Joe Joyce Stops Daniel Dubois in 10
By Caryn A. Tate on November 28, 2020
I’m a fan of boxers who attempt to show their greatness. (photo: Queensberry Promotions)
In a rare matchup of two undefeated young contenders, on Saturday British fighters Daniel “Dynamite” Dubois (15-1, 14 KOs) and Joe “Juggernaut” Joyce (12-0, 11 KOs) faced off in a 12-round bout. Dubois entered the fight as the WBO “international” heavyweight title holder; Joyce won an Olympic silver medal at the 2016 Olympic Games.
In the first couple of rounds, both men showed their intelligence and athleticism by relying on the jab, moving laterally, and implementing angles. The result was that both fighters missed one another relatively often but when they did land, it was typically the jab.
The two traded which rounds they won on my card. In the second, Dubois came out more aggressively, seemingly at the urging of his corner, and he landed more shots on Joyce. In that round, Dubois was also able to bring the right hand behind the jab a couple of times to catch Joyce.
Joyce, despite being taller and slower than his younger opponent, often threw the jab downstairs successfully. While slower than Dubois, Joyce showed he has excellent timing which largely makes up for his lack of speed. Plus, Joyce showed Dubois a lot of feints and little movements that made it tough for Dubois to time him. Joyce seemed relaxed throughout, perhaps intending to take Dubois into the late rounds; he has only been 10 rounds once. Typically, Dubois fights end much earlier, and it seemed Joyce might have been trying to capitalize on that.
In the sixth round, Dubois’ left (lead) eye began swelling shut, a big problem for the orthodox fighter. It was caused by Joyce’s incredibly accurate jab, which he consistently kept flicking out throughout the fight. And like any smart fighter, Joyce began aiming his accurate jab at Dubois’ injured eye.
A right hand from Joyce landed cleanly upstairs in the 7th. Both men continued to have their moments, and both showed very good footwork throughout.
Dubois was perhaps too predictable with his punch selection. He tends to rely too heavily on the 1-2 (jab-right hand), which made it much easier for Joyce to slip the shots because he knew what to expect. Often, Joyce would slip by moving his upper body to his own right—a smart move to get away from Dubois’ right hand, but if Dubois had utilized a good left hook, he could have caught Joyce cleanly and given the latter one less road to safety.
Several of the rounds were very close and could probably go either way. After 9, I had it 5 rounds to 4 in Joyce’s favor.
In the 10th, Joyce landed a beautiful clean jab directly to Dubois’ left eye, which was now swollen shut. Dubois took a couple of steps, continuing his movement, before he had a delayed reaction to the pain, wincing as he dabbed at the eye, and took a knee.
The referee began the count, and Dubois remained on the knee until 10—it was too late. The referee waved it off.
It was a superb performance by Joyce, who showed that he has a higher level of skill than perhaps many people realized. It was also a very good showing by Dubois, despite the ending; and being only 23, he has plenty of time to move forward and learn from the experience.
Most importantly, both fighters should be lauded for taking such a risky fight particularly at this relatively early stage of their careers. They certainly didn’t have to, and personally, I’m a fan of boxers who take on risks and step out in an attempt to show their greatness. It’s what we all say we want as boxing fans, so when fighters actually do it, let’s give them credit for it.