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Saturday, November 7, 2009

Haye Wins WBA Title, Upsets Valuev

David Haye wins a 12 round majority decision to claim WBA Heavyweight Title from Nikolai Valuev

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Before I recap this fight, let me state how fights are scored: Clean punching, effective aggressiveness, ring generalship and defense with a strong emphasis on clean effective punching.

I scored this about against popular opinion. I had Valuev winning this fight 8 rounds to 4 or 116-112. Official judges scored the fight 114-114 and 116-112 twice for David Haye.

I was watching the same fight as everyone else and here's my round-by-round recap followed by an explanation as I still stand by my scoring in favor of Valuev.

Round 1: Valuev is imposing his will on Haye and firing his jab. Haye is not getting his punches off. (Scored for Valuev 10-9)

Round 2: Haye is moving and jabbing to the body. Valuev is not jabbing as much and Haye is getting in and out easier. (Scored for Haye 10-9)

Round 3: Haye lands an overhand right and followed it with a straight left jab. (Scored for Haye 10-9)

Round 4:
Valuev trapped Haye in the corner momentarily and lands a left hook. Valuev lands an overhand right. Haye is fighting from a distance and lands an overhand right. Both fighters exchange left jabs. Valuev lands a right to the body. Valuev pushes Haye back with the jab.
(Scored for Valuev 10-9)

Round 5: Valuev is aggressive firing the jab. Haye is not busy. Haye lands an overhand right. Valuev connects with an overhand right with Haye's back to the ropes. (Scored for Valuev 10-9)

Round 6:
Valuev continues to impose his will; jabs as he comes forward. Valuev lands a left hook. He connects with a right to the body as Haye is cornered. Haye fires and lands a left hook. Haye is running. (Scored for Valuev 10-9)

Round 7:
Valuev scores with a left hook. Valuev is chasing Haye back with his jab. Haye is not working the body. Valuev connects with an overhand right. Haye is not throwing. Valuev charges in, but Haye nails him with a big overhand right. (Scored for Valuev 10-9)

Round 8:
Haye is feinting a lot, but not throwing. Valuev lands a left hook. Haye connected with another overhand right. Haye jabs, but Valuev dictating the pace of the bout. (Scored for Valuev 10-9)

Round 9:
Haye is making Valuev miss, but Valuev continues to press forward. Haye lands a combination. Valuev jabs and comes forward. Valuev hits Haye with a left hook. Haye fires a jab to Valuev's body. (Scored for Valuev 10-9)

Round 10:
Haye connects with a big left hook. Valuev is pressing forward, but Haye is making him miss with his punches. (Scored for Haye 10-9)

Round 11:
Haye lands a clean overhand right. Valuev lands a jab followed by a right. Haye jabs to the body. Valuev jabs back. Valuev connects with a short left hook. Haye hits Valuev with an overhand right. (Scored for Valuev 10-9)

Round 12:
Valuev is busy chasing Haye. Haye connects with a jab-left hook-overhand right combination. Valuev hits Haye in the body with a right. Haye connects with another overhand right. A left hook-overhand right combination by Haye stuns Valuev. (Scored for Haye 10-9)

Overall Summary:
Okay, so here's my explanation on scoring this bout for Valuev. First, let's look at effective aggression. Clearly, that belongs to Valuev as he pressed forward the entire fight using his jab and dictating the pace.

Secondly, the edge in clean punching goes to David Haye. However, here's where I differ from many observers. While Haye landed the cleaner punches, I asked myself did Haye control at least 2 of the 3 minutes of every round? He definitely flurried and landed some quality shots, but does that alone win you the round? To me, the answer is no unless the clean punches are effective enough that they appear to really hurt the opponent. Valuev didn't seem fazed by Haye's punches as he continued to charge forward.

Next, who gets the edge in ring generalship? Haye did not appear to me as if he was out boxing Valuev, rather it looked like he was running from the pressure Valuev was bringing. Again, Haye was not scoring enough to say he was dictating this fight. I've seen fighters such as Muhammad Ali score frequently when fighting backwards and controlling rounds doing it. Haye was not that effective fighting backward. I gave the edge in ring generalship to Valuev. Valuev scored with his punches coming forward just as much as Haye moving backwards. Also, remember Leonard vs. Hagler? How did you score that fight? Did you score it for the guy flurrying or the guy bringing the fight?

Finally, I gave the edge in defense to Haye. He made Valuev miss with punches due to his boxing ability and his well timed feints. Valuev was there to be hit all night, but Haye could have taken more of an initiative to make this fight not appear close. He did not do so.

I now presented my case on why I thought Valuev won. What do you think?

2 comments:

Deb said...

would love to rss feed your blog into our sports forum....in the process of interviewing Buster Douglass, and fell in love with your blog. Not sure how to email you.

Deb
http://forums.sportsjabber.net/sjforums/index.php

deb2cowboys@hotmail.com

THE BRYGUY said...

Mike, I thought Valuev won as well, but my explanation differs from yours; Sauerland was done with Valuev. I thought from round two on that Haye was fighting as if all he needed to do was not get knocked out, it seemed odd to me, but in the end made sense. Sauerland has the rights to Haye for his next couple fights, and has gotten his use out of Valuev.

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