Herring, Pulev score decision wins on ESPN+
Photo by Alex Menendez/Getty Images
Herring survived a late scare to hold onto his world title.
WBO super featherweight world champion Jamel Herring (21-2, 10 KOs) successfully retained his title tonight in an ESPN+ main event, taking a unanimous decision over Lamont Roach Jr. (19-1-1, 7 KOs). Official judges had the fight 115-113, and two scores of 117-111. BLH scored the fight 116-112 for Herring.
The fight played out largely as expected coming in, with it being a technical fight between a boxer and a counterpuncher. But with the boxer, Herring, being the taller, longer man, he sort of forced Roach to come forward in a manner he’s not really comfortable with. That posed a big problem for Roach who had a hard time finding his way into range without getting picked off.
But down the stretch of the fight Roach started to find his timing, and started landing his hooks with more regularity. In the 11th round Roach managed to badly hurt Herring with a clean hook, but it came in the waning moments of the round when the bell rang before Roach could really follow it up. Roach would come out and have a strong 12th round as well, but by that point he was too far down on points to overcome his deficit.
In the main card’s opening fight, IBF heavyweight contender Kubrat Pulev (28-1, 14 KOs) solidified his mandatory title shot by outpointing Rydell Booker (26-3, 13 KOs) over 10 rounds of action. The three judges turned in unanimous scorecards of 99-91, 98-92, and 98-92, all in favor of Pulev. BLH also scored the fight 98-92 for Pulev.
Booker came into the fight looking to be in pretty bad shape, but flashed some fast hands and some veteran savvy which gave Pulev a hard time in the early going. But by the third round you could see Booker fading, and at that point he mostly used his energy to move his head and ride hard shots from Pulev. And as Booker continued to tire, Pulev was able to land his right hand more effectively. Pulev never really seemed to have Booker in danger of a stoppage though, because Pulev’s offense was so unimaginative that even a tired Booker could see his shots coming and ride them.
With the win Pulev will seemingly look to enforce his mandatory title shot at whomever emerges with the IBF title in the Andy Ruiz vs. Anthony Joshua rematch this December.