Jones and Gus improvement analysis
A great fight. I think a lot of us learned about each fighter, mostly the champ. After big fights like this, these boards light-up with so many tantrums and arguments based upon who should have won and what other pros said versus media, etc...
How about a discussion on where each fighter can improve. Here are a couple things I saw. I would be very interested in seeing mature replies from you all.
Jones: he seemed to plod foward, flat on his feet all night. He lacked any foot work, head movement. It is clear to me he has relied upon his size advantage and threat of his takedowns to compensate for his lack of defensive striking skills. That all being said, I think due to these gaps against an equally sized opponent, Jones now knows where he has to improve. He has skills to work on to fair better against a guy like Gus next time.
Gus: showed that he had the particilar set of tools last night to defeat Jones. His equal size, excellent TDD and superior hands was the right combo, but... he failed to capitalize in a way to get the finish or outright dominate thus forcing the judges decision. The only thing I can say is that Gus might have trusted his better hands a bit more and forced Jones into sustained exchanges. Gus spent a lot of time emphasizing movement, when I think maybe a few more exchanges of his choosing might have been to his advantage. You will notice I didnt mention technical improvements for Gus, because there really isnt as many for him as Jones has in my opinion. His improvement is more strategy-based.
In a nutshell, my observation for go-forward planning for a rematch:
Jones: train striking defense, footwork, head movent
Gus: adjust strategy, to include more sustained exchanges. One thing I'd mention that he might consider spending time working on a left hook. I'd guess that Jones wasnt seeing to well from that right eye after the cut appeared. Mixing more left hooks into his tool bag might not be a bad idea.
Love to hear you guys' thoughts.