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Jermain Taylor: I’m returning to boxing to capture the belts and be #1

Jermain TaylorBy Allen Fox: Former WBC/WBO middleweight champion Jermain Taylor (28-4-1, 17 KO’s) is making a comeback on Friday night and looking to make a new run at becoming the No.1 fighter in the middleweight division. Taylor faces Jessie Nicklow (22-2-3, 8 KO’s) in a fight that should give fans a good indication of whether Taylor will be successful in his comeback or not.

Taylor hasn’t fought since October 17th, 2009 in a 12th round knockout loss against Arthur Abraham. The knockout did damage to Taylor he subsequently took a leave of absence from boxing to let his head recover from the series of knockouts he had suffered dating back to 2007. He’s now had two years off and has passed the medical exams to get clearance for this fight. Taylor thinks he can make it all the way back to the top of the middleweight division but it would seem hardly unlikely given the long period away from activity in addition to the three knockouts he suffered in his last five bouts.

Taylor said this during a telephone conference call on Tuesday: “I’m returning to boxing to be No.1 and to win the belts.”

Well that sounds good but unless Taylor has somehow recovered to the point where he can take a heavy shot without getting knocked out, his chances of success are slim at best. But there is hope because the middleweight division is painfully weak once you get past Sergio Martinez, Marco Antonio Rubio and Dmitry Pirog.

Taylor really shouldn’t take chances by pressing his luck in trying to fight any of those guys. It’s too dangerous and he may fail. He’d be better off going after the International Boxing Federation (IBF) middleweight champion Daniel Geale. He’s definitely the weak link among the four middleweight champions and he can’t punch his way out of a wet paper page as well. The IBF has soft opposition ranked in the top 15 as far as the eye can see, and Taylor, even if his chin hasn’t been improved with the two years off, can definitely beat most of the guys ranked in the top 15 if he can avoid Martinez at number 3.

Taylor should shine on Friday night and make it look easy in beating Nicklow. He’s got to start out fast and show Nicklow his speed and power to get him out as quickly as possible to keep him from land something big on his own.

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