Tag Archives: miguel cotto

Ace of Spades~Canelo vs Golovkin For The Glory

Saul Alvarez, 49-1-1, 34 KO and former WBC champ challenges unified middleweight champ Gennady Golovkin, for all his titles, HOWEVER, Canelo still holds the Ace of Spades in this dust ’em up, the Ring middleweight title he won off Miguel Cotto 2 years ago. That would, of course, be this Saturday, September 16th, in Las Vegas at T Mobile.

Canelo’s last fight was supposed to be an old school Mexican heavyweight shootout against Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, but Canelo amazingly unveiled a new, high octane, bob and weave aggressive offense utilizing lateral in and out movement that proved to be way too much for Junior as the complete pounding of him demonstrated. This was the best anyone has seen out of Canelo, so now he risks health and legend going against a modern day MONSTER in Golovkin, 37-0, 33 KO who only just lost his 23rd consecutive KO streak, accumulated over a 10 year span in his last fight against a running Danny Jacobs. Speculation ran rampant when training pics 3 weeks out showed Canelo ripped to the gills as usual, and, gasp, the titanium forged Golovkin looking like the Pillsbury Dough Boy.

Canelo 3 weeks away: 

Golovkin 3 weeks away:

Naturally the frothing, slobbering anti-social media experts concluded that Golovkin must be SHOT now at 35 years of age, but of course they already knew that Canelo would never fight him after savaging the Canelo name across the internet, pretty much exposing them had they any honor, which of course they do not.

Canelo and Golovkin have some favorable history together as sparring partners upon arriving in America to make their chops where the teenage Canelo actually had more pro experience. Anecdotal reports recall the teenager holding his own  as a welterweight in some lively spars, and now here he is all grown up in the greatest years of his prime as Golovkin enters his last prime years, so it’s a win/win for boxing if boxing can clean themselves up from the fetid mess they splattered themselves with a few weeks back with McGregor vs Mayweather. Yes, we have to hold our collective breath just to talk honestly about boxing these days as we scramble for our gas masks just to survive the outrages.

Best Buds

Best Buds

And, yupsir, that orchestrated hoax in advance took some of the wind out of the promotional sails of this fight. Canelo is still P4P #1 on boxrec while Golovkin is #4.

Golovkin, blessed with a naturally sunny disposition that belies his unceasing brutality as a fighter, is the expected favorite, the approximate odds 3 weeks out being Canelo +140 to Golovkin -160. I suspect the close odds reflect that he’s a slugger with all the attendant bias against sluggers who let their opponents go the distance as happened with Jacobs. Canelo is the money fighter in this donnybrook and could very well nab the decision in a corrupt jurisdiction as Vegas is whether deserving or not.

Forget the dubious scoring and prejudicial actions of the ref in Vegas.  For those wanting to actually enjoy boxing without being emotionally bound to a wager, it should rightfully be The Big Drama Show of a hotly contested ebb and flow of a classic that even the most pedestrian non-fan can savor. Who cares if one or the other wins the always dubious Academy Award by the end? If the combatants play out their roles as expected, we’ll have a fight to savor ’til the end of time.

 

 

Shock & Awe~Canelo vs Amir Khan

Now that seismic tsunami waves created by the Thunderclap announcement of Saul Alvarez vs Amir Khan have finally died out, here they’ll be on this Cinco de Mayo weekend to inaugurate the spanking brand new T-Mobile in Las Vegas @ 155lb catchweight, the new Caneloweight class. What comes next?

Back to 2015 for context: Fans of both Miguel Cotto and Canelo were highly disappointed over that light sparring match for the legendary WBC/Ring/Lineal middleweight title after expecting a well waged WAR for the ages given their usually fan friendly styles. Fans of Khan have been long disappointed over his lack of top ten opponents since being knocked out by Danny Garcia in 2012. Upon announcement of this fight, based upon expectations on paper, ie their records, Canelo knocks Khan out all day every day and twice on Sundays, and true, that may well come to pass, but Khan does have some upside on Canelo starting with nominally better handspeed and the kind of fleet running footspeed that could dampen Canelo’s offense. If Khan manages to survive the distance, then according to unwritten boxing code, that means he exceeded expectations, meaning he may cop the decision regardless how many might think Canelo won it in a landslide. Decisions, sometimes even knockouts these days, are too often a crapshoot in boxing. Who could ever really win or lose when boxing’s officiating/scoring rules are so backward, corrupt, and unenforceable that they literally create negative feedback from fans every other fight week? Especially grievous are when Al Haymon fighters are on the cards, and guess what, Khan is currently one of 200 fighters “advised” by Haymon.

The Money Fighter: This fight was designed for the 25 year old Canelo, 46-1-1, 32 KO, to secure a big payday before the Gennady Golovkin fight that we all hope we’ll see later this year. Although Canelo was brought up hard in the traditional Mexican way, he now occupies a rare high niche as the future of high level boxing along with the newly minted Brit Anthony Joshua. His critics have long moaned over his supposed favored status, but critics are always moaning about everyone and everything anyway, especially Canelo even when he fights top contenders. Now he enters into the main of his prime still huge in Mexico, yet still developing internationally, so enter Khan and the potential harvest of new British fans who may like what they see in their first viewing if Canelo seals the deal.

The Hype That Didn't Deliver

The Hype That Didn’t Deliver

The Wannabe Money Fighter: The now 29 year old Khan, 31-3, 19 KO, was the sorta money fighter for a while, but Golden Boy could only keep him propped up so long. After his setbacks, he disappeared from the mainstream, only surfacing during petty twitter nonsense. As a former Olympic Silver medalist, he had turned pro with a lucrative contract and guaranteed popularity until he started opening his mouth to repeatedly insert his foot. Then came the humiliating 54 second first round knockout at the explosive hands of Breidis Prescott. Devastated personally by such a brutal loss and subsequent derision by Brits who loved his cocky comeuppance, he soon fled the British Isles for a productive maturing phase to be trained by Freddie Roach, but seemed to be off mentally in the ring the few times he was matched up hard as if he never actually learned to actually fight and strategize other than going through basic boxing mechanics that put him further back of the pack with a couple more losses. Recently completing a succession of interim and vacant WBC silver titles, he now goes for one of the most prestigious titles ever, the Lineal/Ring/WBC middleweight title held by Canelo, a humongous step from where he’s ever been before, but as legendary English Poet Robert Browning once asked three centuries back, “if a man’s reach can’t extend beyond his grasp, then what’s a heaven for?”

Canelo vs Khan

Canelo vs Khan

Khan has the sort of flashy hand and foot speed with eye popping combinations to dazzle judges, yet the individual talents never added up for the expected whole package down to the mental letdowns and somewhat fragile chin. In contrast, Canelo turned pro as a 15 year old kid Julio Cesar Chavez style and worked his way up a very competitive Mexicano food chain to the point where his startling looks in an otherwise mostly mono physiotypical culture combined with his youth and fighting ability to make him a huge star. He’s not blessed with flashy physical attributes that wow the casual fan, but every physical and mental attribute that he needs in boxing he has in plenty enough abundance, sorta like an all around B+/A- student beating out all the honor students on college entrance examines and in the workforce. The sum of his individual talents have thus far proven greater than the expected whole.

It helps in the English speaking culture Canelo primarily operates out of these days that he doesn’t yet speak English very well, perhaps mitigating any potential “gotcha” stupid comments. The press takes great joy in baiting those unfamiliar with the dirty machinations of the media. Poor Khan in contrast, continues to step in one public mess after another because he does speak English and is not shy about expressing himself.

The Officiating: This being Las Vegas, you can bet your last dollar on it, the officiating is generally atrocious. Kenny Bayless is the assigned referee who most notably as far as Canelo is concerned, allowed TUE 49-0 to headbutt Canelo with impunity in the early stages of that fight as well as warning Canelo for a low tap he delivered to let TUE know he needed to release his simultaneous choke hold while lacing his face with the tape on his gloves, all while Bayless stood by pretending to be a statue until Canelo roused him from his stupor by issuing his love tap. So no love for Canelo by Bayless who would also appear to favor Haymon fighters. Judges are: Adalaide Byrd, Glenn Trowbridge and Glenn Feldman who is the only non Nevada resident of the bunch to make the officiating appear at least somewhat fair, yeah, right. Byrd is an horrific judge who favors light hitting/hard running American boxer types, an unholy alliance that has literally eliminated boxing as a traditional sport of combat and popularity. She seemingly would favor Khan, especially since he’s become an American trained, American based fighter. Trowbridge seems to be a low profile type on the right side of the scoring scale in the few big fights I used to establish context for him. Feldman operates normally in the northeast US, most recently in the Adrien Broner vs Ashley Theophane joke this April Fool’s 1st in Washington, DC, a place rife with specious officiating as one might expect from the seat of US government these days.

Bayless nets $4,150 as  the judges net $2,950 for the gig, but of course these are chump change figures released for the rubes. There is no telling what’s going on under the table behind the scenes.

So, stylistically, Khan has to implement an effective hit and run style to have any chance of surviving to win a decision. In contrast, Canelo is basically a well balanced fighter both on offense and defense who can pretty much do it all when needed. His style perhaps best described as counterpuncher/slugger against powerful fighters or a cautious boxer/counterpuncher in some of his less compelling fights against boxers where he concentrates on not making any mistakes, so in his fashion he boxes with boxers, and punches with punchers.

That would seem to indicate Canelo would box with Khan to put steady but careful pressure on him, making sure the public gets to see Khan running the extra mile in the ring to avoid contact. He surely knows he’s expected to knockout Khan and generally abhors disappointing his fans. Can he deliver this go round?

Young Canelo muscling up to Golovkin

Young Canelo muscling up to Golovkin

 

CC Your Buds~Canelo vs Cotto Is ON!

Mandalay Bay Casino in Las Vegas will be exploding come Saturday, November 21st when Saul Canelo Alvarez and Miguel Angel Cotto renew the historical Mexican vs Puerto Rican family feud with a real fight, can you believe it, a real fight in America? Who’d have ever thunk it in this faint hearted day and age of posers, duckers, and bawling punch monkey darlings? Could even be a fight for the ages, but at very least we know from their pedigrees it’ll be good as long as it lasts.

The new promotional kid on the block, Roc Nation, and Golden Boy will share promotional honors after a heart stopping, grueling set of negotiations with Cotto who has lately become something  diva, one of the concessions needed being the 155-pound catchweight. Up for grabs will be Cotto’s Ring Belt and the WBC middleweight belt that he is reported as earning $30 million to defend compared to Canelo’s $10 million. I would have thought the purses would be roughly even after their similar recent PPV numbers, but such is another huge concession that Canelo takes for the opportunity of a lifetime.

Canelo Pounds Kirkland

Canelo Pounds Kirkland

Luckily Canelo has been well priming himself for this big bout at 155 with his last three outings at the weight where he did quite well for himself, knocking the doggie biscuits out of Alfredo Angulo and James Kirkland and forcing Erislandy Lara into a shameless run, shuck, and jive for survival.

Meanwhile, Cotto hasn’t been doing too shabby himself with conclusive knockouts of Sergio Martinez and Daniel Geale. Why he insisted on a silly 159lb catchweight against Martinez? Because he can call more shots at this stage of his career. In making the Geale fight at 157lb, now I could understand as that’s a sweet three pounds under the middleweight limit, but I don’t think those catchweights affected the results anymore than this one at 155lbs will. However, if the winner tries to make Gennady Golovkin make 155, that could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. Cotto might try for that kind of fight, but I think Canelo is ready to move up permanently to the full 160 where he obviously belongs if he wins this, but their futures are not ours to see. First things first.

Cotto Pounds Money

Cotto Pounds Money

In a bad sign of the declining times for Andre Ward, amazingly only 31 years of age and wasting his career away, he is supposed to be fighting another light heavyweight type opponent. Ahh, ha you say, another TBA sacrificial lamb for the needy Ward is it again? Yup, dragged him all the way kicking and screaming out of Oakland they did for this. He can’t even make the cut for the main supporting bout of the night anymore, just pitiful. His heart must be buried in that big load sagging his shorts for this farce, but it’s his career to fritter away, so be it.

Oh, yes and oh, no, so now he can’t even glove it up for his TBA after having a knee problem, so looks like Mr. TBA will just have to wait until 2016 to find Ward in a ring…maybe. What a loss to TBA boxing!

So enter yet another faint hearted P4P poser added to the undercard, Guillermo Rigondeaux , reportedly fighting a last minute TBA, Drian Francisco. World P4P rated by Haymon/Golden Boy News of the Ring Word and still fighting TBAs is it? Such is the fainthearted nature of boxing these days.

As to the otherworldly compelling main event, I strongly favor Canelo. Cotto’s older brother, also named Miguel, managed to rock the teenaged Canelo, slumping him for maybe a second before he recovered quickly to blast the senior Cotto to smithereens shortly thereafter, so could be Cotto has some younger brother payback working here his motivation. Even in his losses, nobody ever had an easy time against Cotto who has added significant caginess to his game to compensate for his fall from the absolute top of his prime. Problem being that Canelo is immensely stronger and even more experienced than Cotto by now, yet still very young and fresh. Simply put, he’s never been beat up. However, trying to walk through Cotto from the gitgo may well be the equivalent of trying to walk through a truck, so I expect Canelo to take his time warming into the fight as a boxer as does Cotto. Then all Hell gets unleashed for the finale.

Yes Sir, Freddie Roach has got Cotto boxing smarter than ever, and Canelo is a high level boxer, so this should be a traditional, high level stakes, aggressive, ring centered boxing display with plenty of applied hurt and heart. Neither comes out completely unscathed in this one, yet the fans may count themselves lucky to remember where they were on this monumental night if the fight is as good as is hoped.

 

Good Sport Updated~Ring Ratings vs Boxrec Ratings~Who You Got?

Well folks, the “boxing experts” who purport to know all about boxing so as to fill our empty noggins with their boxing “expertise” seem to be completely at odds with each other here. No surprises there since boxing is a sport with rules that “boxing experts” often ignore so as to benefit “the chosen” for personal gain or other purpose. Nobody can even say with any degree of certainty from fight to fight which biases the referee will show or how close or far apart the fight scores will be. And for whom? Naturally this is passed on in their ranking systems, in this example being in dire opposition to each other, a perfect draw in boxing terms, but is it really?

You can see some fun I previously had with Ring rankings here, utter hilarity distilled just for you:

https://roberto00.wordpress.com/2010/05/04/ratings-ring-ratings-good-sport/

Anyways, ahem, the current Ring P4Pers were elected by rather large committee circle of…”experts”…are thus:

  • 1. ROMAN GONZALEZ Record: 43-0-0 (37 KOs)
    Ranking:This Week: 1 | Last Week: 1 | Weeks On List: 68
    Title: RING, WBC flyweight
    2. Andre Ward Record: 28-0-0 (15 KOs)
    Ranking:This Week: 2 | Last Week: 2 | Weeks On List:
    No title
    3. Sergey Kovalev Record: 28-0-1 (25 KOs)
    Ranking:This Week: 3 | Last Week: 3 | Weeks On List: 28
    Title: WBO, IBF, WBA light heavyweight
    4. Gennady Golovkin Record: 33-0-0 (30 KOs)
    Ranking: This Week: 4 | Last Week: 4 | Weeks On List: 32
    Title:WBA middleweight
    5. Guillermo Rigondeaux Record: 15-0-0 (10 KOs)
    Ranking: This Week: 5 | Last Week: 5 | Weeks On List: 109
    Title: RING, WBO, WBA jr. featherweight
    6. Wladimir Klitschko Record: 64-3-0 (53 KOs)
    Ranking: This Week: 6 | Last Week: 6 | Weeks On List: 268
    Title: RING, IBF, WBO, WBA heavyweight
    7. Terence Crawford Record: 26-0-0 (18 KOs)
    Ranking: This Week: 7 | Last Week: 7 | Weeks On List: 21
    Title: WBO jr. welterweight
    8. Manny Pacquiao Record: 57-6-2 (38 KOs)
    Ranking: This Week: 8 | Last Week: 8 | Weeks On List: 617
    No title
    9. Shinsuke Yamanaka Record: 24-0-2 (17 KOs)
    Ranking: This Week: 9 | Last Week: 9 | Weeks On List: 19
    Title: WBC bantamweight

    10. Kell Brook Record: 35-0-0 (24 KOs)
    Ranking: This Week: 10 | Last Week: 10 | Weeks On List: 2  Title: IBF

    OK, now on to boxrec rankings for comparison. Boxrec uses computer accumulated points which are the first emboldened numbers to go along with each fighter record, the most unbiased rankings regardless of various human errors in assigning the points for various performance measures:

    1. Wladimir Klitschko Dr Steelhammer 1330 64-3 heavyweight

    2. Gennady Golovkin GGG 1078 33-0 middleweight

    3. Saul Alvarez Canelo 1075 45-1-1 super welterweight

    4. Sergey Kovalev Krusher 999 28-0-1 light heavyweight

    5. Manny Pacquiao Pac Man 913 57-6-2 welterweight

    6. Miguel Cotto Junito 887 40-4 middleweight

    7. Kell Brook Special K 863 35 0 0 29 welterweight

    8 Keith Thurman One Time 835 26 0 0 26 welterweight

    9 Erislandy Lara The American Dream 781 21-2-2 super welterweight

    10 Adonis Stevenson Superman 777 27-1 lightheavy

    11. Terence Crawford Bud 760 26-0 jr welterweight

    18. Andre Ward 637 Son of God 28-0 supermiddleweight

    23. Guillermo Rigondeaux 564 El Chacal 15-0  superbantamweight

    29. Roman Gonzalez 519 Chocolatito 43-0  Flyweight

    90. Shinsuke Yamanaka  342 24-0-2 Bantamweight

    OK, first most glaring contradiction in the two rating systems is Roman Gonzalez being first in Ring yet only 29th in Boxrec due to being in a lower weight class of a smaller population of fighters compared to the more populous larger divisions. In context to the way they do their rankings, the Boxrec #1 P4P female, Delfine Persoon who operates in the lightweight division with a population of only 115 total females, she has only accumulated 172 points in contrast to the Gonzalez 519 points with  a male flyweight population of 709. Cecilia Braekhus is the undefeated 27-0 female welter champ widely acclaimed, yet only 10th P4P due to an exceedingly low welter population of 37 females, so fighter population, ie competition, is important to Boxrec rankings.

    If we combine Choco’s two ratings and divide by two for an average, we’d get a 15th rank which seems appropriate even if he has proven to be a beast in his 3 divisions. He could continue to accumulate points in Boxrec to rise further, but let’s move on to other glaring abnormalities.

    Boxrec has Golovkin #2 which seems about right given a general public consensus that he should be #1, but Ring lists the inactive Andre Ward #2 in spite of his gross inactivity in the supermiddleweight division dating back at least 2 years. He also refuses to leave California except when he was forced one single time by the Super Six Tourney, yet he was still at home in New York against a true international fighter in Carl Froch. Boxrec rankings seem more justified in that regard as Ward, 18th, simply wants to sit on his hometown canned record like another American supposed great, TUE 49-0, did for 9 consecutive years.

    Ring has Kovalev and Golovkin ranked 3 and 4 to Boxrec’s Canelo and Kovalev as 3 and 4, so we have only a small measure of congruancy due to Canelo being unranked by Ring in spite of being previously ranked and only losing a majority decision to TUE 49-0, otherwise cleaning out the 154 division at 155lb catchweights as he built to the highly anticipated showdown with Miguel Cotto who is Boxrec ranked. Advantage Boxrec as the Haymon/Goldenboy News of the Ring world simply cannot justify not having Canelo somewhere at this point.

    TUE nose knows it!

    TUE nose knows it!

    Boxrec has Manny Pacquiao ranked 5th, but Ring has dropped him down to 8th in between untested Crawford and Yamanaka in spite of Manny holding the P4P records by a long shot for the most P4P fights, wins, and longest duration in their P4P ratings. We’re talkin’ spiteful Ring ignorance squared x 10 me thinks.

    Moving on, Ring has their former #2, Wlad Klitschko, mysteriously demoted to #6 in spite of starting to tie and break Joe Louis’ heavyweight records set 8 decades ago. Axe to grind? What more can any fighter do than that? He’s sandwiched between the unusually gunshy, barely tested Rigondeaux who hasn’t fought a Ring ranked fighter in two years, preferring to be knocked down by international type journeymen for chump change, and the inexperienced Crawford who is a very good fighter becoming great, but not yet. Wlad has more knockouts than their victories combined and near 5x their combined title wins. Such “boxing experts” represent a gross American bias against foreign greats who have been supplanting their own greats, further magnified by the pitiful dirth of American fighters these days, especially at the contender levels.

    Knocked Cold

    Knocked Cold

    So now we’re down to Ring’s Yamanaka and Brook ranked 9 and 10, so there’s some overlap with Boxrec who ranks Brook 6th, but Yamanaka only ranked 90th down to being inexperienced in a low population of fighters. Yamanaka would be 50th if we combined rankings, not bad, but hardly a P4P top 10. What were Ring’s “experts” ever thinking, or were they? To think or not to think must be the burning question raging inside empty noggins.

    In Boxrec lower 10, they have Miguel Cotto, Keith Thurman, Erislandy Lara, and Adonis Stevenson, none of whom Ring ranks. Cotto I can see because of his long excellence and competitive losses, but Thurman and Stevenson are still relatively unproven being held back by their sugardaddy, Al Haymon. The always running, too scared to fight, feather fisted Lara barely has twenty wins to go with two losses and two draws in terrible performances, but again, there’s not a lot to pick from. Crawford, Ward, Rigondeaux, Yamanaka are all out of Boxrec’s top ten. I could see Crawford and Gonzalez squeaking in based on their startling performances and anticipated years of peak performances.

    Gone is Gone

    Gone is Gone

    I say Boxrec rankings are considerably better, so there it is, the mystery meat of sports, boxing, being served up on the public platter for consumption…yum…who’s on first, no, wait, he’s on third, wait, which way is up and where’s my candy bar and envelope? Only in boxing.

Miguel Cotto Defends vs Daniel Geale

After a long layoff from boxing, WBC middleweight champ Miguel Cotto will make his first defense against Daniel Geale, June 6, Barclays Center in Brooklyn. This is also Cotto’s debut under his new promotional banner, Jay Z’s Roc Nation.

The bout will be contested at 157 pounds which favors Cotto as the smaller man. Geale is an unlikely looking top contender in a physical sense, being tall and stringy with little muscle definition, but maybe not so skinny as to have problems with making 157. Then again, it’s been 9 years since he weighed in under 159, even fighting in the 160s on occasion.

Geale In Fighting Trim

Geale In Fighting Trim

Regardless, it’s another traditional catchweight fight that drives modern boxing fans crazy. Whatever Geale’s few flaws are, light punching being perhaps most prominent, he’s a true fighter at core and cannot turn down this title opportunity against a really big name with the so called “lineal” middleweight title wrapping up everything so beautifully.

Should be a good scrap though with a rare Puerto Rican vs Aussie rivalry backdrop and a chance to see of Cotto can continue to improve under his new trainer Freddie Roach. I favor Cotto, but this is definitely a potential banana skin slip up in the making if he ain’t firing on all cylinders.

The huge payday against Canelo Alvarez would then go kaputsky though they could still stage a fight for decent money. If he wins, I’d say he’s also in the running for the Floyd Mayweather Jr rematch at another catchweight, say 155 lbs for Cotto’s WBC “lineal title” middleweight belt, but Geale comes first.  

With Fightin' Ladies

With Fightin’ Ladies

Boxing Enters Dead Zone Until July~Say Bye Bye To Swiss Pie, Richard Schaefer.

 Boxing officially enters a summer “dead zone” with the recent completion of Miguel Cotto’s signature win over Sergio Martinez. Certainly the hard core fan can still see plenty of good fights featuring top fighters most every week, but there are no more “Big” Fights” until July. That’s when Canelo Alvarez fights Erislady Lara in an exploratory Vegas MGM Grand PPV and Tyson Fury rematches Derek Chisora in a big stadium fight to be held in Manchester, England. Often the general fan’s schedule is unable to make time for these summertime blues “dead zone” fights, and I won’t be writing about them, so the question gets begged before the stifling summer ennui sets in: What of Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer’s recent adversarial departure from his long time gig at Golden Boy? Alvarez vs Lara was his last creation as it were and he won’t be around to massage the final details.

Oh for sure, the “boxing expert” world is agaga over what the impact will be not to mention all the anti-social media monkeys over flowing their shorts with competing befouled projectile offerings of what the former Swiss Banker Schaefer and the rest of his boxing crew does next.

Myself? Neither boxing expert, boxing insider, nor fly on the wall of Richard Schaefer am I, but I can guarantee a big shakeup in the boxing world that’s been a long time coming. This arcane 17th century sport looks to be setting up a scramble for big international dollars as boxing is being developed in the Asian markets as it wanes in the American market. The European market seems to be holding with the Brits and Germans hanging in there as Russia is gaining traction to pull even with them.

So Golden Boy is conclusively split up with Floyd Mayweather Jr also announcing he’s exiting the ranks. And mum’s always the password at the Al Haymon underground boxing works buried somewhere deep down in a former Howard Hughes bunker in Las Vegas, still stocked with thousands of rows of kleenex box slippers ready to be shuffled around in me thinks. Schaefer has given no indication of what capacity he might continue in boxing, but if he does he will have to start from scratch and get to working with as many promoters not named Golden Boy or Top Rank if he is to continue his adversarial relations with Oscar de la Hoya and Bob Arum even as he is still a shareholder in Golden Boy.

Bad Marriage

Bad Marriage

 

 

And where do the Showtime contractual obligations land?

Another sticking point is the many Golden Boy fighters also signed with Al Haymon. Word is many of those fighters don’t actually have a contract with Golden Boy and may no longer be promoted by them, not the least of which is Floyd Mayweather who has his big Mexican Holiday set for his 10th consecutive appearance at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas for September 13th. That would be vs TBA, of course with a TBA vs TBA supporting undercard. Sticky Mayweather negotiations are typically settled at the last minute, but now they may be stickier and more unsettled than usual. His promotional company supposedly lacks a license to officially do business, but no problems when he was aligned with Golden Boy. Just slap his logo up on all the promotional banners and and reap the extra profits.

The Logo

The Logo

Somebody somewhere running some connected responsible promotional entity has to come up with those monstrous 30 and 40 million dollar guarantees that Mayweather has enjoyed, but by whom and by what means will that be accomplished?

Stay tuned for the gold rush crush as everyone and his aunt and sister stake a claim as lawsuits whizz by like bullets in an OK Corral Shootout. It may not be pretty, but sure as shootin’, “It’s Boxing!”

Miguel Cotto Challenges Sergio Martinez

The physically challenged 39 year old Argentine southpaw Sergio Martinez and the 33 year old well traveled Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto have agreed to a fan favorite fight at a “catchweight” of 159 pounds, Saturday, June 7th. Venue: Madison Square Garden if you had to ask, New York, New York if a reminder is needed for one of the hottest ” You got to be there” boxing events in recent MSG history.

Out of training street weight view

Out of training street weight view

There is no slur intended with the physically challenged descriptor of the very game Martinez, currently sporting a stellar 51-2-2, 28 KO mark. He just so happens to be in a continuous state of recovery after Julio Cesar Chavez Jr tore into him for one of boxing’s great all time 12th round moments that Martinez managed to survive only by his overstretched heart strings. After far too many patches, stitches, staples, and surgeries later, he will shock test himself against Cotto in an irresistible fight that not even virulent modern boxing politics could deny.

Cotto himself has left no stone unturned in his quest to become the first Puerto Rican fighter to win titles in four weight divisions, the highly coveted WBC middleweight belt adorned with the abundant scalp of Martinez being the ultimate prize. As such whether by hook or crook, he managed to secure the services of renown trainer Freddie Roach well in advance for the fine tuning needed to exploit the vulnerabilities of the aging Argentine fighter. Cotto brings his own stellar record against the best in boxing, 38-4, 31 KO, yet brings his own frailties to the fight. He not only gives up height, reach, strength, speed, and mobility, but his face tends to bust up very early in fights and Martinez is just the kind of slashing southpaw sharpshooter keep him leaking red and lumping blue and purple.

I personally don’t see how Cotto can beat a healthy Martinez, but he may well be able to beat the injured Martinez who barely scraped by his last outing against Martin Murray and was lucky beyond belief to survive Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, so there it is with no ifs, ands, and butts come fight night. Something or someone has to give, but what will give first and by whom?

 

Big Mouths Mauling~~Adrian Broner vs Paulie Malignaggi

Boxing‘s newest wunderkind and jail’s latest bait Adrian Broner steps up 2 divisions to welterweight to challenge WBA champ Paulie Maliganaggi. The “bout” is today, June 22nd at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

Big Broner vs Tyny Rees

Big Broner vs Tyny Rees

It was no surprise when Broner was arrested down Miami way not long ago for biting another man during a fracas outside a hotel. He seems hell bent on duplicating the style and the life of his mentor Floyd Mayweather Jr by way of flushing money down toilet videos to the accumulating rap sheet. Arrangements were quickly made and he was released on bond to be whisked straightaway into a training camp where his minders kept him on the short leash with no muzzle until ready to be released in the ring today.

As mouthy fighters go, these gentlemen are among the mouthiest with mouth flapping apparatuses in a freeflowing spewage of raw uncut sewage, not that many of us could ever bother listening, but that’s what the cacophony of headlines screamed in the leadup.

Broner will likely be the much bigger guy come fight night after rehydration. His team carefully selected the nominal WBA welter titlist Malignaggi as the smallest, weakest link in the Golden Boy stable of available fighters as the least risk to his division climbing ambitions. As with Mayweather, Broner previously had his JC Castillo moment of being beat up when former banty and featherweight champ Daniel Ponce De Leon more noted for his slugging prowess easily gave Broner a thorough boxing lesson, but was just too small to really do more than sting him at will. It takes a knockout to derail a touted Hayman/Golden Boy fighter, something Malignaggi is not likely to deliver.

For the big knockout, go to the supporting undercard where Al Hayman touted heavyweight Seth Mitchell hopes not to replicate his snake eyes exit against Klitschko promoted Johnathon Banks in their rematch. Don’t blink or you’ll miss it.

Paulie Malignaggi is not only a weak champion, but something of an underachiever, best known for the game losing scrap he gave Miguel Cotto when both were undefeated in full pomp at the start of their primes. Since then he’s been more of a poser than fighter, a preener rather than a boxer, though former lightweight champ Juan Diaz had the pressuring style to put him in an entertaining pair of fights that they split. He did seize opportunity to beat the aging undefeated Vyacheslav Senchenko on a stupendous cut that ended his KO drought, but then lucky to scrap himself off the canvas to secure a hometown split in his first defense against Pablo Cesar Cano.

Of the few fights I’ve seen Broner in, he’s been a plodder, easy to hit in his Mayweather shoulder roll defense, but he has the power to overcome light swatters who stand in front of him like DeMarco and Rees did most recently. Malignaggi can stick and move pretty all night to make this fight tough unless his marching orders from Hayman/Golden Boy News of the Ring World are to stand and trade. Broner told Larry Merchant that he’s like dog doodoo on his opponent’s shoe once they sign the contract to face him, perhaps the most apt descriptor of his touted career progress thus far.

Black and Blue....yeah, right....

Black and Blue….yeah, right….

Could be modestly entertaining or more likely deadly dull, but never destined to be a great fight after The Problem leapt over the strongest division in boxing, the junior welts, to have an easier go at Paulie. It is what it is, a soundtrack of profaned and befouled sound and fury to promote a weak era in boxing where promoters rely on gimmicks after having done nothing to redevelop boxing into the spectacle sport it used to be.

GOD, Guns, & Holy Ghost Robert Guerrero vs Showtime Debut of Floyd Mayweather Jr

Cinco de Mayo got a whole lot more interesting this year when Floyd Mayweather Jr signed a mega six fight deal with Showtime and Golden Boy Promotions. A preposterous figure of around $220 million was quoted, but regardless, the first installment comes against the interim WBC welter titlist Robert The Ghost Guerrero for the supreme claim to the WBC welterweight title being defended by Mayweather. That’s Saturday, May 4th, but look out and be forewarned all ye Mayweather team and fans. Robert Guerrero says God is on his side and he enjoys packing heat when away from home as happened recently at JFK airport in New York City.

Yes, Virginia, this “event” seems to have taken on a personality of it’s own, perhaps not even being a fight any more. Or it could be one of the greatest fights of this era, or just another Mayweather and Showtime sham. See the Mayweather/Victor Ortiz fight and the Showtime Super Six and Super Banty tourneys for reference.

It’s certainly not the all time P4P matchup of the millennium like Pacquiao vs Mayweather would have been. That horse bolted the gate 3 yrs ago and ain’t been seen in these parts since then. Nor is it the fascination when two big heavyweights meet in that rare ripple of time where the fate of the world almost seems to hinge on the result. This fight takes place in an odd shift where overlapping boxing eras intersect with the supermega money of politics, media business rivalries, and global realignments.

We also have the unseemly specter of the dad trainers polluting the promotion, Ruben Guerrero vs Floyd Mayweather Sr. They vowed to beat the tarballs out of each other in the ring or in the parking lot, so who knows where that goes? Crazy uncle Roger Mayweather started a ring riot years back when he attacked Zab Judah in the middle of a round and wrestled with the referee Richard Steele in a disgracefully officiated match that should have been an automatic disqualification loss for Mayweather according to the standard rule long been in force.

Mayweather thus far in his career has received every benefit of every foul ruling and final decision to accumulate one of the best known safety records of his era. He trains year round but only exposes himself to one fight a year against a carefully selected opponent for the past 7 years, all while a golden era of welters fought each other tooth and nail for supremacy.

Getting back to boxing basics, on paper the Ghost only has a ghost of a chance, but look again. It took a Ghost to track down the ghost of the ever elusive Mayweather and badger him into signing the fight contract, so already Guerrero is up on the cards of opportunity. Speaking of opportunity, the Mayweather main supporting undercard bolted to ol’ San Antone for greener pastures when Saul Alvarez took his WBC/WBA unification fight with Austin Trout there to score one of the higher level checkmate boxing wins of this era. The antisocial media howler monkeys hate him, but Alvarez has officially arrived as the A side to any proposed match for him in boxing, including the aborted fight with Mayweather. The pressure is now on Mayweather to see if he can keep up with the rapidly advancing 22 year old kid in the perfect record department, 42-0-1, 30 KO compared to the Mayweather 43-0, 26 KO record. Moreover, can Mayweather recover the considerable Mexican PPVs lost with the Alvarez defection?

There are many other variables affecting this fight, so it’s hard to touch on all of them in an orderly manner, but let’s start with the Guerrero losses. How a fighter loses and his reaction to it is often informative. His first loss was to Gamaliel Diaz, an unheralded fighter who has since maintained a high Ring rating until a loss dropped him only a few weeks ago. The Ghost lost the split on the official cards, but I scored it for him by a couple points in a sloppy uninteresting fight where he looks to have fought down to the level of his opponent. He knocked him clean out in the rematch with solar plexus shot in the 6th, very impressive in that Diaz had never been put down before much less out.

Then the Orlando Salido fight that Guerrero lost, yet was overturned when Salido tested positive for steroids. I had it a close competitive fight with Salido eeking the win, but what was telling is that Salido had most of the fire and offensive activity. Guerrero looked like he was sleepwalking at times, scarcely even bothered when Salido landed flush and also looked painfully slow. I’m thinking he was probably tight at the weight given his ample frame that has marched rapidly through four more divisions since then. That was also 6-7 years ago, light years in time as applied to a boxer’s short career, but nonetheless a window into the boxing development of Guerrero. Perhaps it is not without coincidence that 6-7 years ago is when Mayweather began to command his biggest purses and most acclaim and that Guerrero is also light years younger at age 30 to Mayweather’s 36 and the hungrier fighter by far.

The conclusion is that Guerrero has never been beaten up and seems to have found his perfect niche at welter where he recently relished the combat against undefeated raging bull Selcuk Aydin and then long time former WBC #1 and mandatory, later the WBC  champ, Andre Berto. Guerrero’s new tough inside roughhouse style is always difficult for the pure boxer of Mayweather because the Ghost also possesses decent boxing chops out of the southpaw stance, so the long odds I hear around the 10 to 1 range might shorten up considerably by fight night as big players take a harder look at this fight.

The Eyes Know

The Eyes Know

In a fairly officiated contest, I see Mayweather needing to work extra hard for a win like he did against Miguel Cotto in his last dukem up. Guerrero is a considerably fresher boxer on a long time upswing than was Cotto who has been in some all time wars and is winding down his career. Mayweather has certainly not recently looked the P4P juggernaut the boxing industry has made him out to be, another example being the Victor Ortiz “incident,” a prearranged orchestration ala his infamous dustup with Big Show. If the Ortiz knockout is to be in the record, then the Big Show brass knuckles knockout should be also, both preferably in the official WWE record where they could be better savored as a matching pair of great heel performances of modern times.

Vs Miguel Cotto

Vs Miguel Cotto

Anyone seriously contemplating the Guerrero fight should consider the context of the Mayweather career as he winds down. He turned pro making good money on HBO shows where they promoted him as the P4P successor Roy Jones Jr. Regardless of what anyone thinks of the Manny Pacquiao fight that never was, Mayweather ended up squeezed off between the all time boxing legends of Roy Jones in the 1990s, superseded by Manny Pacquiao in the 2000s by consensus accolades, a snub with a building pressure that put an edge on him. He finally boiled over with a blizzard of felony assault and other charges in 2011 leveled against him resulting in a plea bargain stint in The Big House in 2012. That edge has forced his hand into the type of unsavory comments and accusations against his rivals that he knows will anger his critics and bolster his substantial fan base, so in his world perhaps there is a rhyme to his reason.

His recent regius remunerations have been due to a seismic shift in modern American culture in that his serious felony transgressions have greatly appealed to the hip hop culture where prison time lends street credibility. The troubled man-child, Mike Tyson, had been their posterboy in the past, so Floyd became their unholy mantraman as the national plates of identity shifted with unstable modern American culture.

Thing is, when the historians take over and look at careers to talk about all time rankings and legacies, his record becomes The Big Lie after he leaves Top Rank for Golden Boy. There are huge gaps in his record at a time when equally talented fighters are challenging themselves more frequently with more fights against as good or better competition, but such is the nature of the promotional business that could care less about truth or boxing legacy, they just want the bottom line of his considerable PPV sales when he fights.

And that’s another part of The Big Lie, that he’s the PPV king. His promoter, Oscar de la Hoya, is the all time PPV king by record, and if you average out all of Mayweather’s 8 PPV fights, two with Top Rank and six with Golden Boy, they are almost identical in numbers to Manny Pacquiao’s last 8 , but Pacquiao has many more PPVs that easily put him over the top as the first ever featherweight to be put on PPV promotions. Most Mayweather fans could care less about the facts, it’s the perception that in spite of losing out on accolades, they desperately need to affirm he’s the best not unlike Mike Tyson was made out to be even as his career wound down against vastly inferior competition compared to his peak years that were cut short by long stays in the pen. Tyson was also signed to a Showtime blockbuster contract, but Tyson supposedly did not receive the full value of his contract when Showtime elected to pay more pressing bills stay in business rather than go under, thus leading to Tyson’s infamous bankruptcy.

And you know it’s The Big Lie when Forbes, and other mainstream media outlets report that Mayweather is the highest paid athlete in the world, using his 2 year reported income figures to everyone’s one year figures. Yes folks, it’s not just the boxing press with collective cognoscenti up each other’s arrears, the history of the “mainstream” media is rift with tabloid sized lies, mistruths, and deceptions. They’ve been drafted into action not because of any inherent interest in his boxing career, but because there’s an immense amount of money to be made picking his bones apart before he departs boxing.

Even the infamous Mayweather drug testing program has taken a back seat to this nonpromotion that has scarcely seen Mayweather do more than go between his Vegas lairs at his gym and at home. Noteworthy is that near as I can see, NSAC, Golden Boy, Al Haymon, and Mayweather have refused to address the two part article Thomas Hauser put together last year concerning Mayweather’s alleged positive drug tests and cover up by USADA illicit drug testing cartel:

http://www.maxboxing.com/news/max-boxing-news/the-ped-mess-part-one

Meanwhile, recent inroads of BALCO associated trainers Victor Conte and Angel Heridia AKA Hernandez into boxing have stirred up a hornet’s nest of disputatious minor infractions resulting in a NSAC one year suspension and millon dollar fine of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr for smoking marijuana, yet only a minor fine and disregarded suspension of Conte trained Mayweather stablemate Andre Berto for trace steroids. Berto merely moved his show to California to fight Guerrero which is where the Mayweather/Guerrero fight was birthed. 

Boxing has a way of eating it’s own, taking down better, more honorable fighters throughout history than Floyd Mayweather. I’m sensing a lot of rat traps being set around the perimeters as boxing may well be moving past the old into the new as Macao and Singapore and Dubai move to supplant Las Vegas for big fights. More telling is Floyd sporting the “Oscar” shiner of surrender going up against a new gunslinger single handedly promoting the fight in unlikely religious and political circles of God and Gun constituents. Lord knows what happens outside the ring when they clash with hiphoppers in the MGM after typical grevious ring shenanigans fire up the riff raff.

Put on the blindfold to be spun around to toss your dice and throw your darts to pin the ragged tail on the donkey, there’s your winner, but we’ll just have to see for ourselves. 

Shine On Souvenir

Shine On Souvenir

Trout Fishing For a Whopper–Canelo Alvarez vs Austin Trout.

The year 2013 looks to be a big transition year in boxing and one of the bigger transitions is Austin Trout finally landing the biggest whopper of his fight dreams against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez for a light middleweight WBA/WBC unification. This “dream” bout takes place Saturday, April 20th  in ol’ San Antone for any Texas fight fiends still interested in the finer science of fisticuffs.

The unification story is just small patooties stuff. The orgs will quickly split the belts off at the most opportune time in the near future as is the transitory nature of titles these days. Canelo won the belt vacated by Manny Pacquiao who won the belt stripped off Sergio Martinez after he won their WBC middleweight belt. Sergio in turn won his 154 lb WBC belt from the stripped Vernon Forrest. Incredibly the WBA belt Trout first won has more strippages than a Red Light District No Tell Motel in Vegas, and so it goes in the strippage crazy merry-go-round world of ABC orgs.

Miss Corona, Canelo, Oscar, Jesse James, Austin

Miss Corona, Canelo, Oscar, Jesse , Austin

For Trout, these are new opportunities giving him the recognition he believes he deserves. Win, lose, or draw, he’s in a bigger mix for as long as he produces good fights. Golden Boy has a big stable of potential 154 lb fights to keep him busy for years. The venue came about because of bold moves by Canelo who has been ahead of the opportunity sweepstakes as soon as Golden Boy Promotions signed him as an 18 yr old Mexican sensation. With a record of 41-0-1, 30 KO, he has not yet disappointed like so many touted phenoms, yet he’s only 22 years of age with plenty of gas left in the tank.

The disclaimer: Canelo Alvarez vs Money Mayweather may soon be archived in the dusty bins of The What If Library of Fantasy Fights” if recent trends hold. Alvarez was the first fighter of record to reserve the Cinco de Mayo weekend as the perfect date for the Mayweather fight, something Golden Boy Promotions has been pointing to with some four co-promotions between the two over the past few years. Alas, Mayweather negotiations are always a prickly, back stabbing, down and dirty affair, so ultimately Alvarez refused to support the Mayweather trump card again and staked out his claim as the headliner in his own venue to play his own wild cards.

The unvarnished facts of today are that Alvarez is already ahead of the pro career of Floyd Mayweather Jr at the same age when both were holding their first WBC belt. Alvarez has more defenses against a higher grade of fighter than Mayweather faced at age 22, fact, and he won his title a year earlier than did Mayweather, fact. Not only that, but he’s well ahead of Golden Boy Promotions founder Oscar de la Hoya at the same age with his own cracking promotional company staging boxing matches in boxing crazy Mexico, fact.

Unvarnished facts are heresy to regrettable Americans anchoring the current hunkered down HBO vs Showtime vs Golden Boy vs Top Rank entrenched lockout that threatens to put a stranglehold on American boxing. The kid takes a lot of profane stick and cheap shots in the antisocial media websites, yet precious few boxers have ever accomplished more than Alvarez at the same age. He can take heart knowing that Julio Cesar Chavez had more than his fair share of rabid detractors as happens when any boxer surges to the top.

At the kickoff presser to official announce the big dukem up, the prime aged 27 year old Austin Trout announced, “I don’t think he has his man strength yet. I will impose my will on him. I am going to take him out of his comfort level.”

Such tepid fodder well short of the usual doomsday beatings of a lifetime, knock you into the next county morgue stuff typical fighters utter in the build up to their fights, but perhaps indicative of a more direct sweet science approach the southpaw Trout is looking to apply to the hide of the orthodox Alvarez.

Since Alvarez made his Golden Boy American debut against aspiring fellow prospect, Larry Mosley, a close relation to Shane Mosley, Canelo has gone 19-0, 15 KO against a much stronger line up of prospects, fringe contenders, and former champs than the mostly journeyman padded record of local fighters Trout has been promoted with.

An added amusing aspect to the proceedings is watching the hordes of antisocial media critics eat their brown stained shorts when Alvarez signed the fight. Such is their nature that they almost immediately took to moaning that Trout will not get a fair shake in the officiating.

Meanwhile, the self appointed Ring “boxing experts” got exposed recently after some 20 odd “experts” picked Brandon Rios to knock out Mike Alvarado in their dynamic rematch, ouch! Almost the same number picked Donaire over Rigondeaux, ouchie~ouchie! Figure on a panel of baboons to be able to pick around 50% winners by chance alone, but no matter, Ring and too many other experts have been too blinkered to understand the timeline of Alvarez accomplishments in the lead up to the fight.

An interesting parallel is this bout somewhat reprises the Mayweather/Corrales fight. Both were similarly undefeated and highly regarded though still relatively unproven at the elite level. The slightly younger 23 year old Corrales at 33-0 had higher quality defenses with more wins than the 24 year old Mayweather at 24-0, but Mayweather had the advantage of the biggest name, Genero Hernandez in his record. Mayweather also had a Ring P4P ranking, similar to Alvarez who has a Boxrec #8 P4P ranking and looking to crash the Ring P4P list.

In spite of fewer fights against lesser competition, I will use his moniker to prove a point, there is No Doubt that Trout is a quality operator with a decent chance to win this fight. He did what he had to do against the home favorite Miguel Cotto, waging an aggressive no quarter asked war as Cotto’s best shots bounced harmlessly off him like popcorn. Alvarez was similarly put through his paces against Shane Mosley.

One advantage on paper for Alvarez runs contrary to the claim Alvarez has not faced legitimate 154 lb fighters. Fact is he beat the Ring ranked #4 Ryan Rhodes, a big southpaw who had fought as high as super middle, as big or bigger than Trout. The result was a lopsided beatdown for Alvarez who was only 20 years of age at the time, not even needing his full “man strength” as I suspect southpaw Austin Trout will learn once they step into the ring. Facts are that Canelo has been matched hard and often in Mexico since age 15, so he knows how to beat bigger, stronger, “man strength” fighters and now he’s matured into a physical match for Trout with more power. Speculation has it that Trout has more speed, but Alvarez is certainly speedier than Cotto who had no problems catching up to Trout.

I like Alvarez in this fight for all of the above reasons, but I have to wonder what happens as the sometimes farcical Golden Boy promotions aligns with the farcical Showtime. Thus far Canelo has been immune from the dubious officiating and dirty fighting of Hopkins and Mayweather fights because he comes to actually fight and thus far has scarcely struggled save a competitive bout against Mosley. On his worst day he has yet to quit as Hopkins is prone to do.

This being a Texas fight, that also means the inglorious Laurence Cole is the “chosen” ref, the lousiest ref in boxing since the lamentable Joe Cortez thankfully exited the ranks. Cole pulled Danny Garcia off the knocked down and out on his feet Eric Morales in their first bout to nurse Morales to the closing bell Joe Cortez style. He was one of the Showtime cabal of dirty refs in some of the most ham handed officiating and judging of recent years. He DQed Arthur Abraham for knocking out Andre Dirrell in their supersix tourney in spite of being blocked way out of position to even see the details of what transpired.

We have no idea what GBP options are on Trout or any other machinations going on behind the scenes. The Showtime banty tourney featured some of the most blatantly dirty fighting ever seen as Abner Mares merrily fouled his way to spurious wins Andre Ward style to claim the tourney.

Making The Big Splash

Making The Big Splash

I can’t say for how long Golden Boy will have Alvarez signed, but the kid could turn out to be the Mexican Oscar De la Hoya Golden Boy looking to expand north, so Alvarez has much to lose in the short term if he loses to Trout. In turn, Golden Boy will have at least temporarily staved off another competitor in promotions.

I’m trying to ignore my well justified cynicism as I close up. If the fighters have any say so, it’s a great night featuring high level boxing, plenty of guts and heart, and some big challenges to overcome. Let’s cross fingers X X and hope the poohbahs, judges, and ref keep their sticky fingers out of the fight and let the fighters decide how best to proceed without the usual monkeys on their backs.

To quote the reknown Latin Lover of Linguistitudes, Lupe Contreras, “Quien es mas macho?”

Saul Canelo Alvarez vs Austin No Doubt Trout

Saul Canelo Alvarez vs Austin No Doubt Trout