Mickey Garcia Picks A Bone With Adrien Broner

 

The fight is being marketed as 3 division champ Mikey Garcia, 36-0, 30 KO vs 4 division champ Adrien Broner, 33-2, 24 KO this Saturday, July 29 @ Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York.

The fight should be a good one because, whatever his numerous flaws, Broner at least comes to fight unlike many other high profile American divas in boxing today. Garcia is a highly disciplined ring technician extraordinaire, so ultimately, if you like slow, careful, progressive beatings, that’s what we’ll likely see the more the fight progresses, perhaps even a stoppage by Broner’s corner. I give Broner a 5% puncher’s chance, and that’s it.

*** On a side note, I don’t get how boxing suddenly allowed fighters to have these thick beards in the ring as Broner sports. It’s already bad enough with their atrocious ring entrances blaring trash misappropriated as music. Such coincides with an overall decline in American boxing.

A Broner fight pays decent and is a guaranteed workout. Mikey is well supported by his older brother,  Roberto Garcia, who gave Marcos Maidana a good gameplan to BTFO out of Broner a few years back. About Billions Broner flushing his career down the potty like he did with his money on video clips as the Broner Braindead Trust pulled another boner in their opponent selection…OUCH!

FUN before the fight

FUN before the fight

 

 

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Wilt Chamberlain vs Ali~50th Year Anniversary Tribute

In 1967, Wilt Chamberlain contracted  to challenge Muhammad Ali for his undisputed heavyweight title in Madison Square Garden. ABC and Howard Cosell arranged a special sports segment with Ali and Wilt appearing jointly to announce the fight. Jim Brown was supposed to have been the promoter and had enough money lined up on the table that enticed the Ali team to enter into contract negotiations. The abbreviated story is that Ali’s manager, the Nation of Islam, son of Prophet Elijah Muhammad, Herbert Muhammad, passed on the deal without comment, so Ali refused to sign the contract as verified by the public ABC youtube footage shown here. Ali did put on a credible act of talking about a fight, yet couldn’t be induced to pen his John Henry to paper.

Instead, Ali’s last title defense of 1967 was a milquetoast affair against grizzled long time contender Zora Folley before being stripped of his titles in 1968 for refusing to be drafted into the US Army. That led to a 3 year exile from boxing and a pending case before the US Supreme Court before Ali was able to make his 1970 comeback against Jerry Quarry in Atlanta, Georgia. Not many boxing fans know a gang of Northeastern big city thugs crashed Ali’s elite Atlanta victory celebration filled with Atlanta’s most renown political icons,  media big shots, and various celebrities to rob the well heeled bunch at gunpoint. Got away with it for a huge harvest too, but slowly the underworld extracted a payback of sorts since these were just two bit punk gangsters, not the real gangsters who would never dream of pulling that kind of public relations nightmare heist. 

The 1960s through the 70s was quite an era for sports fans. Boxing’s big fights usually aired over “real” free terrestrial TV as did the Olympics, World Series, Superbowl and many of their regular season games. Then you had the Kentucky Derby, Indy 500 and Daytona 500 and so on. Ripe, passionate sports fans of all ages, sex, and races grew on trees into the furthest reaches of America ready to be plucked for viewing every sports weekend.

What could’ve been the biggest sports splash of the Century slowly ebbed out of existence. Oh, to be sure there was a brief flare up in 1971 had Ali pulled off the win against Joe Frazier in the Fight of the Century. The closed circuit fight was to be in the Houston Astrodome with posters actually printed up.

Ali instead got well whooped by Frazier, so Wilt canceled their contract since the heavyweight title was no longer Ali’s to defend as most of the money backing the deal also fled for greener pastures. I don’t know who the promoters were, but Jim Brown talks about the fight in his Siri interview below where he laughs about the Ali shouting “Timber” story that supposedly killed the fight. He may have been part of the promotion, or at least close enough to deny “The Timber” moment ever happened as reported. Ali once again entered  into his wanderings in the wilderness of being yesterday’s news even as he was ultimately reaffirmed with a favorable Supreme Court ruling and could now box free of Federal charges against him. Wilt was in his last two creaky knee years of an all time career in the National Basketball League, so he was less inclined to further pursue an assbackwards sport, boxing, rife with so many contractual problems and other boxing monkeyshines magnified by the political instability of Ali himself.

At any rate, Ali never had had full control over his career with Herr Herbert at the helm. Ali wisely recalled the fatal fate of  Malcolm X after getting crossed up with the NOI. He picked a later date after his retirement after NOI founder, Elijah Muhammad,  passed away before Ali felt safe to leave that sect.

Nonetheless, Wilt did his part in trying to make this fight, and he had more than just financial backers that included substantial boxing support from Cus D’Amato. The future HOF trainer had long made a study of the Ali style and was training Wilt in secrecy just how to leverage his immense gifts of size, strength, reach, athletic ability, and, yes, it must be stated frankly, Wilt was substantially more intelligent. Substantially! Ali may have been a naturally gifted fighter, yet he was physically inferior to Wilt with Ali further burdened by a limited boxing style that only he ever used to success that served him ill has he aged. Cus knew how to crack his style and famously showed Ali how in a documentary just how Frazier was going to break him down. That prophecy was fulfilled on March of 1971 in the Fight of the Century.

Ali fans naturally scoff and deride the notion of a basketball player being able to beat Ali, but they typically show ignorance in understanding just how gifted Wilt was compared to every other athlete in the world. He would’ve preferred track and field or the Harlem Globetrotters over pro basketball, and yet he set all those still unbroken basketball records because that’s where the money was. Now, seriously, think about it. For sure boxing promoters and trainers hounded him from day one as a pro with the Globetrotters, and eventually a rumor here or there would surface about him in training and of course his two contracts to fight Ali.

As stylistic matchups go, in some notable boxing “exhibitions” against athletes from other sports, Ali looked not only very poor, but vulnerable as well. Ali also looked vulnerable against legit contenders using their own personalized awkward boxing styles.

The Ali/Antonio Inoki fight in Tokyo netted Ali a cool $6 million, but also landed him in a Tokyo hospital on a critical condition after Inoki kicked his leg into a throbbing mess that threatened to send a fatal blood clot to his brain. This a fight where Ali had full access to boxing rules, yet Inoki was limited to only 10% of his arsenal and had to be pulled off  take downs of Ali by the American ref, Gene Lebell, a notoriously famed Judo expert and all around street and Hollywood tough guy.

Then there was the farcical encounter with 400 lb Gorilla Monsoon who quickly popped a vicious body slam on Ali that I’m certain was not supposed to be part of festivities. Ali luckily escaped without injury, but only because the match was immediately stopped.

And then the also ill advised exhibition against Denver defensive lineman, Lyle Alzado, who was likely pumped up on steroids. Ali had nothing to keep Alzado off him and was mauled throughout.

Most fighters are trained in a traditional, upright boxing style that overall is the best style to use in boxing, but boxing has always had a cast of “awkward-savants” who dished out serious punishment to great success. Ali used his own awkward style to great success against traditional fighters, but struggled mightily against other awkward fighters no matter who won. Just think Karl Mildenberger, Buster Mathis, Joe Frazier, Oscar Bonavena, Rudi Lubbers, George Foreman, Ken Norton, Chuck WepnerRon Lyle, Earnie Shavers, and Leon Spinks.

Wilt, with his huge physical advantages, would be the King of Awkward. Wilt had already proven that he could outrun the NFL’s premiere running back of the era, Jim Brown, twice in a row in fact. Wilt turned pro early, an action that was forbidden in his day, but not for the Harlem Globetrotters whom Wilt loved for the rest of his days. He played a 7-1 guard, now think about all that crazy ball handling he got in as a key part of the comedy troop. While no doubt he met many intellectual equals or even greater than his own considerable intelligence, I doubt he ever met his physical equal in his life. If that athlete existed, he’d be in the public record, but nope, just the usual greats of every era, but no Wilts. There are only two other of the most celebrated all around athletes in their day that could match Wilt’s all around ability, yet both would be as equally dwarfed in size and strength as was Ali. The first being the greatest all around athlete ever in this world, Jim Thorpe, and Babe Ruth who still holds Major League Baseball pitching and hitting records, neither of whom lived long enough to meet with Wilt because of age differences. No doubt, they would be mightily impressed.

As to my opinion then and now, well then I was a punk kid pumped for the fight. What’s not to like about such a pairing? I was still raw and unstudied, but instinctively I knew Wilt had a decent chance. I still like the fight today knowing so much more about both Wilt and Ali. I didn’t know who would win when I was young, but now I strongly favor Wilt because of all those physical and mental advantages with Cus D’Amato lined up in his corner focusing on one specific Ali style only. Ali could not study Wilt boxing because there was zero tape, and more importantly, zero sparring partners who could replicate Wilt. Cus claimed that during his childhood Wilt boxed in the amateurs for a short duration, but no record exists that I know of.

Chamberlain loved physical challenges as his varied sport interests are a testament to, but what a shame the public didn’t get to see one of the greatest “what if?” fights in boxing. Cus D’Amato is supposed to have made him an offer to box Ali in 1965, the first of the 3 fights with Ali offered to Wilt. The Philly 76ers talked Chamberlain out of the match with more money, but the idea of the fight never died and gets talked about on boxing forums to this very day 50 years later.

Cus D’Amato trained Wilt Chamberlain vs Angelo Dundee trained Muhammad Ali, who ya got?

 

 

 

Say It Ain’t So~Just Another Joe Smith vs Sullivan Barrera

Last time he was in action, New York Local 66 Laborers Union member, Joe Smith Jr, 23-1, 19 KO, spectacularly knocked Bernard Hopkins completely out of the ring and out of boxing. Now, mysteriously, he’s assigned the formidable task of prevailing against Sullivan Barrera19-1, 14 KO,  this Saturday, July 15th in a return to the scene of his last spectacle, the Forum, Inglewood, California.

                                                         WHOOPS…….

                               >>>>>Going>>>>> Going >>>>>

\/**********GONE!**********\/

While I expect this to be a good fight between quality contenders, it’s very interesting in how Smith is being shunted aside after two of the hottest knockouts of 2016 as the away limited “away” fighter against the touted hometown heroes. Andre “Maternity” Ward was busy delivering the Kiss of Death to Boxing in his two matches with Sergey Kovalev, as Adonis Stevenson was busy fighting fringe contenders to pad out his bank account, and that title record that is looking smarter and smarter every day given how Kovalev and his promoter Main Events were treated by the Vega suits. They were near run out of town by horrific officiating in those two Ward bouts in spite of Kovalev’s fan friendly knockout fights that spiked interest in the moribund Lightheavy division.

“Just Another” Joe Smith leap frogged over his opposition to net a #4 Boxrec rating to Barrera’s #12 rating, so on paper this promises to be be a competitive bout, all dependant however by Barrera’s using his traditional come forward boxing style. The WBC International light heavyweight title bauble is the minor trifle being fought for.

I’m picking Joe, but Barrera could prove to be a banana peel and the officiating? These days you’d be better counting on a roll of the dice in a craps game than count on boxing officials. Sad indictment of a noble sport empowered with fair and equitable rules they seldom enforce except in favor of their orchestrated result…only in boxing! 

Bobby Mac Updates the Manny Pacquiao vs Jeff Horn Scoring Travesty

Pacquiao vs Horn Scoring Update:

Folks will be getting a full Monty here using my simplified scoring system scoring points for fighters, not deductions of fighters as is the current incompetent system of scoring. Moreover, I eliminate 90% of the useless padded points boxing uses to cover up the incompetency of their current scoring system. I included abbreviated rd by rd notes that I take in watching every fight as I score it. I liked both fighters going into the bout and knew Horn wasn’t the expected patsy being portrayed. Fighters did their job and put on a real humdinger of a fight, but because of the judging, that great fight was quickly abandoned for an unjustified ugly scoring squabble. True fighters such as these deserve better no matter who wins.

The lack of boxing oversight credibility in this new age of boxing videos and big screens and boxing forums where fans can actually input their views pretty much dooms boxing to an ever diminishing market for a product the average sporting fan can’t understand any more than the idiotic announcers boxing chooses to run boxing in the gutter even further.

Here’s what Horn and Pacquiao looked like late in the fight. Being busted up is only one indicator of how the fight has gone, but Manny is bleeding from unintentional headbutts born of the orthodox/southpaw awkward footwork and body positioning, not legal punches. That’s the reason southpaws used to be converted to orthodox righty because they were a nightmare to fight because of that awkwardness. At any rate because of being so much older in so many fights, Pacquiao is the one that is supposed to have the busted facial features, not Horn.

1. Horn 1-0 Pac– P defense good, but H very aggress/hit on break-P knock H gum out-rough round for P but gains traction.

2. Pac 1-0 Horn-H broken rhythm style tuff to crack/exchange favor P-P combo as P show more aggress now-

3. Pac 1-0 Horn– Great action fight-H aggress but P box/move/good in exchanges/smiling at such a good fight

4. Pac 0-0 Horn– both aggress-H throw P down- H aggress but P with R Hooks, maybe tired.

5. Pac 0-0 Horn– H aggress and P box/pic shots- H prove tuff customer

6. Pac 0-0 Horn– H bull P to rope/maul- P OK- time for butt-P cleared by doc- P box-H good Rt-nobody hurt in fight yet

7. Horn 1-0 Pac– Exchange- H slow but bull P to ropes/exchange/time for P butt that hurt P/P to ropes

8. Pac 1-0 Horn– Ref good job- H aggress-P move and pic shots/H down from Rt but maybe feet tangle- No KD

9. Pac 1+1-0 H– H aggress but not as much-P pick shots/batters H around ring/H on shaky legs but not down

10. Pac 1-0 Horn– H aggress-P rest w/good combos/move-H still game

11. Pac 1-0 Horn– H aggress/grab/rassle- P sharp combos/H time for glove tape repair/tired trick by corner

12. Pac 1-0 Horn– H bull to ropes- P box well/H time for glove tape repair/exchanges favor P- H grab/bell and P with furious shadow flurry showing he’s ready for more

By rounds my score is Pac 7/Horn 2/Even 3. Pac dominated the latter half of the fight as Horn tired, and if I assign Even Rounds to Horn that makes it 7-5 still for Pac.

By my simplified rd by rd scoring, Pac scored 8 points(7+1), Horn scored 2 points, and 3 rounds were scored zero points. Current boxing rules ignore even rounds as other sports rightly score non scoring possessions as zero. There were no foul deductions or knockdowns to add any additional points to the fighter totals, just the one dominant round by Pac that netted him one extra point, so by my points scoring, 8-2 for Pac.

Of course the judges scores read like basketball scores where 90% of the points are useless padded points.

Official scores 117-111, 115-113, 115-113, all for Horn.

Aggregate judge cards here. First 4 rounds all match, and then all helter skeltor breaks out:

Horn’s Brisbane celebration 4 days later. Note both eyes still in recovery:

FULL FIGHT HERE:

***EDIT in WBO 5 judge panel results along with Compubox numbers:

The anonymous WBO scorecards yield Horn 3, Manny 1, and 1 Draw, meaning they scored the fight much closer, but no other big pro sport has 3 separate scores and scoring controversies every other week, sometimes a half dozen in the week save boxing.

Thing is, today Compubox and it’s copycats are just as viable as the shaky judges, and here is that summary:

“”

  • Compubox stats showed that Pacquiao landed 182 out of 573 punches thrown (32%), whilst Horn landed 92 of 625 thrown (15%).

Manny Pacquiao Hones In On Aussie Jeff Horn

Manny Pacquiao, 59-6-2, 38 KO defends his WBO welter title down under in the topsyturvy world of Australia this Sunday, July 2nd against Jeff Horn, 16-0-1, 11 KO @ Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane, Queensland. That would be late AM hours in Oz as opposed to 11 PM US east coast time working through the time zones to the US west coast 8 PM time. Yes, such time zone warps are the bane broadcast programmers, but such is the modern age we live in.

As we can see, Horn looks to have not only advantage of youth, but that of size, well, except for the massive fist Pac sports. Pacquiao also has a massive number of rounds in the bank, 443 compared to Horn’s 94 professional rounds, but as we all know how ye olde boxing saw goes, Manny could also turn old overnight with all that wear and tear.

The usual hue and cry of derision echoes around the boxing world when when Manny or any acclaimed fighter doesn’t fight the fighters certain fans demand no matter the improbability of the impossible details unknown to them. And let’s face facts, Horn is scarcely known outside of Australia, but make no mistake, this a fighter behind that school marm background. In the last three years, the collective record of those 10 opponents has been 240-29-7 that averages to a 24-3-1 record when they fought him. And of those ten fights, Horn notched 6 KOs, so clearly he’s not one to pussy foot around the business end of boxing. He’s 29 years old, the traditional peak of athletic prime years, and is solidly experienced even if lacking championship experience. Though unranked by Ring, his Boxrec ranking is impressively #12, and Boxrec rankings are comprehensively inclusive of ALL of boxing and less biased because they are coldly formulaic without blind passions that “boxing experts” bring to rankings.

Trainer, Glenn Rushton, taught Horn in a sort of philosophy of fighting, an unpredictable boxing style he calls “broken rhythm pressure fighting.” Don’t know if such is an original idea or an old one put into modern terms for modern fighters, but I could see evidence of a very unique style Horn used to systematically take apart the still powerfully formidable and experienced Randall Bailey, a 3x champ, end result being he retired on his stool after the 7th round. Bailey had been down over half dozen times, a couple of KDs mixed in with obviously weakened legs leaving him off balance and skating around disastrously on thin ice.

Some good background info where Horn admits to being more nerd than natural fighter, so had to be molded much like Gene Tunney. Manny on the other hand, though of course taught at a high level, was a natural born fighter much like Jack Dempsey or Roberto Duran.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-39866485

That said, most think Manny dispatches Horn easily, perhaps notching a KO denied him in a couple of previous fights because of illicit maneuvers by dubious referees. Let’s face it, more and more refs are giving extended long counts as much as 20 or more seconds, plenty of time for fit fighters to recover, so let’s expand on that fitness theme. Manny signs his opponents about 4 months in advance that gives them extra time to train with an extended training camp needed to have any chance against Manny and do proper promotional preparations. Compare to the typical Al Haymon fighter like TUE 49-0 or Deontay Wilder who play TBA fighters off each other until the last minute before signing them for peanuts with insufficient time to train for a big fight. Although the rules of boxing were originally designed to provide fair officiating of fights, backroom skulduggery as often as not still has a place at the table of these shady fighter teams.

Horn is a ring centered fighter using angles and nifty footwork for his offense and defense, not the modern contemptible run and duck and stink style that has regrettably led to the sinking of American boxing. So all in all this promises plenty of fan friendly action, and more importantly, since it will be on a late Sunday morning in Australia, it’s gonna be on ESPN, not HBO PPV. 60,000 crazed Aussies are expected to pack Suncorp Stadium for the fight!

Manny’s Uncle Bob says he’s staging a world tour for Manny, ostensibly to  expand his worldwide profile even more than it already registers off the charts in advance of his anticipated Filipino presidential run in the coming years. As such, this may well be the last year for the 38 year old Manny who had a perfect attendance record in the Philippine senate before his last fight.

So why not have the fighting senator go up against the fighting teacher on the world stage? Both could bring home some honor to those professions currently under fire for long standing, seemingly intractable problems born largely of the the political system they operate in.

Former sparmate Jack Asis Presents Manny With Toowoomba Aboriginal Art Glove Charting His Life Journey.

Former Filipino sparmate Jack Asis Presents Manny With Toowoomba Aboriginal Art Glove Charting Manny’s Life Journey.

Sergey Kovalev vs Andre Ward~Oh, Dear, That Time Of The Month Again?

Sergey Kovalev, 30-1-1, 26 KO, returns for more Vegas Monkey Business in this regrettable rematch against Andre Ward, 31-0, 15 KO, Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino, Events Center, Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday, June 17th.

That is a downsized venue, about 1/2 the capacity compared to the T-Mobile of the first fight thanks to Ward and his promoter, Roc Nation, not bothering to promote this rematch despite holding the exclusive right to do so. Why are they even in the boxing business one has to ask?

Ward’s guarantee is $6.5 million, so why not kick Kovalev even more financially since they cannot otherwise hurt him in the ring. Kovalev’s purse is zero, nada, nothing for this fight. So Kovalev fired the first shot after he finished his portion of the last presser Thursday as he, his trainer, John David Jackson, and manager Egis Klimas walked out on Ward before he could take questions, a clear snub of the smug sense of entitlement by Ward who has done little to hone a hint of popularity in the sport. Kovalev has made Ward $11.5 million, probably treble his modest career earnings for context.

Ward: 100% of the purse guarantees~Kovalev: 0%.

Ward: 100% of the purse guarantees~Kovalev: 0%.

Maternity Ward did very little in their first encounter other than rush head first under Kovalev’s armpit resulting in the lockdown that Kovalev was repeatedly warned for by the dubious ref, Robert Byrd, until the desired straight up head to head buttfest was attained. That was mostly prevented by Kovalev with some nifty head butt feints and slips in close. That makes Kovalev the first fighter in ages who ain’t been headbutted open by Ward, the problem being Kovalev, as the big, strong, Russian born slugger, he ain’t supposed to have better defense than the featherdusting Maternity Ward.

Worse, Ward made himself as small as possible during the promotion of their first fight, highly touted by mainstream press and fans that cleared only 160,000 PPVs. Mainstream Americans don’t know who the last Men’s Olympic boxing gold medalist is, or if they did, they could care less about his heavily orchestrated hometown fights in an international era of boxing. The bogus decision was on the corrupt level of the first Manny Pacquiao vs Timothy Bradley Jr fight that sent the fans and the press screaming for justice in this dirty sport, but truth be told, all of this was foreordained in advance by those of us who watch how boxing continues to make itself irrelevant to the greater public. Kovalev does his part with knockdowns and knockouts to little credit or financial reward:

The high & mighty on all fours tail between his legs

The high & mighty on all fours tail between his legs

Then we have Ward signing up with VADA drug testing before backing out weeks before the rematch, all while Kovalev continues his own VADA testing that has led to accusations by fans of juicing by Ward. Now that Bernard Hopkins has retired, is Ward the new King of Stink?

Maternity Ward’s growing shoe collection would be a more exciting look than smelling him stink over the big screen on a traditional celebratory Saturday night for sports fans. Could he make enough money to buy out the shoe collection of his heroine, Filipino First Lady Imelda Marcos who sported 3000 pairs of shiny shoes in her pomp, all carefully arranged in a closet about the size of your average 3000 square foot American middle class home?

Sad to say American fighters are now populated with the worst stinkers and poseurs in boxing these days of dwindling boxing interest, so, here we go again with another roll of them dice of destiny in a supposed P4P rematch on PPV that even fewer will watch this time.

Imelda & All Her Precious

Imelda & All Her Precious

....1001, 1002, 1003.....

….1001, 1002, 1003…..

.....2143, 2144, 2145....

…..2143, 2144, 2145….

.....2789, 2790, 2791.....

…..2789, 2790, 2791…..

Maternity Ward Giving Boxing His Kiss of Death

Maternity Ward Giving Boxing The KISS of Death

IBHOF Fight~Regis Prograis vs Julio Diaz Jr

Southpaw Regis Prograis, 19-0, 16 KO, defends his NABF super lightweight title in Turning Stone Resort & Casino, Verona, New York against fellow undefeated prospect, Joel Diaz Jr, 23-0, 19 KO.

Both prospects plan to leverage this Hall of Fame weekend in New York to move on to bigger, and better opportunity in this rebuilding year of boxing. Lots of HOFers and their fans in town love a good match, so what better HOFer watching is there than at a boxing match next door everyone is keen for?

Oddly, Prograis at age 28 has 5 years of boxing experience to the 25 yr old Diaz 7 years of boxing experience, but by the Boxrec formulac ratings, Prograis at 27th to Diaz 68th has a big paper edge, but that shouldn’t matter since both have been fairly coddled as is the American way these days, and remain at the same untested level.

Let us hope in the overall dire circumstances American boxing is currently stewing in that these fighters make a good enough fight of it to enhance both their games down the road. Good luck and may the best man win. Can you HEAR me officials?

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

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?”