Lockport Cruiserweight Headed to NYC in July
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal
It was a disappointing set back last week for Lockport’s Joe Taylor, but there’s good news on the horizon for the hometown hero and knockout artist.
Taylor lost by split decision last Saturday to Canadian Joe George for the WKA Northeast Title in a five-round brutal affair at the Kenan Arena.
Two out of three ringside judges awarded George the fight by 1 point and one judge had it in Taylor’s favor by a point.
“The loss was a learning experience,” Taylor said. “I feel like I could have won the fight if I fought a little harder. You live to learn and I’m blessed to live and fight another day.”
“The learning experience is invaluable” added Taylor’s head coach Corey Webster of Western New York MMA in Buffalo. “While the goal is to win them all, there are bumps along the way.”
The question on everyone’s mind now is, whats next?
Lace Up Promotions CEO Amer Abdallah said the fight was a close one.
“It could have gone either way and we obviously would have liked to get a hometown decision, but that’s what keeps the sport clean and we all respect the decision of the judges,” Abdallah said. “I stayed with Joe all night after the fight. Aside from him being my fighter, he’s my little brother and a close friend. We talked, laughed and began planning the next step.”
Abdallah, Webster and Taylor have decided to continue to push Taylor’s career forward.
“We’re taking Joe Taylor to Madison Square Garden.” Abdallah said. “For the first time in almost 40 years, a Lockport fighter will fight in Madison Square Garden on a worldwide stage. The largest kickboxing promotion in the world ‘GLORY,’ will host Glory 43 on July 14 in New York City at the world famous boxing mecca, Madison Square Garden. I have a wonderful relationship with GLORY and we wanted a big fight for Joe. We aren’t aren’t looking for soft touches. We’re in champion-building mode.”
Added Webster, “I believe stepping on to the big stage will bring out the best Joe Taylor we’ve seen yet. His desire to succeed is unparalleled.
It won’t be easy for the former Lockport semi-pro football all-star running back Taylor (2-1), who will now fight a kickboxer who once beat Joe George, veteran Ariel Sepulveda (4-2).
“It’s an honor to fight in Madison Square Garden,” Taylor said.
“Not too many people have the opportunity to do so. Everything is on the line and I can’t take another loss. I need a big win. It’s all or nothing and we didn’t make it this far to turn around now.”
Only three other Lockport fighters have ever fought at the Garden, Tommy Hicks (1972), Pat Cuillo (1979) and Taylor’s father, Johnnie Taylor (1971).
“These lockport legends paved the way for all of todays champions,” Abdallah said. “Joe will be the fourth person in history to represent our hometown in the Garden and will do so in front of the world”.
Added Taylor, “I thank God for everything and thank Lace Up Promotions, my family, and my community for their support. My sponsors, the McClains, Johnsons and Harris Construction for believing in me. I believe bigger and better things in life will always come.”