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Dougie’s Friday mailbag

27
Feb

Photos: (L) Floyd Mayweather Jr. (Al Bello/Getty Images). (R) Manny Pacquiao (Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Photos: (L) Floyd Mayweather Jr. (Al Bello/Getty Images). (R) Manny Pacquiao (Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

MAYWEATHER WINS EASY

Okay, it’s a foregone conclusion that Floyd f___s Pac up. The supposed mega-event created by the media will be another boring boxing exhibition by Maywether. He is the best at what he does, limit the action, sharp shoot. Pac cannot beat him and it will be just like most Mayweather fights, he will do juuuuust enough to win. He is not going to put himself in harm’s way. Pac can punch, no revelation to Floyd, he has a big, quick left hand, newsflash. Floyd WILL NOT get hit with that left hand, mark it down, now what does Pac do to win? Is he going to outbox Floyd from distance as the shorter man?

Everybody thinks Floyd is a b__ch with no balls who will fold up like a lawn chair the first time someone breathes on him. But who was the last guy Pac starched? Literally, what DECADE was that? He isn’t knocking anybody out since people have realized that he does have power at this weight and don’t just stick your chin out there and see if he can punch. Floyd is going to take the left hand away, then the fight is over.

He couldn’t really get Maidana’s rhythm down, but how good did he look against Alvarez, who everyone thinks is a killer????????????????????????????????????

Floyd is going to be laughing all the way to the bank with – Jason C. Brown

He might. He’s the favorite to do so, but to think of him as untouchable and to think of Pacquiao as a one-armed bandit is gross oversimplification of both fighters and this matchup in my opinion.

Maybe it’s good to keep the analysis of this as simple as you have: Floyd takes away Manny’s left hand. Fight’s over. Floyd wins. Sometimes boxing is that simple. But I don’t think this particular matchup of future hall of famers is that simple.

Pacquiao has more than a big left cross and there’s a lot more for his opponents to worry about than his power. He’s still got his speed and reflexes. He’s got his footwork, which still beautifully sets up his offense and takes him out of the danger zone after he’s done his damage. He’s got a good jab, the one punch that Mayweather’s opponents can land with regularity. He’s got head and upper-body movement and makes good use of feints. He counter punches and puts his shots together well. Oh, and he’s a southpaw.

In other words, Pacquiao is a handful – even for Mayweather.

Check out this 2-minute video by Lee John Wylie, one of the better young boxing analysts out there breaking down fights. It’s part one in a series that examines the signature techniques of both Mayweather and Pacquiao. Part one looks at how Pacquiao often uses his vaunted left as a lead counter against an orthodox opponent’s jab (Wylie calls it a “Split-Entry” Straight Left).

I know you’re going to say “So what? That’s Brandon Rios he’s countering and outmaneuvering in the first example. Floyd’s on another level. True. But Pacquiao’s on another level from Maidana and Canelo.

I’m not saying that Mayweather is going to be overwhelmed and run over by the Filipino icon’s unique style and “signature techniques.” His style is just as difficult for Pacquiao as the underdog’s style is for him. I see a competitive (hopefully compelling) fight that goes the distance.

EARLY NIGHT FOR PACMAN

Hey D-man!

It’s been awhile since I wrote to the greatest mailbag known to mankind, wait…humankind. That’s better. I wouldn’t wanna be considered a sexist there. Ha ha, joking aside. Like casual or hardcore boxing aficionados alike, I am thrilled this fight will finally happen. In the midst of all that’s been said since the announcement, I could not help but be miffed or even annoyed that the consensus is that Floyd will win a decision (UD, SD).

That’s like saying, he is not fighting Pacquiao. I’m by no means a Pacquiao nut hugger or the like, because I do agree with most people that yes, it will be a competitive fight. That is, for as long as it lasts! Let’s face it, Manny wanted this fight from the beginning, Floyd did not. Manny done fought almost everybody at this point (worthy opponents and not), LOL! Here’s my opinion as to why I think it will not go over 5 rounds…

  • I think back to when this fight “should” have happened — which was 2010. Since then, PacMan only lost 1 fight, to Juan Manuel Marquez. And yes, I’m not even counting that bogus decision to Tim Bradley. So what do we have. Pacquiao only lost 1 fight in 10 years (last one being to Erik Morales, in their first bout in ’05). So fast forward to now. Sure, both Floyd and Manny slowed down a bit, as expected. But I mean it’s as if it’s still 2010, and that the only difference is that Manny (while not as dynamic, or aggressive as he used to be)…WILL, in my mind, try to be as close to that destroying force he once was. He has toÔǪ it is, after all, the SUPERFIGHT. I mean s__t, I’m not paying top dollars for either of these guys to lay an egg come May 2nd. As for MoneyMan, yeah, he’ll still be the defensive wizard like he always is, smooth and counter punching his way to points victory. I don’t even care what he looked like in his fights recently. I expect the Floyd of 2009-2010 to show up. One thing I don’t expect, is for Floyd to hurt Pacquiao. That’s the difference. I don’t recall any of Pacquiao’s opponents since 2001 when he came on the scene where they had an “easy” night when facing him in the ring. Either they got busted up, or ran out of gas. So with Pacquiao’s punching power, volume-punching, awesome footwork, and those impeccable angles he dishes out…I can only see victory for him by KO in the 5th round. I believe he will start fast, and look to hurt Mayweather any chance he gets (bodywork especially from the get-go). I see Floyd on his back, trying to get up but can’t. I already read JMM deeming the fight to be “dangerous” for Mayweather. I second that. I look forward to a new P4P king on the night of May 2nd, 2015.

– Care to opine with your thoughts Dougie? I don’t think I’m that crazy to say the fight will end early in Pacquiao’s favor. Because think about it, everybody would get their money’s worth!! Pardon the pun, haha. Peace and good health. – Allan, Rancho Cordova, CA

I think you’re overestimating Pacquiao and underestimating Mayweather as much as Jason is overestimating Mayweather and underestimating Pacquiao.

I agree that we can expect the best versions of Mayweather and Pacquiao possible on May 2. I agree that, despite his KO loss to Marquez, Pacquiao has been on an amazing run and, for the most part has operated on an elite level.

However, I think you’re overlooking the severity of his knockout loss. Pacquiao was KTFO. Cold. Face down on the canvas and he was out of it for several minutes. It’s very possible that Pacquiao suffered a severe concussion in that fight, and few boxers – if any – come back all the way from a knockout as devastating as that one.

I also think you’re overlooking Pacquiao’s subtle but gradual slide in 2011 and 2012.

Having said that, I was one of the many skeptics that thought he was finished as an elite boxer after the Marquez bout, and I can admit that was wrong about that (I picked Bradley to beat him legitimately in their rematch and I thought Algieri would give him fits when that fight was first made). Pacquiao has rebounded as well as one can since December 2012, and I think that’s as much proof as any of his past accomplishments that he’s a very special boxer.

Still, I have a hard time envisioning Pacquiao stopping Mayweather in five rounds. I can see him stunning or rocking Mayweather in the early rounds. I can even see him score a knockdown during the first half of the fight. But I don’t see Mayweather giving up or being totally bewildered by a fast start from Pacquiao. I think he’ll keep his composure and tie Pacquiao up if he gets hurt. I can even see him resort to dirty tactics if he needs to in order to buy enough time to recover and survive the round.

I think fans are getting a distance fight on May 2.

UK FIGHTS AND ‘SUPERMAN’

Hi Dougie,

Haven’t written in for a long while but jeez these past few weeks have been turbulent! Finally Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao will get it on (FINALLY) and GGG reasserted himself as the top dog at 160 pounds!

I have a few questions for you today though, Doug, there are a few intriguing match-ups this side of the pond on Saturday: Tyson Fury vs Christian Hammer, Chris Eubank Jr. vs Dmitry Chudinov and Carl Frampton vs Chris Avalos. From where I stand, I see the first two as good match ups, but Fury should outclass/KO Hammer. However, if ‘Euby’ (props to you for that awesome nickname) doesn’t tighten up his defence and start quicker than he did against Saunders, he could be in for a tough night. I’m really excited for Frampton-Avalos. I mean, we all know Frampton is a class act, but Avalos can bang, and I hope we see an action packed fight. Who are you backing in those 3 fights and why?

Adonis Stevenson is fighting Sakio Bika. I mean, I like the PBC idea, and the fights which have been announced, but that is just a joke, and Al Haymon is taking the piss. Is Stevenson trying to actively discredit his incredibly 2013 even more, or is he so god-damned terrified of Krusher that he wants to make quick money and ditch the sport? Because from where I stand Bizier vs Molina and Bika vs Stevenson are two steaming piles of… yeah.

A couple of quick MMs for you:

Pernell Whitaker vs Manny Pacquiao at 147lbs

Beast with Professor X as his trainer vs Thing with Doctor Strange in his corner.

All the best dude, hope to hear back from you!! – Stan, UK

I’m looking forward to the UK fights tomorrow. I like Fury by decision or late TKO, Eubank by decision and Frampton by decision (in a good scrap).

The Eubank-Chudinov fight is the most intriguing to me. Taking on the undefeated Russian after suffering his first loss is a bold move. I was impressed with Junior in the Billy Joe Saunders fight and I’m impressed with his decision not to step back down in his level of competition. I’m familiar with Chudinov. He and his brother Feder began their pro careers in Southern California and I used to watch them spar at the Maywood Boxing Club and other gym in the greater L.A. area. He’s a brute strong boxer-banger with a lot of heart. If “Euby” isn’t on point, he can get clipped. However, I like the speed, reflexes and versatility of the British boxer.

Fury and Frampton are simply a level better than their opponents on Saturday, but both fights are interesting because Hammer and Avalos can punch. I see both UK stars outboxing their opponents before going for the KO in the late rounds.

Is Stevenson trying to actively discredit his incredible 2013 even more than he already has? Yeah, he is, from our perspective. From his perspective he’s just trying to capitalize on 2013 by making the most money for the least risk. I hope Stevenson is saving and investing the money he’s earning and I wish him well, but as a boxing fan I’ve completely lost interest in him. I think Bika is shopworn and ready to be taken out. If Stevenson can’t take out the former super middleweight beltholder, he’s overrated in my opinion.

Your mythical matchups:

Pernell Whitaker vs Manny Pacquiao at 147 lbs – Whitaker by decision

The-Thing-boxingBeast with Professor X as his trainer vs Thing with Doctor Strange in his corner – I’m an X-Man fan, but it would be Clobberin’ Time for poor Beastie. Apart from being several times stronger than the blue furry genius, and nearly invulnerable, the ever-lovin’ Thing has mad boxing skills gleaned from his days with the Yancy Street gang.

 

FIGHT FOR THE FANS?

Doug,

Just a thought. If the execs and especially Manny and Floyd would like to proclaim this fight is for the fans, I have two conditions:

1) The fight must be 15 rounds. A true championship fight and 2) the networks should charge the public no more than $39.95.

Fans have been paying through the nose for the likes of Algieri, Bradley, Maidana, Guerrero and even a stand-out amateur like Alvarez. Let half the world be able to afford watching this snore-fest with Mayweather rolling under Manny’s big haymakers. Enough said. – Terence

This was never the fight for the fans. I don’t care what the fighters say. It was made because Pacquiao was out of options, and I believe it was forced on Mayweather by his network (Showtime/CBS). This fight is for them (Mayweather, Pacquiao, Haymon, Bob Arum, Showtime and HBO), and they’re all gonna make a killing. It’s not for us.

Fights for the fans are accessible to the fans. Provodnikov-Matthysse and Canelo-Kirkland are for the fans, because real fans can actually afford the tickets to witness the fights in person, and they won’t have to pay extra to watch it on TV.

Dude, there is no f___ing way the pay-per-view price for Mayweather-Pacquiao will be anything under $80. And there’s no way they’d schedule it for 15 rounds. (If they did, they’d charge another $30 for those extra three rounds!)

MIXED FEELINGS

Hi Dougie,

I love reading your mailbag- one of the highlights of my week. Keep up the good work!

Am I the only one who has mixed feelings about Pac-Mayweather? I am bored with it to be honest and would be much more interested in Klitschko/Wilder, Kovalev/Stevenson, Rigo/Lomachenko or Quigg/ Frampton! It feels like it is a little too late but I guess when I think about it I am glad it is here. I pick Manny to win convincingly – do you think Floyd has the power to discourage him? Or will he stitch him up with the referee like he did Hatton?

Incidentally, can you explain the ranking system? I cannot believe that Andre Ward is STILL in the p4p top ten considering the year Carl Froch has had. Ridiculous. And no Gennady Golovkin? Crazy!

In terms of mythical matchups, what do you think about Calzaghe/Froch/Eubank/Benn/Collins in a round robin?

Stay cool. – Mark

I’ll try. (No I won’t.)

I think Calzaghe would come out on top of that mythical UK super middleweight round robin.

Due to inactivity and a lack of quality opposition since his stoppage of Chad Dawson in September 2012, Ward is no longer in THE RING’s pound-for-pound rankings. I’m sure the magazine’s Ratings Panel will suggest his return to the mythical ratings once he returns to the ring, but for the time being the undefeated American is out.

Golovkin is currently No. 9 in the pound-for-pound ratings, behind your guy Froch.

You are not the only one who has mixed feelings about Mayweather-Pacquiao. Part of me is glad the boxing industry finally got over the hump of #TheNeverEndingStory, part of me thinks it will be a good fight (at least by Mayweather standards), but another part of me is just plain burnt out on the subject and is not looking forward at all to the unholy media-and-fan cluster f__k this event will be (weeks in advance and, of course, on May 2). Part of me (no, make that most of me) is already sick of Mayweather and Pacquiao’s fans and dreads their over-the-top reactions after the fight.

But, hey, it’s happening. And we’ll all get through it together.

ASIAN BOXERS

Hey Doug!

My friends and I were talking about Asian athletes, and who we thought was the most accomplished Asian athlete with international acclaim. None of us are sports historians, let alone boxing historians, but Pacquiao’s name came up way too often. How do you think he ranks among Asian boxers? Thanks!

Love your mailbag. – Patrick

How do you say “No. 1” in Tagalog?

KAZAKH SPECIAL

What up Dougie,

Just regarding the Monday Mailbag and the question on the punch GGG used to knock out Rubio. You probably already know this, but the punch you called the “Kazakh Special” is a variation on an old Soviet era “Russian Hook.” It was thought in boxing gyms in the eastern bloc.

If you watched many MMA fights you’d see it used to be implemented a lot by Fedor Emelianenko and Igor Vovchanchyn. While it’s very effective weapon, especially for Golovkin who uses a variation of it to hook around guys elbows delivering shots to the body (Good lord they look like they hurt!) it’s a very dangerous shot to throw to the head as it’s easy to break the hand! (maybe in MMA more so than boxing where there’s little protection to the hand).

Here’s a good article done by Jack Slack, who I feel is one of the greatest writers in regards analysing and breaking down fighters attributes not just in MMA but also boxing, on the subject of Russian hooks.

http://fightsgoneby.blogspot.ie/2012/03/striking-of-igor-vovchanchyn-part-2.html

 

Anyways sorry for the rambling a just wanted to get that off my chest. Always a fan. Regards. – Tosh, Ireland

Thanks Tosh. I’ll check it out. Maybe I’ll learn how to throw the Russian Hook and use it (open handed, of course) against the next person who asks me about Mayweather-Pacquiao. (Smack! “Talk to me about GGG, you sucka!”)

GGG AND HISTORY

Hey Dougie,

3rd time writing to the mailbag. I been reading it every Monday and Friday for the past couple years since I graduated college. I tell my friends who I’m trying to get into boxing that it’s the best way to be introduced to the sport. Anyway, enough of the nuthugging! haha

My question regards our favorite middleweight, GGG and his place in history. By now, everyone knows that Kazakh Thunder is legit. He can punch, he can put together combinations and he can cut off the ring. Oh and what about that chin! But what about his place in history if he can’t get at least a few “meaningful” fights? By meaningful I mean fights against people like the Canelos, Wards, Chavez Jrs or any middleweight with a belt.

Can he still be considered hall of fame worthy if he only fights say 2 or 3 top tier fighters before he retires? He is 32, and I would think a little behind the 8-ball in terms of racking up wins against the best of his era. Of course, he is easily the most avoided fighter in boxing, but will that factor into HoF voters minds?

I know I’m getting ahead of myself with the GGG and HoF talk, given the quality of his resume and the fact he still has a few years of fighting to go, but I think it’s a legitimate topic. I’d be thrilled to know what you think. Especially with regard to historical precedent (i.e. other fighters in the Hall who may have had similar career trajectories as GGG).

Thanks for the great work! – Peter, New Jersey

You’re definitely getting ahead of yourself with hall of fame talk for GGG. He’s the best 160 pounder right now but middleweight isn’t one of boxing’s deeper divisions. I’m a huge Golovkin fan but we still need to see how he fares against a fellow elite boxer before we start talking about ever-lasting legacies.

However, given his current activity, title bout stats and potential opponents, hall-of-fame enshrinement certainly isn’t out of the question.

Here’s what he can do to gain that consideration:

*Unify all the major title belts (if possible) to become the undisputed champ

*Break Bernard Hopkins’ middleweight title defense record of 20. GGG is already at 13 defenses. With his current fight pace (four bouts a year) he can equal the record by the end of 2016.

*Beat at least four of the following: Canelo and/or Cotto at middleweight; beat Froch, Chavez Jr. and/or Ward at super middleweight; beat Stevenson and/or Kovalev at light heavyweight before he retires.

SPARRING PARTNERS

Hey Doug,I know you’re probably getting a ton of these, so I’ll keep this brief and hope for the best. If you were training either Mayweather or Pacquiao, who are some of the top guys you’d want to get some rounds with before the big event? – Dan, NYC

Good question, Dan.

For Pacquiao, I’d try to get undefeated prospects Amir Imam and Sadam Ali because of their boxing ability and fast/hard/accurate right hands; and maybe Dierry Jean or Mike Dallas Jr. for their overall athleticism.

For Mayweather, I’d want fast southpaws who move around a lot (because I think Manny’s footwork is what will trouble Floyd the most), so I’d go with Mookie Pendarvis (a quick, explosive sort who has “played” the PacMan role in other world-class camps), undefeated 2008 gold medalist Felix Diaz (for his movement) and maybe Ajose Olusegun (for his toughness).

 

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

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