Monthly Archives: May 2017

All My Precious~ Kell “Special One” Brook vs Errol “The Truth” Spence

Kell Brook, 36-1, 25 KO, defends his IBF welter title in Bramall Lane Football Ground (outdoors), Sheffield, Yorkshire against American interloper, Errol Spence Jr, 21-0, 18 KO, this Saturday, May 27th. This comes on the heels of the tragic terrorist attack not so far away in Manchester at a concert venue last week.

Large gatherings of western peoples are the new candy for these terrorist organizations. While this wasn’t one the bigger fights that could be made this year, it is a decent scrap between 2 Ring top 10 rated fighters, so I’d expect attendance to be down because of last week’s attacks, but Brits are a funny, stubborn folk who may well rally round their fighter to storm the Bramall grounds.

Brook has been going at it since 2004, yet thus far has little to show save his dubious win over Shawn Porter in as ugly a performance as could be had. His moniker is “The Special One,” perhaps in tribute to the voluminous Gollum  “My Precious” references in Lord of the Rings, but who can say in this era of fighters choosing their monikers instead of fans assigning them based on fighting style as happened in most of the history of boxing.

Spence has been going at it since 2012, so he should be vastly under prepped against such an experienced foe with 8 years more experience, but nope, they’re about even in top level comp won. His moniker is “The Truth,” perhaps in honor of former heavyweight contender Carl The Truth Williams who started fast as a blazing young prospect and contender only to become too quickly derailed.

 Picked Spencer in my predictor league, but in boxing, between the KO stopper and crooked officiating, in what is close to an even fight, any result could occur. Let us pray for a safe and secured facility for the fighters and fans and let the fighters decide the result in a more fairly waged contest of wills and skills.

So, there it is for all My Precious, Special, Truthers: “The Special One vs The Truth.”

All My Precious: The Truth vs Special One

All My Precious: The Truth vs Special One

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Terence Crawford vs Felix Diaz

Terence Crawford defends his junior welter titles against Dominican Republican Felix Diaz @ Madison Square Garden, New York, New York. Now say Dominican Republican 10X real fast and see how stupid you end up.

Crawford vs Diaz

Crawford vs Diaz

Crawford makes a strong case study for everything that is right in boxing and dangerously wrong for Crawford personally. Bob Arum has done his damnedest to promote him into the soon to be retired Manny Pacquiao PPV replacement slot by building his local Omaha fan base. Arum secured excellent, increasingly more difficult developmental fights for him, yet in his biggest coming out party and PPV debut at the MGM Grand in Vegas against Viktor Postol, it was a flop, only 50K PPVs if even that. OK, we have to acknowledge that boxing PPVs in 2016 sank to, what, a 30 year low that year with the exception of Canelo Alvarez of Mexico and Anthony Joshua of the UK.

Oh, most certainly, Crawford fought his most brilliant fight against his most formidable opponent that he got little credit for because of the 2016 blow back after the 2015 Manny/TUE record setting farce, but there’s more at play here. Coming up and just breaking into contender status, he was interviewed and told of taking a grazing scalp wound when a guy pulled out a gun during a craps game. The inference of the article was that he had matured past those dangerous lifestyle choices, a story of redemption leading to the fulfillment of his potential in a feel good rags to riches story. So, going into to his PPV debut, instead of his focus being on the grand fight, it was on “Bud” Crawford himself and his fellow “buds” ganging up on some overwhelmed auto body shop owner to hijack Bud’s car in the middle of paint job or some such nonsense. They damaged the guy’s equipment and put a big scare into him as we can imagine, so of course the owner pressed charges, won a settlement, and Crawford was put on 2 years probation. The net result was basically telling the larger, casual boxing public that boxing needs for big promotions that Crawford was just another 2 bit street punk soon to become unraveled and behind bars and hardly worth the effort.

Coming into this fight against Diaz, he had another incident involving a girl friend fighting another girl in a street fight where he pulled out a concealed, permitted gun to brandish that scattered the smattering of spectators watching, but landed him into hot waters again. So, while thus far his flawless boxing as been top of the heap, his personal judgement in his regular life is proving problematic and potentially life threatening had someone else pulled a gun in retaliation to start a shootout in his most recent self inflicted mishap.

That certain segment of the thug culture in the US may yet adopt him en masse as they did Mike Tyson and Floyd TUE Mayweather Jr, but that culture is heading for something of a bleak extinction given their lack of relevance in this new rapid fire information culture. At any rate, they are only a small segment of the market he needs to capture for financial success.

Now as to Felix Diaz, while not Ring ranked, he holds a worthy 20th Boxrec ranking, an impressive 2008 Olympic Gold Medal, and is a squat, tricky, 5’5″ southpaw, the kind of fighter that can cause any fighter problems. This matchup could further be seen as the longtime desire of Bob Arum to prep Crawford for the southpaw style of Manny Pacquiao fight. A potential problem with that is that Arum is in his mid 80s and has recently put on some weight and sounded less than lucid in interviews of late and may not have the control over boxing that he used to.

Just think how far Don King as fallen in relevance in his advanced years. Manny was supposed to fight Amir Khan in April, but that fell apart over money and control of Manny’s career when he and manager/advisor Michael Koncz independently tried to negotiate a fight outside the Arum loop with Khan in Dubai for fabulous money, so nobody to really know where the Golden Goose lays his next Golden Egg save Manny reluctantly committed to the Horn fight in Australia for about 1/6 of what he would have made in Dubai after that deal fell apart.

Certainly there’s not much spare money in this fight, but fight fans may be as well pleased as can be possible for such an unlikely demographic with this matchup. By rankings alone it’s a bit of mismatch, and by the bookies, 25-1, but by styles and caliber of talents, it could be quite interesting for as long as it lasts. Any early ending will be by Crawford, but straggling to decision is always a crap shoot in boxing. Crawford’s already dodged one bullet looking to put a hole through his noggin, so he best not push his luck with another crapshoot.

That POT ‘O GOLD at the end of the rainbow still remains within Crawford’s grasp, but rainbows quickly fade, so he best get to cracking in the ring and straighten up outside it. When Manny retires as expected for his campaign for the Filipino presidency, not even Manny Pacquiao can continue boxing.

Día Mexicano@Ground Zero~Canelo vs Junior~Quien Es Mas Macho?

Saul Alvarez, 48-1-1, 34 KO, and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, 50-2-1, 32 KO, currently two of Mexico’s most popular active boxers, square off on Cinco de Mayo weekend, Saturday, May 6, @ T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada in what is being hyped as the biggest all Mexican fight ever. Perhaps, but it also may well be the biggest fight this year as far as the financials goes though the Wladimir Klitschko/Anthony Joshua fight may surpass it or not. Regardless these two biggest fights of the year happen back to back weekends for a thrilling run for boxing.

Canelo has taken a lot of stick from fans for the delay of the Gennady Golovkin bout, but blame Richard Schaefer and Al Haymon for illegally gutting Golden Boy Promotions that have completely upended boxing that resulted in hundred million dollar lawsuits. Then we have All Star Boxing winning a rather dubious $8.5 million judgement they against Canelo in spite of having no contract with him…only in boxing and only in Floriduh could this happen.

So of course Canelo has had to follow the richest prize money against Amir Khan and Junior. Golovkin, in spite of his vastly superior boxing credentials, brings an inferior purse after the down year of 2016 that saw boxing in America it the lowest financial point in in the last 35 years regarding general public interest. Assuming Canelo prevails against Junior, the Golovkin fight will be twice as big as this time as compared to last year and primed for this September. White gloved, snooty, connoisseur snifting boxing purists may not like it, but Canelo has been giving the fans what they want the bulk of his career which is why he has been so financially successful save for the big civil judgement against him. All Star have filed a lien in advance to garnish that $8.5 million judgement on Canelo’s purse for this fight, a huge bite of cash for a really big OUCH!

Before the fight was announced: Best Buds

As to Junior, he’s taken well deserved stick for his lack of dedication, but make no mistake, this kid has a dangerous punch to him as future HOFer Sergio Martinez found out. His post fight career was utterly ruined when he was only barely to crawl out a survivor against Junior, and then Andy Lee KTFU.

After the fight was announced: Grrrrr

Canelo vs Junior

Canelo vs Junior

With this being an all Mexican superfight, the super special, superduper, WBC championship belt for the Mexican Champion of the World will be on the line. Three designs were presented to voted on with the participation of thousands of fans around the world, but primarily Mexicans fans that will decide the winning design, or at least that was the promise by WBC El Presidente Gordo Para la Vida Sulaimán. The “Winning” belt was obviously a complete redesign of the three…only in boxing in the WBC!

All the belts were designed by native Mexican Huicholes Indians. Here were the contenders.

 

And……………………….THE CHAMPION:

The All Mex WBC Belt

The All Mex WBC Belt

Word is that Canelo has made a special point to reject the belt that I assume involves WBC sanctioning fees in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. Money and pride is quite enough for Canelo who has indicated a disparagement of the WBC after some heavy handed demands they made upon his career. I suspect amends will be made before the fight since Canelo would otherwise be proud to accept such an outstanding design of his native countrymen.

The Network Numbers, the real bottom line in boxing these days:

The HBO replay of the Canelo-Liam Smith fight drew 459,000 HBO subscribers, but in perhaps in spite of the 50,000 fans that packed Cowboy stadium, the PPV sales appear approximately 300,000. However, it is also supposed the Smith fight was seen by 18 million viewers in Mexico on free television via Azteca 7. Notably, Alvarez’s fight this past May versus Amir Khan drew around 600,000 PPVs and 767,000 HBO subscribers on the replay. His Miguel Cotto fight drew 900,000 PPVs and the replay 901,000 HBO subscribers. Junior may prove to be bigger than all three combined, so we shall see.

Junior has hired legendary Juan Manuel Marquez boxing trainer Ignacio Beristain for this fight, and perhaps most tellingly the notorious Marquez BALCO PED pusher, Memo Heredia, as his physical trainer. Junior was slapped with a minor drug violation of using illegal diuretics to drop weight in the past plus one marijuana violation that cost him $900,000 in a clear daylight robbery by the Vegas commish, so it is quite sad and telling that Junior is resorting to these dubious means at this juncture. It becomes scary to contemplate what Junior could do pumped up on Memo Heredia’s PEDs.

As a preview to this Mexican  family guerra  in Mexico, Canelo older brother “Inocente” Ramon Alvarez was knocked out in the 2nd round by Junior’s younger brother “The Businessman” Omar Chavez to even up that series 1-1, so the Alvarez and Chavez family already have some history of competition. My question would be if Meme Heredia also works with Omar in a family affair?

Lest the 164.5 lb catchweight be a problem for Junior, here he is after hard training for 2 months in the mountains of Mexico a month before this fight, doubtless in the best condition of his somewhat wasted career as to his unfulfilled potential. Here he is probably near the lightheavy limit of 174 lbs looking ready to fight with fire in his eyes at that weight again. All he has to do is lose a gallon of water, and presto, he’s made the 164.5 catchweight with 36 hours to rehydrate and replenish to a probable 190+. Many construction workers deal with similar losses most every day working outside during the summer months.

Ripped Junior

Ripped Junior

Add in that Canelo likely to be at 180+ lbs come fight night, really this is what used to be an ol’ fashioned heavyweight fight. Canelo’s fabled El Gancho Izquierda should prove the difference. However long it lasts, it promises to be HOTLY contested in a WAR strategically waged by Canelo and emotionally waged by Junior, but only after Lupe Contreras asks them, “Quien is mas macho?”