Originally Posted by Vysotsky
I agree it was nowhere near as quick, sharp or powerful and was far less than it used to be but it was still an effective tool even against guys like Byrd and Ruiz, Ruiz himself having a quality jab.
As I recall, Golota jabbed extremely well against Byrd for the first six or seven rounds. When he came back and fought Brian Nix and Terrence Lewis, I thought he had some surgery done? I could be wrong. But his jab when he came back in 2003 had more speed and consistency than it did in his fights with Rhode, Norris, and Tyson (all post-Grant/post-accident). Whatever the case may be, his jab was looking quicker but far less powerful 2003 into 2004. If I'm not mistaken Golota hurt his left arm/hand/shoulder/something in the Byrd fight, and he stopped jabbing over the final six rounds. That made them a judging nightmare, because they were close rounds that were actually quite entertaining.
I think Golota was ****ed up against Ruiz. I don't remember him working the jab much at all in that fight, though I have not seen that once since it aired live. Wasn't he ****ed up? I remember reading something from Colona that said Andrew was in immense pain preparing for that one, and they'd consider canceling it except they knew the stakes and knew they may not get another title shot. Anyone remember something like that? Or if Golota used his jab much against Ruiz?
But back to the other point, Golota did have a real nice left hook that complimented his jab and (pre-Lewis) a powerful right with deceptive hand speed. He never committed to his punches quite the same way after the Bowe fights, and his hands never quite seemed as quick fluid as they did previously. Even in Grant he seemed (to me) to lose a great deal of speed, but his jab was still a powerful tool that was very effective.
But after Grant, he looked pretty bad in those 3 fights with Certo....well, 2 of the 3, can't count the Rhode one in China.