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Dougie’s Monday mailbag

20
Jul
Photo by Naoki Fukuda

Photo by Naoki Fukuda

JUNIOR FAILS AGAIN

Just wondering how it’s possible for Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. to continue riding on Dad’s rep? I watched the Marcos Reyes fight and have to say Junior looked terrible and cried like a little girl. Didn’t make weight again. WTF? He is the son of a legend but the plain facts are evident to anyone with one good eye: he came into the ring as a light heavyweight (maybe heavyweight) and looked bad against a mediocre middleweight. – Joseph P.

Here’s my take on Chavez Jr. He was never that talented to begin with but he’s regressed since his WBC middleweight title reign when he was trained by Freddie Roach and part of the Top Rank stable, which included the world-class matchmaking of hall-of-famer Bruce Trampler and Brad Goodman.

I’m not saying all of Chavez Jr.’s success was due to his connections, but much of it was. Still, he had to WANT success for it all to work. And he did. I think he really wanted to prove to fans, to his father, and most importantly, to himself, that he had the ability and desire to win a world title. Once he got his hands on that WBC strap (and made history as the first Mexico-born fighter to win a major middleweight title) and defended it a few times, I believe that he satisfied his own hunger.



I know I’m playing the role of psychologist here, but I don’t think Chavez wants to fight anymore. So why does he continue? Well, for starters, he still makes a lot of money to fight (and networks are still happy to showcase him because he still does strong ratings), but beyond that I don’t think he’s realized yet that his heart is no longer in the sport. If Robert Garcia really puts the screws to him in their next training camp, he might realize it and quit. Or if he gets his ass handed to him again, he might come to grips with reality.

One thing is for certain, fans are done with him.

It will be interesting to see what Al Haymon does with Chavez next. Maybe he’ll use Junior’s name to prop up one of his other super middleweight or light heavyweight clients – Andre or Anthony Dirrell, Adonis Stevenson, James DeGale or Lucian Bute. Personally, I think Haymon should match Chavez with Kid Chocolate in a battle of the most delusional oversized middleweights in the game.

FRAMPTON-GONZALEZ

Well Dougie,

I just watched the Carl Frampton fight and I was quite surprised. I’ve never seen Carl look as bad. Was he having a bad night? Did I overate him? Or underrate Alejandro Gonzalez Jr. maybe? I can’t believe that dude is only 22 years old. Holy s__t.

I’m Irish and a Frampton fan but the commentary was totally biased towards the new Haymon signee. Plus, every time Carl complained to the ref the ref responded. Gonzalez was in that fight until the very end. No doubt. Do you think Gonzales is a future world champion? Carl looked disappointed and blamed the weight loss on his performance. I don’t know. Put it this way – it wasn’t the victorious entry to the US market that they hoped for. Not a complete disaster but it had shades of Hatton v Collazo to it. It’ll be interesting to see where it goes.

Scott Quigg v Kiko Martinez was another surprise. I didn’t expect Quigg to take him out in the second round. I watched the weigh in and Quigg looked completely relaxed to me. One of the commentators mentioned that Kiko signed with Haymon?

Wee Barry looked a little flustered ringside. I just wish he’d put Carl in with Quigg to give the fans what they want. Not that that really matters. Cheers. – John

I’m repeating what my buddy Steve Kim has said numerous times, but here goes again: Frampton vs. Quigg could be the U.K.’s answer to the Marco Antonio Barrera-Erik Morales rivalry. As someone who covered the trilogy closely and was ringside for all three fights (which took place at 122, 126 and 130 pounds) I can honestly say that every boxing-mad country/region of the world should experience something like it. Hopefully, boxing politics and business don’t kill this one.

Yeah, I heard that about Martinez signing with Haymon before the Quigg fight. I guess Al thought Kiko had a decent shot at the upset. I can’t make fun of him for that. I thought Martinez was going to give Quigg hell for 12 rounds in a respectable losing effort. But that’s why they fight the fights and that’s why boxing is so awesome. Ya never know what’s going to happen when that bell rings.

I learned of Quigg’s second-round stoppage through my Twitter TL at the same time that Frampton was getting dropped by a skinny, fresh-faced kid in El Paso.

[springboard type=”video” id=”1544689″ player=”ring003″ width=”648″ height=”511″ ]

I’ve been a Quigg booster for some time now, so I’m gonna proudly say that he’s better than a lot of fans think he is. However, I’m not gonna crap too much on Frampton’s performance. Yes, he was in with an unrated fighter who was barely a prospect, but the kid has boxing pedigree and he grew up around the sport. Plus, he was a complete unknown outside of Southern California. And I’ll tell you something, Gonzalez’s dad (former WBC featherweight champ Alejandro Sr.) brought a dude from Mexico to fight super middleweight prospect D’Mitrius Ballard in Philadelphia on Fox Sports 1 on June 30. Gonzalez shared the flights to and from L.A. with me and broadcast partner Beto Duran and he was very confident in his son’s preparation and chances against Frampton.

In the past, I think Gonzalez Jr. was trained by others (including boxing pariah Javier Capetillo). But for this fight, I believe that his father was more involved in the training. And if you don’t know, Cobrita was a hell of a fighter. Anyway, I still thought it was a boy vs. a man and I was afraid that the kid would take an awful beating. However, he rose to the occasion, and fought 12 hard rounds against one of the top junior featherweights in the game. So yeah, I think Gonzalez has championship potential – IF he’s managed correctly. He’s a Haymon fighter. If Al wants to keep tossing him to top-five 122-pounders or featherweights, and the dad allows this to happen, then the kid will likely get burned out. But if he’s developed over the next year or so the way a promoter should move a top prospect, I think he can get to the world-class level.

I don’t think Frampton is overrated. He was just overanxious to impress in his American debut, and perhaps a little tight because of his struggle to make 122 and because he was fighting outside of his comfort zone (in Ireland and in front of his loyal fans). Frampton is a skilled boxer who can also scrap. I hope he figures out his weight issues, though, because he looks too small/short for featherweight.

 

CHAVEZ, THE JACKAL, FAN BOYS

Dougie,

I got to give it to you Doug, I listened to you on Tha Boxing Voice and you basically showed them how to give out an opinion without sounding biased or one sided. Your explanation of how the PBC has basically not met everybody’s expectations was a slap in the face to a group of fan boys who seem to be on Haymon’s payroll. They have a great show but lately have become very one sided in their opinions and have failed to see the many flaws the PBC has (especially matchmaking). Then on Friday, you totally destroyed that Flo-Mo that attacked you in your own mailbag. That was classic! Props for that! Which leads me to…

The PBC this past Saturday: Carl Frampton had a scary first round but managed to get out alive by winning a decision in what I would call a solid performance yet not what he would’ve wanted to give as a first impression. I don’t see the English Jackal beating the Cuban Jackal anytime soon.

Chavez Jr. laid another egg and yet again showed all his technical deficiencies plus his lack of dedication (by not making the contractual weight) by almost losing to an opponent that wanted it so much more. I think Showtime has also realized that it’s probably time to step off Junior’s train.

For me, the PBC’s final review is still up in the air. Some shows are better than others (Spike TV’s broadcast team is by far the best). The CBS broadcast seemed a little cleaner and better presented. They are still polishing their game, and as you said on Tha Boxing Voice, when Golden Boy started, their matchmakers also made mistakes and it took ’em a while to correct them and become as good as they are today. Let’s hope Haymon and his people understand that it’s not only about putting a name vs a name. Yes, some matchups sounded good on paper (Broner vs Porter) and others don’t (Khan vs Algieri), and wound up giving us opposite results.

Keep up the good work, love your participation with the Kimster with those 10 Count segments. It’s good to see you two back together, the best of all is that its freeee haha. Cheers. – Juan, San Diego

Man, PBC Cheerleaders get sick of Kim’s “It’s FREEEEEE!” battle cry. And that’s why he loves doing it. I have a lot of fun working with Steve on those 10 Count shows on Ucnlive.com. Last week we had RING magazine editor Michael Rosenthal join us, which worked out very well. I hope Michael does more in the future.

I’m glad you liked my guest spot on Tha Boxing Voice podcast. I know that some fans and even a few of my media peers view me as a Haymon Hater, but I really do try to be balanced in my opinions on the PBC. I see negative business practices, random matchmaking and mediocre TV shows, but I also see the positive side for a lot of fighters and boxing industry folks. Somebody Tweeted me a few hours before I went on TBV and told me that they were Haymon/Mayweather boosters, but from what I heard before I went on they sounded balanced in their opinions. And they were very cool and respectful once I was on, so they’re OK in my book. I haven’t been a regular listener prior to Thursday but I’ll be listening more often going forward.

Regarding Chavez Jr., I think you said it best: he laid another egg. And what made this one so stinky rotten is that he not only failed to make weight for an already undersized no-hoper but he also had dumb excuses for his lack of professionalism.

Chavez-weight-graphic_mailbag

(And then he had excuses for why he didn’t knock Reyes out. He’s says he hurt his hand but we all know that he lacked the balls, conditioning and ring-cutting ability to overwhelm the smaller man.) I agree that the good folks at Showtime are finally realizing that Junior is a bulls__ter, but we’ll probably see him “grace” their network again this year. (Beggars can’t be choosey.)

Regarding Frampton’s performance on Saturday, I would favor Rigondeaux over him and Quigg but I wouldn’t totally count out either U.K. standout. Rigo is dying on the vine as I write this line (hey, I rhymed! Gimme a beat, Juan!)

Regarding Joe Steed’s silly ass, who knew that my response in the Friday mailbag would get the Twitter reaction that it did? I didn’t! Can you imagine if social media was around when I used to do those Bitch Bags packed with angry emails from the nutty faithful followers of Tyson, Jones Jr., De La Hoya, Tito and, of course, Money May (plus my venomous written retorts)? We could have locked those mailbags up to members only and kept MaxBoxing.com in business!

Or not.

MEXICAN WARRIORS, PURSES

Hiya Doug,

This is my 2nd time writing in so hopefully I’ll see my name up in lights come Monday. I’ve only been reading the mailbag for a year or so but I’ve become a big fan of your writing and picked up a lot of boxing knowledge along the way. Although it seems with boxing and boxing politics, the more I learn, the more baffled (and intrigued) I become.

Chavez Jr. What can I say? I try so hard to like this guy. Even after the Fonfara abortion I still gave credit where it was due. That was a tough opponent to have picked. His post-fight comments I forgave, sighting probable concussion. But man, I’ve never seen anyone come straight in with absolutely no head movement and throwing nothing the way Junior does, or at least has in his last 2 outings.

The Showtime commentator (the mustached one) assessed his technical performance as “mediocre”. That’s generous to say the least. As the call team also pointed out, he was only able to get away with it this time because of his significant size advantage. Before the end of the 2nd, I found myself cheering for Reyes. How could you not? Missing weight, not disclosing his fight night weight and waving an undersized opponent on after taking his shots… There was only one Mexican warrior in that ring for mind. Where next? Maybe BKB or something…

My other thought is about purses and PRIZE money. Boxing is still technically a sport right? Doesn’t it make sense that there should be a financial incentive for fighters to win? Couldn’t there be say, 30% of the total purse allocated to the victor, with the remaining 70% split being negotiated between promoters/managers/advisors in what could be called the ‘marketing purse’?

When did PRIZE money, where the winner is rewarded with money exit pro boxing? Or does it happen that way sometimes? Somewhere? Don’t work too hard Doug. – Riley, Australia

I’ll try not to, Riley. I finally have a family vacation coming up this week (first one since the summer of 2009).

Regarding prize money in boxing, so-called “winner-take-all” bouts haven’t been common in the U.S. since the turn of the last century, but they do occasionally take place in various parts of the world.

Roy Jones Jr.’s 12-round cruiserweight bout against rugged French journeyman Zine Eddine Benmakhlouf in 2013 in Moscow was billed as a winner-take-all bout.

However, most boxers shy away from such arrangements, including the kind where a percentage of the total purse goes to the winner? Why? Um, because most fighters have families they need to provide for and they can’t be coming home with less of a purse or no purse at all because they lost. (Duh! LOL. That’s my guess, but you might want to take to Twitter and ask some actual pro fighters to share their opinions on the subject with you.)

Also, boxing is unique among professional sports in that a fighter’s entire team (sans the promoter) is paid from his or her purse. So if a fighter loses a fight where the winner takes 30% or more of the total purse, it isn’t just the fighter who is short changed, it’s the manager, the trainer, the cutman, the conditioning coach, etc.

Come on, man. They ain’t havin’ that, and I don’t blame them.

Regarding Chavez Jr.’s performance, I think Al Bernstein (the guy with the mustache) was fair when he said it was “uneven.” Chavez looked OK in spots – when he pressed the smaller man and when he worked his jab. But he looked lost and sloppy for long stretches during the fight.

I would describe Junior’s performance as “unimpressive.” No need to analyze it further.

I’m sure BKB would love to have a name like Chavez in their combat league, but can they afford The Brat?

QUIGG AND FRAMPTON

What do u make of this weekend’s events in the super bantamweight division? Maybe people will start believing u now in favouring Scott Quigg over Frampton! I must admit even though I prefer Quigg I saw it as a straight 50/50 pick ’em because Frampton has looked unstoppable at times!

I thought Martinez was really troubling Quigg in round one. It looked like he wouldn’t be able to cope with the heat then – bam! Uppercut changes the game and what a sensational way to finish. Talk about killer instinct. I thought Frampton struggled with range against Gonzalez especially troubled by his long jab. I think the scorecards and reviews of his performance are a bit favourable to say the least! Gonzalez troubled him throughout, caught him with combos and always had a reply. (Good little fighter. They always match Mexicans too tough young. Imagine him under a British promoter.)

Frampton should steer well clear of Rigo. I feel Martinez made Frampton look so devastating because he’s so open. In hindsight it took Frampton 21 rounds to beat Martinez convincingly. Rendall Monroe beat him twice and Quigg just obliterated him!

Unlucky for Anthony Crolla. Thought he did just enough against Perez especially with points off for low blows. I can’t believe he didn’t get the decision especially in his hometown. I’ve always felt he just might miss out on a world title and I fear judges denied him of just nicking one legit! Shout out to trainer Joe Gallagher. He’s got to be up for trainer of the year. He massively improves every fighter he works with and I believe takes their performances to beyond their ceiling!

Few mythical matchups for you, assuming all in their prime:

Jersey Joe Walcott vs Evander Holyfield

Jake LaMotta vs Bernard Hopkins

Naseem Hamed vs Manny Pacquiao

Nigel Benn v GGG (remember McClellan was a killer too) love this fight

Keep up the good work. – Andrew Cardiff, UK

Thanks. I’ll try.

I asked the good folks of the Boxing Twitterverse if Frampton’s tougher-than-expected fight with an unheralded pup and Quigg’s strong showing against rugged former titleholder changed anyone’s opinion on the outcome of their potential showdown and most of the replies were a resounding “No!”

That’s all good. It’s actually nice to see fans NOT jump off the bandwagon after one shaky performance. I can’t fault anyone who thinks Frampton is a superior fighter to Quigg because the Irish star is a more polished boxer-technician and probably the more talented athlete, but I’m gonna keep boosting Tha Quiggster. I think the Lancashire man has underrated poise, power and versatility. I also think Quigg’s a better infighter than Frampton and one of the better body-punchers in the game.

I agree that Quigg was troubled by Martinez’s hard pressure in Round 1 (which he soundly lost), and I agree that Gonzalez bothered Frampton all night (despite Virgil Hunter’s observations),

I don’t agree that Frampton (or any other junior featherweight worth his salt) should “steer well clear of Rigo.” Frampton is in his prime right now. He should WANT to challenge the recognized champ of his division. If Frampton shows the same guts that Hisashi Amagasa exhibited against Rigo (or that Gonzalez Jr. showed against him), who knows what might happen?

I haven’t seen the Perez-Crolla fight yet but I hear it’s a heartbreaker for the Manchester native. I’m sure Eddie Hearn can secure a rematch with Perez, and if not, maybe a shot at whoever wins the vacant IBF title.

I think Gallagher is one of the best young trainers in boxing. He was a Trainer of the Year candidate last year and I believe he will be this year.

Your mythical matchups:

Jersey Joe Walcott vs Evander Holyfield – I think Walcott at his best outboxes and outpoints Holyfield in a very competitive fight.

Jake LaMotta vs Bernard Hopkins – I think best middleweight version of B-Hop could outpoint The Raging Bull in a close fight. LaMotta is often characterized as a pressure fighting madman, but he was really a crafty, tough-as-nails boxer. He would be able to jab with Hopkins and land sneaky counters, but if Nard got on his toes and moved on the Bronx native he could control the distance. LaMotta was kind of plodding and flat footed.

Naseem Hamed vs Manny Pacquiao – I think Naz clips and KOs the PacMan at featherweight. I would favor Pacquiao by late stoppage at any heavier weight.

Nigel Benn v GGG – I like Golovkin by mid-round TKO or late KO in a war at middleweight. At super middleweight, I favor Benn by decision in a Fight of the Year-type box-and-brawl match.

QUIGG-MARTINEZ / YAMANAKA-MORENO

Hi, Doug!

  1. I was surprised by Scott Quigg’s TKO victory over Kiko Martinez. We know Kiko is far from invincible, but he had never been beaten so easily. Kiko might have been too aggressive after the successful 1st round, or he might be more or less worn out after some wars. Anyway, it was a true test for Quigg, and he showed a terrific performance. While I want to see Quigg vs Frampton next (I still pick The Jackal, though), I’m looking forward to his fight against Donaire. And I’m glad that Santa-Cruz is FINALLY going to fight a top fighter and there’s a rumor about Rigo vs Lomachenko. The super bantamweight division has too many undefeated fighters.
  2. I’m excited at the news that Shinsuke Yamanaka is going to face Anselmo Moreno in September. It seems that Moreno has not been so sharp as he used to be since he lost to Abner Mares, but Yamanaka, who relies too much on his destructive left hand, is a bit predictable. I don’t know which fighter to pick.

Mythical matchups:

What do you think about a round-robin of the following four legendary lightweights?

Benny Leonard, Tony Canzoneri, Ike Williams and Carlos Ortiz (I’d go with The Ghetto Wizard).

I’m a bit sad to see less mythical matchups these days. Cheers. – Taku from Japan

I think we’ll see more mythical matchups in the mailbags of the next few weeks because there aren’t any really big events coming up (unless you’re wetting your pants over Garcia-Malignaggi).

I’ll answer your comments in order:

1. It looks like the 122/126-pound divisions are finally heating up. We just need these guys to fight each other. We’ve got Mares-Santa Cruz on August 29 and we might get Quigg vs. Donaire or even Rigo. There’s also a slight chance we could see Rigo vs. Loma (but I’m not holding my breath for that one). With Frampton now in Haymon’s PBC League, we could see Frampy vs. the Mares-LSC winner or Gary Russell Jr.

2. I think Yamanaka-Moreno (which could be for THE RING’s vacant bantamweight title) is a toss-up bout, but I favor Yamanaka. He’s no spring chicken at 32 (two years older than Moreno) but he’s a lot fresher than the Panamanian boxer. Moreno’s had a lot of tough fights that I believe have taken a toll on the master southpaw’s reflexes and punch resistance. Yamanaka by close but unanimous decision (and he probably scores a knockdown along the way).

Your mythical lightweight round-robin: I like Ike.

FRAMPTON IMPROVEMENTS

Hi Doug,

Does Frampton remind you of any other fighter and what do you think he needs to work on?

Great to hear that there’s gonna be more added to the website and more supervision of the comment sectionÔǪ The Ring Mag’s official website deserves more!

Mythical Match-up-Maidana v Mayorga at WW?

Cheers! – Ray K.

Does Frampton remind me of any other fighter? Good question, Ray.

I can definitely see a lot of his mentor/manager Barry McGuigan in his style with his sharp and educated left jab and his intelligent aggression. However, with his short stature, sound foundation, good footwork and versatile fighting methods (sometimes boxing from a distance, other times pressing the action), Frampton reminds me a lot of former WBA 122-pound titleholder Clarence “Bones” Adams. (He also seems to bruise and cut easy like Adams, but appears to be a better athlete and a bit sturdier.)

What does Frampton need to work on? I think he would do well to employ some of the head- and upper-body movement that were integral parts of McGuigan’s and Adams’ boxing styles.

Your mythical matchup: I think Mayorga bashes and befuddles Maidana to an ugly but entertaining decision victory.

ABRAHAM-STIEGLITZ

Hey Dougie, Just seen Arthur Abraham-Robert Stieglitz. Very unusual for Abraham that he was in the fight from the first round. After his disappointing fights at the Super 6 (except for the Taylor KO) I was almost counting him out. Really good performance with a big knockout today, but what comes now?

I guess his promoters and German TV will get their cash cow in a fight with Felix Sturm, of course that would bring much money. In my opinion he will also knock him out. After that I hope he gets in the ring with James DeGale or one of the Dirrell brothers. Ward would give him another lesson… I guess. Hopefully, there will not two or three defenses against lower rated boxers just to keep the title. Very interesting for German fans would be a fight with J├╝rgen Br├ñhmer. What’s your opinion?

P.S.: Best decision of the week, trainer Dirk Dzemski stopped the fight. Stieglitz could have taken much damage. – Kossi

[springboard type=”video” id=”1544897″ player=”ring003″ width=”648″ height=”511″ ]

It might be time for Stieglitz to consider hanging up his gloves. I thought Abraham was going to make that decision after getting stopped by Stieglitz in 2013, but here he is. Can’t really call him “King” anymore but the hardnosed veteran is definitely a stern test for young super middleweight standouts.

I care nothing for an Abraham-Sturm matchup now. That fight should have happened when both held middleweight titles. I’d like to Abe bump knuckles with DeGale, the Jack-Groves winner, and maybe GGG if the middleweight monster can’t find a decent dance partner by the end of the year.

CHRIS EUBANK

Hi Doug,

Avid reader of your mailbags.

I bumped into Chris Eubank Snr recently and I have to say, I was surprised by his personality, a lot more humble then I had envisaged and still in tremendous shape.

My question to you is, where would you rank him against the current super middleweights and how would he have fared against Carl Froch? Many thanks. – Wazaslam

I think Eubank would have bewildered tough but basic guys like Abraham and Stieglitz. Of the top super middleweights of the past 10 years only Joe Calzaghe (who beat a somewhat faded version of Eubank for his first world title), Andre Ward and Froch would have competed with the prime version of Eubank in my opinion. Maybe Mikkel Kessler would have given Eubank a fight.

I think Ward and Froch could outwork Eubank en route to decision victories (each in his own way). The Eubank-Froch fight would be entertaining. Eubank-Ward? Not so much.

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

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