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Kennedy McKinney vs Junior Jones: 4 Exciting Rounds

Posted by beeshabo on September 14, 2007

December 19th 1997 marked the day that Junior Jones celebrated his birthday (turned 27), and fought Living Legend Kennedy McKinney (32-3-1) for the WBO Super Bantamweight Title in New York at the Madison Square Garden. Junior Jones claiming this would be a birthday bash, and McKinney wants no part of it, and it was clear.

During referee Wayne Kelly’s final instructions to the two fighters who stood center ring McKinney oddly gave his back to Jones, and only turned momentarily to give the traditional touch of gloves before returning to his corner to listen for the first bell.

Jones comes out into the first round, asserting his left jab to the body of McKinney, both men doing some feeling out, Jones a bit more eager to get things going as he’s fighting at a faster pace, in an accidental clash of heads Jones suffers a minor cut underneath his right eye. With a minute or so left in round 1, both guys swinging wildly at one and other trying to make a statement in the closing seconds of the round. Jones comes out as the aggressor in round 2 throwing viciously with both hands, and McKinney just kinda sitting it out, trying to withstand Jones’ onslaught as Jones came on very strong in the opening moments, although under sever attack, McKinney calm a relaxed and just sitting back and waiting for his moment to strike. Jones still on the attack, squaring his shoulders up and he drives McKinney into the ropes leaving himself open for McKinney to land his share of punches, and yet McKinney did not elect to counter at that moment.

Round 3 begins, Jones having fought at an extraordinary pace, marked by the fact that he threw 100 punches and landing 36 of 64 power punches in round 2. The fight is being held at center ring, with Jones keeping up his fast pace, attacking and striking at will, McKinney still holding back a bit, ducking and slipping punches, but still hasn’t got off. With a 1:27 left in round 3, Jones lands a right left right combination on the inside, and McKinney is down for the first time in the fight, McKinney is up at the count of 8. As soon as the referee allowed McKinney to continue, Jones was all over him, landing vicious lefts and rights, but McKinney holding his hands high and using the ropes for resting as he selectively picks his shots to mute Jones’ oncoming punches. Doing well enough to survive what seemed to have been the worst, McKinney showed his champion heart, and still picking his shots in order to get out of the round 3, and if he is able to do so, with a minutes rest between rounds, how much resilience will McKinney have. In the closing seconds of round 3, both men landing a straight right, and both wobbled for a moment, WOW, the bell rings to end round 3 and McKinney still in the fight

Round 4 begins, this time at a bit slower pace, Jones looking a little tired but still landing power shots, McKinney aiming for his right hand and lands one, and down goes Jones, but the ref rules it as slip. Although McKinney did apply pressure to the back of Jones’ neck to help him down to the canvas, Jones appears hurt and dazed, this is McKinney’s shot as Jones for the moment seems punched out. Jones is on the move, retreating against McKinney’s pressure, and with one solid right hand from McKinney, down goes Jones, badly hurt and he stays down until the count of 8, referee Wayne Kelly asks Jones if he wants to continue and Jones clearly answers “Yeah”. With :24 left in round 4 Jones is up and let back in to battle on wobbly legs, and without another single punch thrown, Jones falls straight into McKinney sending himself and the ref to the canvas and ref Wayne Kelly waves the fight off, McKinney has done it.

Although this fight was very short, it was great to watch, these two warriors put on a spectacular show in 4 amazing rounds.

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