CANADA’S Jean Pascal (35-6-1, 20 KOs) defended his WBA light-heavyweight title with a split-decision victory over two-division champion Badou Jack (22-3-3, 13 KOs), much to the dismay of a pro-Jack crowd at State Farm Arena in the co-main event to Davis-Gamboa. The judges scored the fight 114-112 in favour of Pascal twice, and 114-112 in favor of Jack once.
Fought at a blazing pace from the opening bell, the bout was a tale of two halves. Pascal led 50-44 on all three scorecards after five rounds and controlled much of the fight’s first half as he started quickly and scored a fourth-round knockdown. Jack, who went down for the fourth time in his career, was caught on the temple by a massive overhand right that sent him stumbling to the canvas.
However, Sweden’s Badou Jack finished the fight strongly, out-landing Jean Pascal 141-76 in overall punches and 134-121 in power punches. He capped off what he thought would be a victorious fight with a devastating four-punch barrage that knocked down Pascal for just the second time in his career in the 12th round. Jack finished the fight with advantages of 244-155 in overall punches landed, including 120-35 in jabs and 124-120 on power punches. Jack was also the more accurate puncher (39 percent to 28 percent overall) but Pascal’s punches hurt Jack at the end of several rounds.