JARRETT ‘SW⚡FT’ HURD
Every now and then, we will do a segment for fighters who come up a little short, and for fighters whom in a particular area was heavy exploited in, regardless of the outcome. Before we start, I’d like to cast a spotlight on what Julian ‘J Rock’ Williams stated in his Post-Fight interview last night.
What he had to endure and decided to internalize as fuel was that he was completely written off by many people in the boxing pantheon simply for losing one single fight, and outright disrespected in many circles. In this current climate, there is a cut-throat narrative for top boxers if and when they lose a fight, that many in the community would go as far as to kick you off of a cliff just for a laugh, and for entertainment purposes. It has gotten out of hand, and it’s something that bugs me profusely. As a fighter, you win some, you lose some, that’s the name of the game…but in the mean time, it’s incumbent of you to analyze your mistakes and your shortcomings so that you can implement the necessary adjustments so that you can put yourself in a better position going forward. Boxers can use situations like these to learn a little more about themselves, and about their opponents, so if used as the right motivation, it can propel you to becoming a better fighter.
Now with that being stated, we’re going to focus in on former Unified Champ Jarrett ‘Sw⚡ft’ Hurd (23-1-0, 16KO), a young hungry fighter who just recently lost his WBA & IBF Super-Welterweight Titles to the aforementioned Julian ‘J Rock’ Williams yesterday, May 12th. Hurd is known for being a relentless pressure fighter, who puts a lot of mental pressure on his opponents with a great motor. In many ways, for comparison purposes, you could stylistically compare him to that of an athletic Antonio Margarito, which can be viewed as both a good thing and a bad thing. As shown yesterday, once you can take the pressure component away from him, he is out of his element, due to him not having the tools to switch up, bounce outside despite his height and reach advantage over just about everybody that the Super-Welterweight division has to offer.
Now we have to keep in mind that he started very late as a boxer, so his fundamentals lack polish, and is still a raw fighter despite coming a long way and doing MORE than achieving his dream of becoming a World Champion. It is very rare for boxers who start late, and late bloomers to really get to a place of technical mastery. One current example of a fighter who classifies as a late bloomer, that is really starting to tap in these elements is IBF Super-Featherweight Champion Tevin Farmer, but even in his case, he has the blood of a legend in him in Hall-of-Fame Lightweight All-Time-Great Joe Gans being his Great-Great-Uncle, with boxing passed down through the family that helped shape Farmer’s pedigree as a fighter.
As for Hurd, a few things can help him improve at this point, some things to add on, and a couple of things that he should subtract from his arsenal. First things first, he needs to abandon the Shoulder-Roll defense. The Shoulder-Roll is a great defense to use if you have both the speed and reflexes advantage against your opponent, but it can be a serious detriment to you as a fighter If you don’t use it right, or if you don’t have the right tools to use it properly. In his fight with Williams, Julian had the serious speed advantage, crisper combinations, and stayed inside the entire fight, while Hurd tried the roll in closed quarters, yet couldn’t get out the way of much of Williams onslaught. For Hurd, the basic defense of both hands up and elbows tucked in would be much better suited for his style. His punches at times tends to wing outward, and doesn’t come out with much velocity, so he can look to practice shortening up his punches and delivering snap at the point of attack, and last but not least, with his reach, he can try to turn the jab into his best friend, in scenarios such as yesterday when his inside game isn’t for him, to be able to shift the flow of the fight to make the opponent adapt to your adjustment. Jarrett Hurd has a great head on his shoulders, and he will be back into the mix, and if he and his team are able to identify some of these shortcomings, he could return better than ever.