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Dougie’s Friday mailbag (Canelo-GGG2, DAZN, The Ring titles, Paul-KSI)

Could GGG be headed for a knockout loss against Canelo Alvarez?
31
Aug

IS GOLOVKIN HEADING FOR A KO LOSS?

Hi Dougie,

I enjoy the weekly track boxing chats, thanks for posting them.

Pattern?



Chocolatito Gonzalez v. Rungvisai

Chocolatito loses a close decision in their first fight that most thought he won, then gets stopped in the rematch.

Kovalev v Ward

Kovalev loses a close decision in the first fight that most thought he won and then gets stopped in the rematch

Canelo v GGG

Golovkin draws in a close fight most thought he won and then… see where I am going?

I am a Golovkin fan and think he won the first fight and will be pulling for him in the rematch, but I respect Canelo and he is improving with each fight. He is also in his athletic prime while GGG’s may be just behind him.

Of the possible outcomes, how unlikely do you think a Canelo stoppage win would be?

Mythical matchups:

How do you think one of my all-time favorite fighters, Chico Corrales, would have done v. Lomachenko or Mikey Garcia?

Thanks. – Tyler   

Given their respective styles I think Corrales would have had a decent shot at clipping Garcia (after eating a lot of leather as he did against Mikey’s older brother) and almost no shot at beating Loma.

I see where you’re going with your comparisons but keep in mind that Golovkin is at his prime weight, unlike Gonzalez was against Sor Rungvisai, and though he’s older than the Nicaraguan future hall of famer, he’s got less wear and tear on his body than Chocolatito did by the time of those back-to-back tussles with the Thai tank. And keep in mind that as accomplished and formidable as Kovalev was for a time, he’s always been a class below Golovkin (from the amateurs through to their pro championship reigns).

Also keep in mind that while Canelo is a hell of a boxer/fighter, he isn’t as relentless as Sor Rungvisai or as technical and cagey as Ward.

So, in other words, the Golovkin-Canelo style matchup and rematch scenario is not the same as it was for Sor Rungvisai-Gonzalez II and Ward-Kovalev II. But that doesn’t mean that Canelo CAN’T score a knockout or stoppage.

I am a Golovkin fan and think he won the first fight and will be pulling for him in the rematch, but I respect Canelo and he is improving with each fight. I agree. I’m curious to see what kind of adjustments and wrinkles Alvarez brings to the rematch.

He is also in his athletic prime while GGG’s may be just behind him. I agree, but Golovkin is still on top of his form and his experience and conditioning is top notch.

Of the possible outcomes, how unlikely do you think a Canelo stoppage win would be? I think the most likely scenario is a distance fight, and I give Golovkin a slight edge in winning it, but I believe both middleweights have an equal opportunity to score a stoppage.

 

EDDIE HEARN’S DAZN PLAN

Hey Dougie,

I am high on Hearn, as usual, he is such a compelling sales person, his videos on Tha Boxing Voice crack me up, mercilessly tearing into Showtime and HBO and guaranteeing marquee names just around the corner. Questions for you:

* How are you feeling about Hearn’s progress with DAZN? If he gets Pac and Mikey they are decent statements and could set off a chain reaction?

* Andrade vs. BJS – I have seen plenty of BJS being in the UK, he is slick, tricky and since DLM fight he seems very focused and fit. How good is Andrade, how do you see it going?

* Smith vs. Groves – I think Groves is now at his peak not physically but in terms of boxing wisdom, if his shoulder holds out, I think that will prove too much for Smith. Groves has a big pair of balls on him too as shown by the Eubank fight. Smith has on occasion looked flat, so either this is his coming out party or its Groves. What do you think?

Mythical Matchups

* AJ, Fury, Wilder vs. Ali

The pre-break from boxing Ali

The Fury that beat Klit

AJ and Wilder as they are today

Cheers. – Ed

I think the peak version of Ali (mid-1966-to-early ’67) stops Joshua and Wilder by the late rounds in entertaining fights and clearly outpoints Fury in a stinker (that is still fun because of the trash talk that precedes the bout and continues during).

How are you feeling about Hearn’s progress with DAZN? I’ve got no feels about Hearn’s deal with DAZN or the progress of the streaming sports platform in the U.S. because it hasn’t kicked off yet. I’m definitely an interested observer as a member of the boxing media and a hardcore fan, but it’s too early to ask my opinion on the “progress” of the whole deal. Ask me after the stacked Oct. 6 card in Chicago (Vargas-Dulorme/Roman-McDonnell/Beterbiev-Johnson) and Oct. 20 show in Boston (Saunders-Andrade/Taylor-Serrano). Ask me next year before the finals of the WBSS Season 2 tournaments.

If he gets Pac and Mikey they are decent statements and could set off a chain reaction? I’m not sure about that. (And I seriously doubt he gets Garcia.) I think it’s more important for Hearn to make fights that hardcore heads want to see so badly that they will gladly dig in their pockets to pay for DAZN, matchups that are sooooooooooo damn good that they will get over their fear and aversion of watching boxing a streaming platform. And he’s got to do this on a regular basis.

Andrade vs. BJS – I have seen plenty of BJS being in the UK, he is slick, tricky and since DLM fight he seems very focused and fit. Saunders is one of the best middleweights in the world when he’s at his best. He seems focused and fit right now, but he hasn’t fought since undressing Lemieux in December, so

One of Hearn’s recent U.S. signings is unbeaten middleweight contender Demetrius Andrade, who is scheduled to challenge Billy Joe Saunders for the WBO title on October 20.

we really don’t know where he’s at in terms of his conditioning and focus.

How good is Andrade, how do you see it going? Andrade was world amateur champion and U.S. Olympian, so obviously he’s got skills and experience. He’s an exceptional athlete. He’s smart. He’s a tall and rangy southpaw with a difficult boxing style, and he’s still in his prime. He’s actually a lot like BJS, only he was a more accomplished amateur. However, Saunders is a more accomplished pro. I think it’s going to be a tit-for-tat chess match for 12 rounds. I slightly favor Saunders because he’s more battle tested at 160 pounds than Andrade, but, really, there shouldn’t be a favorite in this matchup (especially since it’s in Boston).

Smith vs. Groves – I think Groves is now at his peak not physically but in terms of boxing wisdom, if his shoulder holds out, I think that will prove too much for Smith. I agree with you, but that’s a big “IF.” Groves has been in some tough fights and that shoulder injury occurred in February. Also keep in mind that Smith, though the lesser experienced of the two British super middleweights, is the bigger and fresher fighter.

 

DAVID BENAVIDEZ/JERWIN ANCAJAS

Hey Dougie,

Not much going on in the boxing world this week, so I wanted to get your thoughts on a couple random subjects. I think David Benavidez has a boatload of potential & some crazy hand speed for SMW. Sadly it feels like he’s dropping off the radar as his inactivity just keeps stretching on. He’s young and going to be coming into his prime—has there been any date/venue progress with his matchup w/ Dirrell that you’ve heard about? I think he’s gonna make Dirrell look bad, so I just want them to get on with it already. Lastly, do you think he’s at a stage where he’d be ready to step up & pose a threat to some of the WBSS fighters at that weight category?

What are your thoughts on Jerwin Ancajas and where he fits into the picture at his division? Do you see an elite overall skillset there? He’s basically a polar opposite of Benavidez in that he always has fights lined up, but I can’t bring myself to care based on the match-making. Looks like Sept 28 he’ll be in yet another showcase fight—do you see him mixing it up with a top 10 guy after this, and how would you see him faring when he ultimately steps up?

Ready for things to pick back up and hoping for some fireworks with these September fights! – DJ

I think we’re going to get our share of fireworks. We might even get some with tomorrow’s Facebook Watch show. (See, you were sleeping on Ryan Garcia. Shame on you.)

I think David Benavidez has a boatload of potential & some crazy hand speed for SMW. I agree. He can also crack with both hands. He’s got a solid beard, and good engine.

Sadly it feels like he’s dropping off the radar as his inactivity just keeps stretching on. That tends to happen with PBC guys. Some just don’t care to fight more than once or twice a year, but I don’t get the feeling Benavidez is one of those complacent cats. Hopefully, Showtime’s new three-year deal with PBC will enable the standouts of the Haymon organization to fight more often (and in more significant bouts).

He’s young and going to be coming into his prime—has there been any date/venue progress with his matchup w/ Dirrell that you’ve heard about? Last I heard he had given up on his plans to jump ship to Top Rank, returned their $250,000 signing bonus, and was supposed to be making a WBC mandatory against Anthony Dirrell in September. But nothing has been scheduled. Maybe Benavidez will return in October.

I think he’s gonna make Dirrell look bad, so I just want them to get on with it already. Don’t count the 33-year-old Michigan veteran out. Dirrell is way more experienced and battle tested than Benavidez.

Lastly, do you think he’s at a stage where he’d be ready to step up & pose a threat to some of the WBSS fighters at that weight category? I do, but he’s clearly still a work in progress. At age 21, time is on his side. Give him one year and three more fights and I think he’ll have the seasoning and maturity to do more than post a threat – he’ll be ready to beat the best of the 168-pound division.

What are your thoughts on Jerwin Ancajas and where he fits into the picture at his division? I think the Filipino sensation is right there in the mix of the top 115 pounders.

Do you see an elite overall skillset there? I see a solid foundation and good set of skills. He’s not an elite-level boxer or athlete but he’s solid all around, he’s got a lot of experience for a 26-year-old, and when he puts it all together he’s a world-class junior bantie (which is saying something because it’s a deep division).

He’s basically a polar opposite of Benavidez in that he always has fights lined up, but I can’t bring myself to care based on the match-making. Yeah, I hear ya. I wish he would participate in the SuperFly series.

Looks like Sept 28 he’ll be in yet another showcase fight—do you see him mixing it up with a top 10 guy after this, and how would you see him faring when he ultimately steps up? I certainly HOPE Ancajas takes on a top-10 guy in his fight after the Alejandro Barrios bout. (It should be noted that Jonas Sultan was rated by the IBF, but I know what you mean.) I can see him defending against Rex Tso (No. 5 by the IBF, No. 8 by The Ring) or Andrew Moloney (No. 11 by the IBF, No. 9 by The Ring) – if Moloney beats Luis Concepcion on Sept. 8. I think Ancajas can hang with anybody in the 115-pound division, except for maybe Srisaket Sor Rungvisai and Juan Estrada.

 

WHERE’S KEITH THURMAN?

Hi Doug,

Lately I’ve been wondering: where in the world is Keith Thurman? I thought he was scheduled to fight again in August, but nothing materialized. So, naturally, I thought I would ask the prophet of the Bible of Boxing himself if he knew anything about Thurman’s current circumstances.

PS: Thank you for all you do for the boxing community, and for putting up with all us hard-headed fans. – Jesse

It’s my pleasure, Jesse. (Most of the time.) 

Funny, you brought up my ponytailed Halfrican brotha. I recently reached out to folks connected with Team Thurman for an update because members of the Ring Ratings Panel had brought up dropping him from the welterweight rankings due to inactivity. I’ve been told by a good source that Keith is in training for an upcoming fight that has yet to be scheduled. 

I believe it because I’ve seen photos and footage of Thurman working out, but still, if there isn’t an official announcement in the next two weeks, the Panel will have no choice but to vote on whether to keep or drop the current No. 1-rated 147 pounder.

 

MORE RING CHAMPIONS, LESS VACANCIES

Doug,

I appreciate that the Ring Championships truly have to be earned. I do feel though that having only 2 champs out of 17, as of the Sept issue, really starts to erode at that value rather than adds to it. It makes it nearly impossible for any organization or broadcaster to mention your titles to help the laymen understand just how good a fighter is. 17, or close to, Ring belts on tv is better than none. I do have a solution. Your problem is in your 6 ways a fighter can lose the belt. I believe that ways 2-6 need to be in conjunction with the vacancy being filled. If a champ moves up in weight, fails to defend for 18 months etc, you don’t strip him until a fight that meets your requirements is made. This allows for more continuity, preserves lineage and could add value to your champions without having so many vacancies all the time. Less stripping and vacancies, more “passing of the torch” situations. Please consider it. – Drew Adkins, Red Deer, Alberta, Canada

I appreciate your concern, Drew, but I don’t think we’re going to need to change our rules in order to fill more Ring title vacancies. The right fights are being made or are in the works for the publication to rightfully and organically award the prestigious belts to worthy champions. 

Right now there are four Ring champs – Aleksandr Usyk at cruiserweight, Vasiliy Lomachenko at lightweight, Srisaket Sor Rungvisai at junior bantamweight and Hekkie Budler at junior flyweight. All four badasses have their Ring belts and fans will see them proudly carry their new titles going into their next fights.

More Ring champs are on the way. Two more may be crowned in September. I’m proud to announce that the Ratings Panel voted to put the vacant middleweight title on the line for the winner of the Canelo-Golovkin rematch on Sept. 15, and The Ring 168-pound belt will be awarded to the winner of the World Boxing Super Series super middleweight final on Sept. 28. 

The WBSS bantamweight and junior welterweight finals will likely crown Ring champs at 118 and 140 pounds and I know (as you should know) that Showtime plans to match Jarrett Hurd and Jermell Charlo in a 154-pound title unification fight that will give us a Ring junior middleweight champion. 

RING Editor Doug Fischer was on hand to present Gennady Golovkin with the magazine’s Pound-for-Pound champion belt.

I’m also proud to announce that TITLE Boxing, which does a great job manufacturing The Ring titles, is creating a Women’s Pound-for-Pound championship belt for Cecilia Braekhus that will be awarded to the undisputed female welterweight champ during Canelo-GGG2 fight week in Las Vegas. (Golovkin holds The Ring Men’s Pound-for-Pound championship belt.) In the near future, we will consider awarded championship belts to worthy female champions, so you can expect to see a lot more of The Ring title/championship brand during the second half of 2018 and throughout 2019.  

 

LOGAN PAUL VS KSI

Hey Dougie,

I hesitate to even bring this up, but did you check out the Youtube Boxing Championship with Logan Paul and KSI?

The Pay-Per-View cost was $10 on Youtube, and they reportedly got nearly 800,000 buys, with another 400,000+ streaming illegally on Twitch.

Do you think the bout’s relative success says anything about anything boxing-related at all? – Tim

I think it has more to say about the legion of loyal teen fans of Paul and KSI than anything boxing-related, but the American public (and much of the world) has an appetite for combat sports and a fascination for celebrity “beefs,” so I’m not shocked that the PPV did so well. Let’s just call it what it is – celebrity worship. (I seem to recall a Celebrity Boxing series on Fox in the early 2000s featuring the likes of Danny Bonaduce, Tonya Harding, Todd Bridges and Vanilla Ice, and if memory serves me, the two shows did very high ratings despite being shredded by TV critics.) 

 And, no, I did not watch those shows or the YouTube PPV.

 

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

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