By By Jordan Davies: First off I would like to congratulate James DeGale on winning the IBF Super middleweight world championship against Andre Dirrell in his own backyard by way of decision (117-109, 114-112 twice respectively) last Saturday night in Boston, Mass.
DeGale was up on the scorecards early in the fight scoring two knockdowns in the 2nd round and seemed to be too much for the American could handle. However, it seemed he decided to coast to a decision mid way through the fight by not engaging instead frustrating Dirrell by retreating onto the back foot.
Despite cries of robbery from Dirrells corner the two judges scoring the bout 114-112 had it correct, there was no dispute among knowledgeable boxing fans who won the fight, although deciding to give away rounds when fighting in a foreign country was a very foolish game plan that could have easily backfired for DeGale.
Jim McDonnell has been with James DeGale for 6 years, and has stuck by his fighter despite his career stalling due to injuries, and DeGale has sworn loyalty to the man who has brought him to a world title. The bond between trainer and fighter is sacred, sometimes however change is necessary and no disrespect but McDonnell should have taken a leaf from Floyd Mayweather Sr’s book. Despite Floyd being up comfortably on the scorecards against Manny Pacquiao, Floyd Sr. instructed his son to not give away rounds because he believed the judges would favor the Filipino.
So now that we have addressed the problem, what is the solution?
Booth had once worked in the opposite corner to the new IBF champion when he lost in a British title bout against George Groves (who challenges for Badou Jacks super middleweight title) via majority decision in 2011.
Groves would later split with Booth two months before his first showdown against Carl Froch with an apparent £100,000 legal dispute ensuing. Booth refused to comment on why they had split, downplaying rumors about George Groves being unhappy with the time being split between him and Booths other fighter former WBA Heavyweight champion David Haye.
Booth has since teamed up with Andy Lee, leading him to his own world title and a defense against Peter Quillin who had previously dropped the belt. Not only is Booth one of Britain’s best trainers but you can bet he would have a solid game plan to beat Groves should he win the WBC strap.
So fight fans do you agree? Should James DeGale team up with Booth for a fresh pair of eyes? should he stay with McDonnell? Or is there another trainer you think DeGale could benefit better from? Let me know in the comment section below.