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Andy Lee vs. John Duddy would be huge in New York, says Steward

Andy Lee John DuddyBy Jason Kim: Trainer Emanuel Steward thinks an all Irish contest between middleweights John Duddy (29-2, 18 KO’s) and Andy Lee (24-1, 18 KO’s) would be huge in New York where he thinks it could draw as many as 10,000 boxing fans at Madison Square Garden, according to Michael Marley at

A fight between Lee and Duddy would pull fans from the large Irish community in the New York area, who probably wouldn’t seeing these two good middleweights go at it for 12 rounds.

Both Lee and Duddy have been beaten in the past and are considered flawed by a lot fans. Lee, 26, is possibly the better of the two, but it’s hard to tell because he still hasn’t fought anyone during his four year pro career besides Brian Vera, who stopped Lee in the 7th round two years ago in March 2008.

At that time, Steward had been making noises about Lee fighting then WBC/WBO middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik. However, Lee’s loss to Vera ended such talk. Lee has been matched against nothing but soft opposition since the Vera defeat and it’s unknown how Lee will react when he’s finally put in with someone that kind fight a little like Duddy.

The good thing that Lee has going for him in a fight with Duddy is that he’s a southpaw, can punch and will have a five year youth advantage. However, Duddy has a great chin and all he needs to do is stick around past the midpoint of the fight and keep landing occasional right hands and Lee may get rocked and taken out again.

What Vera wasn’t magical against Lee. All he did was stick around long enough to survive Lee’s early onslaught and then he started to blast Lee with right hands once the Irish fighter started showing signs of fatigue.

Built with a slender neck, Lee’s head snapped back and forth when he would get hit with right hands from Vera. It might have looked worse than it actually was, but the referee didn’t like how Lee was getting hit so cleanly and decided to pull the plug on the fight.

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