Dougie’s Monday mailbag
EVEN MACHUPS, NOT WORLD BEATERS
Hey, you know what I like? Evenly matched fights. Fights that look like Antonio Escalante v Rocky Juarez. Not world beaters, but guys who bring it and are facing guys on the same level as they are. This match was a see-saw battle and I gotta say that Escalante really put his punches together well even though he lost. I’m glad he has a good following in El Paso and I hope he has more cards on outlets like Telemundo (or whatever Mexican channel it is that I am watching this on).
Karim Mayfield v Mauricio Herrera was also evenly matched, and I believe a bit more in Karim as a real contender now. I had doubts how he’d handle a guy that beat Mike Dallas and Ruslan Provodnikov. But he was pretty imposing in his victory.
And again, Carlos Abregu v Thomas Dulorme was also a pretty even fight on paper. I like when prospects like Dulorme are matched tough, and I hope that his loss doesn’t discourage promoters from putting their guys in a little tough in the future. Classy stoppage by his corner too! He wasn’t really taking a beating, but he was hurt and dropped twice, and I assume the trainer knew he wasn’t going to stop getting hit with the right hand anytime soon, so despite the fact that he could possibly win the fight, he protected his guy from further damage.
All in all, I have to give this night of fights a solid “A” in the entertainment department. No there weren’t any “important” fights, but between the 3 fights mentioned plenty of good action.
Wish I could’ve seen Cristian Mijares v Rafael Marquez… – Jabre, Galveston, Texas
I watched the Mijares-Marquez fight on YouTube (thank you, Cliff Rold). Do check it out. It’s was an evenly matched bout between two complete boxer-fighters. Both veterans fought with a lot of skill and spirit. Marquez was the aggressor but at age 37 his legs and reflexes simply weren’t as spry as the 31-year-old southpaw’s.
I’m happy for Mijares, who scored a ninth-round TKO, because he’s a good guy, but it was sad to see Marquez get knocked out. I have so much respect for him and it’s clear to everyone – but him – that he needs to retire.
Having watched Marquez and Mijares fight during their primes (and at their prime weights – 115 for Mijares and 118 for Marquez), both looked like they were in slow motion on Saturday. Still, Mijares, who is one slick, savvy S.O.B., has a few more high-profile bouts left in his body. I don’t think he should continue to campaign at featherweight, where he’s undersized, and I doubt he can win a title at junior featherweight, but if he drops down to 122 pounds I think he can make for some of those even matchups you like so much.
I think Mijares matches up well with Toshiaki Nishioka (and that fight would be well received in Japan, where the Mexican is known and respected). I’d love to see a rematch with Darchinyan and I think he is a real test for young guns, such as Carl Frampton and Rico Ramos.
Abregu-Dulorme was definitely the best fight of HBO’s Boxing After Dark broadcast. I hope Abregu gets a decent payday for rolling the dice against the young talent. And I hope Dulorme ignores all the fans and media who are s___ing on him at the moment, learns what he can from the experience, and gets back into the ring as soon as possible.
He didn’t exhibit the best defense, chin or ability to adapt, but he showed heart getting up and trying to win (not merely survive) after his third-round knockdown. That’s something that can’t be taught.
I was also happy for Mayfield but I still view him as a fringe contender (someone just outside of the top 10-15) for now. I know Herrera is a tough cookie with underrated technique but I thought the Provodnikov fight could have gone to the Russian and I definitely thought Dallas got screwed in that decision loss. However, Herrera is a glegit ate-keeper and Mayfield beat him, so I look forward to seeing the San Francisco native face better opposition.
Juarez-Escalante – which was on Telefutura, not Telemundo – was a hell of a scrap from what I saw. I tried to DVR the Solo Boxeo Tecate telecast but my recording started with the final minute of the fifth round of main event. Anyway, that minute and the next three rounds were BADASS.
Juarez, who hadn’t won a fight since 2008, finally got a victory. (Good for him.) I don’t know where he goes from here but he looks like he can still handle himself in the ring. Escalante, on the other hand, probably needs to hang ’em up. I know he’s only 27, but his legs, reflexes and technique didn’t look right to me. He seemed off-balance as he moved about the ring and when he let his hands go.
He’s been in a few brutal distance fights (Jose Hernandez and Miguel Roman come to mind) and he’s suffered some nasty knockouts (against Mauricio Pastrana, Daniel Ponce De Leon and Alejandro Perez).
Escalante has always given the fans their money’s worth, but it might be time for him to look out for himself.
SPECIAL K & KING KHAN
Alright Dougie. Hope all is well,
Many people in the UK want to see a grudge match between Amir Khan and Kell Brook, except it seems me. While I have watched both fighters over the years and have always willed them to do well, I personally think Brook should leave Khan alone and focus on the task at hand which is challenging for a world title. After all Khan isn’t exactly looking like a worthy opponent right now. Do you think this is a worthwhile fight for anything apart from money?
At present he is the mandatory challenger for the IBF strap but it is most likely Devon Alexander won’t take the fight. If the fight did go ahead who do you think would win? And also what is your personal opinion of Kell Brook as a fighter? I am presuming strong since he sits 3rd in THE RING ratings only behind Mayweather and Pacquiao.
Since this is a rather poorly written email I don’t expect to see it in the mailbag but would love to know what you thought. – Adam, Sheffield UK (currently residing in Houma, Louisiana)
Don’t be hard on yourself, Adam! I thought your email was better constructed than most of my responses.
I’ve been high on Brook for some time. He’s smart, talented and versatile, but I think his exciting gut-check fight with Carson Jones earlier this year gave us insight into his spirit. I believe he’s destined to win at least one major title.
I don’t know if the IBF belt is it. I think Alexander-Brook is an even fight (and not one that I care to see given their styles). Khan-Brook is a matchup that I do want to see, but not until Brook wins a major 147-pound title and Khan gets a few wins under his belt and proves himself at 147 pounds.
I would not want to see Khan fight Brook in his welterweight debut (if he did, I’d pick the Sheffield native to win big). However, if Khan looks good against Carlos Molina in December, has some time to gel with new trainer Virgil Hunter, and then beats a world-class junior welterweight or welterweight in his next bout or two, I’d probably start beating the drums for a Khan-Brook showdown in late 2013 or in the first half of 2014.
You know I’ve never covered a fight in the UK. That one might be worth the trip.
RECORDS THAT WILL NEVER BE BROKEN
Len Wickwar. British Lightweight in the 1920s, 30s, 40s.
He had 461 bouts in 10 years (!) from age 18 until he joined the army in WW2 1940 at age 28.
After 6y in the army he had 4 more fights and then retired, ending with 337-85-42 in 465 bouts.
I think he holds the record for the most recorded fights in a calendar month – 10.
How much do you know about Abe (the Newsboy) Hollandersky?
He allegedly had 1300 fights, mostly offshore against sailors on US warships in the 1910s and 1920s. There are no records though, apparently his biography is where the stories come from. Sincerely yours. – Owen Cleary
I’ve never heard of Hollandersky, but I’ll look into him. If he had that many bouts my guess is that many of them were three- and four-round exhibitions and that he probably fought multiple times in the same day.
I have heard of Wickwar. I just checked out his record on Boxrec.com, which took up seven freakin’ PAGES! (Boxrec credits him for 466 bouts, by the way.)
It’s safe to say that NOBODY is going to fight that often ever again. He was a busy bee even by 1920s/30s standards.
While browsing through his record, I noticed Wickwar fought close to a dozen fighters who fought more than 150 bouts, including the legendary Jack “Kid” Berg (who notched 192 fights in his hall-of-fame career).
I counted six opponents who had more than 200 bouts, including Tiger Bert Ison (325), Arnold “Kid” Sheppard (289), George Rose (242), my personal favorite – being a major comic book nerd – Jack Kirby (220), Harry Mason (214) and George Odwell (207).
BRIAN VILORIA POUND FOR POUND?
I know this is, as Steve Kim puts it (though I’m cleaning it up a bit), an act of ‘mental self pleasuring’, but in terms of pound-for-pound lists, where do you rank Brian Viloria right now? I’m asking this because it feels like his recent achievements have been largely ignored.
He KO’d highly ranked and regarded Ulises Solis in 2009, winning the IBF Jr. Flyweight title. Had a major hiccup in 2010, losing to Carlos Tamara. Went through another one of his seemingly endless comebacks, beating two guys and moving up to Flyweight along the way.
Picked up the WBO Flyweight title by beating solid Julio Cesar Miranda in 2011. Got the best win of his career by stopping then-fringe pound-for-pound entrant, Ivan Calderon-conqueror, Giovani Segura in the 8th round.
Shook the proverbial gorilla off his back, winning a revenge match against the notable Omar Nino Romero.
Now he’s got a tough fight ahead of him against Hernan Marquez. Assuming he wins this one (not a gimme by any stretch), would he be getting consideration then?
Lastly, to the man who has devoted his life to the sport of boxing, we the boxing fans give you thanks Emanuel Steward, may you rest in peace. – Butch, Manila, Philippines
Amen to that, Butch.
If Viloria beats Marquez, I think some boxing writers will think of him as a Fighter of the Year candidate (though certainly not a front-runner for that award) and I’m sure he will receive some pound-for-pound consideration from THE RING’s Ratings Panel.
The losses to Tamara and Edgar Sosa hurt him, but he’s got a solid body of work having won three major titles in two weight classes and he’ll add a fourth belt to his collection if he wins on Nov. 17.
I think consecutive victories over Miranda, Segura, Romero and Marquez could land Viloria anywhere from No. 10 to 8 on THE RING’s “elite” list.
If he were to win a talked-about showdown with undefeated 108-pound titleholder Roman Gonzalez (who fights on the Viloria-Marquez undercard), he’d definitely break into everybody’s pound-for-pound top 10. So I think he’s within reach, but first thing’s first: he’s got to beat “Tyson.”
Oh, and by the way, I agree with Kim. Pound for pound lists are indeed exercises in “mental masturbation” (see, I used the word you were avoiding – no big deal), but hey, there’s nothing wrong with a little “self pleasuring” (as you put it) every now and then.
Email Dougie at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @dougiefischer