Former Middleweight Champion Jermain Taylor Dropped by DiBella Entertainment

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Former Middleweight Champion Jermain  Taylor Dropped by DiBella Entertainment
Nick Laham/Getty Images

After ending his amateur career following a bronze medal winning performance at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney, Jermain "Bad Intentions" Taylor was a can't-miss prospect heading into the professional ranks.

Taylor (28-4-1, 17 KOs) would field several promotional offers and eventually sign with Lou DiBella of DiBella Entertainment.  His success as an amateur translated to a large number of his professional bouts being nationally televised.

Early on, he was criticized at times for being a middleweight that had a reputation for picking on smaller guys to build up his record.  Padded record or not, he would eventually meet then-champion Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins for the World Middleweight Championship in July 2005.

At the end of 12 close rounds Taylor would walk away with a razor-thin split decision and Hopkins' world titles.

A rematch would ensue five months later. Taylor once again got the nod over Hopkins, this time on all the judges' scorecards.

Taylor went on to successfully defend his crown three times before running into current Middleweight Champion Kelly "The Ghost" Pavlik.  Their first fight was a highly entertaining slug fest that featured Taylor scoring a massive knockdown over Pavlik and nearly finishing him off.

Nearly.

Pavlik would come back later in the fight to score a devastating stoppage over Taylor that left the fighter never quite looking the same.

Since his original loss to Pavlik, Taylor has lost three of his last four bouts with the last two ending in brutal knockouts at the hands of European pugilists Carl Froch and Arthur Abraham.  The latest loss was in the first stage of the Super Six World Boxing Classic.

It isn't just the losses that were disturbing.  Losses happen.  It was the fact that Taylor was not only being stopped, but taking longer to get up.  Many have speculated on whether or not Taylor should hang up his gloves. 

Earlier today reports circulated that Taylor would indeed carry on with his career and challenge Andre Ward for his newly acquired WBA strap in the second stage of the tournament.

Later on, DiBella Entertainment released the following statement:

“I have just been informed though numerous press reports that Jermain Taylor has elected to continue his participation in The Super Six: World Boxing Classic tournament, and will face Andre Ward in April. It is with a heavy heart, but strong conviction, that I will recuse myself and DiBella Entertainment as Jermain’s promoter.

“Jermain’s career has been outstanding, and it has been a pleasure and honor to promote him. His victories against Bernard Hopkins remain the highlights of my career as a promoter. Jermain is not only a great fighter, but a good and decent man with a wonderful family. It is out of genuine concern for him and his family that I am compelled to make this decision.

“I informed him, as I do all my contracted fighters, that my goal was to help his secure financial stability for his family, maximize his potential, and leave our unforgiving sport with his health intact.

“It is my belief that the continuation of Jermain’s career as an active fighter places him at unnecessary risk. While he is undoubtedly capable of prevailing in future bouts, I cannot, in conscience, remain involved given my assessment of such risk.

“I wish Jermain all the best in his future endeavors. All of us at DiBella Entertainment hold Jermain close to our hearts and consider him and his family part of our family. We wish him Godspeed and continued health.” - Lou DiBella

We here at Bleacher Report wish him the same.

 

Questions and comments can be sent to brianoblake@yahoo.com

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