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Dougie’s FAT Friday Mailbag

06
Mar

Read for fans’ opinions on Saturday’s triple header from San Jose, Calif., more feedback on Marquez-Diaz, thoughts on potential Marquez showdowns with the PacMan, Ricky Hatton, Floyd Mayweather, Edwin Valero, and even Shane Mosley, plus much more in this week’s truly FAT Friday Mailbag. Enjoy!

HBO TRIPLE HEADER

times are tough, dougie. instead of paying $500 for a ticket to hatton/pacqiao, i will instead use that money to fly back to the bay, attend the hbo triple header this weekend, and probably pay for a buttload of drinks as well. actually, i'd be surprised if the whole weekend cost me $500. only time will tell if i made the right decision. anyway, since this is the first live fight card for me in almost four years, i thought i'd write in with my two cents.

kirkland/julio – can kirkland deal with julio’s power? can julio deal with kirkland’s relentless style? i don't know but can't wait to find out. both guys can crack and neither has shown much defensive prowess (unless you count kirkland’s offense as his defense). my guess is that both fighters touch the canvas in this one and it is the fighter with the superior heart/will that comes out on top. my guess is that is kirkland, but i'm not very confident about the pick.

ortiz/arnoutis – i think this will be a real tough fight for ortiz. arnoutis has the style and skills to give him fits. however, because mighty mike tends to be a little conservative with the old punch output, i think he'll have a tough time getting a decision against the busier ortiz. i'll go with ortiz by decision.

guerrero/yordan – i have to admit, i don't know doody about this air yordan character, which leads me to believe that guerrero will wipe his butt with him. but who knows? maybe i should just ask for your two cents on this one.

keep up the good work. if i see you at the fights, i'll tug your ponytail. – alex (formerly of sf, now in colorado)

Anyway, If you want more bang for your buck, Alex, and you don’t get into the whole ‘big celebrity event’ atmosphere in Vegas, I think you made the right choice buying tickets to Saturday’s show in San Jose. The main event is a hell of a fight on paper, Victor Ortiz is in with the most difficult opponent of his career, and the local crowd will go completely crazy when ‘the Ghost’ enters the ring. Also, I think you’ll want to get to the show as early as possible because there are a number of talented young prospect on the non-televised undercard. Two young guns that I am familiar with are Charles Huerta (8-0, 5 knockouts), an entertaining featherweight boxer-puncher I used to watch spar with the likes of Martin Castillo at the Maywood Boxing Club when he was an amateur, and junior lightweight Eloy Perez (12-0-2, 2 KOs), a pure boxer trained and managed by the famous Garcia Clan of Salinas, Calif., who was taught the finer points of the Sweet Science by and the great Don Familton.

If you see me at the fights, be sure to holler at me (but please don’t pull the ponytail. I’m a mild-mannered dude, but that’s one of the few things that will make me go off like James Toney at a press conference where food isn’t served).

Anyway, here’s my two cents on your two cents:

Kirkland-Julio – Like you I’ll go with Kirkland but I wouldn’t bet a lot of money on him. I favor the Texas badass because I think he’ll have the superior conditioning and think he’s got more heart than Julio, who showed a little yellow streak in his close decision win over Ishe Smith. Of course, Kirkland is going to be a lot easier to hit than Smith was.

Ortiz-Arnaoutis – Again, I agree with most of your analysis. I think the stick-and-move style of Arnaoutis will trouble Ortiz who can be a little flat footed. I believe that Arnaoutis, who has decent pop when he catches his opponents at the end of his punches, is the busier of the two. Ortiz is methodical in his approach (stalking his opponent down) and economical with his punches. However, like the main event, I’m going with the guy I think has the better heart and conditioning, and I believe that’s Ortiz.

Guerrero-Yordan – “Air Yordan”. I like that. I have no idea what to expect from the 1-year-old Indonesian. I sort of half-watched his one fight in the U.S. (on the Marquez-Casamayor) undercard and I don’t recall being overly impressed. I gotta go with the known quantity and the hometown lad, Guerrero. Like I wrote in my feature on ‘The Ghost’ this week, when he’s focused he’s one of the most formidable young fighters in the sport.

ROOTING FOR HATTON

Hello Dougie,
Did you have fun in Houston? I watched the Marquez/Diaz fight again on Sunday, again on Monday and guess what my evening plans have scheduled for the rest of the week… Man, I don't think I'll ever get tired of that fight.

I wasn't sure of who to root for in the Hatton/Pacquiao fight, they are two of my favorite fighters. But now I have a clear favorite in that fight. I'm rooting for Hatton, just because I think that fight with Marquez is more likely to happen than a 3rd fight with Manny Pacquiao. Pacquiao is now clearly chasing bigger paydays and who can blame him. If Pacquiao beats Hatton I'd like to see him fight Cotto. I'd root for Pacquiao in that fight. If Pacquiao takes on Mosley I'd root for MosleyÔǪ Marquez vs. Mayweather, talk about a pipedream. At this point ANY fight mentioned with Mayweather is nothing but a pipedream. I don't think it's a coincidence that the sport has gotten more exciting since his departure. I'm joking, I'm joking. But I do think it’s a testament that the sport don't need him in order to thrive with entertaining matchups. Kirkland vs. Julio will be another example of that. – Jorge, San Diego

You might be joking but I’m not. I think the entire sport is better off without Mayweather. When the recognized pound-for-pound king is more manager than fighter, I believe that bitch-ass money-grubbing mentality trickles down to young up-and-comers and poisons the sport. It’s better to have real warriors like Pacquiao and Marquez at the top. I don’t miss Floyd and his boring ass fights.

The great thing about Marquez is that he’s a worthy challenger for either Hatton or Pacquiao and he’ll make for exciting and dramatic fights with either fighter. If Pacquiao beats Hatton I don’t think he’ll avoid Marquez if there’s enough public pressure (on him, Bob Arum and HBO) to fight the Mexican master a third time. If Hatton pulls off the slight upset, I don’t think he’ll duck Marquez. No matter who wins on May 2, I think boxing is in a good place going into late part of the year. I want to see Pacquiao-Marquez III more than any other fight, but I won’t be too disappointed if we get Cotto-Pacquiao at 147 pounds and Hatton-Marquez for the junior welterweight championship instead.

KIRKLAND VS. JULIO

Hey Doug,
HBO continues its recent run of good shows with a triple-header this weekend. In particular, I’m very interested in the Kirkland-Julio match-up. Although he did score the TKO against Brian Vera in his last fight, Kirkland didn’t seem quite like the same animal with that sense of all-out aggression we’ve become accustomed to seeing in his fights previous to that one. Whether or not that can be chalked-up to a tactical decision, off night, etc., I’m looking forward to seeing him in the ring with a solid, experienced guy like Joel Julio. I think Julio is clearly the best fighter Kirkland will have been in the ring with, and on top of that, Julio can crack, which I think makes this a very interesting fight. Thanks a lot. – Jesse, New Jersey

HBO’s boxing programming has indeed been excellent in the first quarter of 2009; Showtime hasn’t been too shabby, either, with Darchinyan-Arce, Adamek-Banks, and the April 4 Holt-Bradley 140-pound title unification coming up.

The Kirkland-Julio matchup looks like a can’t-miss barnburner on paper, but I wouldn’t be shocked if the combatants gave each other some breathing room in the early rounds. Julio’s got the kind of experience that has to be respected and Kirkland’s team probably knows that both of the Colombian’s two losses have been to southpaw boxers, so who knows? Maybe Kirkland will come out boxing. It would fool hardy for either man to come out winging crazy shots as hard as they hit, but I wouldn’t complain if they did.

I don’t think Kirkland looked great against Vera but we have to remember than Vera is a naturally bigger fighter with a lot of Texas pride. Most natural 154 pounders would not have been able to last as long as he did against Kirkland.

Although I was disturbed the number of flush right hands Vera landed on Kirkland and I haven’t forgotten the knockdown Allen Conyers scored with a straight right, I’m going with the Austin, Texas native by decision or late stoppage. I thought Julio was underwhelming versus Cosme Rivera and Ishe Smith. The best he’s looked since his loss to Quintana and his lucky decision over Rivera was his eighth-round KO of K9 Bundrage. Kirkland is so much meaner and formidable than Bundrage I don’t even want to get into it.

YOUR SON

Dougie,
Quick question about your son, Edwin Valero. How do you see Valero doing against last Saturday night's versions of both Marquez and Diaz? Does he get outboxed? It's real intriguing to think about… Keep doin' what you do, Dougie. – Joe from Philly (now in Vegas)

Those are intriguing lightweight matchups because I think Marquez EASILY out-boxes “my son” and I think believe that Diaz easily out-boxes and out-works the ‘V-nom’, however, I thought both Marquez and Diaz were all too open to a variety of punches during their Fight of the Year candidate and that my friend would spell certain doom against Valero.

As much as I respect Marquez, and I’m on record stating that he’s a great fighter, he’s susceptible to getting caught with left hands from quick southpaws. (For proof of this please view his fights with Terdsak Jandaeng, Jimrex Jaca and, of course, both fights with Manny Pacquiao.) Valero is a fast southpaw and he hits harder than any of the lefties I mentioned, including the Pac-Monster. He’s also craftier than a lot armchair Eddie Futches out there believe. After watching the left hooks of Diaz, who is not a KO puncher, shake JMM down to his ankles last Saturday, I’m afraid I have to favor “my son” in a matchup with the future first-ballot hall of famer. Diaz might be a tougher fight for Valero than the champ. That young man really is a bull in the ring and he’s able to block a lot of punches as he comes in and imposes his will on his opponents, but I don’t think pressure and volume punching is the way to beat Valero. Sooner or later Diaz would get caught clean with the hardest punch he’s ever taken in his career, and the fight would be over.

B.A.D. IN SAN JOSE

Whats up Doug? I love your mailbags man. I'm able to spread out the FFFM, Dan Rafael's chat on ESPN and the articles on Maxboxing and Yahoo all day on Fridays while I'm supposed to be working. Who do you have in the fights on Saturday? I've only been to a Friday Night Fights they had in town where Tony Thompson beat Dominick Guinn so I'm glad they brought a good show up here. I haven't seen much of Victor Ortiz or any of Arnaoutis, little of Guerrero even though he's a local guy, so I don't want to make predictions on those. Julio has better defense and he's fought better competition and both have been down before but I think Kirkland can handle Julio's power and has more speed. I think Kirkland will catch him and put him to sleep, but both are young and can bounce back from a loss. I'm going with some friends who aren't as big of boxing fans as me so I'm just hoping for some entertaining fights, which I think they will be. Are you coming up? I think they're done by 7 so plenty of time to go out after.

I don't think it will happen because Floyd always disappoints me and avoids tough fights but who do you think would win if Mayweather came back to fight Marquez? He turned down $8M to fight Mosley, do you think he'd get more to fight Marquez? On a side note, don't you think Fernando Guerrero kind of looks like O-Dog from Menace II Society? See you at the fights. – Dave, San Jose

Dude, where the hell do you work where you’re able to print out and read my mailbags (which are RIDICULOUSLY LONG), Rafael’s chats, articles from MAX and Y! Sports, and then still have time to sit around and wonder if Fernando Guerrero and O-Dog from Menace II Society look alike? Oh my God. When do you do any work? Anyway, God bless you. I will be at the HP Pavilion Saturday night to cover Golden Boy Promotions’ excellent card. After I’m done with my deadline column I’ll be ready to down a few beers and maybe have a cigar or two. If you see me, don’t be a stranger.

I’m going with the chalk on the three co-main events. I like Guerrero by mid-to-late stoppage and Ortiz and Kirkland by decision in competitive fights.

I think Mayweather is too big, too fast and too defensive minded for Marquez to out-box or beat up on. In the past Marquez has had trouble with slick and crafty African-American boxers (see his bouts with Julian Wheeler and Freddy Norwood for examples), however, I should add that he made Wheeler basically quit with body shots in the final round of their bout (way back when both were prospects) and I thought he out-pointed Norwood 116-113. So who knows? Maybe JMM would find a way to crack the Mayweather code. If the fight were to take place at 140 pounds, I wouldn’t count him out.

COTTO-PACQUIAO? NO WAY

Dougie…..Is it just me or is Bob Arum talking out his ass, talking of matching Pacquiao with Cotto? I don't doubt he'd do it….but I also think its a ploy. He knows Cotto is LEGITIMATELY pissed over the handling of the Margarito situation (and Cotto SHOULD BE PISSED!!!! There is ZERO doubt in my mind he loaded for Cotto too….this isn't something you decide to do AFTER your biggest win, winning a super fight….my theory is it started after the Williams bout). I think Bob is offering up the specter of a Pac Man bout to sate Cotto as a sort of give back with a mega fight that Cotto would sign up for in a minute. While Bob would be willing to make that match, I don't see Pacquiao's people, namely Freddie, letting him take that bout…..its one thing to smack Oscar around, its an entirely different thing to take on Cotto, a punishing fighter who can REALLY crack and has solid boxing skills, a fighter who is going to come forward and take his pound of flesh….other fights to be made with MUCH LESS RISK and similar pay days. I'm calling “bulls__t” on this one.

I also belive that Hatton is a VERY LIVE dog against Pac Man. My initial reaction as that Pac Man is too versatile, but upon further look… you gotta throw out the win over DLH. It was a mismatch from the time it was made, Pac Man was gonna get in Oscar's ass. Do you think Pac Man would be such a big favorite over Hatton if the DLH fight was never made? I don't think so. Your thoughts? – HG in SC

I don’t think it’s fair to call De La Hoya-Pacquaio a mismatch after the fact. You weren’t saying that before the fight and neither was anyone else (except for my buddy Dave Schwartz and “my son” Edwin Valero). So why can’t we just give Pacquiao the credit he deserves for jumping from lightweight to welterweight and dominating De La Hoya like no one ever has?

And why can’t you take Cotto-Pacquiao seriously? I agree with you that Hatton is a live dog versus Pacquiao – mainly because of his grappling tactics – but let’s suppose that the Pac-Monster dominates the Manchester Hitman the way he did De La Hoya. He’ll be THE 140-pound champ. How is it bulls__t for the best fighter at 140 pounds to fight one of the best at 147 pounds, especially a methodical and somewhat plodding welterweight who is no taller or rangier than he is? If Pacquiao can prove himself at 140 pounds, I think a showdown with Cotto is the second best fight out there for him after a third match with JMM.

IT’S TEXAS TIME!

Doug,
So Marquez didn't take the Baby Bull to school, once again you were right. For a while there it almost looked like it was going the other way. However Marquez still remains quite a phenomenon. My heart goes out to the Baby Bull, he has nothing to be ashamed of. The atmosphere at the Toyota Center was awesome, I'm ready for the LW tourney in Austin. Already have my tickets. It’s too bad I didn't run into you, I had a couple of Guinness' ready for you so naturally I had to down them for you. So what are your thoughts on Marquez – Pac/Hatton winner playing out, and actually being made? Take care! – Roger

I’ll be at ‘Lightweight Lightening’ in Austin, so you have another chance to share some Guinness with a fellow fight fanatic.

I scored Marquez-Pacquiao I and II draws (113-113 and 114-114 respectively) and I don’t think it matters what weight they fight at, they will always extend each other to their limits. So obviously I see a nip-and-tuck battle in their third fight, if it happens. However, I think at this stage of their careers, Marquez is the hungrier fighter, so I slightly favor the Mexican master. I think Hatton is bigger, stronger, faster and fresher than Marquez, but I still think the lightweight champ will eventually out-class and out-gut him the way he did Diaz.

RASHAD HOLLOWAY

I read your article on Pacquiao returning to camp that Rashad Holloway is back in the gym and training for a fight. Was his eye injury the result of Margarito's “loaded hand wraps”? What does he think? – JB

I haven't asked him yet, but I will next week when I do a ‘New Faces’ feature on him.

My opinion is that there's no way Antonio Margarito loaded his gloves for a damn sparring session. That's crazy. Why would a fighter or his trainer want to injure the guy who helps prepare him to win an important fight? Margarito NEEDED Holloway to get ready for Shane Mosley. Those little guys he sparred with didn't prepare him for Mosley's physical strength on the inside and in clinches. And do you have any idea how expensive it is for Margarito's management to fly in quality sparring partners from other states and put them up and feed them and pay them for their services? A guy like Holloway, who was local and preparing for his own fight is like a God-send because he's FREE quality sparring. So why would they want to seriously hurt him? It makes no sense and to be honest I can't believe how many boxing writers ran with that injury as some kind of proof that Margarito loaded his gloves. To me that just exposed their ignorance of the sport.

MARQUEZ & PACQUIAO NO. 1 P4P

I think that after JMM's performance Saturday night against a very good fighter in Juan Diaz that there should be some sort of tie between Pacman and Marquez in the p4p rankings until one of them does something spectacular to push themselves ahead of the other. At this point both fights between JMM and Pacman were so close that you really can't look at those fights too much but you have to look at what they have done lately, while Pacman did look great in his surgeon-like dissection of Oscar de la Hoya, one can say that Juan Diaz at this point is a much stiffer test, especially considering the age and ring age of DLH at this point. Is there any precedent for having 2 guys tied for #1 p4p? Because I really see Pacman and Marquez as being tied at this point.

Thanks Dougie and keep up the good work at the ring I really enjoy all of your articles and mailbags. – Steve from NL, Canada

I don’t recall any time when there was a tie for the pound-for-pound No. 1 spot. Sometimes there was a dispute, such as the early 1990s when fans and media were split between Pernell Whitaker and Julio Cesar Chavez (Sweet Pea settled it with his “draw” against JC Superstar in ’93), or in the late ’90s when the debate was between Roy Jones and Oscar De La Hoya. Recently, before Floyd Mayweather retired, there was some debate as to whether he was ‘the man’ or Manny Pacquiao.

I think an argument can be made that Marquez and Pacquiao should be tied for the current pound-for-pound No. 1 spot.

STOP CALLING OUT MAYWEATHER!

Dougie,
What a great fight Marquez v. Diaz was. And it wasn't even PPV. What a treat. But can I just say to fighters to please STOP calling out Mayweather. The man is retired. We all know he dodged the best and most elite fighters toward the end of his trek. What makes them think that he'll come out of retirement to fight them now? The man should stay retired as far as I’m concerned. And so long as fighters keep calling him out they still give him the credit of being the #1 pound for pound best. He ain't. Duckers don't deserve that title. Neither do retirees. Only men like Pacquiao and Marquez and Cotto and Mosley deserve the kind of respect of being pound for pound best because they shun no one and leave it all in the ring, even if it results in defeat. – Dan, Los Angeles

Amen to that, Dan. I agree 100 percent.

DON'T BET AGAINST JMM

Dougie,
I remember you saying that you don't bet boxing and I can understand why. I almost cried when Diaz was knocked out in the ninth because my money was on the tenth and eleventh rounds at odds of 50/1. But what a war. Marquez then called out a guy who would probably only fight at 147 or over if he ever fights again. Presuming Marquez is attempting to outdo Pacquiao, which he certainly has done at 135, do you think Marquez vs Mosley is a realistic fight? This is the guy that beat Oscar twice when he was in his prime and is currently no.1 at 147. To prevail here in the summer would certainly get him a shot at the winner of Hatton/Pacquiao. Presuming any Mexican will ever want to get into the ring with Shane Mosley again, that is. – Paul, Dublin, Ireland

Mosley is too big for Marquez. That fight shouldn’t happen. To be honest, I can’t think of any current Mexican fighter who I would give a fighting chance to beat Mosley. I’d favor Sugar Shane over a big guy like Marco Antonio Rubio. If Alfredo Angulo keeps winning and developing, maybe he could give Mosley a good fight sometime next year, but I’d still favor the “old man” in that fun matchup.

The fights out there for Mosley this year include Miguel Cotto, Andre Berto, and Floyd Mayweather if ‘Pink’ is truly serious about returning to the ring.

The fight that all real boxing fans must push for is the winner of Hatton-Pacquiao accepting the challenge of one Juan Manuel Marquez.

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