Nathan Lewkowicz, a promoter of Magomed “Mago” Abdusalamov, informed ESPN.com on Monday that the 32-year-old heavyweight’s condition has improved to the point where he will be removed from the intensive care unit into a main room at New York’s St. Luke’s Hospital.
After having been awakened, Lewkowicz said that the fighter had been “breathing on his own,” had “opened his right eye,” and had the ability to “move his right foot,” following a vicious battle and 10-round loss to Mike Perez on Nov. 2.
Doctors had elected to wake up Abdusalamov after he began “to respond positively” following surgery and being placed in the coma as a result of a blood clot that had formed in his brain during his fight with Perez.
Abdusalamov had to have emergency surgery to remove the blood clot. The fight, which took place at Madison Square Garden in New York City, was also broadcast worldwide on HBO.
Lewkowicz could not be reached for an immediate comment on Monday.
“The doctor told me he is out of the coma and awake and that he is aware of his surroundings, and they are moving him to a regular room [on Tuesday]. They said this is different than last time, because this time he’s showing more improvement. He’s awake. He’s not able to speak, but he’s awake and aware of his surroundings even if he can’t speak. His eyes are open,” said Lewkowicz, according to ESPN.com.
“He said they won’t know how his brain is until 18 months after the injury, but it’s only been a month and his brain is still healing. The doctor said he most likely will have some limb dysfunction, but they don’t exactly what it will mean. He was on death’s doorstep when they brought him in after the fight, but the fact that he was young and healthy made all the difference. He’s making progress. He’s going to live but they don’t know what his limitations are going to be.”
ZAB JUDAH ON RETIREMENT: ‘I’M NOT A QUITTER’
Two-division titlewinner Zab Judah, who turned 36 in October, said that he has no plans of retiring after Saturday night’s unanimous decision loss to 33-year-old Paulie Malignaggi at Barclays Center in their naive Brooklyn.
“No, you know me. I’m never a quitter. I don’t know how to quit,” said Judah. “If anybody challenges me, then I’m right there. I’m in their chest. So as far as me quitting, we’re far from that.”
Against Malignaggi, however, Judah admitted that he had trouble catching up to the elusive boxer’s style and that he was bothered by cramps as early as the fifth round.
“My corner was telling me all of the right things, but sometimes, when you’re in there, people can tell you what to do,” said Judah. “But when my dad [and trainer Yoel Judah] was saying, ‘go get him,’ every time I went to go and get him, I just found myself lunging with my left hand and trying to swing. Paulie’s speed and great boxing ability kept me off balance.”
Judah said that he not only did not absorb much punishment, but that he, in fact, would have preferred to fight a toe-to-toe battle with Malignaggi.
“If I would have had to absorb more punishment, then I would probably be holding the Brooklyn belt right now,” said Judah. “Because that would have meant that we had engaged in a war. The most of a war we had was what? The last 30 seconds of the fight in 12 rounds?”
Judah had scored a ninth-round knockout over previously undefeated Vernon Paris in March of 2012 before rising from an eighth-round knockdown against Danny Garcia this past April during a narrow unanimous decision loss to RING, WBA and WBC 140-pound champion at Barclays Center.
Among Judah’s other losses were those to Joshua Clottey, Kostya Tszyu, Miguel Cotto, Carlos Baldomir, Cory Spinks and Floyd Mayweather Jr., with all but the one against Tszyu taking place in the welterweight division.
While a 147-pounder, Judah split victories with Spinks, falling by unanimous decision in April of 2004, but winning the rematch — and the IBF, WBA and WBC 147-pound belts — by ninth-round knockout in February of 2005.
Judah regained the IBF’s vacant 140-pound title by seventh-round knockout over Kaizer Mabuza in March of 2011 before being stopped in the fifth-round of his next bout with Amir Khan in July of 2011 and then facing Paris.
Judah also owns a split-decision victory over Lucas Matthysse from November of 2010.
“You win some you lose some,” said Judah. ” You have to just be a man about it.”
UNBEATEN HEAVYWEIGHT AMIR MANSOUR , LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHT RYAN COYNE FIGHT DEC. 14
Delaware heavyweight Amir Mansour (19-0, 14 KOs), 41, will face Kelvin Price (14-1, 6 KOs), and light heavyweight Ryan Coyne (21-1, 9 KOs) will do battle with Lionell Thompson (14-2, 9 KOs) on the Dec. 14 installment of NBC Sports’ Network’s Fight Night from the Resorts Hotel and Casino in Atlantic City.
Also on the card is former cruiserweight titleholder Steve Cunningham (25-6, 12 KOs) against heavyweight rival Manuel Quezada (29-7, 18 KOs), heavyweight David Rodriguez (36-0, 34 KOs) opposite Darnell Wilson (24-17-3, 20 KOs), and middleweight Darley Perez (11-2-1, 4 KOs) taking on Allen Conyers (12-9, 9 KOs).
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com