Joe Joyce knows why Daniel Dubois did what he did during the 10th round Saturday night.
Nevertheless, even one of humblest men in boxing didn’t sugarcoat how Dubois dealt with a seriously damaged left eye that was swollen shut when he took a knee versus Joyce. The undefeated Joyce feels Dubois “quit” in the 10th round of their scheduled 12-round heavyweight fight at Church House in London.
“Yeah, he definitely quit,” Joyce told IFL TV in a post-fight interview. “But it was a good, I mean, he saved his eye. His eye was obviously busted up and I hear he broke [an eye] socket or something and it broke his heart. I mean, he’s young, he can come again, and ‘The Juggernaut’s’ just gonna keep marching forward.”
Joyce’s iron chin served him well when Dubois landed hard right hands Saturday night. The 2016 Olympic silver medalist acknowledged Dubois’ power afterward, which was why he so often used his jarring jab to keep Dubois at a safer distance.
“I felt the jab was landing well,” Joyce said, “so I kept at him, took his jab away, used my footwork, stayed away from the dangerous shots, followed the game plan and it worked for me [Saturday] night. And I didn’t really fancy like mixing it close with him, because what I was doing was working. So, I just kept at it. And it seemed to be quite a close fight, but I was happy when he put his knee down and I stopped Daniel Dubois, and I proved all you haters wrong, and hopefully made a lot of people some money [Saturday night].”
The 23-year-old Dubois (15-1, 14 KOs) was favored to defeat the 35-year-old Joyce (12-0, 11 KOs) in what was considered a risky fight for both Brits at these respective stages of their careers. Dubois led on two scorecards entering the 10th round (88-83, 86-85, 84-87), but the pain around his eye and an inability to see Joyce’s jab coming made him take a knee and stay down while referee Ian John Lewis counted to 10.
“I’m very pleased and happy that I got him out of there,” Joyce said. “I proved all the doubters wrong, and I’m ready to rumble on and go for the world title.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.