Tonight at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, NV, undefeated welterweight contender Mike Jones (24-0, 18 KOs) convincingly took care of business in a rematch with tough as nails Jesus Soto Karass (24-6-3, 16 KOs).
Winning via a twelve-round unanimous decision, Jones fought this encounter completely different from his previous match with Soto Karass back in November of last year. That fight saw the two men engage in an all-action slugfest over ten rounds that resulted in a close majority decision in favor of Jones.
This time around, the boxer out of Philadelphia was determined to engage in a more disciplined, scientific fight and use his much superior boxing skills to neutralize the Mexican’s constant aggression.
In the first round, Mike Jones may have tried to box too much, as he was on his bicycle most of the round and used his legs excessively to avoid slugging it out. As a result, Soto Karass got off to a good start and took the first round on points with his aggression.
But in the second, Jones was much more effective, as he settled down, moved more strategically and landed some big combinations to set the pace and take control of the fight. It was clear from this point forward that Mike Jones would not allow himself to stand and slug toe to toe, but he wasn’t going to be pushed around by his forward charging opponent either.
In the third, Jones continued to utilize his faster hands, good combinations and movement to keep Jesus Soto Karass off balance. A head butt opened up a bad cut over the left eye of Soto Karass and by the end of the round he had cuts over both eyes.
Confusion ensued when it was time to begin the fourth round, as it appeared the corner of Jesus Soto Karass may have been interested in stopping the fight and being awarded a no contest decision, but referee Kenny Bayless made his belief known that the boxer’s cuts were caused by punches and a failure to continue would result in a defeat.
Soto Karass quickly indicated his willingness to continue and came out charging with a sense of urgency in the fourth round. With blood streaming over both eyes, he applied extreme pressure reminiscent of his first encounter with Jones, and a strong case was made that he should have taken the frame on the scorecards.
But from the fifth round forward, it was largely Mike Jones in total control of the fight by effectively utilizing distance, his jab and throwing hard, scoring combinations. Instead of cutting off the ring, Soto Karass was simply following his taller, longer opponent around, and for that he received a fierce beating.
During the late rounds in particular when it was clear Soto Karass did not possess the punching power or will to overcome his more talented opponent, very few objections would have been made if the fight was halted by the referee or ringside physician. But to the credit of Jesus Soto Karass, he finished the fight.
The official judges’ scorecards were all in favor of Mike Jones, reading 115-113, 116-112 and 117-111.