Chris Byrd vs. Jameel McCline

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Chris-byrd mccline.jpg

2004-11-13 : Chris Byrd 214 lbs beat Jameel McCline 270 lbs by SD in round 12 of 12


Byrd beats McCline, keeps IBF heavyweight title
Published: Sunday, November 14, 2004

NEW YORK (AP) — Chris Byrd felt the power and found the canvas. Then Jameel McCline found out what made Byrd a heavyweight champion in the first place.

Giving away 56 pounds and several inches, Byrd survived a second round knockdown and a bigger man's punch to retain his IBF heavyweight title Saturday night on a split decision by the narrowest of margins.

As crafty a fighter as the heavyweight division has seen in recent times, Byrd needed every bit of his skills to come on strong in the later rounds to win a split 12-round decision that was in doubt until the final judge's tally was added up.

The two good friends hugged as the highly entertaining fight ended and the crowd at Madison Square Garden stood and cheered. Byrd won by 115-112 and 114-113, while McCline was favored 114-112 on the third scorecard.

The Associated Press had Byrd ahead, 115-113.

"The way I fought back showed I am a true champion. I had to dig down. He weighed 270 pounds," Byrd said. "I definitely did enough to win the fight. I am a champion."

The fight preceded the late WBA heavyweight title fight between champion John Ruiz and Golota, part of a card filled with heavyweights promoted by Don King. [1]


Preceded by:
Byrd vs. Golota
IBF Heavyweight Title Fight
# 43
Succeeded by:
Byrd vs. Williamson