Dougie’s Friday mailbag
WILDER’S FUTURE, KLITSCHKO’S HOLDING
Assuming Deontay Wilder beats Gerald Washington this Saturday, what are the chances we see him face the winner of Klitschko-Joshua in his next fight?
He gets a lot of flack for his padded record and flawed technique but I’ve always had a soft spot for the Bronze Bomber. He’s like Bambi with a bazooka; long legged and a little wobbly but explosively dangerous as Spizka most recently discovered. I also think his chin is a little underrated and his jab just keeps getting better.
Regarding the Klitschko-Joshua fight, I think a big factor is going to be how much holding the ref allows Klitschko to do – he may very well be influenced by the English crowd. I don’t think Klitschko will be able to get away with the amount of clinching and smothering he did to Povetkin and even Jennings in the garden. (I think he got maybe 1 point taken away in that one?)
Joshua is a power punching destroyer and I think Klitchko will get hurt badly and then get taken out if he can’t constantly clinch. His jab is still elite but it’s only half of his potent nullify style. That won’t be enough against the young lion in my opinion.
Ike Quartey vs Carlos Palomino
Henry Armstrong vs Sergio Martinez
Tommy Hearns vs Bernard Hopkins
Thanks. – Jack
Interesting MMs, Jack.
Ike Quartey vs Carlos Palomino – Quartey by close, maybe majority decision in a 12-round bout; Palomino by late TKO in a 15-round bout.
Henry Armstrong vs Sergio Martinez – Armstrong by close decision (if he weren’t so small, he’d have the right amount of pressure and volume-punching to breakdown Maravilla to a stoppage).
Tommy Hearns vs Bernard Hopkins – This is a tough one. Hearns had the skill, speed, reach, power and overall athleticism to outpoint B-Hop (and pretty much anyone), but Hopkins’ possesses a great chin (one that was tested by the best punchers of the 1990s, 2000s, and 2010s, but didn’t let him down until he was in his 50s) and an aggressive-cagey boxing style that could trouble even the prime Hitman. I think Hopkins (at his best with Bouie Fisher in his corner) would know that a physical, dirty street fight would be his key to victory and would engage in ugly trench warfare from the get-go to earn a late TKO.
Regarding the Klitschko-Joshua fight, I think a big factor is going to be how much holding the ref allows Klitschko to do – he may very well be influenced by the English crowd. Count on it.
I don’t think Klitschko will be able to get away with the amount of clinching and smothering he did to Povetkin and even Jennings in the Garden. (I think he got maybe 1 point taken away in that one?) He did, in Round 10 against Jennings. However, I don’t think he’ll try to hold Joshua – a 6-foot-6, 250-pound brickhouse – as much he did against Povetkin and Jennings. AJ can match Klitschko’s size, physical strength and power, and he knows that (he’s not dumb, Jack).
Assuming Deontay Wilder beats Gerald Washington this Saturday, what are the chances we see him face the winner of Klitschko-Joshua in his next fight? I think the chances are very good. Wilder (who is 31) is not getting any younger and aside from the AWOL Tyson Fury, there are no other high-profile opponents for him.
He’s had the last two years to develop his skills/style and to settle into his role as WBC beltholder, and I believe he’s getting a little bored with the type of title defenses that only appeal to diehards and fans in Birmingham, Alabama. There’s no buzz for tomorrow’s fight against Washington and Wilder knows it.
Wilder has been happy to defend his title against huge underdogs on national television, in front of home-state audiences while making very good money, but I think he’s ready to move on to the next level – which is either Joshua or Klitschko. The top two contenders in the WBC are Bermane Stiverne, who he’s already beat, and Luis Ortiz, who represents high risk for low reward. So why not roll the dice against the Joshua-Klitschko winner – even if it might mean venturing to Europe? He’ll get a shot at glory in a major event (a bona-fide superfight) of international significance and make the kind of crazy payday that he could retire on if he chose to do so.
PRIME WELTERWEIGHT SHOWDOWNS
I wanted to get your thoughts on the upcoming welterweight fights. I was speaking to one of my fellow boxing fanatics and we were kind of stumped – when was the last time 2 welterweights in their prime faced each other? I guess Floyd Mayweather fought a young Victor Ortiz but he wasn’t as highly touted as DSG, Thurmy, Brook, or Spence. We agreed it was probably Oscar de la Hoya vs Tito Trinidad. Did we miss any significant welterweight showdowns? Also, who, in your opinion, is considered the top dog at 147 out of the two fights? The winner of DSG vs Thurman, or the winner of Brook vs Spence? I suppose how they win is a factor but still.
Also, being someone that has hated the PBC til now, matching Charlo vs JRock and Spence vs Brook is risky and very good for the sport. Harmon deserves at least a little credit in 2017 so far…
Anyways, keep up the good work broham. – Francisco from Denver
Thanks Francisco. I’m more than happy to give Harmon a little credit in 2017, whoever that is. I’ll also give Al Haymon some kudos for his part in making Charlo-Williams, DeGale-Jack, Frampton-Santa Cruz II, Zlaticanin-Garcia, Thurman-Garcia and Brook-Spence (along with the fighters, their individual teams/management, and Viacom, of course). This year has started very strong, and the PBC has definitely been a part of the quality schedule.
I wanted to get your thoughts on the upcoming welterweight fights. I assume you’re talking about Thurman-Garcia and Brook-Spence.
When was the last time 2 welterweights in their prime faced each other? Aren’t Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter in their primes, and didn’t they face each other just last year?
I guess Floyd Mayweather fought a young Victor Ortiz but he wasn’t as highly touted as DSG, Thurmy, Brook, or Spence. No, he probably wasn’t as touted as Garcia, Thurman, Brook or even the relatively unproven Spence; getting the fight beat out of him by a then-unheralded Marcos Maidana (and then struggling against Lamont Peterson) gave him a bit of a stigma, despite his thrilling WBC title win over Andre Berto. But I wouldn’t include Mayweather-Ortiz. If memory serves me right, Floyd was 10 years older than Vic when they fought (34 or 35 years old at the time). Mayweather was a – arguably THE – top welterweight in 2011, but he wasn’t in his prime.
We agreed it was probably Oscar de la Hoya vs Tito Trinidad. Did we miss any significant welterweight showdowns? I believe that you did. I think the aforementioned Berto-Ortiz, THE RING’s Fight of the Year for 2011, should count. Perhaps so should THE RING’s Fight of the Year for 2013, Tim Bradley vs. Ruslan Provodnikov (unless you want to consider Provo to be only be a contender at 140 pounds, and not 147). Here are some other 147-pound matchups between standouts in their primes (and I believe that all were title bouts): Antonio Margarito-Kermit Cintron I and II, Paul Williams-Margarito, Miguel Cotto-Carlos Quintana, Ricky Hatton-Luis Collazo (unless you don’t count the Mad Hatter as a welterweight), Cotto-Zab Judah, Judah-Cory Spinks, Spinks-Ricardo Mayorga, Mayorga-Vernon Forrest I and II, Forrest-Shane Mosley, and Mosley-De La Hoya I. There, that should take you all the back to 1999 when Oscar met Tito at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas.
Also, who, in your opinion, is considered the top dog at 147 out of the two fights? The winner of DSG vs Thurman, or the winner of Brook vs Spence? I suppose how they win is a factor but still. I think it definitely depends on how they win. Garcia and Spence, who are generally ranked outside of the welterweight top five, would have to win in sensational fashion to jump all the way to the head of the pack. Thurman is ranked No. 2 by THE RING and ESPN.com (behind Kell Brook in THE RING ratings and Manny Pacquiao in ESPN.com’s top 10). If he wins in clear, impressive fashion, he could take the No. 1 spot. If Brook defeats Spence (without any help from hometown judges) he could remain the top dog in THE RING’s rankings and maybe claim the prime spot in ESPN.com (which currently ranks him No. 3). If Brook can stop Spence, he’ll likely become the consensus Numero Uno.
YOUR VIEWS ON WOMEN’S BOXING
Pretty sad that in 2017 you don’t “follow women’s boxing closely”
Are women less deserving of coverage in the “bible of boxing” as the men?
It’s a view I’d expect from your old pal Michael Katz.
Kind regards. – Will R.
Katz is a hall of famer who covered women’s boxing (as well as he covered and wrote about men’s boxing) whenever it was relevant enough to merit his attention. His columns on Laila Ali for HouseofBoxing.com are among the best-written articles about the daughter of the “The Greatest.”
I don’t follow women’s boxing closely for the same reason I don’t follow amateur boxing closely – I don’t have the time. Covering professional boxing (primarily the U.S. scene, where women’s boxing is not as prominent as it is, say, in Germany or Mexico) is a fulltime gig. It’s not personal. I don’t have anything against female boxers (or amateur fighters, or teenagers, or anyone who laces on the gloves but isn’t part of mainstream American professional boxing).
I don’t prevent RingTV.com contributors from writing about women boxers (do search for Heather Hardy on this site and see how many articles come up) and I’m proud that THE RING magazine has a recurring department devoted to women’s boxing penned by the excellent Thomas Gerbasi.
I’m not trying to ignore standout world-class female boxers or the fact that a resurgence in women’s boxing popularity in the U.S. appears imminent. When a mailbag reader named Robbie asked me about the most talented female boxers and applauded Showtime’s decision to have Claressa Shields headline an upcoming ShoBox, I didn’t blow off his question or downplay his opinion or statements on the promise of women’s boxing. I tried to answer his question, highlighting undisputed welterweight champ Cecilia Braekhus and noting her title defense against Klara Svensson tonight in Olso, but I also had to keep it real and let him know that I didn’t follow the women’s scene “closely” because I’m sure there are many other notable world-class female fighters around the globe. My reply to Robbie was 250 words on Braekus, Shields and other female up-and-comers and standouts and that are already making noise and will continue to do so in 2017.
Would you agree that 147 is currently the most fun division in the sport? It’s certainly overflowing with talent and would appear that the fighters are now willing to face each-other (with the exception of Amir Khan pricing himself out of a Brook superfight!)
Thurman-Porter and Porter-Broner were excellent matchups. Brook-Porter was also an excellent match. Brook-Spence and Thurman-Garcia are off-the-charts in terms of excellent fights for 2017 across the whole sport, never mind just at 147.
Throw in the likes of Pacquaio, Bradley, Broner, Peterson, Granada, Vargas, Diaz and even Khan and you have a series of tasty matchups. If Brook and Thurman come through their clashes (both 50/50 IMO), then a massive clash between them beckons! MGM Grand, anyone?
Who needs Canelo and GGG? ? Regards. – Paul Wickes
Oh, I don’t know… everyone?
Those two are going to sell out major U.S. venues (Madison Square Garden and the T-Mobile Arena) and do respectable PPV numbers fighting other guys on March 18 and May 6; imagine what happens when they face each other.
But hey, until we get GGG-Canelo, we’ve got two elite-level welterweight matchups on the menu and I’m glad that so many boxing fans are excited about them. There’s not much to complain about the first five months of 2017 (unless you’re vehemently against Canelo-Chavez Jr. and Golovkin-Jacobs, and I don’t why anyone would be, those are good fights).
If we can get GGG-Canelo plus the winners of Thurman-Garcia and Brook-Spence to fight sometime in the second half the year I think we can consider 2017 to be a crowning success.
Would you agree that 147 is currently the most fun division in the sport? Not in my opinion. I’m more excited about potential elite matchups in the lightweight and junior bantamweight divisions, but the welterweight division obviously also holds a lot of promise.
It’s certainly overflowing with talent and would appear that the fighters are now willing to face each-other (with the exception of Amir Khan pricing himself out of a Brook superfight!) Hey, King Khan might finally get a showdown with Pacquiao (in the UAE), so stop hating! LOL.
CHAVEZ JR. FOLLOW-UP
This doesn’t really need to make the bag; just a quick follow up to say I rewatched the Chavez fights you suggested a few weeks back and am happy to concede he does have more talent than I gave him credit for. He’d have been a scary fighter with his dad’s work ethic.
Saw the article that Canelo/Golovkin is nearly a done deal… Starting to hope Canelo isn’t looking past Julio, we all know he’s dangerous even in the twelfth and Canelo sometimes fades a bit down the stretch.
Keep up the great writing as always and best to yourself and the family! Kind regards. – Phil, Liverpool
Thank you for the kind words and wishes, Phil.
I’m glad that the promoters – Golden Boy’s De La Hoya and Eric Gomez, and K2 Promotions’ Tom Loeffler – continue to make offers and extend their dialog on the anticipated Canelo-GGG showdown, but I don’t think Alvarez OR Golovkin can afford to look past their next opponent. Golovkin’s in with a bigger, more athletic, versatile boxer-puncher in Daniel Jacobs. Canelo is facing his first legit former middleweight titleholder at super middleweight, and, as you’ve observed, when Chavez Jr. has his act together, he can go about his brutal business with real craft.
Plus, we don’t know how effective Canelo is going to be fighting above his “comfort-zone” weight of 154/155. My hunch has always been that Canleo will have better stamina and more confidence in working a higher-volume offense if he were to fight closer to 160 pounds, but who knows? Maybe carrying the extra weight will detract from his hand speed and/or reflexes. Maybe it will make him sluggish from the get-go and not help his stamina at all down the stretch. We won’t know how sharp (or dull) Canelo will be above 155 pounds until he steps into the ring on May 6.
This doesn’t really need to make the bag; just a quick follow up to say I rewatched the Chavez fights you suggested a few weeks back and am happy to concede he does have more talent than I gave him credit for. Dude, you took my advice AND you agreed with my opinion. You HAD to know that I was going to include this email in this week’s Friday mailbag.
He’d have been a scary fighter with his dad’s work ethic. Hey, Junior’s only 31 and despite having 54 pro bouts under his belt, he hasn’t been in too many wars – it’s not too late for him to turn it around.
A FEW BOXING THOUGHTS
First I hope all is well. I’ve never bet on a boxing match but I’m strongly considering Klitschko via KO vs Joshua. He didn’t even throw anything of note vs Fury but I think Joshua is open to a big right and I question if he can eat it and stay upright. A lot of folks think his no show vs Fury was overdue & happy to see him go but maybe it was a wake up for a last hurrah.
I definitely prefer a possible Wilder vs Joshua showdown like most but I think he may just get clipped.
I was also thinking about the rounds & fights of the year & I guess Ward vs Burton gets lost in the shuffle. They said Ward threw 175 punches in the 10th round & loss! Over 2000 punches in 10 rounds, I thought that was amazing, the ref did too I suppose by those congratulations kisses he gave them.
Me vs my dad Mythical matchups:
Marciano vs Frazier
Meldrick Taylor vs Mayweather
Aaron Pryor vs Duran/Pacman @ 140
Trinidad vs Mosley (I personally blame Winky Wright for depriving us of this lol)
Finally thanks for the great insight on ‘Fed to Wolves’ really enjoyed reading. Keep up the great work. – Jamaal, Louisiana
Thanks for the kind words, Jamaal.
I’ll take on you and your dad’s mythical matchups first:
Marciano vs Frazier – Smokin’ Joe by mid-to-late TKO (due to cuts; I think he would hurt Marciano – and vice versa – but I don’t think Frazier would be able to put The Rock down and keep him there)
Meldrick Taylor vs Mayweather – I think Mayweather handles Taylor at welterweight via competitive but clear UD; at junior welterweight I think he would win a much close, perhaps controversial decision (maybe split or majority); Floyd’s feistiness at the lighter weight would play into the quicker, busier hands of Taylor. Aaron Pryor vs
Duran/Pacman @ 140 – Hands of Stone by late stoppage in a great fight; Pryor by close, maybe majority decision in a nearly great fight. Trinidad vs Mosley – Tito by decision in an entertaining scrap for eight or nine rounds, but a little one-sided (in the Puerto Rican star’s favor) down the stretch.
I was also thinking about the rounds & fights of the year & I guess Ward vs Burton gets lost in the shuffle. Nah, Ward-Burton was THE RING’s 2001 Fight of the Year and hardcore fans of the late ‘90s/early 2000s still talk about the ESPN2 thriller.
They said Ward threw 175 punches in the 10th round & loss! Really? He threw that many punches? That’s insane. He won the fight, by the way (and more than a few fans thought Burton/Augustus deserved the nod, despite being dropped in the ninth round).
Over 2000 punches in 10 rounds, I thought that was amazing, the ref did too I suppose by those congratulations kisses he gave them. That was Steve “The Fighter’s Ref” Smoger. We can’t blame him. After breaking CompuBox records through nine rounds of non-stop action, Ward and Burton let it all hang out in the final 30 seconds of the 10th and final round. They’d more than earned the right to take their feet off the gas pedal – and they weren’t making much money, probably under $10,000 each – but instead they emptied tanks that should have been depleted in the middle rounds. It was something special.
I’ve never bet on a boxing match but I’m strongly considering Klitschko via KO vs Joshua. Go for it! I consider Wladdy to be a live dog.
He didn’t even throw anything of note vs Fury but I think Joshua is open to a big right and I question if he can eat it and stay upright. Tyson was playing a goofy game of keep-away and got-you-last. AJ won’t be playing games, he’ll be playing for keeps, but that search-and-destroy mode will put him in the line of Klitschko’s considerable fire. My only concern for Klitschko is his inactivity.
A lot of folks think his no show vs Fury was overdue & happy to see him go but maybe it was a wake up for a last hurrah. We’ll find out in a little over two months. Klitschko’s bounced back from much worse setbacks, but that’s when he was much younger.
I definitely prefer a possible Wilder vs Joshua showdown like most but I think he may just get clipped. It’s very possible.
THREE KNOCKDOWN RULE
Hi Dougie. Couple of questions to keep you on your toes here man.
1) Why are the majority of fights we see “no three knockdown rule”? Seems to me that if a man is knocked down three times in a single round, calling it would be doing him a favour. Do you know origins of this rule or why it exists? I was wondering, when has a man ever come up off the canvas three times in a single round to work his way back into a fight? How often does this really happen?
2) You mentioned in your last Bag, about Roy Jones’s three or four straight left hooks. It reminded me of playing EA Sports “Fight Night”. In the game, Oscar’s go to punch was a triple left hook. So who had it first? And I was wondering about the best signature punches out of boxers, not signature moves such as a shoulder-roll or styles, but signature punches. Any come to mind off the top of your head?
Happy Family day to you and yours Doug. Look forward to hearing from you and keep up the good work. – Stephen, Toronto, ON
Thanks for the kind words and well wishes, Stephen. Good to hear from you.
Jones definitely had the triple hook before De La Hoya (who I honestly don’t recall doing that in a major pro bout). Jones came out of the 1988 Olympics; De La Hoya came out of the ’92 Games, so the Pride of Pensacola established his talent, style and signature punches to the public before The Golden Boy did (although it didn’t take Oscar long to become a force in the sport).
And I was wondering about the best signature punches out of boxers, not signature moves such as a shoulder-roll or styles, but signature punches. Any come to mind off the top of your head? How about the “Bolo punch” (a flamboyant windup to a right uppercut), first popularized on the world-class U.S. scene by Filipino badass Ceferino Garcia (whose prime was during the 1930s) and later made more famous by Cuba’s Kid Gavilan (a former welterweight champ and hall of famer who was a popular TV fighter during the late 1940s and throughout the ‘50s). Sometimes a fighter’s signature punch is so potent, popular or anticipated that it has a name. Hall of famer and former heavyweight champ Rocky Marcinao’s right cross was called the “Suzy Q.” The late, great Muhammad Ali had his infamous “Anchor Punch” (a downward angled right to the temple, I think) that he dropped on poor Sonny Liston in their bizarre rematch. Former heavyweight contender Razor Rudduck’s formidable left-hook/uppercut hybrid punch was called the “The Smash.”
Why are the majority of fights we see “no three knockdown rule”? Because the state commissions and sanctioning organizations decided a few decades ago that the three-knockdown rule caused more controversy than it was worth, and it really didn’t serve to protect the fighters that much. It’s very possible for a fighter who is dropped three times during a given round to absorb considerably less punishment than one who takes a shellacking for three minutes without going down.
Seems to me that if a man is knocked down three times in a single round, calling it would be doing him a favour. Maybe. Maybe not. Not all knockdowns are created equal. What if the canvas is slippery? What if there’s an awkward style matchup and the fighters keep tripping over each other’s feet? What if one or two of the knockdowns are flash knockdowns (or more of a push) and the fighter who was dropped three times in one round isn’t hurt at all, or is still able to protect himself and fight back?
Do you know origins of this rule or why it exists? No, and I can’t say that really care to find out. I don’t think about weird, obscure s__t like this.
I was wondering, when has a man ever come up off the canvas three times in a single round to work his way back into a fight? How often does this really happen? Not often, but it happens. Haven’t you seen Juan Manuel Marquez-Manny Pacquiao I?
Email Fischer at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter at @dougiefischer