Bad Night in the Office for Andre Rozier!
There is little doubt that decorated head coach Andre Rozier foresaw a triumphant night at the Barclay’s Center. The seasoned chief second was on double duty for the night. Two of his charges would enter the ring; first time super welterweight, Curtis “The Cerebral Assassin” Stevens, and light heavyweight “Sir” Marcus Browne. Stevens would open the show and Browne was half of the bad-blood co-main event.
“Listen, mama said ‘there’d be days like this’. ‘There’d be days like this,’ mama said. It was a rough night but were going to dust off our pants and we are going to start working and we are going to get back to our winning ways because we have a fantastic team. Team Havoc, we are winners and we will continue to do so.”
TROUBLE ON THE HORIZON
Granted, even before the premiere bout could commence, there was ample curiosity surrounding the Cerebral Assassin. First and foremost, there was large speculation surrounding how much he had left in the tank. He has been a professional for fifteen years, yet came to the ring with a year’s worth of ring rust.
There is nothing personal about the skepticism though, as boxing is a brutal sport. Once a fighter reaches a certain mileage it’s only logical, and natural, to keep a sharp eye on them.
Aside from his tenure in the game, there was the matter of Stevens dipping down in weight. Traditionally, as boxer’s age, making weight becomes increasingly strenuous and therefore they matriculate up through the divisions. The thick-muscled Brownsville native’s moving down, whilst in the twilight of his career, stood out as curious, to say the least.
In the ring, for about ninety seconds or so, the Cerebral Assassin stalked and pursued Wale “Lucky Boy” Omotoso with purpose and precision. That was until Lucky Boy placed him on his hands and knees courtesy of a straight right-hand. It’d be the first of three trips to the canvas.
Stevens, ultimately, was felled once per round throughout the three-round fight. Each time he went down was worse than the last. The final trip to the ground, lubricated by a picture perfect 1-2, was severe enough for referee Johnny Callas to call the match.
Unfortunately, Rozier was not offered any time to ponder whether or not Stevens’ age had caught up with him, or if the weight cut was too detrimental. Within mere minutes after walking Stevens backstage, Rozier was back in the ring to coach Marcus Browne.
“I don’t know what it was. I think it’s more mental than physical with him. He was in great physical condition and I gave him a shot. I told him you have to show me something or that’s it, so that’s it […] that’s it for his career.”
A ROYAL DISASTER
While the pre-fight theatrics between Pascal and Browne were colorful and entertaining, the perception surrounding this fight was essentially that of a mismatch. The reason being, the former WBC light heavyweight champion Pascal was long past his prime.
If his career was a movie, we’d be watching the credits waiting for Marvel teasers. Few boxing fans envisioned Pascal doing anything outside of showing heart and going out on his shield. Pascal had other plans.
Rather foolishly, “Sir” Marcus furnished his weathered veteran foe with all the tools he would require. Browne accomplished this by setting a rather slow pace, consistently coming in with his hands low and fighting with excessive arrogance. Obviously, Sir Marcus saw himself walking through Pascal.
The animated Haitian was not going for it! In two separate rounds, he dropped Browne three times with the same identical right hook. The rubber-legged fighter flopped down a third time, and just barely survived the round.
In the end, it was a thunderous collision of heads, which Rozier believes was purposeful, that forced the fight’s early conclusion. When the scorecards were tallied, Browne lost his interim WBA world light heavyweight and WBC silver light heavyweight titles. It was Browne’s first defense of the belts.
“Well, we made some mistakes. He shouldn’t have dropped his hands when he was coming in. I think he was doing so well when he was boxing, turning him, combinations, eventually the effort would have been him stopping him from attrition, but he got a little anxious and little careless at the same time.
“So, and still, if anything, I think it should have been a draw.”
LOOKING TOWARDS THE FUTURE
Prior to tonight, Rozier’s most visible client, Daniel “The Miracle Man” Jacobs, dropped an uninspiring unanimous decision loss to Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. The Miracle Man has remained off the grid since the highly anticipated dust-up on May 4. When questioned about Jacob’s next move, Rozier declined any serious comment.
“I can’t really tell you right now. He’s [Daniel Jacobs] on vacation doing what he’s doing and I don’t want, I don’t even want to talk about him until he’s ready to come back.”
Luckily for Rozier, along with Browne and Jacobs, he and his fighters can bounce back. Provided Pascal grants him a rematch, and Browne is more mindful, “Sir” Marcus should be able to set his loss right.
Jacobs certainly has plenty left in the tank, but we’ll have to wait and see what he has up his sleeve. I can’t lie though, the eyeball test says that Stevens is finished at the top level of professional prizefighting.
All that can be done now is put the disastrous evening in his rear view and focus on the next challenge at hand. However, there is no doubt that Rozier will not be eager to return to the Barclay’s Center!
By: Bakari Simpson