When the story of Roy Jones Jr. vs. Kimbo Slice first popped up on the internet, plenty of people thought that it was likely a false rumor or,even, a joke. However, as the story made its way through social media circles and on second tier boxing websites, things became a little more real.
Now, the story has been picked up by the New York Post and confirmed by the sponsors of the event and by Jones, himself.
The joke isn't quite as funny anymore.
"He's a big street fighter with a lot of power, so early in the fight he can be very dangerous... but as the fight goes on, my mental experience should take over," Jones told the Jamaica Observer at an event to announce the fight. "But for the first five rounds he will be very deadly."
Jones(56-8, 40 KOs), 43, has been running on fumes for the last several years, living off the memories of a legendary career that saw the Pensacola, FL native win world titles in four weight classes and earn recognition as the pound for pound best fighter in the world. Jones' last victory over a world class opponent, though, was in 2003 when he took a majority decision from Antonio Tarver.
Since then, Jones has been defeated soundly by everyone above second-tier status. His recent 7-7 run has also seen him suffer brutal knockouts at the hands of Tarver, Glen Johnson, Danny Green, and Denis Lebedev as well as one-sided decision losses to Joe Calzaghe and Bernard Hopkins.
Meanwhile, Slice (5-0, 4 KOs), who was born in the Bahamas, is a 38-year-old boxing novice fighting under his birth name, Kevin Ferguson, and scoring dubious wins in club fights against an extremely poor level of opposition. Best known for his YouTube street fight videos, Slice also made an attempt to break into the world of mixed martial arts, but soon bottomed out of both Elite XC and the UFC.
Billed as an exhibition, likely because even an ultra-flexible Jamaican Athletic Commission would be hard-pressed to sanction such a farce, the bout will take place as part of festivities to celebrate Jamaica's 50th anniversary.
Promoters of the event are quick to point out that, while the bout isn't 100% signed yet, Jones-Slice is very close to being a done deal.
Win, lose, or draw, this is just another liver shot delivered to the legacy of Roy Jones Jr. It reminds one of when a broke and broken Joe Louis took to refereeing wrestling matches in order to pay his bills.
Nothing will take away from the legendary Hall of Fame career he once had, but spectacles like this, as well as his ever-diminishing ability to compete against top fighters, are just making Jones' glory days harder and harder to remember.
Paul Magno was a licensed official in the state of Michoacan, Mexico and a close follower of the sport for more than thirty years. His work can also be found on Fox Sports and The BoxingTribune. In the past, Paul has done work for Inside Fights, The Queensberry Rules and Eastside Boxing.
Marc Raimondi, Jones Jr., Kimbo to meet in exhibition boxing match, New York Post
- Sports & Recreation
- Kimbo Slice