Category: Archive

Demolition man

February 17, 2011

By Staff Reporter

The big punching Duddy jumped on Pudwill from the first bell and had the North Dakotan down three times before referee Wayne Kelly stopped the scheduled 10-round contest.
The 5,600-capacity Theater at the Garden, swathed in green and packed to the rafters, was delirious as the Derry Destroyer brought the biggest Irish boxing event in New York City in years to a stunning conclusion on St. Patrick’s Day eve.
The Irish were indomitable. Not even the last-minute cancellation of the Matt Macklin-Chris Troupe fight could dampen the occasion.
Arklow light middleweight James Moore, showing that he’s another champion in the making, broke down the now 9-3-2 (3 KOs) Jose Felix in three rounds. County Clare heavyweight James Clancy outclassed Mitch Rose over four heats, while junior lightweight Maureen “The Kerry Kid” Shea beat up on LeAnne Villarreal for four stanzas.
Brooklyn welterweight Martin Wright, the latest addition to first time promoter Eddie McLoughlin’s stable, starched Joseph Davis at 2:40 of the first round on his debut to complete the sweep on the Irish Ropes Promotions’ maiden show.
Duddy was almost a minute quicker in the main event to claim the quickest knockout on an unforgettable night.
“Never would I have believed in my wildest dreams that I’d come in Madison Square Garden on St. Patrick’s Day (eve) and knock him out in the first round,” Duddy said after winning his first title in the pro ranks.
The blowout started with a left hook that exploded high on Pudwill’s temple, hastily introducing the 11-year veteran to the canvas.
“The first time I landed the left hook and knocked him down I knew that I was going to knock him out,” said Duddy, who, at 26, was four years younger than his foe.
Pudwill beat Kelly’s count but would never recover.
“You could see when he got up his legs were not there,” Duddy said.
A right hook to the head set up the second knockdown, and once Pudwill had survived that too, Duddy bore in with another right hook to the ear that decked his man for the third and last time.
It was the 160-pound prospect’s 13th victory by KO in 16 fights.
Pudwill, whose record dropped to 21-3-1 (9 KOs), was apologetic when he bumped into Duddy back stage after the fight.
“I wanted to give you a fight,” he said, giving his conqueror a hug. “I’m better than that.”
He later told the Echo: “I didn’t get a chance to get going. This is the place to shine and I didn’t. I trained six and a half weeks. I was relaxed and felt good.”
Team Duddy was ecstatic after picking up its first championship.
“With John, you don’t know what to expect; whether it will be a first round KO or he’ll take you the distance,” said trainer Harry Keitt, who went 3-0 on the night with his charges.
“Brilliant!” raved McLoughlin who called the entire evening a “grand slam home run.”
On Duddy’s next fight, the promoter said they were looking at an early May date followed by a return to the Garden on June 10.

James Moore gave his rendition of retired Puerto Rican idol Felix Trinidad’s “creeping death” fighting style six impressive minutes against Jose Felix.
Moore gave a calm, methodical and calculating performance as he stalked Felix. He boxed sharply, jabbing and countering well while showing a good defense.
Felix, a 30-year-old from Savannah, Ga., was floored twice in the second round, the first time by a left to the ribs — and then by a left-right combination to the body early in the third stanza. Referee Steve Smoger waved it off after 26 seconds.
“I trained for this fight for a long time, since January 2,” said Moore, who upped his record to 5-0 (4 KOs).
His dad Jim, who flew in from Arklow to work his corner with Keitt, was impressed.
“Very good. It was near enough perfect performance,” he said.
“He’s definitely getting better,” noted Keitt. “That guy (Felix) was a good fighter. A lot of people wouldn’t fight him.”
Now 28 and being fast-tracked to contender status, Moore is lined up for another bout next month and can’t wait.
“I’m looking to fight once a month (but) I won’t be fighting bums. I want to fight guys that will bring it to me,” he said.

James Clancy was an easy winner over Mitch Rose, a 269-pound heavyweight who came in looking like a blubbery Mr. T of “A-Team” fame.
The Boston-based Clancy, 32, won all four rounds to preserve his unbeaten record (6-0, 1 KO).
“He could punch,” Clancy observed.

Matt Macklin’s New York debut against Chris Troupe fell through after the Atlanta native reportedly failed to make the contracted 157-pound weight limit.
“Obviously Matthew wanted to go through with the fight but my first priority is to look after my fighter and the weight difference on the night would have been ridiculous. It could easily have been over twenty pounds,” trainer Billy Graham said in a statement.
“I’m gutted that the fight fell through,” said Macklin, the Irish middleweight titlist. “I really wanted to make a big impression in front of the New York fans.”

Actor Liam Neeson, four-time world champion “Sugar” Shane Mosely, former heavyweight contender Gerry Cooney and Junior Jones, also a four-time world titlist in his days, were among the prominent names that turned up to watch the Duddy headlined card.

Former heavyweight Seamus McDonagh, now in the marketing business in San Francisco, was also ringside at his old haunt to cheer on Duddy.
Looking in excellent condition, the 43-year-old, who came close to upsetting future great Evander Holyfield when they met for the WBC Continental Americas heavyweight belt in Atlantic City in 1990, fought 11 times as a pro at the Felt Forum, as the Theater was then known.
He recalled winning the 1985 Golden Gloves heavyweight title at the Garden and receiving his pendant from Muhammad Ali.

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