Bob Arum goes full heel after Josh Taylor's unanimous decision loss to Jack Catterall

Jack Catterall, left, punches Josh Taylor in the super lightweight boxing bout at the First Direct Arena in Leeds, Britain, Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Richard Sellers/PA via AP)
Josh Taylor (right) lost his rematch to Jack Catterall. (Richard Sellers/PA via AP)

Even at age 92, Bob Arum still has some fire in him.

The legendary boxing promoter came in hot Saturday after his boxer Josh Taylor lost a rematch with Jack Catterall by unanimous decision. The junior welterweights' first meeting was highly controversial, with Taylor winning by split decision despite many observers scoring it otherwise.

Saturday's fight in Leeds, England went to the scorecards as well, with Catterall emerging as the winner by unanimous decision (117-111, 117-111, 116-113). The fight was all Catterall early, but Taylor fought back enough that some expected the scores to be close.

Arum apparently thought Taylor was the winner, and was so galled that all three judges instead had him losing by at least three points, he pledged to never bring an American to the country:

Here is Arum's reaction, which was met with boos by the English crowd:

"I saw the fight like everybody else. Those scorecards were a disgrace, were an absolute disgrace. I really feel sorry for Josh, I thought he won the fight, but those scorecards were ridiculous. And that's the lesson, I will never, ever allow an American fighter to come here with this British board scoring the fight. Those scores were ridiculous."

On the note of allowing an American fighter to fight via "the British board," it's probably worth noting that Taylor is Scottish.

Taylor also expressed a belief that he had won the fight, barely, but conceded the loss before calling for a trilogy fight:

"I thought it was a great fight, fair play to Jack. It was the better fight tonight, it was better than the first fight. It was great, but listen, I thought I just nicked the fight to be fair. Thought I just nicked it. It was a close fight, but given the controversy in the first fight, I think that probably played it in the judges' hands.

"Fair play to Jack, he won the fight. Let's do a third one."

Taylor had already lost the final components of his undisputed junior welterweight title to Teofimo Lopez last June. His rematch with Catterall represented a chance to answer the largest remaining question from his undefeated run, until Catterall came out swinging.

The scorecards were at least in agreement that Catterall won the first, second, fourth, fifth and 11th rounds, while all three judges had Taylor winning the seventh. Every other round sees a difference in opinion, including a tie on one card in the sixth round.

CompuBox saw the fight as a bit closer than those scores indicated, with Catterall outlanding Taylor 176-162 in total punches, but Taylor winning 102-88 in power punches.