Call it a Comeback

Andy Lee shows the heart of a champion to earn a draw against Peter Quillin

They couldn’t be split after 12 rounds in the Barclays Center.

Updated 03.15

ANDY LEE SURVIVED an early scare and produced a sensational comeback to force a draw against Peter Quillin.

The WBO middleweight champion — whose title was not on the line — was knocked down in the first and the third rounds at the Barclays Center, New York.

But he rallied to dominate the second half of the fight and the judges scored it 113-112 Lee, 113-112 Quillin, and 113-113.

It is the first time in Lee’s career that he has gone the distance in a 12-round fight, but he had the edge in the late rounds and whittled down Quillin’s lead on the scorecards.

The undefeated “Kid Chocolate” (now 31-0-1) forfeited his chance to challenge for Lee’s title when he failed to make the 160lbs weight on Friday.

And he let a sizeable points lead slip with a lethargic performance as the fight wore on.

Former WBO champ Quillin started the strongest and nearly ended the contest in the very first round. Lee (34-2-1) was rocked by a powerful right hand and had to withstand serious pressure just to make it to the bell.

Lee had to deal with a cut on his left eye following an apparent clash of heads in the second, and it got worse for the Limerick southpaw when he was knocked down again in the third. His protests to referee Steve Willis that Quillin had stood on his foot fell on deaf ears.

Quillin continued to press home his advantage and after a cagey fourth round drew some boos from the Brooklyn crowd, he found his range with a smart right hand-left hook combo in the fifth.

But Lee had shown that he would not go quietly and was starting to trouble Quillin, his right hook proving particularly effective.

That punch found its mark with 25 seconds left in round seven, knocking Quillin down and giving Lee’s fans faint hope that he might be able to produce another spectacular stoppage.

That never arrived and although Quillin did shade some of the final rounds, Lee was by far the busier fighter and did enough to force the draw.

16 reasons why Andy Lee is a champ in every sense

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