Badou Jack added to Mike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr card on Nov.28
By Jim Maltzman: Fresh off consecutive losses to Jean Pascal and Marcus Browne, former two-division world champion Badou Jack has been added to the undercard of Mike Tyson vs. Roy Jones Jr on November 28.
The 36-year-old Badou will be facing little known cruiserweight prospect Blake McKernan (13-0, 6 KOs). It’s a poor match-up, but then again, it goes well with the current state of the Jones vs. Tyson undercard. It looks like a real mess from top to bottom.
Adding past his prime Badou to the card goes along with the theme of the event involving older boxers that are no longer relevant.
Tyson vs. Jones undercard = a MESS-terpiece
It’s unclear why Badou is fighting at cruiserweight, and also, it’s odd that he’s a prospect rather than a contender. Jack isn’t a cruiserweight, though, and he likely would have problems if he fought a contender in the division. As it is, Jack is struggling with his career in losing his last two fights.
Also added to the Tyson-Jones card is cruiserweight prospect Viddal Riley (4-0, 2 KOs) vs. 38-year-old former MMA fighter Rashad Coulter. Riley-Coulter is another odd fight, as casual boxing fans have likely never heard of Coulter or Riley, and they won’t be motivated to order the card based on the addition of that fight.
Adding Coulter is a move that appears to be aimed at luring MMA fans to order the Tyson vs. Jones card.
The Tyson vs. Roy pay-per-view event had been scheduled for September 12, but it as moved last week to give it more time to build interest among the boxing public.
It makes sense for organizers of the Tyson-Jones event to take place on November 28, as it comes two days after Thanksgiving, which means a lot of fans will be at home with their families. However, that doesn’t mean that they’ll be more inclined to pay to see the 54-year-old Tyson and 51-year-old Jones Jr (66-9, 47 KOs) fight it out at the cost of $49.99 on pay-per-view.
To entice fans, the organizers might need a quality undercard instead of sticking 36-year-old Badou Jack, and YouTuber Jake Paul in his fight against former NBA player Nate Robinson.
Changing the date for Tyson-Jones a strategic move
Boxing fans have been ridiculing the event organizer’s decision to add non-boxer Jack Paul to the undercard, as it turns the card into a circus act instead of a semi-serious card. But the other fights that have now been added between Badou and McKernan and Riley against Coulter are almost as bad.
“Changing the date to November 28th will give more people the opportunity to see the biggest comeback in boxing history,” Tyson said via TMZ. “This temporary inconvenience will last longer than Roy Jones Jr. He better be ready, I’m coming full force.”
Badou Jack used to be a good fighter during his best years, but he hasn’t looked the same since his grueling 12 round draw against former WBC light heavyweight champion Adonis ‘Superman’ Stevenson in May 2018. Jack took a lot of punishment by the hard-hitting Stevenson in that fight, and he’s been struggling ever since.
In Jack’s two fights since the Stevenson bout, he was outworked by Pascal and Browne in losing a pair of fights. Jack doesn’t match-up against the top fighters at 175 nowadays, like Artur Beterbiev and Dmitry Bivol. Those guys would likely trounce Jack at this point in his career or at any point.
Jack captured the WBA light heavyweight title three years ago in beating Nathan Cleverly by a fifth-round knockout in 2017, but that was against a shot fighter, who was arguably a paper champion at the end of the line. Not surprisingly, Cleverly retired after his loss to Badou. It was a good bit of match-making by Jack’s promoters to target Cleverly rather than Bivol or Beterbiev.
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