Harrison withdraws from Charlo fight due to ankle injury; Charlo will face Jorge Cota on 6/23

WBC junior middleweight champion Tony Harrison injured his ankle in training last week and has withdrawn from his title defense against former world champion Jermell Charlo that was scheduled to headline FOX PBC Fight Night on FOX and FOX Deportes Sunday, June 23 at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

Harrison has an inner and outer ankle sprain with torn ligaments in his right ankle and he will be out for 10 weeks before he can resume training. Harrison and Charlo plan to have their rematch later this year.

Stepping in to replace Harrison for a 12-round fight is the always dangerous Jorge Cota (28-3, 25 KOs), who most recently lost a disputed split-decision in April on FS1 against Jeison Rosario. The 31-year old from Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico had scored three straight knockout victories before the defeat in April.

The 29-year-old Charlo will now have to wait for his opportunity to avenge the only loss of his career and regain his title against Harrison. Fighting out of Houston, Texas, Charlo won the vacant WBC title with a devastating knockout victory over John Jackson in 2016. He made three successful defenses of the title with highlight-reel knockouts over Charles Hatley and Erickson Lubin, plus a majority decision win over former champion Austin Trout.

Harrison’s injury is the latest twist in the 154-pound division that started last December when Harrison and Charlo’s first encounter took place live on FOX. Harrison won the decision to upset Charlo and take away the title. The close nature of the bout helped warrant an immediate rematch that promises to be just as highly charged and dramatic. Julian “J-Rock” Williams scored a hard-fought unanimous decision over Jarrett Hurd as the IBF and WBA titles changed hands as well in May.

This setback for Harrison, who is from Detroit and was trained early in his career by the late Emanuel Steward, is another challenge for the 28-year-old champion. Harrison was on track for a title shot before suffering the first loss of his career in 2015 to Willie Nelson. After three-straight wins, he earned a shot at the vacant 154-pound title against Jarrett Hurd. Although Harrison had strong moments in the fight, he eventually lost to Hurd and was forced to again climb to the top. After another three victories, including a win over former champion Ishe Smith, Harrison took advantage of his second world title opportunity against Charlo

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We expected Charlo-Hurd; what we could get is Harrison-Williams

The beauty of boxing is the unexpected can happen at any time. For example, look at the 154-pound division. In 2018, the thought was that then undefeated champions Jermell Charlo, and Jarrett Hurd would battle it out in unification fight. However, Tony Harrison happened. He beat Charlo by unanimous decision last December in Brooklyn to take Charlo’s WBC belt, and on Saturday night in Fairfax, Virginia, Julian Williams happened.

Williams shocked Hurd by unanimous decision, including dropping Hurd in round 2 to capture the IBF, IBO, and WBA belts.

Both Charlo and Hurd were headliners in their bouts against Harrison and Williams, which may have been something that overwhelmed them. There is a lot of things a fighter has to do when headlining a show: the appearances, the media, family, and more.

The 28-year-old Hurd said he didn’t feel like himself in the fight against Williams. Fighting in front of a raucous hometown crowd filled with family and friends as he hails from nearby Accokeek, Md.

“I wasn’t able to get off. I can’t really call it right now. I have to go back and watch. I was loading up on my shots instead of just letting my hands go,” Hurd said. “J-Rock was just the better man tonight. There’s definitely a rematch clause in our contract, and I’m going to go for it. I’m going to come back better than I was tonight.”

The 154-pound division is very deep. Besides the champions, you have Erislandy Lara, Erickson Lubin, Brian Castano, and more.

Charlo and Hurd won’t happen anytime soon, and in reality, if Harrison beats Charlo in their rematch in June, there is a chance we could see Williams-Harrison in a unification bout sometime in 2019. No one would have ever expected that one, but that’s boxing for you, the “theatre of the unexpected.”

Photo: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME

Jermell Charlo: ‘I feel like I’m the people’s champ for fans all around the world’

Former WBC junior middleweight champion Jermell Charlo wants to silence the doubters, and the only way that can happen is if he avenges his first and only loss, which happened in December against Tony Harrison. Charlo expects to do just that on June 23 when he battles WBC junior middleweight champion, Harrison, in the rematch, at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

“I’m coming to this rematch with a whole different mindset and a much better game plan,” Charlo said at a press conference on Wednesday. “I took this loss like a wake-up call and reminded myself why I’ve been doing this for all these years.”

A loss in boxing can set a fighter back, but according to Charlo, that has not been the case for him.

“I feel like I’m the people’s champ for fans all around the world,” Charlo said. “My popularity is still growing despite the robbery. I’m going to step into the ring and channel everything into a great performance.”

Five months later, Charlo still believes he was robbed, but this time, he is looking to leave no doubts.

“Tony knows exactly what happened in our fight,” Charlo said. “He knows he can’t beat me. I’m here to prove it again and leave no doubt.

“I’m dominating this fight. If he(Harrison) does make it to the 12th round, he’s going to be bruised and beat down.

“I’m leaving it all in the ring in this fight. I’ve got no distractions, and everything is smooth heading into this one. I’m giving 110 percent. It’s going to be ruthless.”

Photo: Sean Michael Ham/TGB Promotions

Charlo on Harrison fight: ‘The judges gave me a bad decision because I didn’t get the knockout’

Former WBC junior middleweight champion Jermell Charlo is telling anyone that would listen that he was robbed of his title on December 22 in Brooklyn when he lost to Tony Harrison by unanimous decision. Fortunately for Charlo, he has an opportunity to get revenge. Charlo will battle Harrison, in a rematch of their December fight, on June 23 from Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas(FOX).

Charlo is still angry about the controversial decision and plans to be even more focused this time around.

“I am in a ruthless state of mind. I am upset and this upcoming fight, I am going to give it 110 percent,” said Charlo. “I am way hungrier now than I was before. I am not desperate for a win because I know how to win.”

In their fight back in December, All three judges scored the fight for Harrison, by scores of 116-112 and 115-113 twice. Per CompuBox, Harrison connected on 34 percent of his punches throughout the fight to Charlo’s 29 percent clip, while Charlo out landed Harrison 160 to 128, plus a 108 to 71 advantage in power punches landed.

Before the loss to Harrison, Charlo had stopped four of his last five opponents, which he thinks may have worked against him when he fought Harrison.

“The judges gave me a bad decision because I didn’t get the knockout, but you don’t have to knock everybody out to beat them,” Charlo said. “He knows he didn’t beat me. He knows exactly what happened. He knows he can’t beat me. If I have to go in there and prove it again, I will.”

The first fight was good, and the second fight might be even better. Both fighters have a lot to prove in this fight. For Harrison, he has to prove that he can truly beat Charlo, and for Charlo, he has to win to show that all the hype surrounding him is legit.

Harrison on Charlo fight: ‘I don’t want to hear any more crying or excuses’

WBC Super Welterweight Champion Tony “Superbad” Harrison and former super welterweight champion Jermell Charlo will step into the ring for a highly anticipated rematch live in primetime Sunday, June 23 in the main event of Premier Boxing Champions on FOX and FOX Deportes from Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

Televised coverage begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT and features former world champion Guillermo “El Chacal” Rigondeaux taking on exciting Mexican contender Julio Ceja in a WBC Super Bantamweight world title eliminator.

Harrison and Charlo’s first encounter took place live on FOX in December as Harrison earned the decision and upset Charlo to earn the title. The close nature of the bout helped warrant an immediate rematch that promises to be just as highly charged and dramatic.

Harrison (28-2, 21 KOs) has proven to be “Detroit tough” during a boxing career inspired by early years trained and managed by the late Emanuel Steward. He had to climb back into title contention twice before reaching the top with his unanimous decision victory over Charlo last December.

Harrison was on track for a title shot before suffering the first loss of his career in 2015 to Willie Nelson. After three-straight wins, he earned a shot at the vacant 154-pound title against Jarrett Hurd. Although Harrison had strong moments in the fight, he eventually lost to Hurd and was forced to again climb to the top. After another three victories, including a win over former champion Ishe Smith, Harrison took advantage of his second world title opportunity against Charlo.

“Being a world champion now, I’m excited to defend my title for the first time in this rematch that everyone is looking forward to,” said Harrison. “I think there’s actually more pressure on Charlo, just like last time. It’s just a blessing for me to be fighting on FOX and FOX Deportes Sunday, June 23. Everyone is going to be tuned-in to this fight and we’re going to bring the action to Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, the capital of the boxing world. I plan on doing the exact same thing to Jermell that I did in December. I’m going to get the win, and then I don’t want to hear any more crying or excuses.”

The 28-year-old Charlo (31-1, 15 KOs) suffered the first setback of his career with the close unanimous decision loss to Harrison. Fighting out of Houston, Texas, Charlo won the vacant WBC title with a devastating knockout victory over John Jackson in 2016. He made three successful defenses of the title with highlight-reel knockouts over Charles Hatley and Erickson Lubin, plus a majority decision win over former champion Austin Trout.

 

 

Hurd: ‘Tony Harrison beating Jermell Charlo definitely threw a monkey wrench into the plan’

In life, sometimes, the best-laid plans don’t work out, and in boxing, plans are thwarted all the time. Such could be the case when it comes to a fight between unified junior middleweight champion Jarrett Hurd and former WBC junior middleweight champion Jermell Charlo.

Hurd and Charlo were on track to fight each other in a unification bout sometime in 2019, but the unthinkable happened. Charlo would lose by a controversial unanimous decision to Tony Harrison back in December, which killed the plans for the highly anticipated fight between Hurd and Charlo.

However, according to FOX Sports boxing insider Mike Coppinger, Charlo will battle Harrison, in a rematch, sometime in June, while Hurd has a tough fight on tap as he will battle Julian Williams on May 11 at EagleBank Arena in Fairfax, Virginia.

According to Coppinger, if Hurd and Charlo win, the two could clash later in 2019. At least, that is the plan.

“Tony Harrison beating Jermell Charlo definitely threw a monkey wrench into the plan coming off of surgery,” Hurd said on Sunday. “I’m going to go after the WBC belt regardless of who has it, but first I have to take care of Julian.”

For the 28-year-old Hurd, this an opportunity to defend his title near his hometown of Accokeek, Maryland, which is very important to Hurd.

“It was very important to fight at home because that’s what everyone has been asking for,” Hurd said. “I’m excited to have the opportunity, and I can’t wait to step in the ring.

“All of my fights are classics. I know that ‘J-Rock’ has been watching me and that makes him dangerous. He’s coming in with a good game plan, and we’ll see what it is on fight night.”

While he won’t predict how he will win, Hurd expects to get the victory in Virginia. Of course, that’s the plan.

“I’m going to be victorious on May 11. I’m looking for a decisive win. I’m not saying I’m going to to get the stoppage, but it will be convincing that it went my way.”

Photo: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME

Tony Harrison has concerns about the judges in a Charlo rematch

When the scorecards were announced after the Jermell Charlo-Tony Harrison fight back in December, many fans at Barclays Center and some reporters on press row were surprised by what they heard. All three judges had it for the new WBC junior middleweight champion, Tony Harrison.

According to Charlo, there was a rematch clause in the contract, and recently, the WBC ordered a rematch between Charlo and Harrison.

After the bout, Charlo called the decision a robbery and called for a rematch, which is something Harrison is interested in doing. However, Harrison has some concerns about how the judges will handle the rematch.

“That’s the only thing that scares me,” Harrison recently told Paul Gant about the judges in a possible Charlo rematch. “Because it was the same thing with Ishe Smith when I fought Ishe Smith after he fought Julian Williams. I thought he(Ishe Smith) gave a hell of a performance, and I’m actually rolling with Ishe because I actually thought the scorecards were a little too wide on how competitive the fight was. After all that complaining that he did after the fight, which was very acceptable because I thought he deserved a little better scorecard than he had, but I think it affected me when I fought him next. They gave me a split decision when I thought I dominated him ten times more than Julian Williams did, so that’s mostly the only thing that scares me about fighting him(Charlo) again.”

Harrison does make a good point about the Julian Williams-Ishe Smith fight that took place November 2017. In that fight, Smith fought hard and gave Williams a very tough fight, but the scorecards were very wide. The scores for the fight were  99-91, 98-92 and 97-93 all in favor of Williams. Harrison fought Smith seven months later and dominated him for 10 rounds. Harrison won the fight, but the fight was way too close on the scorecards than it should have been. The Detroit native would win by split decision.

The controversial nature of the decision in the first fight with Charlo could make it hard for Harrison to win in a rematch. He might have to win more definitively the next time around. It may put Harrison in a tight spot and may force him to be more aggressive than he needs to be in the rematch.

Harrison on Charlo-Hurd: ‘I honestly think Charlo would win’

Everything was setting up for a big unification fight between unified junior middleweight champion Jarrett Hurd and former WBC junior middleweight champion Jermell Charlo, but then Tony Harrison happened. Harrison would beat Charlo by unanimous decision back in December, and now Charlo-Hurd must wait.

Interestingly enough, according to Harrison, If Charlo-Hurd were to happen, he thinks Charlo would get the nod.

“I honestly think Charlo would win,” Harrison recently told Paul Gant. “Because those shots that Jermell missed on me, I think ninety-nine percent of the shots he missed on me, ninety-nine percent would land on him. He’s not the weakest puncher in the world. So, I think Jarrett Hurd is very skillful in defense in an awkward kind of way, but I think he gets touched a little too much. I think if Jermell kind of touch him with some of them shots, and putting shots together like he showed (against)Charles Hatley or Austin Trout. He starts putting them shots together I think he does damage to Hurd.”

Hurd does take a lot of shots, but he can absorb the punishment and keep on trucking. Hurd has shown the ability to break a fighter down, which he did against Harrison and Erislandy Lara. Charlo-Hurd would be an exciting fight, and I was looking forward to seeing it in 2019. However, it will have to wait, at least for now.

Listen to the complete interview below. Harrison comes in at 04:32:

 

Photo: Esther Lin/Showtime

Tony Harrison on Charlo fight: ‘I watched the fight as a fan, one time, and scored it 8 to 4’

Newly crowned WBC 154-pound champion Tony Harrison shocked the world when he defeated Jermell Charlo by unanimous decision to capture the title in December at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

After the fight, many questioned the decision, including some at ringside, but fortunately for Harrison, that won’t change the outcome.

Recently, Harrison was a guest on the Go4it podcast with Paul Gant, and when asked how he scored the fight, here is what he had to say.

“I re-watched the fight; I scored it 8 to 4,” Harrison told Paul Gant. “I had it 8 to 4. I gave him every round that I even thought was close. If you start watching every round, at two minutes and thirty seconds, I dominated each round. He came out strong for about thirty seconds of every round, and after that, it was over. It died down, and I was in control…

“Half of those guys that said he was robbed are his fans, and for me, it’s fact. It’s not a robbery when every judge had me winning, and you were the ‘A’ side. You had parts of the promotion. You was all the hype; all the hype was through you, so you mean to tell me they want to cheat you for somebody that already had losses. Facts speak for themselves. Like I said, I watched the fight as a fan, one time; scored it 8 to 4, and I said, ‘the judges got it right.'”

All three judges scored the fight for Harrison, by scores of 116-112 and 115-113 twice. Per CompuBox, Harrison connected on 34 percent of his punches throughout the fight to Charlo‘s 29 percent clip, while Charlo out landed Harrison 160 to 128, plus a 108 to 71 advantage in power punches landed.

By no means was this fight a robbery, I think you could have scored it 7-5 either way; 8-4 might be a stretch, but you could make a legitimate argument that Harrison won the fight.

Even if you had Charlo winning the fight, you have to acknowledge that Harrison had a great night. According to Charlo, there was a rematch clause in the contract for this fight, so we’ll probably see this again at some point down the line.

Photo: Stephanie Trapp/TGB Promotions

Listen to the complete interview below. Harrison comes in at 04:32