Tag Archives: ibf

American Graffiti~Errol Spense vs Lamont Peterson

This All American donnybrook takes place this Saturday, January 20th at Barclays, a shiny new entertainment venue located in what used to be the graffiti covered working class neighborhoods of Brooklyn before New York suits upended the residents for upscale gentrification.

The 28 year old Errol Spense, 22-0, 19 KO is the newest American hotshot in the welter division with high hopes of greatness. The 33 year old Lamont Peterson, 35-3-1, 17 KO has generally been an honorable contender and minor beltholder for this weak American generation of 3rd millennium boxers. While having some good natural physical attributes such as quickness and durability melded with the current negative defensive skills taught to modern American boxers to the exclusion of offensive excellence, he could never enter into the mix of greatness. And like many fighters in the fight game, he was led astray with some bad advice, the worst being that illicit doctor’s prescription for a testosterone implant that led to his unfortunate public moniker of Cheaterson when he failed a drug test.

Sadly, this low key fight seems to be the best fight boxing can put on in January. While a decent fight from a boxing enthusiast point of view due to Peterson’s ability to make Spence work hard for his victory, a true fan might wonder why some bigger fights couldn’t be made in such an open month as the barren January traditionally is?

Well, folks, here it is as the naked truth, there really are no really big all American fights to be made in boxing, and the boxing suits are also loath to go viewing head to head against the NFL Superbowl build up and the NBA regular season.

Spense has already needed to go overseas for his biggest fight where he acquitted himself quite well against long time British contender, Kell Brook, but physically Spense is really tight at the weight and will need to go up to middleweight for a Canelo fight if he wants a really big payday. That shining beacon of hopeful purses is not likely to be hanging around that much longer, maybe 3-4 years, and Canelo certainly doesn’t need Spense to make his money, so good luck to Spense spinning his wheels in what is left of Boxing’s barren landscape. Money Mayweather and the boxing suits sucked out all of what was noble and good about boxing, leaving vast shadows in an empty cavern of what used to be a plethora of hardnosed contenders now defensively shadowboxing each other for the privilege of a fight with what used to be the great champion, now pretend belt holders. Spense holds one of those pretend belts, the IBF.

But for boxing fans in this bitterly cold winter, it’s Spense vs Peterson who will almost certainly be boxing in a negative defensive style to take Spense deep into rounds where he may show some stamina vulnerability. In turn, I would interpret Spense’s ambition and professionalism to show up in top shape with a savvy game plan to highlight both his boxing skills and his formidable power, and more importantly, enhance his boxing media marketability. In just the battle of natural attributes, Spense wins hands down before we ever get into his excellent all around skills shown thus far. I don’t see Peterson going past 6 rounds, and will likely be whacked out by the 4th round in spite of his durability, but maybe early on he could bust up Spense’s eye or break his nose to force Spense to gut out a gritty fight. It happens.

I do hope Peterson puts up a credible fight for as long as he lasts. He may not realize it, but he could well make his best purses as a credible gatekeeper test for up an coming fighters due to the woeful lack of quality boxers these days, but he ain’t doin’ a damn thing to promote fights with that mangled mess of a crow’s nest glued to his face, another reason boxing has been on the decline. Too many modern fighters don’t look and act professional anymore.  The best Americans can do for Spense is hope and pray he keeps his head screwed on as he continues his ascent. He is one of the few bright hopes American boxing fans have in these barren depression years of boxing.

Many in the archived boxing annals were the talented American fools succumbing to the temptations of wine, women, and song, and now they have to pass through the gauntlet of suits who determine fight outcomes more than the fighters do these days, so good luck gentlemen. Your futures await you.


Alexander Ustinov Vs Manuel Charr

Alexander Ustinov,34-1, 25 KO, goes against Manuel Charr, 30-4, 17 KO, for the vacant WBA world championship at Koenig-Pilsener-Arena in Oberhausen, Germany. Charr is returning to action after having had hip replacement surgery in May, while Ustinov is a huge lump of a fighter generously avoided for that substantial reason.

Well, folks, such activity is probably needed to grease the skids for a Deyonce Wilder WBC/WBA unification down the line. Of course Anthony Joshua holds the real WBA title, the “Super” title along with the IBF title, but the WBC unification is probably way off in the future to 2019 if ever. Joseph Parker is the current WBO titlest looking for a big payday by leveraging Deyonce and Joshua for the best payday.

Regardless, Joshua is the consensus #1 Man of the division into the foreseeable future. 

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


Manny Pacquiao Giving Free Passes to Title Fight?

Manny Pacquiao, the esteemed Senator, fighter, fight promoter, pro basketball player and coach, recording artist and movie star and all around raconteur seems to be opening the doors of his latest fight promotion in the Philippines.

McJoe Arroyo, 17-0, 8 KO, defends his newly won IBF superflyweight title in Taguig City on the outskirts of Manilla September 3rd against Jerwin Ancajas24-1-1, 16 KO. Sounds like a really great fight, but the language used on the fightnews article made it sound like a freebie. Could it be yet another example of the legendary largess of Pacquiao passed along to his people?

Sounds great even if I have to pay, but alas, that round trip air fare and hotel fare is killer. Oh to be a Filipino for one day. Maybe some day!

“”The fight will be held at the Philippine Navy Gymnasium in Taguig City and will open to the public as a gift of Sen. Manny Pacquiao to fight fans.””

McJoe Arroyo arrives in Manila




Hercules Cleaning Out Al Haymon Stables~Anthony Joshua vs Dominic Breazeale

IBF Heavy Champ Anthony Joshua, 16-0, 16 KO,  ever more looking to be a modern day Hercules cleaning out Al Haymon‘s stable of heavyweights, defends against Dominic Breazeale, 17-0, 15 KO, at the O2 Arena (Millenium Dome), Greenwich, London, Saturday, June 25.

Joshua looking American & Breazeale looking British, go figure...

Joshua looking American & Breazeale looking British, go figure…

The USurper Breazeale wants us to know that he’s no Charles Martin, the soft Haymon heavyweight that Joshua blew out in two rounds two months ago. Well, bully good for Breazeale to step up for this title shot, however in his last fight where he did indeed step up for the first time against a 43 year old southpaw fringe contender, Amir Mansour, it is exceedingly rare to see a fighter so greatly outclassed as was Breazeale. Mansour swept the first five rounds on the judges’ scorecards by 50-44, 50-44, 50-44, even knocking down Breazeale in the third round for a 10-8 round.

Mansour, however, was so sick with the flu before the fight that he could barely breathe, so his trainers gave him a mouthpiece fitted for his upper teeth only. That contributed to what proved to be a disastrous injury when he almost bit tongue in half during the 2nd round when Breazeale caught him. It remains a mystery how the partial mouthpiece was even allowed by the California State Athletic Commision other than to note these are the same knucklenoggins who approved Antonio Margarito handwraps that turned out to be loaded with a few plaster crumbles in an insert. Nobody in these commissions is ever publicly reprimanded for these rules violations that they are supposed to be screening for, which begs the question, why are they even there if all they are is empty suits?

As the fight finally played out, Mansour had to retire on his stool after gulping a quart of his blood. He was rushed off to the hospital to undergo five hours of surgery requiring 36 stitches to sew everything together. Amazing the amount of heart he showed under such painfully debilitating conditions to dominate for as long as he did.

So while we have to credit the 30 year old Breazeale for enduring such a terrible beatdown, and he did come up with some big punches that hastened the end over his wounded prey, as far as demonstrable skill levels goes as to what normally constitutes a contender, he miserably FAILED his first real test. Thus the prime aged, rampaging Joshua will be the big favorite with Breazeale in desperate need of a Hail Mary punch.  If the flabby Breazeale makes it halfway through round four, the “over” wagers would triple their money, so the oddsmakers are anticipating a huge flux of wagers on the KO of Breazeale before 3.5 rds is up.

That’s just the way it is for this one. If the 26 year old Joshua’s ego doesn’t swell up up beyond containment from the ease of his victories, and he stays in training and progressing, he could finish out as one of the best ever and maybe even undefeated to boot. Gonna be a platoon of big boys out there in his future just waiting for that one shot to obliterate him, so this one more step at a time, easy as she goes sailor.

The Mesomorph vs The Endomorph

The Mesomorph vs The Endomorph


Joseph Parker To Tangle With Carlos Takam

Joseph Parker, 18-0, 16 KO, takes on his most difficult challenge yet when he tangles with Carlos Takam, 33-2-1, 25 KO, in a 12 round heavyweight IBF elimination bout, Saturday, May 21 at the Vodafone Events Centre, Manukau City, New Zealand. The winner gets a crack at the winner of the upcoming Anthony Joshua IBF title defense against Dominic Breazeale.

Carlos Takam vs Joseph Parker

Carlos Takam vs Joseph Parker

Takam, a 35 year old France based Cameroonian, gave former WBA champ Alexander Povetkin one of his toughest fights in 2014 before succumbing. Listed on Boxrec just under 6-3 and in the 240 lb range, here he is standing slightly back from the listed 6-4, 240 lb Parker, so even allowing for that diminishing perspective factor, likely Takam is slightly shorter than listed and/or Parker slightly taller.

No matter, it’s who wins that matters to the fighters, not size differences which are but one of a myriad factors in any fight. New Zealand born and recently relocated to Las Vegas,  the 24 year old Parker is the young gun projected to be the favorite and the winner, but even at his best it’s likely to be a tough bout for him. It goes without saying that Takam is the hungrier, more experienced fighter here, a very dangerous proposition for any heavyweight no matter how credentialed.

We’ll see how well Parker responds to this new challenge of Takam that both need to advance further through the ranks, so fair play all and a big thanks from the boxing public for making such a good bout.


Al Haymon Ships Charles Martin Down Big River For Anthony Joshua?

In a surprise move by the always hidden under ground and out of sight of daylight, garlic, and holy crosses, Al Hayman, he has struck a landmark deal to ship his freshly crowned IBF heavyweight champ, Charles Martin, across the pond to defend against Anthony Joshua , Saturday, April 9th at O2 Arena Millenium Dome, Greenwich, London.

BTW, noted boxing scribe Thomas Hauser after his wonderful expose of the Floyd Mayweather TUE drug testing debacle, has compounded that seminal work with another 5 part series on the mystery of Al Haymon here:

What we know about Al Haymon: Part V

Why is this fight so surprising you might inquire? Well, Hayman has proven to be the antithesis of a bold, high risk promoter as far as the fights he makes, generally preferring his large stable of fighters to fight each other in “shooting fish in a barrel” type productions where the favored fighter takes little risk against the lesser. Charles Martin scored big time when in spite of doing next to nothing in the ring for his title shot, his hapless opponent, Vyacheslav Glazkov, ended up mysteriously collapsing in a severe knee tear. Probably it was a long time disability that his team hid hoping to last long enough to make the scratch line for a rare opportunity to go up against the raw, untutored Martin for a bogus title that was stupidly stripped from Tyson Fury.

Charles Martin vs Anthony Joshua

Charles Martin vs Anthony Joshua

The diminutive chap behind beltholder Martin above is a long time personal chef to the wealthy now turned boxing manager, Paul Cain, a scouser from Merry Olde England in another very odd couple type of pairing for boxing. Martin is the rawest of the raw type of talent with little amateur background to speak of, but here he’ll be, blinking in disbelief at his career high purse and media frenzy most fighters could only dream of. The highly credentialed Olympic Superheavy Gold Medalist, Joshua, has already been able to parlay his accolades into gobs of high level pro sparring and fights for stellar pro development and big purses. It’s almost an unfair fight save for the unknown X factor that Charles may have hidden deep with his wellspring, just waiting for the right moment for greatness to emerge.

Both Martin and Joshua seem likable, hardworking gents overall compared to the many bad apples in boxing, so my take is that win lose or draw, each should grow further into the division. Joshua of course is the overwhelming favorite as the local hero in a hometown environment for him. Few fights this year will ever be as big and raucous with the potential to sell out this high end sports and entertainment centre, so Martin will certainly be starstruck, a big handicap to overcome, but the adrenaline rush come first bell should wash away those stars. Americans have traditionally been reluctant to travel because their dominant boxing history allowed them to control the venues and officiating, but it’s a new, softer American era now as the easy going Martin represents with his doughboy profile in the ring. Joshua will look like Hercules in comparison. No matter, these are two, really big, modern superheavyweights, so Martin being a little tubby is not a big deal in the 12 round title era, but for now rather more indicative of his relatively new entrance into boxing. He was a carpenter and shipping clerk as recently as 2012 if I extrapolate his background correctly.

In a Big Boy fight like this, both around the 6-6, 250 lb mark, one punch is more likely to completely change the argument more than any other division. Stay tuned to the local channel near you come fight night as it will be widely available in the UK, Europe, and US. 


Fall Fireworks~Gennedy Golovkin vs David Lemieux

The somewhat under appreciated David Lemieux has surprisingly agreed to put up his freshly minted IBF middleweight bauble against the WBC/WBA baubles of new age juggernaut Gennady Golovkin in what promises to be a fan friendly slug’em up. That would be at Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, Saturday, October 17th, supposedly on HBO PPV which ain’t shabby fare for an Armenian-Frenchman from Montreal and a refuge from Kazakhstan. Them fur’nrs is takin’ over American Boxing, and thank goodness for that or we would never have any decent fights in the US.

That said, Lemieux, who gamely fought his way back from ignominy after a couple of stinging losses, me thinks he’s well overmatched here. He used to be listed as having only has a 64 inch reach, meaning he has to be in pretty close to land any punches regardless of what his short reach really is. Golovkin is unfortunately for him the superior long distance sharpshooter who likely boxes in a technical, counterpunching way to let his natural power eventually take out Lemieux who will be charging in like a bull, but now a more mature and nuanced bull, so Golovkin needs to be very careful. It’s a shame really to see Lemieux sacrificed so early in his career just as he reached the top echlon, but then I get the feeling he’s near the best he’ll ever be and may not be planning on a long future in boxing. Then again he may prove to be the bull in this china closet, shattering the expectations of all his naysayers as he as been doing most of his career.

So take the money now and leave the rest to sort itself out later in the fight as the saying goes by real fighters, a dying breed in the boxing world these days.

The Hawaiian Punch

The Hawaiian Punch

The supporting undercard is a very dynamic and perhaps somewhat mysterious bout between the acclaimed, fast rising, undefeated, newly crowned Ring #1 P4P…whew…that would be Roman Chocolatito Gonzalez, and the always popular fan favorite, the Hawaiian Punch, Brian Viloria. The highly credentialed Viloria tends to fight very hot or very cold, usually up to the level of his opponent, so it’s hard to predict the nature of outcome other than to note Chocolatito will be a substantial favorite to defend his WBC flyweight title for the very good reason of consistency and youth. He has become the proverbial beast, and he sure better be ready come fight night, because if Viloria can work up a head of steam early, there may be no stopping him. I’m guessing this could also well be the fight of the night if not the year if Viloria is really dialed in.

Whatever the results on the night, this is an all action card with some serious hurt being doled out as limp bodies splatter the canvas for the count, the history of boxing packed in nutshell this one.

When Two Worlds Collide

When Two Worlds Collide


Mexican Carlos Molina vs Cornelius Bundrage

Mexican Carlos Molina as opposed to American born Carlos Molina finally has a chance to defend his lightly regarded IBF junior middleweight title against 41 year old former beltholder Cornelius Bundrage on Oct. 11 in Cancun, Mexico. Cancun ain’t a bad place for a deported Mexican “sexual offender” to land given his entanglement at the good ol’ US of A Homeland Security detention facility. Could have easily been a much worse outcome had he not had some high level suits working on his behalf.

His situation is similar to that of former lightweight champ Jesus Chavez who was deported on criminal charges and had to work his way in Mexico back to the US of A through legal means. Likely Molina makes that attempt in a much more difficult climate rearranged under ever more stringent “Homeland Security” regulations that encourage permanent deportations amidst the ongoing US/Mexico border crisis that contemptible political establishments have created for illegal economic gain for some 30 decades now.

This fight has a look of a dying gasp at the top for Bundrage who has been a rated contender in a weak division without ever looking to be a top fighter, so here we go again for him against another weak contender cum current ABC champ. The good news for him is that Molina technically won’t be the hometown fighter after having lived his most relevant years in America, but the bad news is Molina is a Haymon signed fighter and tough to knockout which is just about the only way Bundrage can win this fight.

Aggressive offense goes against the grain of the defensive nature of Bundrage even if the aggressive pressuring Molina can’t pop a cherry with a pile driver. The fight is likely be a dreary, sloppy affair like most Molina and Bundrage fights, but hey, ho, boxing does sloppy as well as any other profession, so there you go.


Only In Mississippi~Sam Solimon vs Jermaine Taylor

The 40 year old freshly crowned IBF middleweight titleholder Sam Soliman and the 36 year old former undisputed champion Jermain Taylor will be heading up the Beau Rivage fight card October 8th down in the Biloxi mud flats of Mississippi. That’s a mid-work week Wednesday for a proper alert in this under the radar bout.

Wow, where to start with this bout that had all the nuance of an unexpected thunderclap bolt of lightning from clear blue skies when it was announced? How Taylor managed to line up a new set of suits to bankroll this nonstandard title challenge is worthy of a chapter in book about the seedy underpinnings of boxing. He is currently out on bail after a shooting altercation with his cousin in Arkansas that you can catch up with here:


As to the fight, we can start with the formidable size advantage Taylor will hold assuming he is able to drop 40 lbs from his substantial 200 lb frame in the 7 weeks from the time of his arrest. Soliman is not a big fighter in spite of winning the Aussie cruiserweight title in only his 2nd pro bout. What he is is something of a training fanatic, always being in fantastic condition for his light punching but very busy box and move style. I’m guessing Taylor will weigh 180-185 lbs come fight night to Sam’s 165-170 lbs, but the styles guarantee this bout won’t be decided on size.

Soliman vs Wright

Soliman vs Wright

Taylor can punch some and used to a solid boxer, but I haven’t seen his most recent reincarnation. His past weakness has proven to be his stamina usually interrelated to his chin. Soliman can exploit his stamina, but with a lowly 30% KO ratio, he’s not likely to put a dent in the Taylor chin. The biggest advantage Taylor holds is the home style environs of Mississippi. Soliman lost a widely disparaged decision against 185 lb Winky Wright 9 years ago that American fans rightly booed then. Wright was going into the Bernard Hopkins title challenge that the suits could hardly jeopardize, but they foolishly tried their best by scheduling Soliman without knowing his capabilities.

While I wish Jermain all the best after his recent altercation and rough years in the backwater ports, I suspect this fight will be quickly forgotten, unless…

…Because of the ass backward backroom scoring method boxing uses for decisions, especially “hometown decisions,” Taylor is in this hunt in spite of being well past his best. I expect Soliman to largely outbox and befuddle Taylor, but whether Sam gets proper credit is a whole ‘nother ball of wax.

We’ll see soon enough.