By Anthony Evans: Roy Jones Junior has been knocked out twice in two fights. Antonio Tarver did it in May with a single southpaw left hook on the counter and Glen Johnson pic by Mr Will/Hogan Photos
did it with a right cross delivered from an orthodox stance two weeks ago. The former came out of nowhere in the second round of a bout which was looked developing a cagey rematch in Las Vegas; the later was the brutal punctuation mark of a one-sided beat-down in Memphis
Two very different knockout losses. However, Jones's alibi was the same for each.
"I just couldn't get up for this guy," the former four division champion insisted, as if a lack of enthusiasm had a scientifically proven and detrimental affect on the jawbone.
The excuse is an absolute nonsense and has been received as such by much of the boxing fraternity, and most especially by Team Johnson, who feel Jones is not extending their fighter any professional respect whatsoever. Johnson's emotional, outspoken manager Henry Foster was enraged when he read Jones's excuses on SecondsOut on Monday.
"What he said was absurd," Foster raged from his Florida home. "Pure horseshit! It is sickening, really. It's an insult to Glen and every fighter who has every challenged for a world title. What does that mean, 'Can't get up for it?' It's pathetic. He should be ashamed of himself for saying that after approaching us - his people approached us - and accepting millions of dollars to fight only to say, what, he couldn't be bothered to train? He couldn't be bothered to fight? For him to respect Glen like that - he should leave the game completely. If he has that much contempt for any fighters not named "Roy Jones" how can HBO employ this clown to commentate on fights and fighters he clearly has zero respect for?"
"How can he call himself a f**king fighter," the 'Main Man' continued. "What, he's saying he allowed Glen to beat the f**cking shit out of him for nine rounds and knock him unconscious for half an hour and send his ass to the hospital? Yeah, right! Fighting back was such a chore that he rather be humiliated and hurt that bad rather than put forward any kinda effort? He's talking like four-year-old. He's talking like a complete pussy. He lost because he wasn't motivated to win a world title? Isn't this the guy who used to defend each and every world title fight and use keeping all the belts as an excuses to fight all those bums?
"Listen, I was as shocked as anybody when that punch landed and Jones was knocked out but, to be honest and you know I am telling the truth, I knew Glen would win. I bet $5000 on Glen but I thought it'd be a beat down, down the stretch. Glen was such a machine in training and he wanted to turn his career around so badly I knew Jones would have to be at his very, very best to tackle my guy."
But Jones, of course, was far from his best. In fact, the former four division barely won a round in a one-sided drumming which should end his career.
Foster said: "It's one thing to say he was dehydrated, that he fought the wrong fight - he can have those types of excuses but to say he couldn't get up for it is bullshit. He should just say he lost on the night - it has happened to better fighters than Roy Jones Junior all down boxing history.
"My guy still talks about the Bernard Hopkins fight and that was back in 1997. But it still bothers Glen because he clearly lost fair and square and Bernard beat him badly. But Glen would never, ever, try to take Hopkin's win from him with excuses. Glen's too much of a man. Jones is just a pussy who's had it all his own way for so long he honestly expected Glen to roll over like all the over guys he's fought.
"Roy - you lost because you couldn't do it in there. Roy, you couldn't beat Glen Johnson on your best day, pal. You hit Glen with everything you got, buddie, and my guy took it and then you shit yourself. Glen has always thought he'd got the style to beat Roy and just wasn't afraid of Roy's rep. Two guys have gone after Roy and disregarded his rep and they both knocked Jones out."
The other guy, of course, is Antonio Tarver. While Paul Briggs is the 'Magic Man's' (overdue) mandatory Foster is hopeful the biggest fight at 175lbs can be make next.
He said: "We're hopeful that can be made. The WBC may allow Tarver to fight Glen in a unification before his mandatory or, whatever, we can do it just for Glen's IBF title. Everyone knows Antonio and Glen as the best two at 175lbs anyway and I'm sure HBO don't care if the WBC is involved or not."
"I'm still a little bit giddy that Glen did that to Roy Jones Junior. It wasn't even competitive and Glen beat down Jones worse than any other fighter ever has - worse than Tarver did in his two fights with Jones. Tarver will know full well what Glen will bring to their fight.
"I make Glen the favourite but I know they (the odds makers) will make Tarver a slight favourite so I'll be making some more money in Las Vegas betting. But I know Tarver will train his ass off after seeing Glen smash up Jones. We respect Antonio very much, we respect his trainer Buddie McGirt very much also and we know Buddie will prepare Tarver extremely well and we have to have Glen ready for that."