The champ is back. At least for one last fight. Former boxer Roy Jones Jr., who held titles in five different weight classes, will fight his 75th and reportedly last fight on Feb. 8 against Scott Sigmon in Pensacola, Fla. Jones, 49, has not fought since February 2017 but will have the opportunity to host his last fight in his own hometown. But with only a year away from 50 years old, should Jones even be fighting? Perry Green and Stephen D. Riley of the AFRO Sports Desk debate this interesting question.

Former boxer Roy Jones Jr. (Screengrab)

Riley: Jones has always been a showman, and while his skills have greatly decayed since his prime, he’s still a headliner that can draw reasonable audience. Boxing is still a sport without a group of stars which is why it’s resulted in gimmicks like MMA fighters converting over into professional boxing and over-the-hill boxers still lacing up their gloves for the sake of a check. Boxing is on its last legs right now. The sport is dying for some fresh blood and Jones has a chance to cash out on a sizable payday and can still draw a crowd. Why not give it one more go before hanging them up?

Green: At 49 years old, Jones’ quickness, spring and power are all gone. Fans will pay to see Jones fight just because boxing is watered down, but there are a lot of true boxing fans that will not. And, add in the health risks. One quick combo from Sigmon could put Jones in serious jeopardy. Sigmon is almost two decades younger than Jones at only 30 years old. Yes, Sigmon may not be a Mike Tyson-style knockout artist but smart money says a 30-year-old should be able to handle a 50-year-old.

Riley: Whether Sigmon lays out Jones or lays down for him, we just want to see Jones fight. It’s bad enough fans had to subject themselves to Connor McGregor attempting to masquerade as a professional boxer last year. The last thing some fans want to see is a middle-aged Roy Jones trying to backpedal through the ring like he’s young again. But count me in as one of those fans that just wants to see a headliner fight.

Green: It’s almost like seeing Michael Jordan play for the Washington Wizards. Yes, it was exciting to still see him play but, at the end of the day, it just wasn’t the same. And, a lot of us basketball fans wish we could erase the images of a heavy Jordan shuffling his way around in a teal blue Wizards jersey. It’s the same concept now. Jones was one of the most exciting fighters of all time. And while his last few fights haven’t made it to a national stage, this one definitely will and I would hate for my remaining images of Jones to be tarnished by a lopsided bout.


Perry Green and Stephen D. Riley

AFRO Sports Desk