Taylor Is Favored Over Lacy

By Tom Donelson
Updated: October 26, 2008

Jermain Taylor

Jermain Taylor

IOWA CITY — Jermain Taylor and Jeff Lacy are at crossroads of their careers. Four years ago, Lacy was on top of the Super Middleweight division as he headed toward Wales to face Joe Calzaghe.

What was supposed to be his coronation, proved to be his undoing. The undefeated Lacy faced the undefeated Calzaghe and there were many in the boxing world who viewed this as the fight that Lacy established himself.

For years, Calzaghe was the invisible fighter, underestimated and underappreciated. On this night, Calzaghe punished Lacy and when the fight was over; Lacy’s career nosedived. He was never the same fighter and his last fight, he barely survived against Epifano Mendoza with a majority decision in his last fight.

Taylor lost his last two fights against Pavlik. In their first fight, Taylor nearly stopped Pavlik in the second round but despite taking a lead going into the seventh round, Taylor moved straight back to avoid a Pavlik right but the Pavlik right nailed Taylor and that was that .

Pavlik outworked Taylor in their second fight and now the former recognized Middleweight begins his campaign to become a Super Middleweight champion and his fight with Lacy on November 15th is his first step.

Taylor has fought some of the best in the Middleweight divisions and before Pavlik, beaten his share of champions and former champions including two close victories over Bernard Hopkins.

Taylor always had a amateurish touch to his boxing style, never looking totally smooth but he did have a nice jab that snaps a head back as well as solid right that can punish an opponent.

On the other hand, Lacy’s nickname “Left Hook” pretty much sums up his fight style. At his best, Lacy would punish an opponent to the body and then destroy them with his left hook.

After Calzaghe, he never looked the same and there are times that Lacy looked to have aged beyond his years. For Lacy, this fight is more important for a lost would effectively end his career as a elite fighter or severely damage his career.

As for Taylor, this is his second fight in the Super Middleweight division with his first being his second lost to Pavlik. So while a lost would hurt, it would not destroy his career like a lost would Lacy.

Lacy’s advantage is his power but over the past years, a boxer gave him trouble. Calzaghe’s movement not only bothered Lacy, but his faster hand ripped through Lacy’s defenses.

Taylor has shown that when he is on, he can box effectively and move. His left jab can be piston like and certainly, he will have an easy target in Lacy to hit.

Kelly Pavlik wore Taylor out and out punched him. Volume beats style, but Lacy does not throw the same volume of punches whereas Pavlik wear out opponents, but Lacy has the one punch knockout power and against Taylor, that will be his chance and possibly only chance.

If Taylor moves and jabs, he will win this fight easy and maybe even stop Lacy. Lacy best shot is his left hook. If he is able to survive the early rounds, he can probably even knock Taylor out with the left hook.

The key for Lacy is be able to take advantage of any signs of Taylor tiring.

Taylor should be favorite and if he wins, he will be in position to go for a title shot and grab a portion of the Super Middleweight title but it is a division populated by good fighters just as Mikkel Kessler and Lucian Bute.