Both fighters are in the ring. Taylor did a funny little fairy dance while he was being introduced. Did Pavlik pay extra for that extra long Ghooooooooost introduction from Michael Buffer?
Pavlik aggressive ten seconds into the fight, but it doesn’t last. Crowd begins chanting for Pavlik twenty five seconds in. Big swing and left handed miss…first connection of the fight for Pavlik at 2:15. Lots of movement, both fighters jabbing cautiously at 2:00. More jabbing to 1:30. Big left hook to the body by Pavlik at the halfway point. More jabs to 1:00. Hard right by Pavlik at :55. Pavlik lunges and misses. Big left by Taylor at :38. More jabbing by both fighters to end the round.
More jabbing by Taylor to begin the second. Trading jabs to 2:40. Strong right by Pavlik at 2:37. Taylor’s jabs lead to his first combo of the fight at 2:12. More cautious jabbing, but not tentative; just careful. Combos by Taylor at 1:40 land to Pavlik’s body. Pavlik throws a couple uppercuts. Wide left may have landed for Taylor at 1:11. Taylor sneaks a couple of jabs in. Hard right by Taylor at :44. Low blow by Taylor at :37. Pavlik throws a combo, eats a combo. Back to jabbing for the remainder of the round.
Pavlik is beginning to back Taylor up, though not connecting big to 2:30. Single wings by both boxers through 2:05. Strong right by Pavlik at 2:01. Combination by Taylor lands on Pavlik’s head at 1:26. Taylor is getting more precise with single power punches. Strong right by Taylor doesn’t faze Pavlik. More jabs, getting a little looser through :37. Tied up at :25 for the first time in the fight. More precise single shots by Taylor, and a good jab at :12. Left hook to Pavlik’s body at about :04.
More cautious jabs and single hooks though 2:35. Low left hook by Pavlik lands at 2:30. Still, caution and single punches through 2:01. Taylor gets under Pavlik and ref has to break them up at 1:37. Taylor refuses to be backed up, punches out away from the ropes at 1:14 or so. Lots of jabs, not a lot of combinations. Two punch combo by Pavlik at :49. Pavlik eats a hard left hook at :32. Lots of movement through :12. Pavlik throws several single power shots. Taylor may have landed with a left hook before the bell.
More cautious jabbing through 2:40. Pavlik is throwing wide left hooks that appear to connect, but make no dents in Taylor. Fighters getting flatfooted at 2:15. Slow combination by Pavlik. Pavlik is like a pitcher now, taking mustard off the fastball to gain accuracy. Strong left by Taylor lands at 1:33. Back to jabbing at 1:06. Body shot by Pavlik. Right at Taylor’s face by Pavlik. Taylor bleeding at :40? Jab jab jab. But that’s okay, I like jabs. Right-left by Pavlik lands at :18. Taylor lands a combination at :06, misses badly just before the bell.
Two-punch combos won’t win this fight for Pavlik. More cautious single-punch attacks by both fighters through 2:15. Right to the ribs of Pavlik lands with no effect. Ref breaks them up at 1:56. I think Taylor’s getting a little flinchy. Hard right from Taylor, Pavlik hits Taylor in the gut in retaliation. One-two to the body by taylor. Both fighters are gasping at :30. Left jab by Taylor hard to Pavlik’s face at :19. More jabs by both fighters to the end of the round.
No advantage to either fighter so far. More jabs to open the seventh. Taylor’s defense is stopping a lot of Pavlik’s big punches. More ineffective single punches from both fighters through 2:08. Taylor’s jabs are landing better through 1:54, especially the lefts. More jabs, jabs, jabs through 1:08. Two body shots by Taylor at :59. Fighters moving slower and slower. Pavlik stalking Taylor now, but Taylor reverses field and backs up Pavlik. More jabs through :25. Right-left lands for Pavlik at :14. More jabs to end the round. Taylor is making a habit of throwing one hook after the bell in most rounds.
Slow start again in the eighth. More precise, single jabs from Taylor. A slow hook by Pavlik misses slowly at 2:16. Both fighters connecting with jabs approaching 2:00. The jab is definitely the story here tonight. We may have to count the bruises and measure the swelling to pick a winner. Pavlik throws another one-two, but Taylor connects with a right. Is Taylor beginning to flinch when he gets hit? Hard right to the body by Pavlik at about :33. Left-right by Pavlik, Taylor whacks Pavlik with a right. Pavlik punches on the break just before the bell.
Pretty even fight so far. Taylor lands more jabs, Pavlik throws more power shots, though few land. More cautious jabbing by both men through 2:20. Slow right by Pavlik lands at 2:05. Left-left-right by Pavlik at 1:51. Pavlik and Taylor trade power shots at 1:25, clinch at 1:09. A left hook lands on Pavlik’s cheek. Lampley says Taylor’s eyes are swelling shut, but I can’t see it. Straight right by Pavlik at :28. Crowd chanting again. Body combo by Taylor, left to the face by Taylor, more jabs, and the round ends.
Immediate jabs from both men to start the tenth. Good defense by both men blocks jabs. Pavlik slips a jab thru at 2:12. Clinch at 1:59. Right hook from Pavlik, left jab from Taylor. Little action through 1:23. Big right by Taylor at 1:14. That one got Pavlik’s attention. More aggression from Taylor, now Pavlik is jabbing and backing him up again. Another good left hook by Taylor and more jabs follow. Pavlik is beginning to shrink from Taylor’s punches as the round draws to a close. Fighters flurry up to about :04, ref breaks them, round ends.
Single jabs and left hooks by Pavlik to begin the eleventh. Pavlik bobs and throws a power combo at 2:33. Right to the body appears to hurt Taylor at 2:20. These guys want to be aggressive but they just seem too tired. Pavlik flinches again at 1:41. Taylor throws a good combination to the body at 1:17. Pavlik measures but doesn’t throw at 1:02. Left to the body by Pavlik, another clinch. Why does Lampley keep insisting there have been no clinches in this fight? I know there have been six or more. Pavlik’s jab is backing Taylor up again at :20. Wrestling at :13, again at :06. Taylor does look tired, Manny Steward. Thanks for noticing.
The crowd is enthusiastic as the twelfth begins. Pavlik comes out with aggression and eats a left jab at 2:48. After a little clash the fighters mellow. Then a hard right by Taylor and Pavlik responds at 2:31. Pavlik punches on the break again at 2:12. Wild hooks by Taylor miss, and Pavlik continues to jab. Body punches by Pavlik land at 1:33. More jabs, Taylor backs up again. Taylor is tiiiiiiiired. Good jab by Taylor, we haven’t seen that much lately. Clinch at :56. Pavlik has more energy. Good body combo by Taylor at :45. jabs and hooks by Pavlik are telling. Aggression increases after :20, and there’s a clinch at :12. Wrestling, and another clinch to end the fight.
Pavlik wins a unanimous decision and stays unbeaten. There wasn’t a decisive round in this fight, and Taylor has nothing to be ashamed of. Pavlik seemed to have more energy at the end, but Taylor showed great determination and stayed with him throughout. The jab was important in this fight, but it was what Pavlik did in addition to his jab that won this fight for him. It seemed that power shots to the body hurt Taylor several times, and no amount of training or conditioning will inoculate a man against pain. Congratulations on a smart win, Kelly Pavlik.