Saturday, April 01, 2023  |


Dougie’s Friday mailbag

Fighters Network


Read a pretty good article from your old boss Steve Kim over on re: Oscar De La Hoya's grand plan in conjunction with HBO which would for all intents and purposes would give Golden Boy a monopoly on the sport. A part of me will always find Oscar and his main crony Richard Schaefer completely dis-ingenious and utterly self serving. Actually I'm not entirely sure why Oscar speaks at all anymore, but I digress.

You know what? Who cares? At least Golden Boy isn't telling me to go F-myself like Bottom-Line Bob Arum, right? As fans we should be worried about one thing, that the best fights possible are made. One thing I have noticed about the UFC is the top guys from their promotion pretty much always fight each other eventually, with something like 85% of that sport’s talent residing in Dana White’s promotion. He essentially controls MMA.

While originally vehemently opposed to Golden Boy & HBO pulling the same end around, I'm now of the opinion that this wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing for boxing. I am so sick and tired of trying to figure out if we will ever see fighter A and fighter B in the ring together because they are both under separate promotional banners. Golden Boy is already in bed with HBO. If you're a free agent you already know signing with Golden Boy could get you coveted high-profile dates and tons of cash. Steve Kim made a lot of great points about why it shouldn't work and he was correct in asserting that Golden Boy doesn't cultivate any homegrown stars of their own, instead they steal away established talent that other promoters and handlers have developed, but who cares? I just want to see the best fights.

By the way, the day this story breaks, prints a small little blurb about Paulie Walnuts signing with Golden Boy? LOL, trying to sneak that one by us fans were you? LOL… I'm laughing, but crying on the inside. I thought Amir Khan's one sided beatdown of “The Magic Man' would at least be the end of Paulie popping up on World Championship Boxing or B.A.D. Obviously, I was dead wrong. I can already see his being announced as the B-side for Victor Ortiz's next fight. — Tom G.

Well, probably not Ortiz’s next fight. Malignaggi is supposed to fight at welterweight now and Ortiz is still a junior welterweight, where the best fights can be made for him. But who knows? If Paulie can find new life at 147 pounds and he hangs around long enough, he might be in position to face Ortiz when the youngster eventually goes up in weight (which I fully expect him to do).

If he does fight Ortiz one day watch HBO's commentators commend him for doing the exact same things they condemned Sergio Mora for doing vs. Shane Mosley.

Regarding all the fuss over De La Hoya’s comments in a recent article in Broadcasting & Cable magazine (and to be truthful there isn’t much fuss outside of some American promoters, a few boxing writers and really, really hardcore message board fans who obsess over boxing’s industry news more than the actual sport), all I can say is chill out, folks.

Oscar says a lot of things, and they don’t always come true. He’s a very wealthy former fighter with a lot of influence at the helm of a well-funded and well-connected promotional company, but last time I checked, he’s not a god. His name ain’t Oscar Deity La Hoya. He can’t snap his fingers and make anything happen.

Yeah, he said he wanted GBP to “sign all the talent and get all the TV dates,” but no one promoter can do that in a market as big as the U.S., I don’t care how powerful they are. It’s impossible, unless all the other promoters just sit on their hands and let it happen.

Honestly, I think all he wants to do is what all promoters should want to for their companies and that’s to build towards the future and be as organized as they can be for the betterment of the sport. Obviously, it didn’t come out like that. LOL. He said “My plan is not to take over boxing” but then he stated “a lot of times promoters are the ones in the way” (of making the big fights everyone wants to see) and went on to say “in a way, yes, we do want to take over. Well, we don't want to take control of boxing, but we want to do the right thing for the sport.”

Yadda, yadda, yadda. I can’t believe any longtime fight fan or boxing writer would pay that close attention to what De La Hoya says. I mean, come on, does anyone really think HBO is ever going to do “bi-weekly” fights, as Oscar suggested? The network doesn’t have the budget, programming time, or the interest to do that much boxing.

But I guess people are free to read into the GBP President’s ramblings however they want.

Hey, if they want look at GBP as the “Evil Empire” ran by De La Vader and Sith-Lord Schaefer, so be it. And if the major American boxing promoters truly feel threatened perhaps Obi-Bob Kenobi, Luke Shaw-walker, Princess Duva, Dan Solo, Lou-bacca and R2-Don-2 should ban together into a “New Republic.”

Seriously, all Star Wars jokes aside, if the other promoters work together to develop key fighters in major markets in the U.S. and build towards good fights no one promotional company can “monopolize” the sport. Imagine if Arum and Goossen co-promoted fights in Oakland co-headlined by Andrew Ward and Nonito Donaire.

Bay Area fans would pack the Oracle Arena on a consistent basis to see those two fight and I can’t imagine HBO or Showtime ignoring those shows if Ward and Donaire were in with decent opposition. But let’s say for argument’s sake that the two major subscription cable networks would ignore such shows (under the influence of the Dark Side of the Force, of course). Arum and Goossen could do small PPV shows, or how about this for a novel idea: How about doing a deal with ESPN. No they wouldn’t get the big licensing fees they want but perhaps they could work something out with the basic cable network that ensured that the sports-coverage powerhouse would promote the shows on their TV, radio, internet and magazine arms. The promoters might lose money in the short run, but they would also build a substantial TV audience that could support a future major PPV show with both Ward and Donaire in with worthy challengers (say Ward vs. Kelly Pavlik and Donaire vs. Fernando Montiel).

The same thing can be done in other major U.S. markets, such as Chicago (where any of the major promoters could work with local 8 Count Productions), Detroit, St. Louis, Miami, the entire North East and the New England area, and pretty much anywhere in Texas. Why can’t DiBella and Joe DeGuardia (I couldn’t think of a Star Wars name for him — how about C-3P-Joe?) team up for at least semi-regular shows and the occasional big one in the NYC area? I know Delvin Rodriguez is coming off a loss, but I still think the Dominican vet would make for a decent East Coast showdown with WBC belt holder Andre Berto.

If promoters (and major managers) worked together more often (with or without the “Evil Empire”), De La Vader wouldn’t have anything to complain about to non-boxing publications. Fans wouldn’t have anything to complain about either, come to think of it. And if U.S. promoters can’t work together they shouldn’t fault Oscar for wanting to “take over.” Somebody’s gotta make something happen in the sport if common sense falls by the wayside.

Now that I’ve said that, Tommy, my fellow comic-book collector pal, I have to take issue with that tired line you had to regurgitate: “Golden Boy doesn't cultivate any homegrown stars of their own, instead they steal away established talent that other promoters and handlers have developed.”

This is such garbage. Apart from one year (in 2001 when he was basically promoted by Univision), De La Hoya was a Top Rank fighter through 2004. GBP didn’t really branch out on its own by signing up talent and doing their own regular major shows until 2005. Now you tell me how many championship fighters Top Rank, Main Events, Don King or anyone else have developed from scratch in just five years? Hell, it took Top Rank seven years to get Kelly Pavlik to the middleweight title. How long have they promoted Brandon Rios? (Hint: more than five years.) Does he have a world title yet? It took Top Rank seven years to get Steven Luevano, who they dropped like a hot potato after he lost to JuanMa Lopez, one featherweight belt.

Now, it took Lopez less than four years to win his first major belt, but don’t give Top Rank all the credit for developing the budding Puerto Rican star. His local promoters, PR Best Promotions, deserve credit for his activity and fast rise.

Top Rank did not develop the star of their stable, Manny Pacquiao. They did not develop Nonito Donaire or the Peterson brothers, either.

How come nobody ever says Top Rank “stole” Donaire from Gary Shaw or the Peterson brothers from Brian Young's Prize Fight Boxing? (And by the way, how's Top Rank doing with those three talents? Are those three better off with Top Rank than they were with their original promoters?)

I guess you can say GBP “stole” Victor Ortiz from Top Rank if you want, but the bottom line is, the kid wanted out from Arum & Co. and broke his contract by declaring bankruptcy. (Not a cool thing but not unheard of in boxing.) He was presented to GBP as a free agent by Shelly Finkel and co-manager Rolando Arellano (who bought out Vic's managerial contract from his original manager Cameron Dunkin). Arum has publicly stated that he doesn't hold it against GBP but rather Finkel and Arellano. (And a deal was worked out, sort of like the Pacquiao pact, that gives a percentage of what GBP makes from Ortiz to Top Rank.)

I'm not saying that GBP doesn't do grimy s__t like any other promoter, but I am saying that there is clear bias in how many boxing writers portray the L.A.-based company.

When a prospect or star of Golden Boy's stable loses or struggles in a fight, every one takes a dump on the company's matchmakers for making a “stupid” fight (see Mosley vs. Mora, Ortiz vs. Maidana, Jacobs vs. Pirog). But when Top Rank's stars get their asses handed to them — see Kelly Pavlik (vs. B-Hop and Sergio Martinez) or Margarito (vs. Mosley) — nobody blames their matchmakers. The shortcomings of Top Rank fighters are instead placed primarily on the shoulders of the fighters and their trainers (where they belong).

OK, now I’m rambling on and on, De La Vader style. Thanks for getting me started on all this bulls__t. Can you please email me about a freakin’ upcoming fight next time, Tom? LOL.

By the way, what do you think of this idea for a special four-round attraction that could open up a future Fight Night Club card: De La Hoya vs. Kim.

You could call it the “Battle of Dougie’s Bosses”! I know Kim has no formal boxing background but he’s in the gym all the time, he’s a lot bigger than Oscar and I’m betting that Freddie Roach would gladly train him for the exhibition and give the Korean Hammer same gameplan that worked so well for Pacquiao.

I would be proud to call the action from ringside. I won’t say who I’d be rooting for.


What do you think of Glen Johnson's entering the Super 6? I'm concerned about the weight. He looked drawn in the Tavoris Cloud bout to me. Your thoughts? — Bakari, Jersey City, NJ

Like you, I have mixed feelings. I’m glad The Road Warrior is getting the opportunity, but I’m worried that making 168 pounds will dangerously sap his energy when he fights. The fact that he blew up to around 190 pounds on fight night against Cloud (and fought sluggishly over the second half of the bout) doesn’t fill me with confidence that he belongs at super middleweight.

In fact, I think Green needs to be fighting at 175 pounds. He claims that he had to over-train to make the super middleweight limit for the Andre Ward fight, which is why he fought in such lackluster fashion (and I may be the only person on earth who believes my fellow comic-book collector).

To me, this matchup makes more sense at light heavyweight, not just because it’s probably healthier for both combatants but because it would probably be a better fight at 175.


Sup’ Doug? Same old same old here, lots of rumors speculation this week hoping you can help clear up the B.S. from the facts

1) Is it true that Glen Johnson will drop to 168 to compete in Showtime super six tournament? How will his entry affect the course of the tournament? What will his boxing schedule be and more importantly how will the point system work for him if he has come in this late?

2) I hear the Devon Alexander will be stripped of his IBF title and that Kaizer Mabuza will face the winner of Zab Judah vs Mathysse for the title? (By the way Kaizer is a beast for those who don’t know much about him).

3) Who is most likely to be Wladdy’s next victim at the end of the year?

4) Hopkins vs Pascal is gonna be Showtime PPV? Is this the first time Showtime has done a PPV match and how much will they charge?

Take care Dougie, by the way Mayweather has truly let me down. Between beating his baby momma and not fighting Pacquiao he has lost a fan in me. I always knew the man had tremendous skill and athleticism, he and Pacquiao will go down in history as the fight that should have happened but never did. Peace! — Roland

Yeah, it’s too bad about Floyd. He had an opportunity this year to really solidify his legacy but, as he has in the past, he found a way to pull himself off the board. I actually feel sorry for his fans.

Anyway, life and boxing go on. I’ll answer your questions in order:

1) It’s true. Gentleman Glen is in the Super Six, with zero points. If he’s to have any impact whatsoever on the tournament (i.e. break into the semifinals), he’ll have to knockout Allan Green when they fight in the co-feature to the Lopez-Marquez showdown on Nov. 6.

2) “Easy come, easy go,” is the motto all fighters should have when it comes to winning alphabet titles. The winner Judah-Matthysse (good fight) vs. Mabuza sounds like a fun scrap, but the real 140-pound champ of the world will be the winner of Alexander-Bradley, which will hopefully be finalized by the end of this month.

3) I’ve heard talk of British prospect Derek Chisora, veteran David Tua, and young Russian contender Denis Boytsov for Wlad Klitschko’s scheduled Dec. 11 title defense. Of those three I think Boytsov is the most worthy (but barely). I’ve heard Team Klitschko is interested in Tomasz Adamek, but he’s got a fight scheduled in December and I don’t think his people believe he’s ready to challenge for the title.

4) Yep, Pascal-Hopkins (notice, I put the champ’s name first) will be a Showtime PPV event (perhaps with Librado Andrade in a co-featured bout). It’s definitely not the network’s first PPV show. All those classic Mike Tyson- and Julio Cesar Chavez-headlined PPV shows that Don King promoted in the 1990s were produced and distributed by Showtime (through their pay-per-view arm SET). However, it is the network’s first PPV in a few years (I think the Corrales-Castillo rematch in October of 2005 was the last one).


Nice new feature on the P4P players.

I think a good way to rank fighters is a hybrid of what you mentioned on that article, but with an added twist:

Assuming two fighters weighed the same and were fighting, if somebody had kidnapped one of your loved ones and the only way they're going to give her back is if you pick the right fighter, who do you pick?

I know this is dramatic, but it helps to diffuse bias. In this scenario, I can't fathom anyone picking Adamek over Andre Ward. I know Ward hasn't had a chance to stockpile many accomplishments yet, but he's the clearly superior fighter. It's nice that Adamek has several nice wins on his resume, but your daughter is kidnapped… who are you picking?

Andre Ward every day of the week.

With this added wrinkle to the criteria, it changes things a bit. Here's mine, for what it's worth:

1. Pacquiao
2. Mayweather
3. Ward
4. Marquez
5. Wonjongkam
6. Wladimir K
7. Montiel
8. Williams
9. Martinez
10. Abraham

Ask yourself, in the kidnap scenario: assuming they weigh the same, who wins in a fight of Arthur Abraham vs. Timothy Bradley? Your child's life is on the line, so forget all that b.s. about Bradley's work rate and dedication. He's outgunned, and Abraham KO's him.

See what I mean?

BTW, if you're basing this on accomplishments and quality wins, Bernard Hopkins is no lower than number 3… so we know there is much more to it than that.

Thanks for all your work. (PS – How great is November going to be?!?) — Danny

November is going to freakin’ awesome and very busy for Yours Truly, but I’m not complaining.

My P4P rankings are pretty much based on accomplishment and quality wins, and thus, Hard Nard is off the list. Anyone who thinks B-Hop’s decision over a shopworn Roy Jones Jr. was quality should have his head examined. He didn’t look so hot out-pointing Enrique Ornelas, either.

Anyway, I would go with different fighters than you did if my P4P list based on the “kidnap” scenario. I’m not certain Ward would beat Adamek if they both weighed the same. I’ve never seen Ward fight a guy with Adamek’s strengths and style. Just because he out-pointed a one-dimensional puncher in Edison Miranda and dominated boxers like Mikkel Kessler and Allan Green doesn’t mean he’d shutdown Adamek. Maybe he would, but I wouldn’t want to bet my daughter’s life on that assumption.

I wouldn’t bet her life that Abraham knocks out Bradley, either. I can see Timmy’s lateral movement giving King Arthur problems. The Armenian punisher doesn’t remind anyone of Julio Cesar Chavez when it comes to cutting the ring off on his opponents.

It’s too hard to say who should rank above who based on how we think they might fare against each other in a pound-for-pound sense.

For all we know Ivan Calderon is unbeatable if weight is taken out of the equation. I can’t say for sure that Manny Pacquiao or Floyd Mayweather could overwhelm or outbox the Iron Boy if they all weighed the same. I’ve never seen Pac or Money fight a ring general with Calderon’s style. Maybe if Floyd had fought a really mobile southpaw like Joel Casamayor or Cory Spinks and did well, I’d rank him over Calderon, but I have no idea how he’d handle that kind of lefty.

I’m trying to think of any slick southpaw Pacquiao has been in with and I’m drawing a blank. The only lefty that come to mind is David Diaz and he’s the opposite of slick.


Hi Doug,
Hope all is well. The KO of Enzo Mac by Alex Frenkel was chilling. To me it was almost too disturbing to be glorified by naming it KO of the year. But holy cow, that was the KO of the Year! Since you are doing top 5 lists for your next couple of mail bags, what are your top 5 KO’s so far this year (my apologies if you have already done this list). Mine would be:

1. Frenkel KO of Enzo
2. Ray Beltran of David Torres
3. Danny Green of Paul Briggs*
4. De Leon of Escalante
5. Pirog of Jacobs**

*For comedic value

**Because it was so unexpected and because I met Pirog while he was dressed up like he had just stepped off the set of a 1980’s teen movie at the press event for the Marquez-Diaz II card at Fortune Gym a couple of days before the fight.

Later. — Joe Friedman

Hey Joe! I have done my Top Five knockouts of 2005, but I’ll do the list again because I left off Pirog-Jacobs. (I try to do these Top Five lists off the top of my head because it’s more fun that way. Research = work. F___ that.)
1. Pirog TKO 5 Jacobs (a legit outta-nowhere one-punch KO, even though the Golden Child popped up as soon as the ref waved it off)
2. Frankel KO 7 Maccarinelli (Damn! That was brutal; time for Big Mac to hang ’em up)
3. Karmazin KO 10 Miranda (for sheer drama)
4. Ponce-DeLeon KO 3 Escalante (perfect right hook)
5. Montiel KO 3 Concepcion (perfect right cross)


Hello Doug,
Here are some more top 5's:

Top 5 boxers with the best footwork in the game today
Top 5 jabs in the game today
Top 5 users of feinting in the game today

Thanks. — Chezney, UK

Footwork: Calderon, Mayweather, Montiel, Martinez and Hopkins.

Jabs: Mayweather, the Klitschko brothers, Ward, and Khan.

Use of feints: Mayweather, Hopkins, Ward, Donaire, and Mora (with his feet)


Hey Dougie,
Yes these are fun! Top 5 rivalries? — Choppa B, Sydney, Australia

I'll give you the top 5 of my lifetime and the top 5 I've covered.

Of my lifetime (I was born in 1970): Ali-Frazier, Leonard-Hearns, Brown-Trice (that’s right!), Holyfield-Bowe and Benn-Eubank.

That I’ve covered: Vazquez-Marquez, Barrera-Morales, Gatti-Ward, Pacquiao-Marquez and Morales-Pacquiao.


I'm hitting you up to talk about Terry Norris (there’s nothing else worth talking about in my opinion). He is one of my favorite dudes, period! He was a beautiful practitioner of the Sweet Science as well as a beast when he had to dig off in an opponent’s ass. He was vulnerable too, which always made his fights interesting. What are your favorite Terry Norris moments and who do you take in these P4P match-ups?

1. Norris vs Toney – I think Norris had the speed and the legs to beat Toney if he didn't get caught with a Mike Nunn special.
2. Norris vs Ricardo Lopez – again, we are talking in a P4P sense. A 154lb Lopez would be too much for Norris over the long haul IMO. Late KO for Lopez.
3. Norris vs Wladimir Klitschko – Klitschko is proving himself to be a historically good heavyweight but that's because there is no one like Terrible Terry Norris at 200+ lbs. I see Terry giving him a boxing lesson. It would take more than an excellent jab and holding on the inside to negate Terry's speed, power and legs.
4. Terry Norris vs Felix Trinidad – I see Terry doing to Trinidad the same thing that Anthony Stephens did to him for about nine rounds. Then things would get interesting. Once Terry slowed down just a little Tito would start to catch him and since The Terrible one didn't have the greatest chin I see Tito finishing him off in the last round.
5. Terry Norris vs Floyd Mayweather – You knew this was coming right? Floyd has never fought anyone as gifted when in their prime as Terry Norris. If these two guys were the same size the only things that separate them is Floyd's pure defensive prowess and better stamina and Terry's better punching power along with his killer instinct. This would be a good one and a tough one to figure IMO. Floyd isn't a big puncher but his speed and accurate punches would probably wobble Terry a couple of times but if Terry caught Floyd like Mosely did (and he would) it would be over. Terry didn't let you off the hook when he had you hurt, ever! Hell, if you hurt HIM he didn't let you off the hook. I'm going with Norris in this one. What do you think?

p.s. Tell Jesse in Fort Worth I said whassup! — Fleetwood

Whassup Jesse, from me and Fleet.

Norris is hands down my favorite fighter of the early 1990s. “Terrible Terry moments” that have stuck in my head after all these years are his early-round knockouts of Joe Gatti and Maurice Blocker. There was such ferocity in the manner in which he tore into them after initially rocking both men. I loved watching that man fight.

I agree with all the scenarios in all five of your mythical pound-for-pound matchups with Norris. Great minds think alike, brotha.


Hey Doug,
I know fantasy fights are overrated but I'd like to know, what is your TOP 5 Fantasy Fights? — Jacob

I’ve already done this one, however, here are five matchups I really wanted to see as a fan, all of which could have happened, but failed to come off for various reasons: Duran vs. Pryor at 140 pounds (assuming Hands of Stone could make junior welter around 1980 and ’81 when the Hawk came into his own), Bowe vs. Tyson, Lewis and Mercer; and Pacquiao vs. Valero at 140 pounds.