Mickey Bey will face puzzling challenge in Miguel Vazquez
Lightweight Mickey Bey is confident that he can solve the riddle of Miguel Vazquez, a long-reigning IBF titleholder whose elusive, technical approach is atypical of the Mexican warrior tradition.
“Nobody’s seen my best and I’m going to be at my best when I’m fighting on this level. Nobody fully knows all of the things that I can do,” said Bey, 31, during a recent conference call.
“I know that Vazquez is a crafty fighter but I don’t think that the guys that he’s been fighting have the ability and the speed and everything to keep up with himÔÇªI think that I have way more tools than him.”
THE RING’s number one-rated 135-pounder, Vazquez (34-3, 13 knockouts), 27, will be making the seventh defense of his belt against Bey (20-1-1, 10 KOs) in support of the Sept. 13 rematch between RING welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Marcos Maidana at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Showtime Pay-Per-View.
Vazquez is righting a 13-fight winning streak that includes only three knockouts, having last suffered defeat by unanimous decision to current junior middleweight contender Saul Alvarez in June 2008. Vazquez also has lost his professional debut to Alvarez by split decision in January 2006.
Bey, however, believes he represents a significant step up in quality, skill and talent than that possessed by the most recent opponents of Vazquez, who was last in action for a unanimous decision over Denis Shafikov in February.
“I think that with a lot of the guys in this game, a lot of them fight the same, pretty much. I just think that he’s a good boxer and a lot of guys can’t beat good boxers,” said Bey.
“They just have that ‘Rock-’em, Sock-’em Robots’ type of style and whatever happens happens. A lot of guys just swing for the fences and almost just do it with their eyes closed.”
Bey is coming off a unanimous decision over Alan Herrera in May that followed a third round stoppage of Carlos Cardenas in December. The wins helped Bey rebound from a 10th round stoppage loss to John Molina in July 2013.
Bey’s mentor, Mayweather, was ringside at The Joint at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas when Bey, far ahead on the scorecards, began to showboat prior to suffering the loss to Molina.
“I feel like I was showboating to the crowd. Against a big puncher, that’s a mistake. I took his best punches the whole fight,” said Bey, who had said earlier, “I got over it, probably the day after. It wasn’t like a thing where I had to go back and get betterÔÇªIt was a bad mistake that I didÔÇªI made a mistake by goofing off.”
Mayweather gave him somewhat of a talking-to after the fight, Bey admitted.
“Floyd wasn’t tough on me but he gave me some great advice,” said Bey. “After the fight, he told me, ‘That’s boxing,’ and that it ain’t over until it’s over.”
On Sept. 13, Bey believes he can start anew by solving the puzzle that is Vazquez.
“He’s just got the bigger name, of course, because he’s been the champion,” said Bey. “I think that this is going to be a fight that he’s going to have to get around my puzzles. I can do it all.”
Vazquez-Bey will be refereed by Tony Weeks, who officiated Mayweather-Maidana I, and the official ringside judges will be Robert Hoyle and Adalaide Byrd of Nevada and Julie Lederman of New York.
AUSTIN TROUT 154, DANIEL DAWSON 154
Junior middleweight Austin Trout (26-2, 14 KOs) and former title challenger Daniel Dawson (40-3-1, 26 KOs) each weighed 154 pounds in advance of Friday’s bout at the Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula, Calif.
Trout will end an eight-month ring absence, having last been in action in a unanimous decision loss to Erislandy Lara last December. Prior to the Lara bout, Trout lost a unanimous decision loss to Saul Alvarez in April of last year.
However, before facing Alvarez and Lara, Trout scored a career-best win in a unanimous decision over Miguel Cotto in December 2012 at Madison Square Garden.
Dawson, 36, who hails from Australia, will be making only his second appearance on American soil. He is currently 6-0-1 with two knockouts since a unanimous decision loss to Frank LoPorto in Oct. of 2010.
MANUEL AVILA 122, SERGIO FRIAS 122
Junior featherweight Manuel Avila (15-0, 6 KOs) and rival Sergio Frias (15-3-2, 8 KOs) weighed 122 pounds each in advance of Friday’s match-up from the Allan Witt Sports Center in Fairfield, Calif. Avila-Frias will be the main event of the “Golden Boy Live!” series’ one-year anniversary on FOX Sports 1 and FOX Deportes.
For the co-main event, heavyweights Gerald Washington and Nagy Aguilera weighed 246 and 244, respectively; featherweights Guy Robb and Ronnell Green were 127 and 127.5 and lightweights Andy Vences and Cesar Martinez weighed 130.5 and 131.5.
IVAN REDKACH TO BE TRAINED BY ROBERT GARCIA
Lightweight Ivan Redkach (17-0, 13 KOs), who is coming off a unanimous decision victory over Sergey Gulyakevich in June, is now training with Robert Garcia, as announced in a release on Friday.
Garcia also trains Marcos Maidana, Nonito Donaire, Evgeny Gradovich, Mikey Garcia, Brandon Rios and Marcos Antonio Rubio.
Nicknamed “The Terrible,” Redkach, 28, won 260 of 300 amateur matches and represented his native Ukraine at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing as a team alternate.
“I have a lot of respect for my former trainer, Mario Morales but I needed a new trainer to teach me how to win at the championship level. I didn’t show any improvement in my last two fights, something I need to do every fight to be a legitimate world title contender,” said Redkach, a Los Angeles resident.
“Robert Garcia has proven many times that he is a great trainer, one of the best in boxing. I get great sparring at his gym in Oxnard, which is only a one-hour drive from my home. I can’t wait for my next fight to show everybody how much I’ve improved.”
Redkach’s next fight is expected to be in October.
KENNY PORTER: KELL BROOK ‘WAS HOLDING’ TROUGHOUT VICTORY OVER SHAWN PORTER
Nearly a week after Kell Brook (33-0, 22 KOs) dethroned his son, Shawn Porter (24-1-1, 15 KOs) for the IBF welterweight title, trainer Kenny Porter still is outraged.
Kenny Porter contends that referee Pat Russell did not enforce enough control against Brook, whom the father believes should have been admonished for excessive clinching in their bout at the StubHub Center in Carson, Calif.
“The majority of the rounds, [Brook] was holding. I can’t agree with that. There’s no way possible,” said Kenny Porter. “I couldn’t have been in his corner, coaching him and saying, ‘Kell, just keep holding this guy and you’re going to win.’ No way in hell that I could coach a guy to do that.”
Kenny Porter said he and his two assistants, among them, Hal Chernoff, were admonished for complaining about Brook.
“The inspector came over and said that the commissioner says that you guys need to stop yelling at his referee,” said Kenny Porter. “I felt that I was being threatened in that manner at that time with what was being said to meÔÇªin a very stern, harsh and threatening manner.”
Brook had an overall advantage in punches (158-to-154) and jabs (87-to-24) but trailed in power shots (130-to-74) against Shawn Porter.
As for Shawn Porter’s future, “I know that Shawn’s got a whole lot more going on,” said Kenny Porter. “I’m not interested in being involved in a rematch. That’s not something that we’re going to pursue.”
Photo by Tom Casino/Showtime