By Lee Payton
Photo © Marty Rosengarten / Ringsidephotos.com
I've become slightly obsessed with this fight. For the past month or so all of the irresistible ingredients have darted through my mind in search of the one detail that triggers a eureka moment. After many hours of deliberation I've come up with what I think will be a very close contest, but finding the winner's edge is proving to be an extremely difficult task.
As of August 31st, the underdog is looking pretty good. Considering that I flip-flop almost daily, I'm not exactly sure how much that's worth, but I would like to present my case for Juan Manuel Marquez defeating Floyd Mayweather anyway.
In Part One we'll have a look at the numbers.
Marquez is 36 years old. He has won 50 fights, 37 by KO, with 4 defeats and a draw. You wouldn't be out of line if you said that he won all of the 5 fights that didn't go his way. There is concern that the two wars with Manny Pacquiao, and taxing scraps with Barrera, Casamayor and Diaz have diminished the proud Mexican physically. Probably so, but we've been hearing about how he's lost his legs for awhile now. When do we stop waiting on him to get old and just appreciate the genius? You can always count on Marquez to show up 100% ready to fight, no matter what.
Mayweather is 32 years old. He is undefeated in 39 fights, with 25 wins coming inside the distance. His path to greatness has been decidedly easier than the man who will be standing across the ring from him. Partly because he hasn't fought the same type of opposition, but mostly because no one has been able to find him with their best stuff. He's just been too good.
Is he still that good though?
We haven't seen him in the ring since December of 2007 and for any athlete, that's a long time to go without competing.
What effect will the time off have on his reflexes? I expect that his performance will suffer less than most other fighters have just because of his work ethic and natural ability. However, I gotta think that his boots will feel just a tiny bit heavier than usual. The reaction time that used to be split second will be off by a fraction. Maybe the target is slightly bigger than usual for the sharpshooter.
Floyd has a handful of inches. The extra height and reach equates to a small bit of added safety to one of the best defenders of all time. The longer arms should give him the option to keep things at a comfortable range if he's getting touched up some. The small dimensional advantages he enjoys can be the difference between a landed punch and one that whizzes by.
There is also a well-documented weight issue. The negotiated limit of 144 is 9 lbs heavier than Marquez has ever been at a weigh-in. It doesn't mean that he has to be that heavy, but I think he will be anyway.
The more meaningful numbers are from their "unofficial" weights, which are collected the night of the fight. In the recent past, Marquez has been at 140 with spectacular results. I don't see how eating a little more and putting on a little muscle is going to make any drastic change.
Before his retirement, Mayweather was entering the ring on fight nights at around 147-149. While it's been almost 2 years since Floyd has stepped on a scale for a professional prize fight, we know that he is also an obsessive worker, and I think that we can expect him to step into the ring on September 18 somewhere around 150.
We're really only talking about a 5-7 pound difference between the two men. If you think about it, there is more of a gap in weight between Mayweather and Mosley, even though both are considered welterweights.
You cannot truly get a handle on this particular fight with any measuring device. While the numbers always have some say in the outcome of a fight, in my opinion, styles and intangibles will have much more influence on the result than the tale of the tape.
How will Floyd react to a great counter puncher with a boxing IQ that matches his? Can Marquez' intelligent aggression thwart many of PBF's opportunities to counter? What are their best punches going into the fight? What role will the crowd play? How will Mayweather handle the best fighter he's ever been in with?
We'll go over all that good stuff and more tomorrow... Read Part Two.
email Lee Payton Read more!
Monday, August 31, 2009
By Lee Payton
The Boxing Bulletin's Pick'em game has arrived.
Our game is a little different than most of the variations we've seen online, as it's a combination of picking the winners straight-up and beating the odds. If you're ready to match your prognostication skills against other boxing fans, then let's get started...
How to play:
The game is strictly for fun, and entry is free. The deadline to enter this week is Thursday night at 11 PM EST. We'll post the pick breakdown on Friday, and have the results tabulated and online by Sunday night.
Pick The Winners
This part's easy - 2 points for each correct answer.
Beat The Odds
This is where it gets a little more involved. You will have the option of choosing 1 fight to risk double points, and 1 fight to risk triple points. Points gained (and lost) will be multiplied by two and three times respectively for these fights.
You do not need to risk points on every fight. If you wish to skip a fight, just check "pass" for both fighters.
We will keep standings for the full year, although each game will only last for 1 month. At the end of the month standings will be reset and a new game will begin.
We've got a few details below on the fights in play this week, but if you're ready to get started, here's the Week 1 game sheet.
This Week's Line-up - clicking on the fighter's name will open up their boxrec page
John Simpson vs Paul Truscott - Commonwealth featherweight title - Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, United Kingdom (Television: Sky, UK)
These two featherweights fought back in January, with Simpson coming away with an 8th round "stoppage" win. It went in the books as a TKO, but it was an accidental clash of heads that lead to the bout being called (the correct ruling under British rules). Simpson was coming on strong at the time, and enters Friday's rematch as the favorite.
Jose Lopez vs Marvin Sonsona - WBO super-flyweight title - Rama, Ontario, Canada (Television, TSN, Canada)
This will be a huge jump in class for the 19 year old Sonsona who's fought a grand total of 38 professional rounds. Is he ready for it? Here's the Filipino phenom's one punch knock-out win over Wandee Singwnacha this past May.
The 37 year old Lopez is 15-0-1 since dropping a 12 round decision to Fernando Montiel back in 2001.
John O'Donnell (21-1-0) vs Tom Glover (9-5-3) - 12 rounds - Commonwealth welterweight title & Lee Purdy (11-1) vs Peter McDonagh (14-14) - 10 rounds - Watford, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom (Television: ITV4, UK)
O'Donnell enters the main event as a big favorite, but Glover has put together an unlikely string of upsets, including a win over former European lightweight champion Jon Thaxton last time out.
Purdy's only defeat as a pro... a 10 round points loss to McDonagh last December.
Luis Concepcion vs Omar Solado (12 rounds) - interim WBA flyweight title - Panama City, Panama
Solado was stopped last year in a WBC eliminator by Julio Cesar Miranda. After a couple of wins, he's getting another crack at a strap but will have to travel to Concepcion's hometown for the opportunity.
Concepcion's lone defeat game in his 4th pro fight and since then has rolled off 18 straight victories. Here's the video from his latest fight (it's a short one): click
For a short previews of Simpson vs Truscott and O'Donnell vs Glover, check out Part 1 of our UK Season preview by Dave Oakes.
If you're ready to play, click here for the week 1 game sheet.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Dave Oakes concludes his look at the top prospects in the UK, with a profile of young Manchester heavyweight, Tyson Fury.
6ft 7ins behemoth fighting out of Manchester. He’s attracting a lot of attention around the world just because of his name; he’s currently 7-0 with all seven wins coming by way of knockout.
He’s obviously got height and reach advantages over most other heavyweights, can hit hard and is technically pretty good for a heavyweight. His fitness is improving with every fight and it won’t be too long before he’s fighting for domestic honours.
No one knows how he’ll react when he gets caught by a big shot and he keeps his left hand dangerously low for a heavyweight. He’s also got to be careful not to believe his own hype, he must remember he hasn’t achieved anything yet and there’s still a lot of work to be done before he does.
He fights John McDermott in early September in what should be a good test for him. If he comes through that fight, which he should, then he can start to target fights against the likes of Derek Chisora, Danny Williams, Matt Skelton and the winner of Martin Rogan v Sam Sexton.
For more on the big youngster from Manchester, check out Dave's story from earlier this year: Introducing Tyson Fury: Story & Photo Gallery
e-mail Dave Oakes
Previous Prospect Profiles
In case you are wondering where the 2008 Olympians are, Dave decided not to include them in order to highlight some of the other young fighters that haven't yet received the same kind of attention.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Michael Nelson gives his thoughts on last night's FNF show.
Tavoris Cloud and Juan Urango delivered career performances against game opposition last night in a very solid Friday Night Fights doubleheader. Cloud captured his first world title at 27 years old while Urango retained his IBF strap in the gripping main event.
Cloud's opponent didn't come from the UK to lay down. The grizzled Clinton Woods fought the Tallahassee, Florida native on even terms through the early going, which included a second round that had Woods snapping off a variety of hard uppercuts and straight right hands. It looked like the beginnings of a long night for young Tavoris.
But Cloud found a groove in the middle rounds, being more selective with his punches while landing sharp counters against his taller foe. His James Toneyesque shoulder-roll-right-hand was especially effective in snapping Clinton's head back. Once he began digging in with beautiful triple left hooks - one to the head, one to the midsection, and another one up top as Woods would pull back - he started doing damage. A series of hooks left Woods in serious trouble in the ninth round.
The heart and resiliency he displayed in his trilogy against Glen Johnson though was still evident at 37 years old. Woods refused to go down as Cloud rained blows on him, and came back to hold his own during the championship rounds. Surprisingly, all three scorecards at the end read 116-112, which meant the judges in Cloud's hometown gave Woods most, if not all, of the close rounds. After last week, it was nice to be reminded that hometown bias isn't a guarantee in boxing.
What is guaranteed is action whenever Tavoris steps inside the ring. A showdown with Glen Johnson would be breathtaking. Fights with Jean Pascal or Chad Dawson wouldn't be short of thrills either. Let's just hope he's more active as a titlist than he was as a contender.
Juan Urango had his own set of problems as a belt holder in the main event, getting put on his back for the first time in his career.
The fight went as expected through five rounds. The brute southpaw stalked Randall Bailey and tore into his body while mixing in clubbing right hooks and left hands. Randall tried to maintain distance, paw with his jab, and drop in the occasional right hand.
The script was flipped in the sixth. One of those right hands deposited Urango on the canvas, and for a moment it looked as if he wasn't going to get up. Using the same recovery skills he showed when Nasser Athumani badly staggered him two years ago, he managed to beat the count and make it out of the round without further issue. But he was now sporting a nasty cut and lump under his right eye.
Juan went back to work immediately. He continued chopping Bailey down, taking his older opponent's legs piece by piece with every thudding body punch landed. In the ninth round, Bailey's legs were completely gone as a left hand took him off his feet. He struggled up at the count of nine and suffered a sustained beating until trainer John David Jackson rightly called an end to the proceedings in the 11th.
Urango's flaws are what they are; he has cement feet, and even after seven years of fighters tying him up on the inside, he still refuses to work inside a clinch. He may always struggle against a quick, durable opponent. But match him correctly, and blood and drama will not be far behind.
A dry FNF season ended with a monsoon thanks to all four combatants. Hopefully, it sets the pace for the remainder of 2009.
e-mail Michael Nelson Read more!
Dave Oakes continues his look at the top young fighters in Britain, with a profile of Liverpool's Tony Bellew.
A likeable Scouser who’s boxing at light-heavyweight despite winning three ABA titles at heavyweight. He’s currently 9-0 with 6 stoppages.
He’s been busy thus far in his career, fighting nine times in under two years. He’s fought against, and knocked out, heavier fighters and looks like he’s got the punch power to take out anyone in the light-heavyweight division. He’s training at a great gym under the tuition of Anthony Farnell and isn’t too far away from a title shot.
He’s yet to weigh in at 175lbs and it’ll be interesting to see how easy he can make weight. There are also question marks about his chin after he was dropped against Jevgenijs Andrejevs late last year.
He’s targeting a fight with Commonwealth champion, Nathan Cleverly. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him fighting for the vacant title if Cleverly vacates next year. Fights against Tony Oakey, Darren Stubbs and Courtney Fry would all be good step-ups for him at this stage of his development.
e-mail Dave Oakes
Previous Prospect Profiles
Friday, August 28, 2009
Lee Payton breaks down tonights FNF junior-welterweight match-up between Juan Urango and Randall Bailey.
On tonight's edition of Friday Night Fights, 140 lb brute, Juan Urango defends his title belt against KO artist, Randall Bailey in what should be a hard-hitting affair. This is a must win fight for both men. As silly as the sanctioning organizations are these days, this fight is an example of their rare usefulness. You have two hungry veterans swapping heavy leather for a title that actually means something. Even if it's not for the real title, that strap is the world to these guys right now. I think they'll fight like never before.
Urango is solid. Solid in build, chin and punch. It's been enough to get him love from those who hand out these belts, but he has not get it done in the big show. Andre Berto and Ricky Hatton did enough to keep him out of the fight for the majority of 12 rounds, but it says something about the man's quality as a fighter that those are the only two losses in 24 fights.
At his best, the Colombian rolls forward like a tank. Steadily coming behind thick armor with blasts to the opponents heart, lungs and liver. No one has managed to tear through his own defenses so far, he has basically just run out of time. Does Bailey have enough ammunition left to shock Urango?
Well, he did score a devastating knockout over another left hander in his last fight. In fact, this will be his third consecutive contest against a southpaw, so his hands and feet should be ready for the looks coming his way. He knows what he has to do in there. Can he do it for 36 minutes at 34 years old, against a guy who doesn't take backwards steps? He may have to.
Many would argue that Bailey has improved in the last few years and I think there is something to that. The loss he suffered to Ngoudjo last year could have gone either way in the eyes of many fans, and he showed that he could operate some by using his legs to stay on the outside.
I think this one has the potential to be a lot of fun. The two fighters aren't exactly there to protect their hands...
In trying to pin down a winner, I recalled Diosbelys Hurtado chopping Bailey down with nasty body shots. Urango has big time power downstairs. I'll take those loud whacks to the ribs to decide this one.
Email Lee Payton
Check out Michael Nelson's Tavaris Cloud vs Clinton Woods Preview Read more!
Michael Nelson previews tonight's FNF light-heavyweight clash between Tavoris Cloud and Clinton Woods.
Tavoris Cloud took the Light Heavyweight scene by storm last August when he demolished Julio Gonzales in an IBF title eliminator. But instead of staying busy, he chose to sit on his position as Chad Dawson's mandatory as Dawson fought Tarver twice, and then dropped the belt to rematch nemesis Glen Johnson. The winner of tonight's bout will be rewarded with the vacant strap.
Needless to say, Cloud is looking to be more Cumulonimbus than calm against rugged Englishman Clinton Woods. Having grown up in desolate conditions, Tavoris fights as if he's been famished all his life. He's unlikely to take this opportunity lightly.
Clinton isn't either. This will be his final chance at regaining a stronghold in the division. The last time Woods was seen on American television, he allowed Antonio Tarver to camp in the middle of the ring and move his hands without consequence. If the 37 year old doesn't show more Grizzly against Cloud, it may be a short night in Hollywood, Florida.
Woods will hold a four inch height advantage over Cloud, but his fight is not one of maintaining distance. Expect Teddy Atlas' dialog throughout the bout to revolve around the real estate battle and how Woods is losing it. He's not comfortable moving for long stretches of a bout. Being one of the bigger and stronger men at Light Heavyweight though, he generally accustoms himself well in close.
How well he expects to do banging with the explosive 27 year old Floridian is a question that might not take long to answer. Cloud in many ways is reminiscent of Andre Berto, except he loves to fight on the inside rather than clinch. He loads up on powerful right hands and lead left hooks while mixing in violent uppercuts to keep a ducking opponent honest. And when he remembers to go to the body, he's cruelly effective. A normally sturdy Gonzales winced every time Cloud landed a hook underneath the rib cage.
As evident in his trilogy with Glen Johnson, Clinton is worryingly open for a right hand, Cloud's bread-and-butter. Johnson chopped him down with straight rights to the point where he was nearly out on his feet in the 9th round of their rubber match. To Woods' credit, he survived and won a split decision.
But that was on his home turf in the UK when he was three years younger. Now fighting on Cloud's stomping grounds, the odds are against him. If he gets slammed with as many right hands tonight as he did against Johnson, it's unlikely he sees the final bell, much less win a decision. He'll have to rely on his experience, stamina, and guile to blunt Cloud's charges and outwork his untested opponent.
While most indicators point to it being the younger man's time to shine, the steely veteran can't be counted out. He has defied the critics more than once in his 15 year career. The Friday Night Fights finale shouldn't disappoint.
e-mail Michael Nelson
Check out Lee Payton's Juan Urango vs Randall Bailey Preview Read more!
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Dave Oakes continues his look at the top young fighters in Britain, with a profile of slick Swansea southpaw Ricky Owen.
24 year old stylist from Swansea. He fights in the featherweight division and is currently 11-0 with 4 stoppages.
He’s a fast, slippery southpaw who looks to hit and move. He can be very hard for an opponent to pin down and even harder to catch with a clean punch.
Has only had 11 fights in over four and a half years as a pro and is still relatively unknown apart from in his hometown. He lacks power, can be guilty of switching off when he’s outclassing his opponent and hasn’t fought anyone of any note yet.
He needs to get his career going. Having been a pro for nearly five years, it’s time he took a step up in competition. He should be looking for fights against the likes of Akaash Bhatia, Derry Matthews and Welsh rival, Jamie Arthur.
e-mail Dave Oakes
Previous Prospect Profiles
Dave Oakes continues his look at the top young fighters in Britain, with a profile of Edinburgh's Kenny Anderson.
A hard punching Scottish super-middleweight who’s currently 10-0 with 7 stoppages.
Boxes in a classic style, he works off the jab very well and throws a beautiful straight right whilst keeping his chin tucked down to his chest. He carries respectable power, looks to have a solid chin and is another fighter with good amateur pedigree.
Is known to be lackadaisical when it comes to training and has had problems outside the ring, including being charged with attempted murder a couple of months ago. The charges were dropped due to lack of evidence but you have to question him as to why he allowed himself to be put into that position.
With the attempted murder charges dropped, he should be looking to keep himself out of trouble and concentrate fully on his career. At 26, he should be trying to manoeuvre himself into a position to challenge for the British title in the next twelve to eighteen months. Fights against Paul David, Tony Salem and Tony Dodson would all be beneficial to him at this stage of his career. A potential meeting with fellow Scot Stevie McGuire is already being talked about with great excitement north of the border.
e-mail Dave Oakes
Previous Prospect Profiles
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Dave Oakes continues his look at the top young fighters in Britain, with a profile of 21 year old George Groves.
One of the most hyped prospects in Britain. He fights in the super-middleweight division and is currently 4-0 with 3 stoppages.
A good all-round boxer with knockout power, especially with the overhand right. He can box off the back foot, counter-punch or lead; he looks at home in the ring and has bags of natural talent. He’s a two time ABA middleweight champion and beat Olympic gold medallist James DeGale on his way to the title in 2006.
Is guilty of holding his hands too low and getting caught with silly shots, hopefully this will be something he eradicates as he progresses. He’s under contract with David Haye’s Hayemaker Promotions, who’ve not got a television contract now that Setanta have gone bankrupt.
Having already demolished former British title challenger Paul Samuels in just his third fight, he seems like the kind of fighter who thrives on a challenge. With this in mind, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him being moved more quickly than most prospects. I could see him challenging for the British title within the next two years.
e-mail Dave Oakes
Previous Prospect Profiles
Dave Oakes continues his look at the top young fighters in Britain, with a profile of Swindon southpaw, Jamie Cox.
Swindon born welterweight who looks to have plenty of raw talent. At 22, he’s got time on his side to develop into a real star. He’s currently 12-0 with 7 stoppages.
Another of our prospects with a good amateur background having won gold at the 2006 Commonwealth games, he decided to turn pro in 2007 rather than aiming for the 2008 Olympics. He’s an aggressive fighter whose best punches are the left hook and straight right, both of which have accounted for most of his knockouts.
He tends to rush his boxing too much and is far too eager to trade punches rather than letting everything flow naturally. He’s very impatient and has been calling out Kell Brook for the past twelve months, you can’t fault him for confidence but he needs to keep his feet on the ground and learn how to pace a fight properly before stepping in with someone of Brook’s undoubted talent.
He needs to face boxers who can stand up to his aggressive style and throw enough punches back to make him think about his own boxing. His fight against Mark Lloyd was a great learning fight for him and he would benefit from a few more like it. I’d love to see him in with the likes of a Kevin McIntyre or Michael Lomax in twelve months time.
e-mail Dave Oakes
Previous Prospect Profiles
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Michael Nelson takes a look at Chris Arreola's chances of toppling Vitali Klitschko in next month's heavyweight showdown.
Photos © Ray Kasprowicz
The critics of the upcoming Arreola-Klitschko bout are many. The consensus of the hardcore boxing fan base seems to be that Chris will get blown out in the early rounds, or gas midway through the bout and get blown out then. Either way, the contest won't be very competitive, they say.
Much of the venom spewed comes from resentment towards the notion of yet another fighter allowed to walk down an HBO crafted red carpet without paying dues. That this particular fighter balloons between showcases and doesn't show up to the ring in optimal shape is insult to injury. Meanwhile, HBO ignores whole divisions full of dedicated men who live the boxing lifestyle 24/7, not just when convenient (when's the last time they aired a bout between Cruiserweights?). If it doesn't seem fair, it's because it isn't.
The reason for HBO's push is clear though: Arreola is the rare Mexican-American heavyweight. Any measure of success he has at the championship level is huge. And if he becomes the man to uproot the Klitschko brothers' hold on the division, we're talking about one of the biggest boxing stories in recent memory. The reawakening of the heavies would be Adderal to the casual fan's attention span.
The question remains, does he have a real shot at defeating Vitali Klitschko? Or is this the '09 redux of Michael Grant vs. Lennox Lewis? The lack of tough fights on Arreola's resume makes it hard to come up with a definitive answer, but I'd argue that Chris has better tools than anyone the Ukranian has fought since Lewis in 2002.
Most discredit Arreola's chances because of how his weight has skyrocketed within the past year and some change. Undoubtedly, he should be in better shape, and he'll need to have more discipline between training camps to remain near the top of the division for long. But his current condition doesn't necessarily doom him against Vitali for a couple of reasons. One, he's shown himself to be well-conditioned in his longer fights - going seven rounds twice and eight rounds once - maintaining a work rate that's closer to the average middleweight than the average heavyweight. While it's true that the last time he's gone more than four rounds was two years and 10-20 pounds ago (depending on how much he weighs on September 26), it's a mistake to assume that he'll be out of gas by the middle of the fight when he hasn't had stamina issues in the past.
Secondly, he will have worked with strength and conditioning specialist Darryl Hudson for over two months come fight night. Having a proven track record with Shane Mosley, Chad Dawson, Winky Wright, and others, if anyone can get Arreola into championship level condition, it's Hudson.
He should have the best camp of his career. What happens in rounds nine, ten, and beyond still remains a mystery, but Arreola's pressure and work rate suggests he has the ability to set a pace that can take Klitschko out of his comfort zone... at least for two-thirds of the bout.
The man Chris is trying to yank the title from has been dominant since his TKO loss to Lennox Lewis six years ago. But the 37 year old Klitschko has also been injury prone and inactive. Moreover, the opponents he has dominated are a who's who of fat fighters with careers plagued by stamina issues, coming in grossly overweight for their title shot. Kirk Johnson showed up nearly 20 pounds above his career high weight and summarily got harpooned; Corrie Sanders, Danny Williams, Sam Peter, and Juan Gomez came in at or near their career highs, were on E by the 7th round, and got beaten into submission shortly after. I'd honestly be shocked if Arreola isn't in much better shape than all of those guys.
Lennox Lewis was at his career high weight as well when he gave Klitschko his second loss. His first loss came at the hands of Chris Byrd, one of the few talented opponents Vitali has faced that managed to come in shape. While Klitschko fans will argue that both losses resulted from injuries, it's no fluke that they came against men athletic enough to push him.
Nevertheless, the odds are no doubt against 28 year old from Riverside, CA. Ironfist has the better footwork and defense. He has the quicker, straighter punches. He has a painful jab. And his whiskers appear to be sturdier. At first glance, the gulf in technical acumen appears insurmountable, but peer beyond the surface and you'll see Arreola's advantages; a far better inside game, body attack, and variance of shots that start to level the playing field. Add in Vitali's age and friable frame, and the sweet scent of a brewing upset might float into your nostrils.
Fact is, Arreola has a potent mix of attributes that Mexican fighters are known to possess: combination punching, body punching, and a nefarious left hook along with a healthy dose of heart and balls. Barring an early knockout, Vitali will have to deal with several rounds of the rare big man who throws more than one or two punches at a time. He'll have to deal with a man pounding him to the ribs, arms, and shoulders whenever his chin can't be reached.
The aging champ faces something he hasn't seen in several years. Far from the sideshow many bill it as, this is a real fight with real ramifications. Understandably, low expectations are born out of cynicism of groomed careers and manufactured saviors. Just prepare to be shocked next month if you choose to keep them low.
e-mail Michael Nelson Read more!
Dave Oakes continues his look at the top young fighters in the UK. On Monday, Dave profiled Don Broadhurst and Stephen Smith, and today starts us off with 23 year old featherweight, Ryan Walsh
One of three fighting brothers from Cromer, Norfolk, the others are Michael (5-0 5KO’s) and Luke (5-0 4KO’s). The three brothers are talented, brash and confident, but Ryan stands out as the best. He boxes in the featherweight division and is currently 7-0 with 2 stoppages.
He’s got quick hands, great movement and is full of self-confidence. He beat former British title challenger Marc Callaghan in his last outing, stopping him in the third round. The stoppage came as result of an arm injury to Callaghan but Walsh was picking him apart and was well on his way to victory anyway. He’s also got decent amateur pedigree having won the Junior ABA’s in 2004.
His confidence is often construed as arrogance. This, along with his flashy style, could make him unpopular with the fans. He often boxes with a hands down style and at times seems to be more interested in posturing and looking the part rather than getting on with the job at hand. He’s also been getting away with hanging his chin in the air against low level opposition; he might be in for a shock when he steps up a level.
It’s a case of keeping him busy and gradually increasing the standard of opposition. I do feel he’s got to be more aware defensively if he’s to progress to domestic honours, he’s got the ability to do that and hopefully his brothers will learn that from him as well.
e-mail Dave Oakes
Previous Prospect Profiles
Monday, August 24, 2009
Dave Oakes continues his look at the top young fighters in the UK.
‘Swifty’ Smith is still at the beginner stage of his career but has looked exceptional so far. He’s following in the footsteps of his big brother, Contender star, Paul. He boxes in the featherweight division and is currently 7-0 with 5 stoppages.
He’s the kind of boxer that’s never out of the gym; he loves the sport and is a crowd pleaser. He’s already established a good following, which isn’t surprising considering his all action style; he loves to tear into his opponents from the first bell and throws every punch with serious intent. He’s already shown in his short career that he carries knockout power in both hands.
He doesn’t use his skills as much as he should; he was a very good amateur but has developed a much more aggressive style in the pro ranks. I like that in a boxer but he shouldn’t forget that he can use his jab as a way of setting up the big attacks. The lack of a jab sometimes results in him smothering his work and he can be caught coming in at times when he shouldn’t be.
He should just continue learning; he’s probably two years off being ready for a British title fight and should concentrate on working his way up the rankings.
e-mail Dave Oakes
Previous Prospect Profiles
Over the next week, Dave Oakes will be taking a look at some of the top young talent in the UK. Dave starts things off today with 25 year old Birmingham super-flyweight, Don Broadhurst.
With the new season upon us, I thought now was as good a time as any to have a look at the top prospects of British boxing. I’ve decided that the prospects must have fought less than a dozen times to be considered. I’ve also excluded all of the 2008 Olympians as they’re too obvious to pick and have all received plenty of exposure as it is.
A small man with a big talent. The diminutive Brummie became the Commonwealth super-flyweight champion in only his 9th outing and is currently 11-0 with 3 stoppages.
He’s fast, skilful, has a decent chin and has shown improved punch power in his recent fights. Trained by one of the best up-and-coming trainers in Richie Woodhall, he’s got everything needed to go all the way.
He’s not yet faced anyone with a high win percentage on their record and needs to start stepping up the quality of opposition to avoid becoming stale. Despite sitting down on his punches more recently, he’ll still lack knockout power when he steps up to world level.
He’s also at a disadvantage boxing in a division that’s relatively low on decent opponents. There seems to be a big gulf in class between domestic level and world level, with not many boxers inbetween the two. It might be that he’ll need to take a big gamble at some stage by taking on a fringe world level fighter without having the necessary experience needed for such a step up in class.
I’d like to see him take on British champion Lee Haskins in the next twelve months, along with fights against Andy Bell and maybe Ian Napa, if he can tempt Napa back down to flyweight.
After that, it might be that he needs to target someone around the top 30 in the world. The likes of Zolile Mbityi, Luis Maldonado and Gerson Guerrero should all be within Broadhurst’s reach in around eighteen months to two years time.
e-mail Dave Oakes
Sunday, August 23, 2009
By Lee Payton
I wish I could say that last night's Boxing After Dark, which featured Juan Diaz and Paulie Malignaggi in a 12 round fight, was a hit. Many fans, myself included, had very low expectations for the 3 fights on tap, and while the ring action did surprise a little bit, 2 scorecards delivered by veteran judges Gale Van Hoy and David Sutherland ruined the evening for me.
I'll get the bitching and moaning out of the way quickly...
In my opinion, those gentlemen should be required to go back to school. Van Hoy scored the main event an inexcusable 10-2 for Diaz, and Sutherland scored a 10-0 shutout for Daniel Jacobs. Utter nonsense. I'm not going to sit here and say that both men are corrupt, but I will say that they are completely untrustworthy and therefore, essentially useless. This kind of thing happens far too often in boxing. It seems like there's at least one totally whacky card every week, doesn't it? That should not be happening.
Now for what went down in the ring...
First of all, I have to give props to Paulie Malignaggi for proving me wrong. He handled himseld like a real pro to give Diaz all he could handle. I was very impressed with his punch output, conditioning and discipline in particular. He came into the ring with a realistic plan and was physically prepared to make it happen for 12 rounds.
The brash New Yorker used his superior quickness to get off first with nice jabs and 1-2-3's that he sort of flicked out there. Turning to his left all night after doing his thing was an effective tactic that held Diaz' hands back for the most part. I find the fact that he threw about 200 more punches in the end to be astounding. Who saw that coming?
I don't think this was necessarily bad Juan Diaz, just that quick movers make his own lack of foot speed stand out. When he could get Paulie to sit still for a second he did some of the solid work to the body we're used to, but he just couldn't pin his man down with much consistency.
Another problem I saw from the get go was how left hand happy he was in this fight. It's true that his left is dominant, but when you have a guy moving to your right all night long... throw it!
There has been some passionate discussion over the somewhat wide verdict that went Diaz' way. From what I have read, most fans seem to think he got a hometown gift. I didn't score it on paper, but I didn't really have a problem with the winner. I could see it 7-5 either way. A draw would have been a fair call.
However, I think it's safe to say that there was no way Malignaggi was getting a decision in Houston, based on the official cards. That's wrong.
This is why I don't put a whole lot into decisions when assessing a fighter's career. Wins and losses are ink on paper. The fights tell the real story.
As of right now, perhaps Diaz walks away having lost a little bit more than the man he officially beat.
Guerrero's wind was impressive. The man obviously worked his ass of in training and it showed. He's got a brand new world title because of his commitment to the sport. Congratulations to "The Ghost".
Malcolm Klassen can fight. I think he'd be more fun against a guy who will stand a trade more.
Ishe Smith is easier on the eyes now that he's a seasoned vet. Coming right at a guy like Jacobs took guts. If he had just a little more pop...
I love listening to Eddie Mustapha Muhammad work a corner.
Even though things didn't exactly go the way Daniel Jacobs planned, I came away impressed. He's in damn good shape and seems to have a fighters brain. Looked very natural in there.
Email Lee Payton
Saturday, August 22, 2009
By Lee Payton
Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero threw 100 punches a round on his way to a 12 round unanimous decision win over Malcolm Klassen. While he only landed about 1 in 5 all night long, the constant activity kept the former title holder's hands busy on defense most of the time.
Check out our live round by round blog coverage of the show, including the Jacobs/Smith and Malignaggi/Diaz bouts.
It was the best performance of Guerrero's career. He took advantage of his overall edge in quickness by getting off first with the most all night long. Once he was finished letting loose with a speedy combination, he turned to his right, making Klassen pick up his feet and start all over again.
It looked like things might get dicey in the middle rounds as the South African came on strong, but Guerrero was able to take back control late. His energy level was extremely impressive tonight. The time he spent in Big Bear obviously did him a lot of good. He owes his new belt to the thin air up there. Read more!
By Lee Payton
Check out our live round by round blog coverage of the show, including the Klassen/Guerrero and Malignaggi/Diaz bouts.
Daniel Jacobs and Ishe Smith gave it what they had for 10 rounds, and while there wasn't much in the way of clean punching, the fight was a little better than many fans expected. Jacobs did most of the work, while Smith came forward, finding the mark with the occasional power shot. This was the pattern for about 90% of the fight, until the final round when both men dug their heels in and went for it.
Smith's high guard, quickness and reluctance to let his hands fly seemed to give his opponent trouble throughout. While he was mostly unable to land his big stuff, Jacobs did succeed in throwing many more punches, which was enough to get the unanimous decision.
Smith seemed comfortable giving chase, he just didn't have the offensive tools to be all that dangerous. Still, he may have spoiled some other young fighters tonight. I give the younger man credit for showing a willingness to do what it takes.
With the win Jacobs goes to 18-0 (15), and Smith falls to 21-4 (9). Read more!
Live Round by Round Blog: Juan Diaz vs Paul Malignaggi, Robert Guerrero vs Malcolm Klassen, Daniel Jacobs vs Ishe Smith
Welcome to The Boxing Bulletin's live blog coverage of tonight's HBO Boxing After Dark triple-header. The show starts at 9:45 EST and we'll be providing round by round updates of all 3 bouts on the card.
If you've been with us before for our live blog round by round coverage, welcome back. If this is your first time, thanks for checking us out. Feel free to participate by giving your scores and comments.
Juan Diaz 34-2 (137.7) vs Paul Malignaggi 26-2 (138.2) - scheduled for 12
Robert Guerrero 24-1-1 (130) vs Malcolm Klassen 24-4-2 (129.5) - scheduled for 12
Daniel Jacobs 17-0 (159.7) vs Ishe Smith (159) 21-3 - scheduled for 10
If you are here early, check out our previews for tonight's fights:
News & Notes: Roy Jones Reps Captain Hook, Nonito Donaire Reps Pinoy Power, and Chris Arreola Reps Free Willy --- by Carlos Acevedo
Robert Guerrero vs Malcolm Klassen --- by Michael Nelson
We've also got a two-part preview of the new British boxing season:
British Scene Season Preview Part One; Simpson vs Truscott, O'Donnell vs Glover, Davis vs Napa, Fury vs McDermott & Olusegun vs Daws --- by Dave Oakes
British Scene Season Preview Part Two: Macklin vs Asikainen, Thaxton vs Murray, Sexton vs Rogan & Booth vs Hunter --- by Dave Oakes
Refresh this page often as updates will be frequent
7:15 PM... Check back in with us in 2 1/2 hours for the start of the show.
9:15... 30 minutes until we are underway.
9:47... HBO's on the air. First up will be Daniel Jacobs vs Ishe Smith.
9:48... Bob Papa is the host. He'll be joined by Max Kellerman and Lennox Lewis.
9:50... Jacobs and Smith are in the ring. Looks like we'll be getting underway very soon. Jacobs has re-hydrated to 175. Ishe's at 166.
9:51... Michael Buffer with the formal introductions.
9:53... Laurence Cole is the third man in the ring. Buffer tells us this is in the middleweight division. It was yesterday. Today we've got a light-heavy vs a super-middle. I know, that's the way it is with just about everyone these days.
9:57... We're underway. Jacobs firing off some jabs into Ishe's guard. Smith has the mitts up, now he edges forward while Jacobs flicks out the jab and circles to his left. Jacobs now fires off a 1-2. Jacobs jabbing, and moving, while Ishe following, but not letting his hands go just yet. Ishe now fires off a hook that is short. He misses with another hook. 1:30 to go. Jacobs firing off a couple jabs, and then pops home an uppercut. He then slides away and Ishe follows. Ishe misses with a hook. Jacobs moving to his left. Lennox comments that Ishe hasn't done anything except follow Jacobs around the ring. Now Ishe tries to bang the body with Jacobs along the ropes. Ishe digs to the body with Jacobs along the ropes and Cole warns him to keep his shots up. The action moves to the center of the ring with both men flicking out jabs from a distance. There's the bell.
10:01... Harold has it 1-0 for Jacobs. No surprise there, as that was an easy round to score. Jacobs won it with his jab. Ishe now edges forward as Jacobs backs into the ropes, and fires off a 1-2, but doesn't connect. He's going to have some chances if Jacobs back straight up like that. Ishe landed a decent left hook. Kellerman comments that's the first real punch he's landed tonight. Ishe edging forward, and fires a 1-2 and Jacobs ties him up. Ishe just misses with a right hand. Action is in the middle of the ring. Ishe bangs the body with a right/left. Jacobs with a jab. Ishe fires off a solid hook. Ishe now planting his feet and ripping shots. He got another hook home. Jacobs took it well though. Jacobs jabbing the body, and now it's Jacobs coming forward and Smith backing into the ropes. ACtion moves back to the center of the ring. Jacobs now digs a left hook to the body. Jacobs flicking out his jab. Ishe now edging forward, with Jacobs circling again. Interesting round. Ishe had some good moments and has established himself in the fight after a slow opener.
10:01... Ishe's corner - "You got to go to work. Let your hands go!"
10:05... Harold has it 1-1 now. Ishe coming forward, Jacobs moving to his left. Jacobs with a flurry and then slips away. Ishe now comes forward and digs with a couple hooks and they exchange power shots in the corner. Jacobs quickly slips away. There's a nice exchange in the middle of the ring with both guys throwing power shots and landing. Jacobs not sticking around though, he's quickly on the move. Lennox comments that Jacobs should be holding his ground a little more, that he doesn't need to be walking back so much. He's moving to his left, and trying to work the jab and counter. Ishe's edging forward, trying to bang hooks home. Now Jacobs turns Ishe around and lands a couple decent shots upstairs. Jacobs again gets on the move and Ishe follows. Ishe gets Jacobs on the ropes and bangs home a left hook. Jacobs took it well though and slips away. Jacobs has been the busier man, but Ishe is throwing the punches with bad intentions. He's just not throwing enough of them. BIG exchange at the bell. Cole jumps in there, as there was some action a little late.
10:05... In Ishe's corner, Eddie Mustafa Muhammad really is letting his fighter have it, telling him to get busy.
10:08... Harold is giving his score 2-1 for Jacobs. Meanwhile some good action going on with both guys letting their hands go. Ishe landed a nice little left hook, and then came home and banged the body, before Jacobs responded. Ishe with a nice hook again. Lennox likes what he's seeing from Jacobs standing his ground, although he's the one getting tagged. Jacobs with a nice right hand to the body. Jacobs is now the one moving forward, firing his jab, and then working off it with an uppercut. Ishe fires back though with his hook. Lennox comments that Ishe's hook is more of a slapping hook and not all that effective. Jacobs sticks home a couple jabs. 1:00 to go in the round. Jacobs now edging forward. He flurries with Ishe on the ropes, but I don't think too much got home. Ishe with a right hand. A good exchange in the middle of the round, with both men landing shots. Jacobs might have got the better of that one. Jacobs fires off a right hand that just misses. 10 seconds left in the round. Ishe now coming forward and Jacobs jabbing and moving to close the round.
10:10... I just corrected our listing at the top of the page that had this as a 12 rounder. It's scheduled for 10.
10:12... Ishe comes out in the 5th putting the pressure on. Jacobs back into the ropes, which is where Lennox points out he shouldn't be. Ishe didn't get too much done though on the ropes before Jacobs slipped away. Jacobs with a left. Jacobs now fires off a combo. Ishe responds by coming forward and Jacobs slips away to his right. Bob Papa mentions that Ishe has a cut around his eye. He's following Jacobs around again, with Jacobs flicking off jabs and moving to his left. A solid exchange in the middle of the right, with Jacobs looking like he got the better of it. Jacobs now the man moving forward. He throws a 3 punch combo, although all looked like they were caught on the gloves. Jacobs working the jab again. That's been the big difference in the fight. The busy jab of Jacobs. Ishe lands a big combo, and Jacobs is buzzed. That happened with around 15 seconds left in the round. Jacobs quickly started moving, and got to the bell at which point there were several late shots thrown.
10:13... It was a big right hand that hurt Jacobs.
10:13... At the end of the round, Jacobs had thrown a shot a little bit late, prompting Smith to retaliated with several late shots. Cole warned him in the corner that he'd take a point if that happened again. He warns both fighters to keep it clean to start the round.
10:18... Ishe comes out moving forward. Jacobs using the jab, and then throws a right that is short, before he moves. Now Jacobs fires off a combo. Ishe with a jab. Some bad luck (or good luck from the perspective of Jacobs) that Ishe landed that hard right so late in the round. Ishe looking to land the big right again, but just misses. Jacobs jabbing and moving. Jacobs throwing double and triple jabs here. 1:30 to go in the round. Ishe now catches Jacobs along the ropes and lands a hard left hand. Lennox again comments that Jacobs shouldn't be hanging out on the ropes. Jacobs outworking Ishe this round for the most part with the jab, but Ishe comes forward and throws a flurry with Jacobs' back to the ropes. Big exchange with about 10 seconds to go in the round. I think Ishe may have got the better of it, with a solid hook.
10:21... Harold has it 4-2 for Jacobs. Cole is giving Ishe a warning for going low. Cole tells him that the last time he'll warn before taking a point. Kellerman comments that Ishe has succeeded in turning this fight into a bit of a sloppy brawl that Jacobs wasn't looking for. Ishe edges forward and Jacobs with a flurry into the gloves. Jacobs keeping the jab busy so Ishe can't really get set and try and rip. Ishe coming forward, Jacobs now slips to his right. Ishe with a couple jabs. ACtion in the center of the ring. Jacobs with a couple of jabs. Jacobs now moves forward and backs Ishe into the ropes and fires off a combo. Ishe trying to slip and look to counter, but Jacobs having much of the best of it. Jacobs letting his hands go here with combos. Now he backs off, and Ishe follows Jacobs to the other side of the ring. Ishe misses with a right. Jacobs flicks out a couple jabs. Jacobs with a few more jabs.
10:25... Harold has it 5-2 now. Ishe moving forward, Jacobs dancing to his left and now he backs into a corner, but slips out to his left and then moves to the other corner. Lennox comments how some fighters like to fight with their back to the ropes. Ishe coming forward, but getting outworked. Jacobs with a jab and a right, and then gets on the move again before Ishe can respond. Jacobs with a right hand and then slips away. Ishe pushes forward though, trying to jab his way in. Jacobs backing into the ropes. Ishe fires a hook that misses and then misses with a right and Jacobs ties him up. Ishe with a hook. Jacobs fires back. Ishe with a solid left hand. Jacobs flicks out the jabs and moves. Ishe pressing forward, and ripping his left. He's the smaller man tonight, but he's fighting like the bigger one. Ishe in pursuit, with Jacobs stopping and flurrying.
10:26... Jacobs' corner is telling him to say off the ropes.
10:29... 6-2 on Harold's card. These rounds are competitive though. Jacobs doing a little more, but he's not having an easy night and it's not really looking that much like a 6-2 fight. Ishe moving forward, but Jacobs letting his hands go, backing Ishe off. Ishe though fires off a combo that landed. Jacobs with a jab/right. Jacobs again on the move. Ishe trying to dig hard with a hook as Jacobs backs into the corner. Jacob with a little flurry. Kellerman comments that Ishe is trying to catch Jacobs in between punches with a big left hook. Jacobs with a nice flurry. Jacobs now digs downstairs. Jacobs planting his feet and bit and ripping shots. Now he gets back on the move and Ishe resumes his pursuit. Ishe landed a decent left hand with about 30 seconds left in the round. Jacobs responded though with his own right hand and pushes Ishe into the ropes. Kellerman comments that Jacobs might have been stunned a bit by the shot Ishe landed. As the round ended, Ishe fires off a shot... and he's going to lose a point for it.
10:30... You know what - that wasn't a great call. It looked like Ishe was in the middle of throwing a shot right at the bell. He's done worse tonight then that, but perhaps that was the final straw.
10:33... Harold has Jacobs up 7-2. Ishe comes forward hard to start the round, trying to dig home hooks. Jacobs on the move, jabs, flurries and movement from Jacobs. Jacobs with a hook downstairs. Jacobs now with a flurry downstairs before he slips away again. Ishe presses forward and tries to land a right, but no luck. Ishe is short with another right. Jacobs with the jab. Jacobs backs into the corner again and Ishe tries to unload but smothers himself. Jacobs flicking off jabs and moving. He's also mixing in the occasional right hand. 1:00 to go. Ishe now backs Jacobs onto the ropes and tries to dig home some hooks to the body. He fires upstairs, but can't catch Jacobs clean. Jacobs now gets out of there and the actions moves back to the middle of the ring. Now Jacobs letting his hands go. Firing off 1-2s. Ishe tries to bang home a right, but can't connect. Ishe fights hard until the final bell, but can't land anything of note. There's the bell.
10:35... Just waiting for the decision now.
10:36... 96-93, 96-93 and 100-89 for Daniel Jacobs.
10:37... Ishe gave a very game effort. Outweighed by 9 pounds, he took the fight to Jacobs all night. Maybe could have left his hands go a little more, but Jacobs was making it tough with a steady jab and a lot of movement.
10:38... Up next is Robert Guerrero vs Malcolm Klassen.
10:40... Right now, HBO is airing a tribute to Alexis Arguello, Arturo Gatti and Vernon Forrest.
10:45... This tribute is breaking me up a little. Hopefully someone will upload it to youtube later for those that aren't getting a chance to watch right now.
10:51... Michael Buffer asks the crowd for a moment of silence for the memorial 10 count to say farewell to the 3 fighters.
10:53... Guerrero is 144 tonight, while Klassen is at 142.
10:56... Klassen just popped through the ropes. Guerrero is already in the ring. Looks like we're almost ready to start.
10:57... The ref is John Shorle.
10:58... Michael Buffer with the intros.
10:58... Guerrero got a bit of applause. None for Klassen. They must be saving it for the Baby Bull.
11:02... We're underway. Guerrero fighting out of the southpaw stance. Both men firing jabs from long range. Klassen tries to fire a right to the body but is short. Guerrero working the jab. Both men just let their hands go, but neither landed. Kellerman comments on Guerrero's nice snappy jab. Klassen edges forward and fires a right hand. Guerrero responds by digging the body. Guerrero with a solid 1-2. Guerrero with a nice combo. Klassen has the guard up, and takes it all, but a couple shots definitely got through. Now Klassen comes forward, but misses with a right. Guerrero with a jab, and a right hand. 1:00 to go. Klassen with a jab. Action in the middle of the ring. NOw Guerrero edges forward, and fires off a 1-2. Klassen coming forward, but not really letting his hands go, while Guerrero firing off 1-2, and working the hook. Klassen now with a sright right. Klassen trying to turn it up as the round comes to a close, but it's a good one for Guerrero.
11:06... Guerrero edging forward behind the jab. Klassen with his gloves up. Now Klassen tries to flurry, but is short. Guerero presses forward, looking sharp, he bangs home a 1-2. Guerrero with a hook that is blocked. Klassen looking very cautious so far. Gloves up, and not really letting his hands go. Now he comes forward, and fires off his right hand. Guerrero responds with hiw own right. Klassen pressing a little now. He sticks the jab and fires a right. Guerrero responds with a flurry though, and they clinch. 1:20 to go. Guerrero with a 1-2 into the guard. Klassen witha big right hand. That landed flush, and he tried to jump on Guerrero, but Guerrero fires back. He took the show well and responded immediately. Klassen edging forward, but Guerrero sticking home the jab. Lennox comments that the fighters are stepping on each other's front foot.
11:06... We just a replay of the right hand Klassen landed. Bob Papa points out that Guerrero just got his glove up to cushion the blow a little.
11:09... Harold has it 2-0 for Guerrero. Guerrero coming forward behind the jab. Klassen responds with a right hand. Guerrero with a left, and Klassen responds with his own right. Guerrero witha flurry. Glassen gloves up trying to block and respond. Guerrero slips away though before Klassen can. Now Klassen comes forward and Guerrero slips away to the right, and then fires off a right hand. Now they clinch. 1:30 to go. Klassen bangs a right hand to the body. Guerrero is doing a nice job of turning out of trouble. He's throwing his jab, and his left, and then pivoting. Klassen is pushing forward, but having a hard time getting Guerrero where he wants him. Guerrero meanwhile picking his spots nicely. Using his jab well. We just had a clash of heads, and Klassen then landed a right. Now they clinch. Lennox comments that Klassen is getting a little anxious and jumping in with his shots.
11:13... Guerrero comes forward behind the jab to the start the round. 3-0 on Harold's card. Klassen trying to land his right hand, but Guerrero is managing to avoid it. Guerrero with a 1-2 into the guard, and Klassen comes back with a right. Now Klassen tries to flurry, and follows up with a right as Guerrero backs away. Klassen with a right to the body, and Guerrero responds with a left ot the body. Klassen looks a bit bothered by the body shot, and Guerrero tries to take advantage of it. Now Klassen looks to be okay again. Guerrero just ate a counter right, but no damage. Klassen pushing forward, just missing with a right. Now Guerrero with a 1-2. Klassen is having a tricky time getting into position to nail that right hand home. Guerrero flurries, and Klassen tries to dig to the body. Klassen with a right hand upstairs. Guerero with a 1-2. Klassen pushes forward and fires just after the bell with a combo.
11:18... Lennox comments on how nicely Guerrero is mixing it up tonight. He's 4-0 up on Harold's card. He starts the round working the jab. Now he fires a straight left. Klassen edging forward, but Guerrero turning away from that right hand. Klassen momentarily switched to southpaw, but he's back to conventional. Klassen with a jab. Guerrero lands a nice uppercut though. Guerrero staying the busier of the two fighters, even when Klassen is moving forward. Klassen tries to rip a couple hooks downstairs. Now he catches Guerrero with a couple rights, but Guerrero was moving away from both shots. 1:00 to go. Klassen having his best round and his best moments of the fight. He's pushing forward. Guerrero with a 1-2 and turns away. Guerrero digs to the body. Klassen edging forward, and and bangs the body. Klassen fires a right as Guerrero dances away. Klassen slips a left, and tries to land a right that misses. Lennox says that Guerrero needs to maintain his focus as he looked like he was falling apart a little that round. I wouldn't go that far, but it was certainly the South African's round.
11:22... Klassen has a rep of tiring late. Perhaps tonight he decided to take it easy early and conserve his energy. It's 4-1 now on Harold's card. Guerrero sticking the jab. Klassen firing a right. Guerrero with a 1-2 into the guard. Klassen edging forward, but misses a right. Klassen with a combo that's blocked. Guerrero with a left in the guard. Guerrero again moving nicely and avoiding getting tagged with the right. Klasen digs to the body though, and then lands a decent right hand over the top. Guerrero flurries into the gloves as Klassen puts his head down and tries to work forward. Klassen digs a shot to the body. Guerrero short with a left. Now Klassen backing up for a moment, but then goes on the attack again. Guerrero letting his hands go, keeping Klassen off him. But Klassen fires back with a flurry. Guerrero with a shot that knocks Klassen's mouth piece out. After 10 seconds or so, there's a break and the mouth piece is going back in. 10 seconds left in the round. Guerrero very busy that round, and flurries at the bell. Klassen's left eye is said to be bothering him.
11:23... Guerrero's corner, "He's getting frustrated, keeping turning him, keep jabbing." The shot that knocked Klassen's mouth guard out was an uppercut.
11:26... 5-1 on Harold's card. Klassen coming forward, but Guerrero sticking the jab in there to keep him from getting set. Harold comments on what a good job Guerrero's doing keeping Klassen on the end of the jab and moving. Guerrero with a 1-2 upstairs. Klassen fires off a right hand. Klassen again with a right hand. Now Klassen presses Guerrero up against the ropes, and fires off with a flurry. Guerrero gets out of trouble though. There's a convo going on with the crew about Guerrero using his elbow on the inside. Harold commented that it was illegal, but Max doesn't mind since he's using it to make space to punch. Guerrero staying busy. He's not really planting his feet, but he's putting punches together. Now Klassen digs downstairs hard with a body combo. Another nice shot downstairs from Klassen. Guerrero was just cut on the left eye from a butt. Max thinks Klassen's using his head intentionally the way he's jumping in. There's the bell.
11:27... It looks like a bad cut, but it's on the outside of the eye so it shouldn't bother Guerrero's vision or put the fight in jeopardy of being stopped.
11:31... 5-2 now on Harold's card. Kellerman again comments that Klassen jumps in dangerously with his head. I don't know if I agree that he's intentionally trying to use his head, but rather get himself within range of the longer armed Guerrero. "The use of his head would make Evander proud." - Max. One of Klassen's kids is named Evander, but they are talking about Holyfield. "My good buddy" Lennox says. Klassen just landed a decent right hand, and Guerrero ties him up. The blood is dripping down the side of Guerrero's face. Guerrero with a 1-2 in the gloves. The action is a little slower this round. Klassen trying to dig with downstairs with some heavy body shots. Guerrero not letting his hands go the way he has in previous rounds. Klassen though hasn't stepped it up too much, and you would think he has a real chance to now. Klassen with a right hand that partially gets through. The bell rings with Klassen the aggressor, but not really doing a whole lot of damage.
11:34... 6-2 on Harold's card. Guerrero comes out using the jab. Klassen fires off a right, but doesn't catch Guerrero clean with it. Now he lands a decent right with Guerrero's back to the ropes. Klassen trying to flurry here as Guerrero moves to his right and then gets a clinch. Guerrero trying to dig to the body. Klassen responds with a right hand. Both men now leaning forwared almost shoulder to shoulder on the inside. Klassen with a nice combo and presses Guerrero against the ropes. Klassen letting his hands go, with Guerrero on the ropes. Guerrero dipping and ducking, but some shots got through. Now Guerrero moves out of trouble, and Klassen a little arm weary backs into the ropes on the other side of the ring. Guerrero puts his head down and pushing forward with a hold of Klassen's arm. Klassen now coming forward and digs with a right hand downstairs. Guerrero looking a little ragged here. Klassen trying to flurry, and Guerrero fires back. There's the bell, and they touch gloves out of respect.
11:36... There's a delay to start the 10th as the ring is wet. Our ref grabs a towel to wipe down the logo in the center of the ring.
11:39... Klassen comes forward and fires a right hand. Guerrero with a 1-2 upstairs while backing away. 6-3 on Harold's card. Klassen edging inside, and Guerrero ties him up and slips away. Klassen with a right hand that is partially blocked. Now Klassenw itha flurry, and Guerrero responds with his own flurry. Klassen trying to step up the intensity a little now and fires off another flurry in close. Guerrero though staying busy, as he flurries and backs off before grabbing a hold of Klassen. Now Klassen presses forward and digs a right hand to the body. Guerrero is looking a little tired here. Not much steam on his shots and he's backing up. Klassen trying to press, and lands a right, and then gets tied up again. Klassen forces Guerrero into the ropes, but Guerrero slipping and ducking and then moves. Klassen now is the busier fighter. Klassen digs hard to the body, and Guerrero respons with a hard left that backs Klassen up. There's the bell.
11:40... In the corner, Guerrero says he thinks he hurt Klassen with the left. It definitely backed Klassen up, which is something we haven't seen tonight.
11:41... Guerrero has thrown 1000 punches through 10.
11:44... Harold has it 7-3. Klassen pushes forward to start the round. Klassen lands a decent left hook, but Guerrero fires back. Guerrero is in retreat, but jabbing and throwing 1-2s. Klassen meanwhile is moving forward trying to get in close and loading up. Lennox comments that Klassen is getting a bit frustrated. Klassen throws a left right combo, but doesn't connect. Guerrero with a flurry into the gloves and moves. Klassen fires to the body. Klasen trying to slip the jab and launches a hook that misses. Guerrero with an uppercut. Lennox comments that Guerrero's still doing a great job turning Klassen. Guerrero with a flurry and Klassen throws a counter right, but is a little late with it. Guerrrero now pushes forward and flurries with Klassen along the ropes. Lennox comments that Klassen has really slowed down. He's not having a good round. Getting outworked. There's the bell.
11:48... They touch gloves for the final round. 8-3 on Harold's card. Klassen comes out hard and manages to bull Guerrero into the ropes. Guerrero throwing back though. Guerrero now forces a clinch, and now walks Klassen back into the ropes. Klassen trying to fire the right hand, but he's just missing with it. 2:00 to go. Guerrero ont he move here, and holding when Klassen gets close. Klassen trying to let his hands go, but he's not really landing much of note, and then Guerrero flurries back. 1:30 to go. "We've seen guys running, this isn't exactly running, it's smart." Papa on Guerrero. Klassen now slips to the canvas. He's up, no knockdown there. 1:00 to go. Klassen suddenly looking a little tired. Guerrero flurries and Klassen now presses forward, but gets tagged. Klassen with his head down trying to work, but he's a very tired fighter. Both men look tired. Klassen trying to put some shots together, but it's Guerrero who's letting his hands go as he moves backwards. 10 seconds to go. Guerrero is going to win this one. There's the bell. A very happy Robert Guerrero jumps on the ropes in the corner with his hands up.
11:49... That was a really good performance from Guerrero. Klassen fought hard until the final bell, but he was just outboxed.
11:50... Harold has it 117-111.
11:50... The official cards are 117-111, 116-112 and 116-112 for Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero.
11:56... Floyd/Marquez preview on right now. I'll post an update when we have a sighting of Diaz and Malignaggi.
11:57... Diaz is 145 tonight and Malignaggi is 149.
11:59... Malignaggi is about to make his entrance.
12:02... Diaz is heading in. Crowd is making noise (about time).
12:05... Michael Buffer with the intros.
12:06... Max just mentioned before the intros started about some of what Malignaggi is up against including the small ring. The same problem faced Robert Guerrero, but he did a very good job of keeping Malcolm Klassen from getting inside. Of course, Diaz has quicker feet than Klassen, so Paulie's definitely got a much bigger challenge keeping the busy Diaz at a comfortable range.
12:07... Our ref is Laurence Cole.
12:08... We're ready to go.
12:11... Paulie shooting the stick out there, as Diaz moves forward. Paulie is moving to his left as he jabs. "he looks lightning fast right now." Max on Paulie. Diaz trying to bob and weave his way in under the jabs. Now Paulie ties him up. Diaz trying to jab as he comes forward. He's getting a couple home. Paulie tries to respond with a right. Diaz with the guard up high, pushing forward. He fires a combo in the gloves. Paulie backing up, circling, now stops and throws a 1-2. Paulie has the left hand hanging low. He throws a combo into the gloves. Diaz trying to jab his way in. Paulie's doing a very nice job though. Diaz with a nice jab. Paulie flicking out jabs and moving. Diaz just countered one of Paulie's jabs with a right hand that landed, but not with full force. Paulie jabbing and turning, and then ties Diaz up. Paulie on the move again.
12:12... Paule has a little cut over his left eye that was opened up by a punch.
12:12... Juan's corner telling him to keep punching when Paulie holds him.
12:15... 1-0 to Malignaggi on Harold's card. Diaz pressing forward, but Paulie keeping his hands busy. Flurrying and then moving. But Diaz with a nice combo, and lands a flush left hand. Action now in the center of the ring. Diaz having some good moments, but Paulie sticks his chin out at Juan to let him know he's not getting to him. Paulie still working with the jab. He's backing up, circling to his left. Now he flurries. Diaz flurries back. Diaz with a little hook on the inside. Action in the middle of the ring now. Diaz with another hook. Diaz with some good moments here, and backs Paulie up. Diaz with a right. Paulie sticks the jab and keeps moving. He goes left, now right. He's got the left hand dangling low, as he sticks it out into Juan's face as he comes forward. Diaz though landing his jab as he comes forward. Paulie with a combo, and then eats a counter right. The crowd roars when the Baby Bull does anything. Diaz comes forward, pressing Malignaggi on the ropes and digs to the body, but eats a left hand. Malignaggi with a jab. Now Diaz has a cut over his left eye. Both men cut and we're only through 2.
12:20... Diaz pressing forward and just landed a nice right hand. Paulie fires back though. Now he gets a hold of Diaz and turns him around. Diaz getting closer, and Paulie holding a little more on the inside. He fires a jab though and slips away to his left. Diaz on the march coming forward. "Real good fight so far." - Max. Paulie flicking the jab home. Diaz with a nice little hook in close. Paulie with a 1-2 upstairs. Diaz keeps coming through. He lands another little hook. Paulie seems able to take Juan's best though. He sticks home a jab and slips away. Juan bangs home a jab, and Paulie has hold of him in close. Juan trying to work with his free hand. Diaz pressing forward, landing the jab and gets tied up again. Paulie sticking the jab out, and Diaz tries to press forward and gets tied up again in close. There's the bell. This has been entertaining.
12:23... Harold has it 2-1 for Paulie. Diaz edging forward behind the jab. Paulie flurrying with jab, right and another jab. Diaz with his guard up, banging away. Paulie has a hold of Diaz' left in close. Paulie with a jab and then moves. Diaz just misses with a right hand. Diaz just misses with a left. Now Diaz lands a left. Diaz with a flurry in close that seemed to buzz Paulie for a sec. Action in the middle of the round. Diaz trying to bang home his hook in close. Paulie sticks him with a jab though and then turns away from trouble. 1:00 to go. Paulie sticking the jab home and moving. Diaz with the jab, and trying to follow it with hooks. Paulie now gets a hold of Juan in close. Paulie with a jab, and then moves... then holds and pushes Diaz back into the ropes which the crowd doesn't like. Paulie on the move to his right, now to his left. Diaz tries to chase him down as the bell rings.
12:24... We just a replay of a really nice left hook that Diaz landed.
12:27... Harold has it 2-2. Diaz trying to jab his way in. Paulie with a 1-2 as he circles away. Diaz digs with a hook to the body and upstairs. Malignaggi now with Juan's left tied up in close. Juan on the march forward. Paulie sticking the jab and moving. Paulie with another jab and ties Juan up. Diaz with a hook that lands. Diaz tries to flurry and lands a combo. Paulie responds with his own 1-2. Diaz with another flurry, trying to dig downstairs. Paulie keeps firing back though whenever it looks like Juan might be getting an upper hand. Diaz with a right over the top. Cole warns Malignaggi for using his elbow. Diaz keeps pressing, and Paulie is throwing 1-2 and moving. Diaz just ate a sharp jab that snapped his head back. Diaz coming forward and Paulie dancing away to his left. Paulie circling away and the crowd getting a little restless. There have been very few moments without action. Nobody can have any complaints so far with what we're seeing. There's the bell.
12:29... The cut over Juan's left eye is in a bad spot - right on the eyebrow - but I don't think it's deep.
12:32... Paulie with an uppercut as Juan comes forward. Paulie quickly dances away. Cole said at the start of the round that the second cut Diaz suffered was an accidental head-butt. The first was caused by a punch. Diaz coming forward trying to bang Paulie with hooks. Paulie ties Juan up on the inside. Diaz with a right and tries to bang the body with a hook. Paulie trying to work the jab and keep his distance. Diaz with a little uppercut in close, and tries to bang Paulie's body. Action in the middle of the ring with the fighters almost shoulder to shoulder. Paulie landed a flurry, and then ate a hard shot in return from Juan. 1:00 to go. Paulie is warned for pushing Juan's head down in close. Paulie circling to his right, and now to his left. Diaz with a hook as he presses forward. Paulie sticks the jab as he circles. Paulie keeps sticking the jab and keeps moving. Juan having a little trouble here getting close over the last 30 seconds or so. Paulie with a flurry and Juan tries to respond but misses.
12:32... Paulie's trainer tells him to stay off the inside.
12:33... The doctor is having a look at Diaz in the corner. Just checking the cut out. It's right on the eyebrow. Juan has another one on the eyelid, much smaller, that was caused by a punch.
12:34... Harold has it all even, 57-57.
12:37... Paulie is working the jab. Diaz trying to jump in there with a left. Paulie flurries, and Juan tries to fire back. Paulie circling away to his left. Juan gets inside and tries to dig hard to the body. Paulie responds with a right to the body and then dances away. Paulie flurries, and then hangs around on the inside as Diaz tries to bang to the body. Paulie now slides away. Diaz with a hard right hand over the top. Paulie takes it sticks a 1-2 into the guard as he backs up. Paulie flicking the jab out and dancing to his left. Diaz trying to dig to the body, but Paulie slips away. Paulie moving to his left. Diaz trying to get in close, but misses with a left/right. Paulie moves away, but eats a left as he does. Diaz with a left hook that lands with Paulie moving along the ropes. Diaz with a jab. Diaz chasing, but having a tough time getting close as the round closes. You have to wonder if Paulie's legs will get tired late.
12:37... Juan's corner is working on that cut. Looks to be under control.
12:41... 4-3 for Diaz on Harold's card. Diaz coming forward, Paulie on the move. Now Diaz works his way in behind the jab, but Paulie dances away to his left. Juan with a jab. Paulie flicking his jab out and moving away to his left, now he goes to his right as Juan chases. Juan trying to slip the jab as he gets close, but Paulie keeps dancing away. Paulie not stopping at all this round. Juan trying to land the hook when he gets close, but Paulie slips away to his right. 1:30 to go. Paulie slips a combo and then holds on. Diaz trying to bang a hook in there, but Paulie sticks a few jabs in and gets out of there. Bob Papa comments that Paulie's trunks are slowly coming down. "They are literally falling off, right now." Diaz with a right hand. Diaz comes forward and misses with a right. Diaz trying to work in close but Paulie staying away. Someone needs to pull Paulie's trunks up.
12:41... Diaz' corner is telling him that he has to cut the ring off and "when he jabs, jab with him."
12:44... 5-3 on Harold's card to Diaz. Paulie flicking the jab out and moving to his right. Now to his left. Diaz trying to bang downstairs when Paulie stopped for a second. Paulie always with the left hand low. Diaz with a nice right hand that landed. Paulie backing away, and now grabs a hold of Juan and there's a break. Paulie with a 1-2 into the guard as he bcks away. Juan with a jab, and a right hand that landed flush. Good shot from Juan there. Paulie took it well though and sticks his jab home and gets on the move again. 1:30 to go. Juan misses with a right and eats a jab. Juan slips a left. Juan with a right. Diaz edging forward, while Paulie slips away to his left. Diaz with a jab. Paulie sticking out the jab, and circling. Diaz trying to chase him down. He fires a right hadn that just misses. Lennox says that Diaz needs to come back with a hook after throwing the right. Diaz with a hook, but it's short as Paulie dances away. 10 seconds left. There's the bell.
12:45... According to Bob Papa, Guerrero probably broke his left hand against Klassen. Harold has it 5-4 for Paulie. I must have made a mistake last round, as I was sure it was 5-3 for Diaz on the graphics on screen.
12:49... Paulie working the jab, slipping to his right and now moving away to his left as Diaz tries to get close. Paulie now grabs a hold of Diaz in close. Now he slips away again. Juan trying to chase, but struggling at the moment to get going. Diaz with a jab, and tries to work the body. A good exchange, with Paulie firing off a 1-2 and Diaz responding with a combo. Now Paulie on the move again. Sticking the jab and moving left. 1:30 to go. Diaz trying to slip the jab as he moves forward, but Paulie won't keep still and Juan is just not able to set his feet and rip in close. Paulie now fires off a 1-2 and then gets out of there. 1:00 to go. Paulie with another jab and keeps moving. Juan just isn't getting close enough. Juan following, but not landing. Now Juan misses, and Paulie grabs him, and then moves out of trouble. Diaz fires a right hand that might have partially landed. There's the bell.
12:50... "This is easy work." - Malignaggi's corner.
12:53... Juan Diaz needs to cut the ring off. He's not doing it. Paulie's keeping him at the distance he needs to. 6-4 on Harold's card for Paulie. Paulie with a jab and moves. Diaz trying to jab his way in, but Paulie slips to the side. Paulie with a jab. Diaz tries to jump in with a hook. Diaz misses with a hook. Now he lands a jab. Paulie with a nice upjab. Juan backs Paulie into the ropes, but Pauile throws a combo and dances away. 1:30 to go. Juan tries to lunge in with a hook. Diaz with a right hand. Paulie flurries and moves. Diaz now digs a hook to the body. Diaz trying to flurry here. Paulie ties him up. Lennox comments that Diaz needs to punch with some real urgency. He's trying. He's just not able to catch Paulie. Laurence Cole just called time to pull Paulie's trunks up. 25 seconds left. Paulie with the jab, and gets out of there. Diaz keeps coming forward, but he's not getting close often enough.
12:55... Juan's corner is working on that cut.
12:58... Harold has it 7-4. Paulie sticking the jab. Diaz trying to flurry, but Paulie gets a hold of him. Diaz with some real urgency now. He's pressing forward and trying to rip hooks, but Paulie's staying out of trouble. Diaz now hooks to the body and comes upstairs. Paulie fires back with a combo. Diaz with a hard right hand that landed flush on the inside. Paulie now ties him up. 1:50 to go. Paulie sticking the jab out, and Diaz rips a hook downstairs. Paulie jabbing as Juan presses. 1:20 to go. Diaz with a little hook. Diaz has blood streaming down the left side of his face. He throws a hook, and follows up with a right that just misses. He's fighting with more urgency than he has in the previous few rounds. 50 seconds to go. The crowd is urging Diaz on. Paulie dancing away though. Diaz with a hook downstairs. Paulie dancing away. Diaz with a right, and tries to land his hook, but Paulie gets out of there. 15 seconds to go. Diaz bangs a hook downstairs. Paulie flurries and moves. Diaz comes forward throwing and Malignaggi fires back as the round ends.
12:59... These cards should be interesting. There were a couple rounds in the middle, where Paulie didn't stand his ground at all but was landing his jab. I think Harold gave those to Paulie. Will the judges in Houston have done the same?
1:00... Harold's card 115-113 for Paulie Malignaggi.
1:00... Here's Michael Buffer with the scores. 116-112, 115-113 and 118-110 all for Juan Diaz.
1:01... Wow. 118-110? Really?
1:02... "Inexplicable." - Bob Papa
1:04... I really don't know what to say. As a fan, you kind of lose heart when you see scorecards like that.
1:05... Diaz says he wants a rematch with Marquez.
1:06... Paulie is not pleased. "That was ridiculous." He's mad as hell, and you can't blame him.
1:07... "Boxing is full of shit." - Paulie Malignaggi
1:08... I'm guessing the post fight press conference should be interesting. Anyway, that's it for our coverage tonight. I hope you enjoyed it, and please check back with us for our next live round by round blog.