Mike Jones Preparing To Once
Again Fight Jesus Soto Karass
By Tim Donaldson
On November 13, in front of the crowd gathered at Cowboy
Stadium and all those tuning in to the HBO pay-per-view to
watch Pacquiao and Margarito battle it out, Mike Jones
narrowly defeated Jesus Soto Karass by majority decision.
Jones had been looking for a chance to prove himself on the
world stage, and it looked, for a time, that he was doing
just that. He had Karass up against the ropes in the second
round and unleashed a flurry of punches that most fighters
would not have survived. But Karass was not most fighters.
He survived the flurry, defended himself, and kept throwing
punches. As for Jones, he punched himself out and found
himself on the defensive for the next three to four rounds.
Jones’ trainer Vaughn Jackson had this to say about the
second round. “I was really hoping the ref would stop the
fight, but Karass was swinging back. I thought the ref did
right by not stopping the fight. But I was hoping that he
would stop the fight. I just wanted Mike to take a step
back. He saw something nobody else saw and he went for it.
It didn’t happen. But if it would have happened, he’d have
been a hero. But it didn’t.”
So now, Jones has another fight and another chance to prove
that Karass is no real opponent for him. On February 19, the
two will meet once again, this time at Mandalay Bay as the
co-feature to the Montiel, Donaire fight. It will be the
first fight aired on HBO. Manager Doc Nowicki explained how
the rematch came about. It wasn’t that either fighter had
asked for it, but that HBO thought it was worth televising.
“We got a call for it and I asked Vaughn and Mike. The first
thing Mike said was absolutely. Actually HBO thought it was
a very competitive fight, where in the beginning they
thought Mike was going to blow the guy out. They [Karass and
team] looked at it as now this fight is going to be twelve
rounds. I’ll have two more rounds to wear Mike Jones down.
That’s why they took the fight.”
Vaughn Jackson is confident about this fight. “February 19th
we are going to beat Soto-Karass. He thinks that he did
spectacular, but if you look at the fight, Mike beat
himself. Karass didn’t do anything to put Mike on the ropes.
Mike punched himself out. Karass had Mike where any fighter
would want to have their opponent, vulnerable like that. Any
fighter would love to have their opponent where Mike was at,
and Karass couldn’t even finish Mike. So what makes him
think he is going to be able to finish Mike when Mike is
fresh and learned from his mistakes? I don’t think so. So
Karass, he is going to have his hands full on the 19th.”
Vaughn is also confident that Mike won the first fight. “It
was a close fight but once I looked at the tape, Mike
clearly out punched the guy. Karass was applying a lot of
pressure, but a lot of that stuff was catching Mike’s arms.
Mike was scoring a lot. He threw way more punches than
Karass.” Vaughn saw the turning point around rounds six and
seven. This was when Jones had his legs back under him and
started to get aggressive again. Until that point, Vaughn
knew that Mike just had to hang on. Between rounds two and
three, Vaughn told Mike “to use his jab and keep moving. And
sometime tie him up. If you get a little tired tie him up.”
And that’s what Mike did.
Vaughn believes that he and Mike learned a lot from the
Soto-Karass fight. But mostly, they learned one thing.
“Listen to the corner. That’s the main thing.” The other
thing they learned from the fight, “You can’t knock
everybody out. You just have to win the fight sometimes.”
But don’t think that this means that it will be not be an
exciting fight. Vaughn still wants to show Mike off to the
world. “It seems like I still have a little unfinished
business to do to show everybody that Mike doesn’t fight
like this. Mike is a way better fighter than that.”
Vaughn also sees a silver lining to the first fight with
Soto-Karass. “Maybe it was good that he looked like this
because it opened up doors for a lot of other things. People
that didn’t want to fight Mike are now stepping up. It may
work out better for us because we are still willing to take
Whether or not you believe Mike Jones defeated Jesus Soto-Karass
the first time around, it is clear that his team has every
intention to make you believe that Mike Jones belongs on the
world stage. On February 19th at Mandalay Bay and on HBO,
Mike Jones will have a second opportunity to show the world
who he really is.