Thursday, March 30, 2023  |


Dougie’s Friday mailbag

Fighters Network


What’s up Dougie,

I predicted Brandon Rios to finish off where he left off and pound Mike Alvarado into a heap of goo. And he did just that! The big difference was that Alvarado did it right back all the while boxing Rios to bits. A huge thumbs up to Mikey for accomplishing one of the toughest things in any sport: avenging a previous beatdown.

Nevertheless I’m gonna stick up for Rios. Yes he got pretty unruly at the end of the fight. But that’s Rios. All part of his charm, folks. The dude has all the subtleness of a shredding nail-bomb. Whether he’s speaking his mind or tearing into his opponents. Good for him!

And if Brandon was some preachy, puppy dog-loving namby-pampy boy scout who sugarcoated his words most of us won’t give a f___. Just like Fernando Vargas acting like a grade-A a__hole at times didn’t diminish his appeal. Keep in mind that many beloved fighters in the past ranging from Jake LaMotta to Carlos Monzon to Mike Tyson were really despicable c__suckers in and out of the ring. They still were great or near-great fighters. If acting like model citizens were part of getting into inducted into the Hall of Fame then that hall will still be pretty barren right now!

So once again I’m tipping my hat to both Rios and Alvarado, hard-assed glorious bastards that they are. Thanks for giving us bloodthirsty f___ers what we want, guys!

Speaking of which, that brings us to Gennady Golovkin. He may look like some overly geeky doofus who dwells in mommy’s basement when he’s not camping out at Mad Magazine conventions, but his right-cross hits like a f___ing pickaxe! Poor Nobuhiro Ishida was nothing but a slab of raw sushi for this guy to devour. Now how about a top 10 guy next time out!

And no, Sergio Mora doesn’t count! That’s like pitting a toothpick against that pickaxe I just mentioned. Matthew Macklin, Danny Geale and J.C. Chavez, please step right up and get in line already! OK I’m done! Thanks! – Todd The Terminator

Thanks for giving us your two cents, raw and uncut as usual, Todd.

Word is Matthew Macklin is close to stepping up to the GGG challenge. If Golovkin-Macklin happens it will likely take place on June 29. HBO will televise. I can’t think of a better 160-pound matchup in terms of action potential.

As a card-carrying “bloodthirsty ghoul,” I definitely tipped my hat to both Alvarado and Rios. I’ve said this before, but I don’t mind repeating that it’s an honor to cover grueling ring battles such Rios-Alvarado II and Bradley-Provodnikov.

No disrespect to the ultra-technicians, supreme ring generals and super talents, such as Bernard Hopkins, Andre Ward, Floyd Mayweather, Nonito Donaire and Adrien Broner but I’m fine watching them ply their near-perfect craft on TV.

I know Donaire is the truth. I know Guillermo Rigondeaux was a great amateur boxer and is now a tremendously skilled pro counterpuncher. But I’m pretty sure their deservedly anticipated showdown next Saturday will be an uneventful chess match until one of them connects with a flush shot, which probably won’t happen until the later rounds because both boxers are so smart and careful. Thus, despite the “significance” of the match, I don’t feel like I’m missing anything special by not being there.

Golovkin-Macklin isn’t a matchup of pound-for-pound rated fighters, nor is it for the lineal middleweight title, but if it’s made, I’m gonna wanna BE THERE because I know they are going to go at it and give their all. Same deal with the Marcos Maidana-Josesito Lopez fight. They’re not the best welterweights out there but they’re real fighters.

And I should point out that Golovkin, Macklin, Maidana, Lopez and many other rough-and-tumble punchers and sluggers are absolute gentlemen outside of the ring.

But you have a point that many of the sport’s most celebrated fighters were – or often could be – complete d___heads.

However, as crude as Rios can be and as disrespectful as he often comes off on TV, I can honestly say that he’s not that bad in person. Usually he’s swell guy (when he’s not giving you a titty twister just for the hell of it).


Hey Douglas!

Wow! March was a wonderfully brutal month for boxing wasn’t it! First it was the Bradley-Provo meat-grinder. Then it was King Arthur getting punched into submission followed by Golovkin nearly beheading another overmatched opponent. And capping it all off was the Alvarado-Rios poundathon. The fun just never ended! Wasn’t it great!

Starting with Golovkin. His public near-beheading of Ishida was the most brutal single shot we saw yet this year. Sure Ishida didn’t really belong in the same ring with this guy but it certainly was no meaningless kayo. Other heavy-handed fighters like Pirog and especially Kirkland didn’t even come close to putting a dent in Ishida. Pretty much gives me an idea of what would have happened if Pirog fought Golovkin like he was once scheduled to do.

While I myself have often ripped the G-Man’s level of competition, I’ll take note that both Bernard Hopkins and Sergio Martinez weren’t fighting elite guys until they were in their mid to late 30s. Not that I want Golovkin to wait that long but you get my drift.

As for Rios-Alvarado I certainly didn’t expect Mikey to box like that along with his usual brawling. Neither did Rios apparently. Not that getting repeatedly whacked for 12 grinding rounds was enough to close Brandon’s mighty mouth. But that’s fine! Rios is a jackass but he’s our jackass and whomever he fights next, I’ll be watching. Same with Alvarado. A big high-5 to both guys! And yeah they both earned a breather!

On a side note it was good to have that Fleetwood guy back in your mailbag. I was wondering what happened to that crazy son of a bitch! Loved how he compared Bradley to a dumbed down cheap-ass version of Zab Judah walking into Kosta Tszyu’s right-cross only to find out it was like placing his nuts on a chopping block. I nearly scorched my own nuts laughing so hard. Where does he come out with this classic s__t?

By the way, Judah pretty much LITERALLY presented his nuts on that hacking block when he stood in front of a prime Miguel Cotto and had his balls pulverized! How well do you think guys like Bradley, Provo, and Robert Guerrero would have done against that version of Cotto? Anyways get back to me soon. – Dave

I think the undefeated (pre-Margarito) welterweight version of Cotto that fought Judah (Shane Mosley and Alfonso Gomez) was the Puerto Rican fighter at his peak. That version would have beat all three of the current 147-pound standouts you mentioned, in my opinion, but I think they would have been tough, closely contested matches. I think Bradley would give him the most difficult fight, technically speaking. That would be a tight contest where Cotto’s heavier hands would give him the slight edge on scorecards. Cotto-Provodnikov would be wild shootout (kind of like the Ricardo Torres fight). I think Cotto would survive a few very rocky spots and rage back to stop the rugged Rusian in the middle rounds. Cotto-Guerrero would be a brutal battle of attrition. I think Cotto’s ability to stick and move when he needs to and his body attack (when they engage in close) would be the difference in a distance fight.

Yeah, it was good hearing from Fleetwood. He has a way with words doesn’t he? He and Todd the Terminator are kind of like the anti-Thomas Hauser when it comes to boxing-related prose (which is OK with me). If they ever decide to publish their musings our beloved “Bam Bam” Rios should pen the forewords.

You won’t be alone in watching whomever Rios and Alvarado fight next. And whenever they meet for the third time, I guarantee they’ll pack the arena (which didn’t happen with the first bout or the rematch).

Good point about B-Hop and Maravilla not getting name opponents into the ring until they were in (or near) their mid-30s. I don’t think we’ll have to wait that long for GGG. Macklin (if he can get him in June) is a known and well-respected opponent who should help the undefeated titleholder gain more popularity outside of the hardcore freaks. If Golovkin beat Macklin and looks good doing so my guess is that he’ll get one of the “names” of the 160- or 168-pound division sometime in 2014. If he struggles against Macklin he might get one of those names by the end of this year.

I’m hoping that “March Mayhem” is replaced by “the April Apocalypse.” For that to happen, Donaire and Rigo have to prove me wrong by taking some chances early in their showdown while Viloria-Estrada, Martinez-Magdaleno, Alvarez-Trout, Quillin-Guerrero, Garcia-Judah, Martinez-Murray and Arreola-Stiverne just need to live up to their expectations.


Hi Dougie,

I’m sure you caught Floyd’s latest round of disses and self-justifications. This time he claims there’s no need to consider Canelo, dismissing him as “a 22-year old kid who just got into the sport of boxing.”

We’ve heard Floyd make excuses for years, but now he feels important enough to lecture Muhammad Ali. Seeing Ali in poor shape from Parkinson’s makes him so sad, he says, that it leads him to share his own, er, hard-earned wisdom. If only the Greatest had had the foresight back in the day to pick and choose opponents like Money does today!

Reading Floyd’s staggering presumption made me think: hmmm, What if Floyd had been Ali?

Can’t you hear him saying, “Joe Frazier? Easy work. Easy work. I have the blueprint for selling out Manilla, not him!”

Or: “Rumble in the Jungle? I mean, first I got to see if the jungle can sell tickets like I can. Can the jungle do eight figures on fight night? If it can’t, I’m paying the jungle!”

Or: “Ken Norton? Who?”

Ironically enough, Ali was but a 22-year old kid himself when he stepped into the ring with Sonny Liston. Good thing for us Liston wasn’t in a position to say, “Beat it, kid, come back when you’re famous and can make me more money.”

All best. – RC

Yes, and good thing for Liston that the well-known boxing Floyd of his era was a small but honorable heavyweight champ named Floyd Patterson, who was money savvy individual who made more than a few million-dollar purses during his title reign but never put the business of boxing before the sport.

Patterson was practically given a free pass by the boxing industry, black society and even the president to avoid Liston, but his sense of honor and respect for the sport would not allow him to duck a deserving No. 1 contender – even though his manager (Cus D’Amato) was against the fight and he knew that he would probably be crushed by Sonny.

If Mayweather had Patterson’s mentality (or that of Ali or Liston or any of elite fighter from decades past) he probably wouldn’t be undefeated today but my guess is that he would have proven without a doubt that he’s a great fighter, not just a great talent and businessman.


Hi Doug,

It’s been quite some time since I shot you an email. Hope you and your family’s doin’ well.

Alvarado implemented the right strategy. Though he looked like the one who’s at the receiving end of a vicious beating, his accuracy scored points via his right hands. But, man, Rios took it like a man, did not even take a knee for a breather after some jaw breaking shots. Very good conditioning for Bam Bam. While I give credit to Alvarado’s smart game plan, I feel like Mile High’s accuracy has something to do with Rios’ defense, who apparently is not the second coming of Willie Pep or Floyd Mayweather. Am I spot on in that assessment or am I underrating Alvarado’s boxing skills? I agree that they don’t have to take the rubbermatch right away. But who do you see them fighting next?

I’ve read somewhere that Arum is positioning Rios as a Pacquiao opponent especially now that Pacman appears to be downhill but my boy has underrated boxing skills than his critics give him credit for. Whacha think, Doug?

How do you see the following 140-lb Mythical Matchups:

Gatti vs. Rios

Gatti vs. Hatton

Gatti vs Maidana

Cotto vs. Bradley

De La Hoya vs. Bradley

Khan vs. Pacquiao (I dunno if you could consider this as a mythical fight since both are still active)

Gatti vs. Corrales @whatever weight (RIP to both warriors)

Thank you and God bless, Doug. – Adrian, Philippines

Thanks for the kind words and well wishes, Adrian. Interesting mythical matchups (and yeah, I think Pacquiao-Khan counts as one because your boy is Top Rank property, while King K. is down with GBP). I’ll give ’em my two cents:

Gatti vs. Rios – Rios by controversial split decision in – what else? – a brutal, bloody 10- or 12-round war

Gatti vs. Hatton – Gatti comes from behind to score a Hail Mary mid-rounds KO with a body shot

Gatti vs Maidana – Gatti by decision in a wild slugfest (Thunder gets rocked a few times but edges Maidana by scoring a couple knockdowns)

Cotto vs. Bradley – Cotto by close decision, maybe a late TKO

De La Hoya vs. Bradley – De La Hoya by mid-rounds TKO

Khan vs. Pacquiao – PacMan by mid-round TKO

Gatti vs. Corrales – This one either ends in an unprecedented double knockout or the rare double-elimination “No Contest” or “Technical Draw” in which the ref and/or ringside physician halts the bout between rounds while the warriors are on their stools due to the extreme punishment both men have dished out and absorbed. (It happened once in a 1995 light heavyweight bout between former titleholder Prince Charles Williams and Merqui Sosa.)

Prior to the Alvarado rematch I was thinking Bam Bam a realistic chance of beating Pacquiao if they ever fought. Now I think future hall of famer would be too much for the young gun.

I have no idea who Alvarez and Rios will fight next. I’m thinking they’ll be in with capable fringe contenders before they’re either matched with each other or an elite fighters such as Marquez, PacMan or Bradley.


I wanted to know your opinion if you had to pick between HBO or Showtime, which channel would you pick? For my money, I’ve felt that Showtime has put on the better boxing programming.

Secondly, do you know of any boxing web writers that I should keep in my weekly reading rotation? My list includes you, the Korean Hammer (Steve Kim), Dan Rafael and sometimes Pedro Fernandez.

Lastly, I just don’t understand why Goldie promotions gets so much crap for the fights they make and promote yet other promotional companies get a free pass. – Miguel from Chicago

I dunno, Miguel. #BlameBob.

There are many quality boxing writers who regularly contribute to,,,, the Yahoo! Boxing page,, and numerous forums and message board-type sites. Just take some time and check ’em out. I’m sure you’ll find some keepers.

If I could only have one of the premium cable networks I would choose the one with the best boxing programming for a particular month and then switch to the other if it offered better fights the next month. I wouldn’t just stick with one network all year. So I would have gone with HBO last month (duh, Bradley-Provo and Rios-Alvarado II would have made that an easy choice). This month is not so easy a choice as both networks have quality boxing on tap. But I would go with Showtime because Canelo-Trout is the fight I want to see the most this month. I also think the Garcia-Judah/Quillin-Guerrero doubleheader will deliver action fights. HBO has a bunch of good matchups (Viloria-Estrada and Arreola-Stiverne should be fun) but Donaire-Rigo might be a pure boxing match and Martinez-Murray could turn out to be one-sided.

May is another tough choice. I think Mayweather-Guerrero will be competitive but I KNOW that the Froch-Kessler rematch will be off the chain (and Pascal-Bute could be a good scrap). The Ponce de Leon-Mares co-feature to “May Day” and the Peterson-Matthysse/Alexander-Brook doubleheader tip my decision in Showtime’s favor. But you can see how the boxing programming on HBO and Showtime would have to be examined on a month-to-month basis.



You know that feeling you get with some fights, where you just know what’s going to happen before it does? That is the feeling I’m getting about Trout putting a beat down on Alvarez and throwing a huge monkey wrench in the works. Don’t you just get the feeling that Canelo isn’t going to know what to do when he gets in with someone he is actually evenly matched with? It just seems fated that this redhead never get what he wants.

Also, I can’t wait to see my man Maidana in there against a fighter who I respect the hell out of in Lopez. Thank you. – Byron, Columbia, MO

I can’t wait to be ringside for both of these fights. Maidana-Lopez should uphold the tradition of badass fights at The Home Depot Center’s outdoor arena while Canelo will definitely uphold the tradition of popular Mexican fighters putting mad butts in the seats in Texas arenas.

The only “feeling” I’m getting on Alvarez-Trout is that it’s an even matchup. And I know this isn’t a popular opinion among “hardcores,” but I think Canelo will legitimately beat the undefeated southpaw. I don’t think he’s the one-dimensional hype job others claim he is. I think he can box, fight and counter-punch with the best of his division and I believe he’ll prove it versus Trout.



 Email Dougie at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @dougiefischer