last week, undefeated super middleweight/light heavyweight Joe Calzaghe (45-0, 32 KOs) came out and said that he won’t be fighting Kelly Pavlik next, that “he’s not ready for me,” whatever that means. Calzaghe also said that he’s looking at possibly fighting former boxing great Roy Jones Jr. (52-4, 38 KOs), for his final fight, an idea that Calzaghe has been kicking around for some time. They’ve had discussions for a bout, but reportedly Jones was asking for too much money. However, it looks as if Calzaghe has had a change of tune and is interested in fighting Jones once again, preferring him to a fight against the tough Pavlik.

Previously, it was thought that if Calzaghe did go ahead and take the much easier bout against Jones, Calzaghe would then (if victorious) turn around and face Pavlik for what we assume would be the last fight of Calzaghe’s 15 year boxing career. Now, however, Calzaghe, 36, is saying about the possible Jones fight, “it will be a perfect way to finish off my career.” Come again? A perfect way to end his boxing career? Are you kidding me? That, to me, would be the worse way to complete Calzaghe’s boxing career. I mean, if his intention is to leave his many fans feeling unsatisfied by taking on a fighter like Jones, who at 39 is far removed from his boxing prime around a decade ago.

There’s no suspense in a fight between Jones and Calzaghe, as most people understand correctly that Jones will be in way over his head against Calzaghe and will take a one-sided beating along the same lines as Jeff Lacy’s terrible thrashing at the hands of Calzaghe in 2006. Jones, for his part, may have looked decent (not great) against Felix Trinidad in his recent fight 12-round unanimous decision in January, but that wasn’t much of an accomplishment, given the fact that Trinidad had only fought a measly four times in seven years and was as rusty as you would expect him to be for seeing such little action.

I personally don’t mind Calzaghe fighting Jones, because it is a reasonably interesting fight, somewhat like going to the circus and seeing a person shot out of a cannon, but as far as it being a competitive fight – that’s not happening. Calzaghe is going to destroy Jones and there are very few gullible boxing fans that see it being anything other than a slaughter. This is why I can’t understand how Calzaghe would choose to have this as his last fight, when the more obvious thing for him to do would be to immediately go after Pavlik and use that, the much more exciting fight, as the fight to finish Calzaghe’s career on.

That seems like only the smart thing to do, because ending his career against the likes of the 39 year-old Jones seems like something that would satisfy few while leaving the vast majority of the boxing fans pissed off, feeling cheated. Calzaghe can paint the fight anyway he wants to, calling it “the perfect fight” but that’s like calling a pile of garbage -“art.” Calzaghe may believe what he’s saying, though it would be hard for me to imagine that unless he’s taken too many shots to the head, but that doesn’t mean that the typical boxing fan sees his distorted vision about the Jones fight as being the perfect fight to end his career on.

Calzaghe can go ahead and make the Jones fight his last fight, but if he does do this, it won’t leave a favorable lasting impression with too many of his fans, most of whom will (quite correctly) why he chose to end his career without facing Pavlik. His recent dismissal of Pavlik, saying “he’s not ready for me,” was something that seemed far fetched, just an excuse to avoid what would likely be a very difficult task for Calzaghe to accomplish. Few bought Calzaghe’s excuse then, and even fewer will buy it if he chooses to retire without facing Pavlik.

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