Dougie’s Monday mailbag
HAUSER THE HATER
I’m looking forward to Canelo Alvarez vs Miguel Cotto…. I think GGG vs David Lemieux will live up to expectations because I see Lemieux stopping Triple G in the 6th round.
Getting back to Canelo vs Cotto: I see Cotto trying to work the body but I see
Canelo coming on strong after the 8th round and I can see Roach saving Cotto in the 11th round.
A few side notes to cover: Thomas Hauser is truly a hater (of Floyd Mayweather Jr.). I really can’t believe his latest article on another boxing site and saying he once gave 6k to charity, kind of reminds me of a “shyster lawyer” at the pearly gates saying he once gave 15 dollars to charity and Saint Peter yells out give him his 15 bucks back and tell him to go to hell!
Mayweather had total clearance from USADA and the Nevada commission stated once again there is no-smoking gun and IV was 100% within the rules. Oscar De La Hoya used an IV to rehydrate after his weigh-in.
Leo Santa Cruz is the next big thing from south of the border.
Where does James Kirkland go from here?
Badou Jack is better than most super middleweights out there not named Andre Ward.
Andre Berto talks the talk but doesn’t walk the walk. (I would like to see Berto vs
Porter or Thurman but more than likely we will see Errol Spence vs Berto).
Thanks for listening Dougie! 3 cheers from Finland. – Thomas Jackson (USA)
Three cheers right back atcha, TJ! Thanks for sharing your opinions.
Regarding Hauser, he may indeed be a Mayweather hater (I’ve also been accused of that – for almost 10 years now), but his article on SB Nation brought up many valid points, in my opinion.
Just because the Nevada State Athletic Commission says everything Mayweather did prior to the Pacquiao fight was within their rules doesn’t make it undisputable truth. The NSAC said Antonio Margarito’s hand wraps were clean and cleared going into his first fight with Miguel Cotto. So is that the end of that controversy? Should there be no suspicion there? As far as the NSAC is concerned Shane Mosley didn’t put anything illegal into his body prior to his rematch with De La Hoya. Do you buy that?
Just because Mayweather was “cleared by USADA” doesn’t mean he doesn’t have an inappropriate relationship with the anti-doping agency or that he didn’t violate WADA’s rules concerning IV use for rehydration. It seems to me that USADA failed to follow their own rules in this instance. You can read them here.
It states right on USADA’s official website: “In accordance with the WADA Prohibited List (Category M2 Chemical and Physical Manipulation), all IV infusions and/or injections of more than 50mL (~3.4 tablespoons) per 6-hour period are prohibited, except for those legitimately received in the course of hospital admissions, surgical procedures or clinical investigations.”
Was Mayweather so dehydrated that he should have gone to the hospital (instead of his home, where he reportedly received the two IV infusions – both inside of a six-hour period – that totaled 750 ml)?
Was an IV really necessary? Most hospitals won’t even consider IV fluid replacement unless the dehydration is severe (meaning the patient is totally out of it, suffering from nausea and vomiting). They go with oral fluid replacement (usually an electrolyte/carbohydrate mix, along with good-ole-fashioned water) unless the dehydrated individual appears like they’re about to drop dead. (And even then, those don’t administer as much fluid in as short a time as Floyd took in.)
Was Mayweather – who weighed 150.5 pounds 30 days out from the Manny Pacquiao weigh-in – that f__ked up after making 146 pounds? I don’t think so. I’ve been covering this sport for quite awhile, I’ve witnessed a lot of weigh-ins, and I know what a weight-drained/severely dehydrated fighter looks like. Diego Corrales was severely dehydrated going into his fight with Mayweather in 2001. Roy Jones Jr. was severely dehydrated going into his first fight with Antonio Tarver in 2003. Jose Luis Castillo was severely dehydrated going into his rubbermatch with Corrales (that was cancelled because he couldn’t make 135 pounds) in 2006. De La Hoya was clearly weight-drained to the point of being visibly ill prior to his weigh-in for the Pacquiao fight in 2008. (It was evident at the final pre-fight press conference; never mind the weigh-in.)
Do me a favor, TJ, and watch this video of the Mayweather-Berto weigh-in:
[springboard type=”video” id=”1562933″ player=”ring003″ width=”648″ height=”511″ ]
You tell me if Mayweather looks or sounds like he is “severely” dried out. Be sure to listen to his post-fight interview with Showtime’s Jim Gray, who asks him “What would you like to have to eat that you’ve been denying yourself now for these past couple of decades?”
Mayweather, who had just stepped off the scale, replies: “It has always been easy for me to make the 147-pound weight.”
So what happened between the weigh-in and his home-IV infusion? Mayweather’s Twitter defenders tell me that his piss was reportedly black, according to his medical team. I asked them why was his piss black (and why does he need a “medical team”)?
They told me he could have dehydrated himself with a really hard workout. I asked them why the hell would Mayweather be working out like a crazy person the week of the fight – perhaps the day before the weigh-in? He’s been boxing his entire life. He knows better than that! They stopped trying to answer my questions at that point, and resorted to the usual lame-ass insults and name calling (mainly “hater,” as you’ve done with Hauser).
But labeling Hauser a hater doesn’t erase the rules that Mayweather was supposedly following under USADA’s testing:
“WADA has justified the inclusion of IV infusions on the Prohibited List given the intent of some athletes to manipulate their plasma volume levels in order to mask the use of a prohibited substance and/or to distort the values in the Athlete Biological Passport. Further, it must be clearly stated that the use of IV fluid replacement following exercise to correct mild rehydration or help speed recovery is not clinically indicated nor substantiated by the medical literature. There is a well-established body of scientific opinion to confirm that oral rehydration is the preferred therapeutic choice. Legitimate medical indications for IV infusions are well documented and are most commonly associated with medical emergencies (emergency TUE), in-patient care, surgery, or clinical investigations for diagnostic purposes.”
What I just reprinted here is posted on USADA’s website for the benefit/education of athletes, which begs the question: Why did they grant Mayweather that after-the-fact therapeudic use exemption (TUE) for the IV? Was it really a medical emergency? I find that very hard to believe. If that makes me a hater, so be it.
Let’s get to your other comments:
Leo Santa Cruz is the next big thing from south of the border. – He might be. If Al Haymon can make Santa Cruz a regional (Southern California/Texas) attraction the way Canelo is now, I will consider it his biggest accomplishment since launching the PBC. However, Santa Cruz will need to face and beat real threats, such as Gary Russell Jr. and Carl Frampton, to lock in a loyal Mexican/Mexican-American fan base.
Where does James Kirkland go from here? – Hopefully not jail.
Badou Jack is better than most super middleweights out there not named Andre Ward. – Agreed. THE RING ranks the Gambian Swede No. 3, behind only Arthur Abraham and James DeGale, and I wouldn’t count him out against either of his fellow titleholders.
Andre Berto talks the talk but doesn’t walk the walk. – Well, it’s kind of hard to do that when you don’t have legs to stand on.
Regarding your predictions for GGG-Lemieux and Cotto-Canelo, if you’re right, the boxing world is in for a very dramatic and exciting fall, and if we’re lucky, Canelo vs. Lemieux for the almost-undisputed middleweight championship some time in 2016!
THE ILLUSTRATED ARGENTINE
Hey Dougie, since boxing is a little slow for the next couple of weeks I thought I’d ask you about the next significant fight, Lucas Matthysse vs Viktor Postol.
Like most hard core fans, I have a lot of love for Matthysse: a sharp, heavy handed boxer-puncher who’s not afraid to go to war. I thought he looked the best he’s ever looked against Ruslan Provodnikov in his last outing; his combinations were flying off really crisp and his jab and movement illustrated he’s got a lot of wrinkles to his overall game.
Part of me thinks he’ll rip right through Postol like a buzz-saw through a boiled perogi but then I started thinking about Algeri vs Provodnikov. In terms of frame and style, Algeri and Postal seem quite similar though I think Postol is probably better, (Algeri has always looked kind of jittery in the ring, plus he could never throw an uppercut like the one Postol turned Aydin’s lights out with.) Matthysse is a better boxer than Provodnikov, but I don’t think he can put on quite as much pressure as the Siberian. Could Postol jab his way to a decision or am I being paranoid? (Matthysse has been jobbed on the cards before.) Granted Matthysse does win, who do you want to see him fight? I’d like to see him get another shot at Danny Garcia but I really don’t think Garcia wants that fight. There’s also talk of a Pacquiao fight and while that’s a pretty good match up, I think even a battle worn and coasting Pacquiao would probably befuddle him with speed and pop.
What I’d really love to see is a fight between him and the Bradley-vs-Rios winner or Terrance Crawford. Those are all pick’em fights in my opinion, and probably damn entertaining too!
Some Random Mythical match ups:
Jimmy Ellis vs David Tua
Ralph Tiger Jones vs Darnell Boone
Edwin Valero Vs Shane Mosley for lightweight title
Laila Ali vs Ann Wolfe
Thanks. – Jack E.
I agree that Matthysse was at his best against Provodnikov. However, Postol is the antithesis of the Siberian Rocky. The Ukrainian is a tall, rangy technician who knows how to use his height and reach advantages to control a fight. I also think he’s stronger and more durable than he’s given credit for. I view the Oct. 3 showdown for the vacant WBC 140-pound title as a pick-’em fight.
I really don’t have a strong favorite going into the HBO-televised showdown, but if I have to pick a winner, I’ll go with THE RING’s No. 1-rated junior welterweight (Matthysse). I think he’s long overdue a title victory, and he appears to be preparing well for his second shot a major belt according to this in-camp video interview from RingTV.com’s Argentina correspondent Diego Morilla:
[springboard type=”video” id=”1562891″ player=”ring003″ width=”648″ height=”511″ ]
I like Matthysse by decision or late TKO, but it won’t be easy. (There’s a reason Garcia and Uncle Al steered clear of Postol.)
I don’t see a rematch with Garcia or a huge PPV fight with Pacquiao in Matthysse’s future. Politics prevents Garcia-Matty II and my guess is that Bob Arum will try to make Pacquiao vs. Crawford before he pits his fading Filipino icon against a formidable fighter from outside of the Top Rank stable.
That doesn’t mean the Bobfather is against doing business with Golden Boy (Matty’s promoter). The Postol fight is a co-promotion. And I think the winner of Bradley-Rios is a very likely candidate for Matty IF he can beat Postol and IF he decides he’s ready to invade the 147-pound division.
Onto you random mythical match-ups:
Jimmy Ellis vs David Tua – TuaMan, trailing badly on the scorecards, scores a come-from-behind late TKO
Ralph Tiger Jones vs Darnell Boone – Jones by clear UD
Edwin Valero Vs Shane Mosley for lightweight title – Oh my God. This is a great mythical matchup! How come nobody else has ever thought of this one? These two are the best gym fighters I’ve ever witnessed. And they weren’t half bad in actual prize fights! I think Valero would earn Mosley’s respect with his vaunted power and trouble the Southern Californian with his southpaw stance and underrated footwork/boxing skills, but Sugar Shane’s greater size and consistent body attack would eventually take its toll on the fiercely insane Venezuelan. Mosley by late TKO in a GREAT fight.
Laila Ali vs Ann Wolfe – Ali shocks all of her detractors, as well as the boxing media and hardcore heads, but boxing a disciplined fight and keeping the big bad wolf at the end of her jab and hard straight rights en route to a close but clear UD.
PEDS IN BOXING
Good Afternoon Doug,
I’ve followed your column since I discovered it, and I figured I’d write in for the first time to get your (further) opinion on what’s been the talk of boxing lately. I want to start by saying that I respect your position keeping distant from unfounded accusations and assumptions. I don’t know if you do it out of respect, professional courtesy, or a desire to report only the most credible positions (or some combination of the above), but it demonstrates a fair amount of integrity and I commend you for it.
Having said that, as clear as Lance Armstrong’s PED use was before all the evidence was on the table, the evidence that Floyd Mayweather has cheated since well before he topped any pound for pound lists is nigh incontrovertible. I know you’ve written that you’re not an expert on drug testing (I don’t claim to be an expert myself), but I invite you to take a look at a few of the studies of testosterone/ epitestosterone ratios and look again at Mr. Hauser’s long-form article. Also take a second to look at the amount of the two steroids (T and E) present in Mr. Mayweather’s urine as shown in the tests.
Floyd’s T/E ratio is almost impossibly low for an elite athlete (unless we take MMA athletes’ T/E ratios into account, as they also often also have ridiculously suspect test results). One of his two released tests has a T/E ratio equivalent to a pre-pubescent boy or a young woman. I don’t quite understand how this isn’t getting more attention, perhaps the low ratio is only a clear indicator of PED use in Olympic sports. I doubt it. To me, it’s remarkably strong evidence of Mayweather administering exogenous epitestosterone (which isn’t a performance enhancer, as the article makes clear, but is used to cover exogenous testosterone). What are your thoughts?
Even more ridiculous, if it isn’t a clerical error, is the level of testosterone and epitestosterone in Mayweather’s urine on 3 April 2013. If the measurement of Mayweather’s testosterone is accurate in nanograms to milliliter, then his levels of each hormone are approximately 10 times what they were two years prior. If Mayweather is regularly taking enough PEDs to have testosterone and epitestosterone levels 10 times what they had been earlier in his career, he’d certainly want to receive an occasional IV to dilute the hormones in his blood before providing urine samples. But what’s unclear to me is the units that USADA uses for the analysis. Generally, a maximum epitestosterone limit is set at 200 ng/mL in urine (http://jat.oxfordjournals.org/content/24/2/102.full.pdf). I believe that’s the standard USADA claims to be applying with their 2.0 figure. But the units don’t match up. If Mr. Mayweather’s levels are listed in the same units as the “Reporting Limit” (as they seem to be, based on the face of the lab reports, there’s no explanation given), then his epitestosterone level is 5.5 times the limit required for a report. If not, then an explanation of the differing units would be in order. I have no earthly idea of what’s going on and was hoping you could help shed some light on the discrepancies.
What’s clear to me is that the contents of those two pages alone would supply more than a high enough standard of proof for any court of law to exonerate Mr. Hauser of any manner of poor reporting (if he’s ever even accused, which I highly doubt). But if the numbers and units are correct, it’s also an unequivocal indictment of Mayweather. He may naturally have a lower T/E ratio than Ronda Rousey or a even a moderately athletic woman, but his testosterone and epitestosterone levels wouldn’t naturally fluctuate by an order of magnitude. This is the almost certainly the reason for the (allegedly egregiously) high settlement paid by Mayweather to Pacquiao, as well as the reason that Mayweather won’t sue Mr. Hauser for defamation or anything else (and probably won’t let USADA file a suit either): The more these lab reports come to light, the more evident Mayweather’s use of PEDs becomes.
I apologize for the length of this question, it’s a complex issue and I wanted to make my thoughts clear. I hope this finds you well and I send the best. Very Respectfully. – John
Thanks for sharing your long-winded and very technical observations and opinions on this complex issue. If you’re wondering why most boxing fans and media are fixated on Mayweather’s IV use rather than his two testosterone-to-epitestosterone results that Hauser obtained from the NSAC and revealed in his SB Nation article, this is the reason why. It’s a complex issue, as we’ve both noted, and to address it, you gotta do some research and get rather long-winded and technical.
You do a great job of that, by the way. I’m so impressed I’m gonna give you nickname: Hauser Jr. or Mini-Montoya. Pick one!
I’m going to try to keep my thoughts on this issue very simple (because I’ll be honest with you – I started zoning out midway through the fourth paragraph of your email, and I don’t want my readers to do the same thing with my answers).
People that I know who used to be involved in competitive body building and weight-lifting told me a long time ago that when artificial androgens/testosterone are introduced into the body, the pituitary gland tries to compensate by shutting off the supply of hormones that stimulate natural testosterone. (In other words, the brain can’t differentiate natural testosterone from the synthetic stuff.)
With this in mind, the abnormally low T/E ratios from April 2013 and August 2011 (taken prior to Mayweather’s bouts against Canelo and Victor Ortiz – two considerably younger fighters who were naturally bigger) are more of an indictment against his clean record than the IV use following the Pacquiao weigh-in. (“IV Gate” is more of an indictment on USADA’s questionable PED testing practices.)
The T/E ratios are “red flags” in my opinion. I won’t accuse Mayweather of cheating, but I am suspicious and I will remain so until more light is shed on these results and this situation. (Floyd’s former promoter is also a bit suspicious:)
[springboard type=”video” id=”1562953″ player=”ring003″ width=”648″ height=”511″ ]
The more USADA tries to backpedal and discredit Hauser, the more ammunition Hauser will have for future articles. And trust me, more will come. Once Hauser, and maybe Gabriel Montoya (whose reporting for MaxBoxing.com laid down much of the foundation that Hauser’s initial article was launched from), put enough information out there, my guess is that we will see other sports writers piggy backing off their work and asking questions of their own.
Mayweather may have retired from the ring but his reputation is going to remain in the spotlight and under growing scrutiny for the foreseeable future.
THE DYNAMIC DUO
I am a long time reader of your mailbag. Keep up the good work!
Having had an itch to watch a fight yesterday, I scrounged up the very recent Jhonny Gonzalez vs. Jonathan Oquendo match. I noticed two suited figures seated in the second row. It was none other than Stephen Espinoza from Showtime and Richard Schaefer. They seemed to chat with each other during the entire fight. Seeing those two made me wonder about some things.
My question: What route do you see Showtime going in a post-Mayweather environment? Certainly, Mayweather was only one piece in Showtime’s boxing programming; however, his importance further seemed to increase further when PBC came onto the scene. After all, there was/is no longer a “Schaefer-led” Golden Boy roster for Showtime to draw from, and Showtime seemed to get table scraps this year (apart from the Mayweather fights, I guess). So, my question is really about your assessment of Showtime’s future. It has been/is a (sometimes) major player in the boxing game, but it is now looking very anemic with respect to possible cards.
(I realize that the boxing-TV landscape was a pretty hot topic when PBC began airing its cards, but now that some time has passed maybe you have fresh, unvarnished opinions about the subject generally and Showtime specifically).
Best. – Ernst Bravos
I couldn’t help but notice Schaefer in the audience and backstage after the main event during the Mayweather-Berto PPV. I didn’t notice him chatting it up with his longtime pal Espinoza, but that makes sense.
When Schaefer announces his return to boxing, I expect him to be involved with Mayweather Promotions, a new promotional entity (perhaps called Haymon Promotions) and as an adviser to the brightest stars in Haymon’s stable.
I think he will keep close contact with Espinoza and Showtime as the PBC continues its time-buys on other networks. Once the money from the hedge fund has been exhausted (sometime after 2016), I think Al and Richard will see which networks value the PBC brand enough to pay for the programming (my guess is that Spike TV and ESPN will want to keep it going; while NBC, CBS and Fox Sports will say “thanks for the dough and the memories but kindly f__k off”) and then they will divvy up their talent among those networks and Showtime.
So I believe Showtime will continue to work with Haymon/Schaefer talent beyond this year and 2016, and the boxing programming on the subscription network might improve in 2017 (provided certain standouts – such as Deontay Wilder, Danny Garcia, Keith Thurman, Leo Santa Cruz and Shawn Porter – continue to advance)
DONAIRE VS. SANTA CRUZ, MARES
I’ve been reflecting on the Abner Mares/ Leo Santa Cruz fight. To my eye, there were a fair number of exchanges and, surprisingly to me, neither guy really caught or was able to stun, much less hurt, the other.
What do you think of Nonito Donaire’s chances against either one of these guys at 126, with Santa Cruz being the more interesting bout to me (never seeing Santa Cruz up close, I’m assuming he does not possess Nicholas Walters’ size)? To me, if Donaire was able to land that left hook (that stunned Walters and put a lot of other guys to sleep) just one time in an exchange, it would be lights out for either Mares or Santa Cruz.
All of this assumes, of course, that Nonito is properly motivated for the fight. At the very least, I see it as an action-packed fight that would play well in SoCal, and the StubHub Center in particular.
Where am I off here?
How do you see a Santa Cruz vs. Walters fight playing out? – Andy, Chula Vista, CA
If Walters can still make 126 pounds without draining himself (big “IF”), I would favor him to beat Santa Cruz, but it would be a hell of fight.
You’re not off at all about Santa Cruz vs. Donaire or Donaire vs. Mares. Both fights would be big events in the greater L.A. area.
I favor Santa Cruz over Donaire at 126 pounds. Like Mares, Donaire simply doesn’t belong at featherweight (and Leo is indeed a big 126 pounder even though he just stepped up to that division – he’s also just as rugged as his older brothers were). I like Donaire over Mares at 126 or 122. He’s the more talented boxer and I think he’d be mentally/spiritually up for that showdown. (So would Abner, which is why it would be a very good fight.)
Email Fischer at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter.