On Friday, we saw what was probably the early clubhouse leader for Fight of the Year. One night later, we have a candidate for Worst Fight of the Year.
In what was a genuinely miserable style matchup, Robert Easter Jr and Rances Barthelemy went to a split draw tonight in Las Vegas, leaving the WBA “world” lightweight title vacant.
This was a fight just totally lacking in action, which wasn’t entirely unexpected coming in, but even still was difficult to watch. CompuBox SHOStats had Easter landing 54 punches over 12 rounds, with Barthelemy tallied at 52.
In other words, Easter landed 4.5 punches per round, and Barthelemy 4.3. In no round did either man land in the double digits. Thus, you wound up with judges picking between nothing, basically, and arriving at scores of 115-113 Easter, 115-113 Barthelemy, and 114-114. Bad Left Hook had it 115-113 Barthelemy, while Showtime’s Steve Farhood scored it 115-113 Easter.
“Nobody won this fight,” Farhood said.
“It’s justified. Neither guy deserved to win,” Showtime analyst Paulie Malignaggi said as soon as the result was announced.
“I think it was close but I felt that I edged it out toward the end,” Easter (21-1-1, 14 KO) said in his in-ring interview. “I applied the pressure. The judges seen it a different way. Rances Barthelemy is a crafty fighter, a tricky fighter. He stayed away from my power, which is smart.”
“It’s not the Robert Easter we expected,” Barthelemy (27-1-1, 14 KO) said through a translator. “We thought he was going to fight, he didn’t fight. He didn’t attack in this fight.”
When told that Easter threw about 80 more punches than he did, Barthelemy responded, “Maybe he threw them at the air.”
Barthelemy and Easter then both threatened the viewing audience with the idea of a rematch.