Joppy: 'It just wasn't my night'
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- Jermain Taylor won a unanimous decision over William Joppy on Saturday, retaining his WBC Continental Americas belt and keeping a perfect record.
Taylor outpointed Joppy 120-107 in the 12-round bout to improve to 22-0.
"By the third round I thought I've got him now," Taylor said after the fight. "He came into my hometown talking that mouth big ... I was ready to get into the ring."
Joppy (34-4-1) was in the ring for the first time since losing his middleweight crown a year ago and spent most of the fight making the much more aggressive Taylor chase him. Joppy landed few blows and seemed more content to frustrate Taylor.
"It just wasn't my night," Joppy said afterward. "I just don't get it like I used to. He's a young guy. This is my first fight in a year, all that between time ... it's just not the same."
Taylor landed several heavy blows early and knocked Joppy down in the fifth. Taylor also landed hard uppercuts in the first and fourth rounds and a good left-right combination in the fifth.
Taylor, the 2000 Olympic bronze medalist, won for the fifth time in his hometown of Little Rock. He knocked out former world champion Raul Marquez in Los Angeles on June 19 and is ranked third in the world by three major boxing organizations.
Taylor said after the bout that he felt confident in his abilities going in and that Joppy was a tough opponent.
"I know I did a lot of things wrong," Taylor said. "I learned a lot from him."
He threw 580 punches and connected on 239, while Joppy threw 352 and connected 115 times.
In power punches, Taylor connected on 53 percent of 275 throws, while Joppy landed just 30 of 107.
Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press
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