Bradley Decisions Holt
By Jim Dower: As I expected to happen, World Boxing Council (WBC) light welterweight champion Timothy Bradley (24-0, 11 KOs) defeated World Boxing Organization (WBO) light welterweight champion Kendall Holt (25-3, 12 KOs) by a 12-round unanimous decision tonight to unify the two titles at the Bell Centre, in Montreal, Canada.
Although Bradley got the narrow decision, he was put down twice in the fight – once in the first from a big left hand from Holt and another time in the 12th. The final judges’ scores were 114-112, 115-111 and 115-111.
In the 1st round, Holt dropped Bradley with a tremendous left hook to the head near the end of the round. The punch connected to the chin of Bradley and sent him falling to the canvas on his back. Bradley immediately sprang to his feet, and quickly thought better of it and took a knee to get more time to recover from the shot.
It’s a good thing, too, because had Bradley gone straight back into battle after such a big knockdown like this, I had little doubts that Holt would have finished him off with some big shots. There was little time left in the round after the knockdown and Holt tried in vain to finish Bradley off by jumping on him and landing a big right hand and then a left hook.
Holt landed the bigger shots in the 2nd round, although Bradley pressed the attack continually through the round. Holt showed that he had both the better hand speed and power, but he wasn’t as busy as Bradley. Instead, it seemed as if Holt was waiting to land one big punch and hope for a knockout.
It wasn’t a good idea, because Bradley, up until this fight, had never had a history of being knocked out or badly hurt in fights.
Bradley outworked Holt in the 3rd round, throwing jabs to his midsection and head, and occasional big looping right hands. Holt did next to nothing in this round and just stood on the outside looking for an opportunity to throw one big bomb. It was another bad round on his part, because Holt let Bradley do almost all of the punching without firing back on him.
In the 4th round, both fighters clashed heads on two occasions, which seemed to bother Holt a great deal. Bradley took advantage of Holt being upset by landing well with left hands and dominating the round quite easily.
Holt tried to pay Bradley back in the 5th by landing two low blows. It didn’t upset Bradley in the least, who continued hitting Holt with hard shots. Bradley was now showing more courage, throwing left-right combinations and hard left hooks to the head and body. Holt looked ruffled by Bradley’s pressure and composure and once again didn’t get in enough shots to win the round.
This pattern repeated itself in the 6th, with Holt continuing to throw low blows and not letting his hands go enough to stay competitive with Bradley. On several occasions in the round, Bradley walked in and landed quick four punch flurries without getting hit in return by the quicker Holt.
It seemed as if Holt was afraid to fire back on Bradley for fear that he might get hit with one of Bradley’s big shots while throwing one of his own. This is exactly what happened against Holt in his first fight with Ricardo Torres.
Bradley focused on throwing body punches in the 7th, and appeared to hurt Holt with a great body shot late in the round that had Holt holding on afterwards and grimacing in pain. Again, Holt failed to throw very many punches in the round.
Although there was still four rounds left in the fight, things were beginning to look desperate for Holt because he had given away way too many rounds up this point in the fight.
The 8th and 9th rounds were close, as Holt began to finally let his hands go a little more. However, Bradley still appeared to win the rounds due to his constant work and excellent body shots.
Bradley roughed up Holt in the 10th, landing a hard right hand rabbit punch to the back of Holts head and then another big right to Holt’s kidney area. The referee immediately stopped the action and gave Bradley a warning. Holt did nothing in the round and was pummeled by Bradley, who now was looking very confident and well in control of the fight.
The 11th round was all Bradley as he landed a lot of left-right combinations tot eh head and hard hooks to the body. Holt was limited to a few meaningless combinations and as in the previous rounds, he wasn’t throwing enough punches.
In between the 11th and 12th rounds, Holt looked deeply depressed, staring down at his lap and listening as his trainer tried to give him a small pep talk. He seemed to know how badly he was losing the fight and didn’t seem to feel too good about his chances going into the last round. Indeed, Holt needed a knockout at this point to win.
Instead of fighting aggressively in the 12th, Holt hung back and let Bradley come to him. It looked pretty much like a carbon copy of the 10 of the 11 previous rounds. However, near the end of the round Holt caught Bradley with a right uppercut on the way in, causing Bradley to bend over and touch his right glove to the canvas to prevent from falling down.
The referee spotted the glove touching the canvas and ruled it a knockdown. There was only a few seconds left after the knockdown, only enough time for Holt to land one final right hand before the fight ended.
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