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Judah in make or break fight against Paris tonight in IBF 140lb eliminator

Zab JudahBy Jim Dower: Former two division world champion Zab Judah (41-7, 28 KO’s) has a crucial fight tonight against the tough but totally unproven Vernon Paris (26-0, 15 KO’s) in an IBF light welterweight title eliminator at the Aviator Sports Complex in Brooklyn, New York. Judah is coming off of a 5th round knockout loss to Amir Khan from last July and he really can’t afford to lose to the 24-year-old Paris if he wants to remain relevant at 140.

Judah already moved down in weight from welterweight when he could no longer compete against the best fighters at that weight. It’s safe to say that Judah won’t be able to move down another weight class if Paris defeats him tonight. This is the end of the line for Judah in terms of weight classes, which is why this fight is so crucial for him. Paris, #4 IBF, is a good fighter but he’s hardly in the same league as the best fighters in the division such as Khan, Lucas Matthysse, Marcos Maidana, and Timothy Bradley. Paris is just a good body puncher but who lacks hand speed, power and defense. This is a winnable fight for Judah if he can take Paris’ shots, because he’s not going to get blasted out by Judah. This is a guy that will take whatever Judah offers and keep coming.

Paris does really well against fighters that stand in front of him and try to trade like Tim Coleman did last August in their shootout. Coleman fought Paris’ fight and ended up getting taken out in the 7th. That was Paris’ best opponent in his career and is was a real give and take fight before Paris pulled away. Judah is a lot more talented and powerful than Coleman. He could really give Paris problems if he’s able to set up traps, hit and move and not just stand there in front of Paris like most of his opponents do.

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