Daniel Dubois (15-1, 14 KOs) has lost. Not only I miss a prediction, this happens from time to time, but what I thought to be the next super-champion in the heavyweight division is actually a different boxer from what expected. Totally different.
It happened what I did not expect: Daniel “Dynamite” Dubois has lost against Joe Joyce (12-0, 11 KOs) for TKO at the tenth round. In order to avoid being misunderstood, let’s congratulate with Joyce for his win which came thanks to a brutal power mainly expressed with devastating jabs. He completely managed to close DDD’s eye forcing him to not see punches from the ninth round onward. Nothing to say about Joyce’s performance. He did what he had to do, and he did it gainfully. And a special congrats to his chin: it can really absorb an insane power…
Let’s go back to DDD. I am not shocked about the loss of Daniel Dubois itself. What it shocked me is how he lost. With a knee on the canvas in front of the referee waiting for him to reach the full count. That is painful for a fan! Because let’s be honest: he did not lose, he quit. It is a completely different game. Losing and quitting are two separate issues in a boxer’s life. You can lose but you cannot quit. And, overall, do not show you quit because from now onward it will be difficult to manage the pre-fight mental welfare. And it will be hard to cancel from the mind of your next opponents that you are next to quit on the ring.
Fear is a bitch, everyone knows. It can strike harder than any fighter and in the most unpredictable moment. Nobody is immune. A large amount of fights has been decided by fear alone. No judges, no boxers, no fixers, nothing. Fear alone was dictating who wins and who loses. Fear of losing has modeled arguably the greatest boxer ever, Floyd Mayweather. Fear of being hit has defeated the majority of Mike Tyson’s opponents in the locker-room. Just to drop two names that everybody knows.
Dubois was leading in my mental scorecard, 1 or 2 clean points. Just move around, protect your eyes, counter-punch that 6ft6 juggernaut and the match is yours. And then that knee on the floor, fine. Count to 6, breathe, stand up, wait till 8, recover, try to clear your mind on what’s next and say “I am ok, I can continue, ref”. No, 9, 10… Oh boy! He quit!