Boxing


The fall of the “Big Time” McCline

22.01.07 - By Zhenyu Li: This is not only the fall of Jameel “Big Time” McCline, but the fall of the big time of the American heavyweight. Undefeated WBA heavyweight champion the Russian Nikolai Valuev won the “biggest” match against another American contender Jameel “Big Time” McCline by TKO and took one step further to Rocky Marciano’s historical record of 49-0 with the 46th win added to his perfect record. The fall of the “Big Time” was caused by a debilitating injury to his left knee after throwing a right to “the eighth wonder of the world” at the end of the third round.. Collapsed onto the floor, struggled in pain, McCline tried several times to stand up on his feet but to no avail. This fall terminated McCline, and maybe his remaining career. After three consecutive losses of his title shots, the 36-year old veteran said after the match that he’s possibly going to quit.

Despite the unexpected fatal blunder of McCline, Valuev was ahead on two scorecards. In the first round, McCline, instead of his former self, nervous and uneasy, started off with calm and confident, landing several jabs and a well-organized combination. But the tallest heavyweight rallied with efficiency and accuracy which outworked the opening efforts of the contender. Valuev won this round but not by much. If the first round was just a warm-up, Valuev came out big in the second round, backing McCline up with a fair bit of hard punishments. Round 2 is clearly for the defending champion. Knowing that he might gradually lose the momentum, McCline fought hard and grounded several combinations which were heavy and fast. It seemed that McCline would have clearly won this round. Unfortunately the “fall” smashed the challenger’s dream, the “American dream”.

Though not a much-anticipated fighter, McCline is by comparison capable among most of the American heavyweights, at least someone who could beat Mike Tyson now. John Ruiz, Monte Barrett and now the three-time contender Jameel McCline, Valuev, a high tower with low-level skills has beaten so many top American fighters. Perhaps we have to admit that the big time of the American heavyweights has past…


Zhenyu Li is the senior writer for People’s Daily online. He can be reached at zhenyuli_cn@sina.com.

Article posted on 22.01.2007



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