Kell Brook vs. Carson Jones: Preview, Prediction for Junior Middleweight Bout
Unbeaten British welterweight contender Kell Brook will get a second bite at the apple this Saturday when he meets rugged veteran Carson Jones in a rematch of their highly controversial 2012 bout.
Brook dominated the early rounds of their first contest with his boxing ability, but he faded badly down the stretch under a withering assault from Jones. Many observers felt that Jones, who came close to stopping Brook in the final frame, had done enough to earn no less than a draw.
The only opinions that matter, however, are those of the official judges and they awarded Brook a majority decision victory by scores of 115-113, 116-113 and 114-114.
The rematch will be contested at junior middleweight, and it will give both men a chance to jump back into the championship picture.
Read on for our complete preview and prediction for Brook vs. Jones II.
Tale of the Tape
All the hype in their first fight surrounded Kell Brook, who at the time was considered a high-level prospect, but Carson Jones is actually the younger and more experienced fighter. He's spent nearly twice as much time in the ring as his opponent, and he possesses several physical advantages that should help him in the fight.
Jones has a one-inch height advantage and, what could prove to be substantial, three-inch edge in reach. This makes him a difficult stylistic matchup for Brook, who prefers to box and not engage his opponents.
Unlike their first fight, which was contested at welterweight, the rematch will be fought at a catchweight of 150 pounds. This may prove to be an advantage for Brook. The extra few pounds could help remedy the stamina issues that plagued him in their last bout.
29-0, 19 KO
35-9-3, 25 KO
|Hometown:||Sheffield, Yorkshire, United Kingdom ||Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA|
Kell Brook has faced quite a bit of adversity of late. A scheduled challenge of Devon Alexander for the IBF welterweight title was eventually cancelled after multiple postponements caused by injuries. The result is an eight month layoff that is sure to produce a fair amount of ring-rust for a fighter who relies on his footwork in order to control the action.
Brook will need to guard himself against the disappointment of losing out on a world title shot. Carson Jones gave him all he could handle in their first bout, and if Brook isn't careful he could easily suffer a major setback. He can't win a world title in this fight, but he can lose the opportunity with a loss.
Carson Jones is an extremely experienced fighter. The 26-year-old from Oklahoma City has already stepped through the ropes 49 times in his career, and he has developed a reputation for toughness. He's still young enough that a big win here could allow him to make noise and possibly contend for a world title.
Jones, many thought justifiably, felt he got the short end of the stick when he met Brook last July. He dominated the second half of the fight, broke his opponent's nose and nearly stopped him in the final round. If he's able to get started earlier this time (he lost most of the early rounds), Brook could be in trouble.
Kell Brook is a slick boxer who likes to use his footwork in order to frustrate his opponents. His punching power isn't great, but he lands with such precision that he can hurt you when he connects clean.
Brook definitely prefers to keep the fight in the center of the ring where he can use his speed and movement to create opportunities for countering. That's his comfort zone, and it's where he's the most effective.
In his first bout with Carson Jones, he utilized all of these skills to great effect in the early rounds. Jones was hardly able to get close enough to land punches, and the few times he was able to cut off the ring he wasn't able to land clean shots. For Brook, it's just a matter of being able to sustain that style for the full contest.
Carson Jones is the opposite in many ways. He loves to fight on the inside, and he prefers to overwhelm his opponents with a high volume of punches.
Jones is most comfortable fighting in close-quarters, and he mixes his attack well between the body and head. His body attack is his trademark, and he likes to throw combinations in order to create opportunities to land upstairs.
Jones struggled to get inside Brook's guard in the opening rounds of their first bout. When he did, however, he was able to do what he does—throw a high volume of punches and break his opponent down.
Kell Brook's biggest weakness, and one which nearly cost him his first fight with Carson Jones, is his stamina. He's had some noted struggles with making weight recently, and they began to show in the later rounds when he wilted under Jones' constant pressure.
Brook prefers to box, and he doesn't like to fight in the trenches. When the fight gets too close, his instinct tells him to hold or lean away from his opponent's punches. The latter is particularly dangerous as it leaves him open to getting caught with clean punches.
Carson Jones lacks one-punch knockout power and has to rely on conditioning and volume punching to win fights. During his career he has struggled with slick boxers who stick with the gameplan and don't run out of gas.
Jones is also not known for his defense. He rarely moves his head and instead elects to try and catch punches with his hands. That's easier said than done against a precision puncher like Brook.
Kell Brook Will Win If...
Kell Brook already knows how to beat Carson Jones. He just needs to execute the game plan for the entire fight this time.
Brook dominated the early rounds with his boxing ability, but he faded badly down the stretch. That gave Jones more opportunities to land cleaner, more effective punches and win the fight on many scorecards.
If we learned anything from their first fight, it's that when Brook boxes effectively he's very tough to beat. But, unfortunately for him, we also learned that his conditioning doesn't always allow him to do that.
Stamina will be the key to this fight for Brook. If he's able to box effectively while using his footwork to control distance, he should be able to neutralize Jones' high-volume punching output and win the fight. But he'll need to be able to do this for the full 12 rounds in order to avoid a repeat.
Carson Jones Will Win If...
Carson Jones must avoid starting slowly again. He gave away far too many of the early rounds last time, and this proved to be his undoing when the verdict was announced.
In the later rounds, Jones proved he was capable of getting inside Brook's guard and making his life miserable while there. In order to win this fight, he's going to need to be in his opponent's face from the start and not allow him to settle into a rhythm.
Jones is known for his high-volume-punching, and he prefers to fight inside where he can rake the body and head with combinations. That's the absolute last place Brook wants to be and Jones needs to put him there as often as possible in order to win the fight.
And the Winner Is...
Kell Brook's struggles are about to get worse.
The 26-year-old welterweight contender went life and death with Carson Jones last July in a fight most expected him to win with ease. And that was before all the injuries, disappointments and setbacks that have kept him out of the ring since October.
His management team negotiated a catchweight of 150-pounds for this bout, ostensibly to reduce stress on their fighter when returning from injury, leading some to conclude that Brook was struggling to get down to welterweight. That's the type of thing that seriously affects a fighter's stamina.
That theory was given added credence last month when Brook's promotional team reportedly requested the fight contract be adjusted to allow a maximum weight of 152 pounds. Jones camp promptly declined the request.
Jones will enter the ring in peak physical condition. He comes to fight, throws a high volume of punches and knows he has what it takes to get to Brook. He'll start earlier, get inside and utilize a body attack that will allow him to take over in the second half and win a decision.
Jones by decision (96-94)