Feature | Long read | Premium | Feb 08 2020

Roy Jones – a fighter in a million

Two years on from his last fight, Roy Jones Jr looks back on what made him so special
Roy Jones
Action Images/REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

ROY JONES JNR was at ease before his retirement bout against Scott Sigmon in February 2018. That wasn’t a surprise, considering that a journeyman like Sigmon probably wouldn’t have lasted three rounds with a prime Jones. This wasn’t a prime Jones, who, at 49, was about to take the walk to the ring for the 75th time as a professional. But in his mind, the former pound-for-pound king was as good as he’s ever been. That never got affected by the combinations thrown by Father Time.

Yet even Jones knew that he couldn’t fight forever, and there was no better time than now to walk off into the sunset with his faculties intact and a winning streak that turned from three to four when he scored a clear-cut 10-round decision win over Sigmon in his hometown of Pensacola, Florida.

“You get to a point where your body starts to fail you and you’re having a hard time,” Jones admitted. “Then it’s time to start saying, ‘Okay, now may be time to give it up.’ When your body starts not really holding up to the whole training camp, it makes you start looking at it a little bit different. Because if your body holds up, then you’re good. When your body starts breaking down, then you ain’t good.”