by GorDoom

That this fight was being contested for even a meaningless portion of the heavyweight title is beyond belief. Moorer has had one fight, a desultory 10 round decision win over journeyman Melvin Foster, in May of '95, since losing the real heavyweight title to Big George in November of '94. What has Moorer done to deserve fighting for even this dreary title belt? ... Which brings us to Axel Schulz. Here's a moke who fought a string of nobodies before facing Foreman on April 22nd 1995. He put up a vaguely valiant effort against a guy old enough to be his father and lost a close, controversial decision. The IBF then proceeded to strip Big George and decreed that Schultz and one of the most dismal heavyweights I've ever seen, Frans Botha, fight for the vacated title. Botha won another close and controversial decision in a truly god-awful fight. Subsequently, Botha was stripped for steroid use and voila! We get today's epic, which reeks so much, HBO didn't want to touch it and foisted it off on ABC. At least it's free ... Now that I think about it, this is actually a great deal when you consider that tonight's Duran-Camacho farce costs $26.95 were I live. Talk about reekage, this PPV non-event smells to high heaven! Last night, in a conversation with esteemed boxing historian, Hank Kaplan, I asked him what he thought about this lash-up and his comment says it best, "I wouldn't walk across the street to see that fight."

Michael Moorer has always been a head case. He veers wildly from a well-spoken, self-contained young man into a wild-ass street-brawler dumb enough to belt out a cop, fracturing his jaw. Moorer's association with Teddy Atlas seemingly has tempered Michael's erratic nature, but also may have dampened the raging fires within Moorer which made him an exciting KO artist in the early portion of his career. Even after his rise to heavyweight his punch-outs with Alex Stewart and Bert Cooper were two of the most exciting heavyweight brawls of the 90's. Unfortunately since those two bouts the majority of his fights have been lethargic non-efforts.

As for the fight itself, Schulz looked like he was wound very tight before the opening bell and once the fight began Moorer was more aggressive and out-jabbed Schulz. Schulz seemed lethargic and responded with sporadic flurries that did no damage. This was the pattern for the first 6 rounds which Moorer dominated.

Moorer visibly lost steam in the 7th round and let Schulz back into the fight over the next four rounds. This is not to imply that Schulz began to take over the fight, only that he began to show a semblance of a pulse. Moorer was at no time in any danger and while Schulz increased his punch ratio, his crude mauling presented no real problems for Moorer. At best, he might have stolen a couple of rounds.

Moorer regained control of the fight during the 11th round by being more active with his precise, piston like jab. From that point on, with a mix of right uppercuts and straight lefts, Moorer easily won the last two rounds.

One judge had it 115-114 Schulz, the other two voted for Moorer 115-113 & 116-113. I didn't think it was that close and I had the fight 8-2-2 in rounds for Moorer.

In the aftermath of this mildly entertaining fight, Schulz probably goes back to the scrap heap after losing three straight title fights. Moorer however, is now set for a big money fight with Tyson, or serious challenges from Bowe and Lewis. Of what I have observed the last few years I don't think Moorer could take Tim Witherspoon, much less the aforementioned trio. Moorer lacks the brio and fire he once possessed, and without it, he's a rather pedestrian heavyweight. He was in against a true journeyman and not at any point did Moorer have Schulz in any real trouble. This is not the kind of effort that makes for heavyweight champions. Moorer may get richer behind his new "title", but the only mark he's going to leave on boxing history is that he was the first southpaw heavyweight champion.

© 1996 The Cyber Boxing Zone
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