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Dougie’s Friday mailbag (the Charlos, Warrington-Frampton, Whyte-Chisora)

Photo by Leo Wilson / PBC
28
Dec

2018 YEAR-END AWARDS

Hey Doug,

I’ve done this the last four years, so here are my year-end awards for you.

Fighter of the Year: Oleksandr Usyk

Fight of the Year: Jarrett Hurd vs. Erislandy Lara

KO of the Year: Povetkin KO Price

Prospect of the Year: Teofimo Lopez

Event of the Year: Canelo-GGG II

Hope you have a great holiday season with the family Doug. Looking forward to more great work from you in the New Year.

Thanks. – Robert from Ashton, MD 

Thanks for the kind words, Robert. The Fischer family had a wonderful Christmas break and hopefully the final days of 2018 will be restful and enjoyable.

I can’t really argue with any of your choices, except for KO of the Year. David Price was dropped hard and bloody by the Russian veteran’s left hook, but he wasn’t out cold (though he was “out of it”). The towel was tossed in, the ref waved his 10-count, and it was

BOOM! The Monster strikes! Photo by JIJI PRESS/AFP/Getty Images

indeed a devastating loss for the British Olympian, but it’s not like we haven’t seen him this position before. Price had been stopped on four previous occasions and to lesser fighters than Alexander Povetkin. It’s not like anyone thought that fight would end any differently than it did. I think the recent one-hitter-quitter KO that Dillian Whyte scored against the usually durable Derek Chisora in the 11th round of their recent rematch, or Naoya Inoue’s paralyzing opening-round two-piece against Juan Carlos Payano, who had never been stopped, are more deserving knockouts for that award.

But the other award winners you have are just fine. Usyk is the only lock for winner among the various year-end awards in my opinion.

 

STRANGE SCORING

Hey Dougie,

What did you find more perplexing, Jermell losing unanimously or Jermall up 119-108 on one of the cards? – Rodemeyer

That’s easy: Jermall Charlo beating Matt Korobov by a 119-108 margin was WAY more perplexing because that simply DID NOT HAPPEN. Larry Hazzard Jr. needs to explain his scoring to the New York State Athletic Commission.

I didn’t score Charlo-Harrison round-by-round, but I did not view it as a “robbery.” I thought Harrison boxed the perfect strategy against Charlo. After 12 rounds, I expected Charlo to get the nod because he’s always received the benefit of the doubt in close fights against good boxers (Vanes Martirosyan, Demetrius Hopkins). I was surprised (pleasantly, because I like Harrison) by the official decision, although I can understand the opinion that Charlo could have won the fight.

 

WHAT HAPPENED TO FRAMPTON?

Hi Dougie, seasons greetings.

  1. Frampton is not in the right division?
  2. Do you think it’s a hunger and discipline issue or do you think he is on the slide or little bit of both?
  3. Not really relishing Dillian v Joshua as he may have improved but so has Joshua and I think Joshua gets rid of Chisora in about 4 rounds.
  4. Lennox Lewis is pissing on Joshua when really he doesn’t know the ins and outs like the rest of us and to a certain extent it is the job of the promoters to build and negotiate a fight and Hearn knows what he is up to. It seems a little sour grapes to me?

Thanks – Robert

Seasons greetings, Robert.

  1. Frampton is not in the right division? Sure, he is. He’s a featherweight. He just lost to the better man on the night. I think the version of Josh Warrington that outworked, out-jabbed, outmaneuvered and out-boxed Frampton would beat most of the top 126 pounders, maybe even the elite veterans (Leo Santa Cruz and Gary Russell Jr.). If Frampton wants to move to 130 pounds, that’s cool. I’d love to see him challenge Gervonta Davis, Tevin Farmer and/or Miguel Berchelt, or take on young guns like Joseph Diaz Jr.
  2. Do you think it’s a hunger and discipline issue or do you think he is on the slide or little bit of

    Photo: Twitter @frankwarren_tv

    both? I don’t think Frampton lacks hunger or discipline at all, however, he may no longer be at his peak. He’s 31, he’s been at the world-class level for a long time (since 2012 or 2013), he’s been in some serious scraps, and he’s accomplished a lot in the sport (world titles in two weight classes, 2016 Ring Fighter of the Year, etc.). So, he might be beginning to fade a bit, but I still consider him top veteran. For instance, if he was matched with Oscar Valdez or Davis in 2019, I’d consider picking him in those excellent matchups.

  3. Not really relishing Dillian v Joshua as he may have improved but so has Joshua and I think Joshua gets rid of Chisora in about 4 rounds. I’m more than OK with Joshua vs. Whyte if that happens next. Whyte is a legit top-five heavyweight contender, he deserves a shot at either the WBC belt (held by Deontay Wilder) or the WBO title (held by Joshua), and he proved in his fist ‘go-round’ with AJ that he wasn’t intimidated by the 2012 Olympic champ. I thought he had a dangerous style for Joshua then and I believe he does now. Think about how confident Whyte was going into that first fight with AJ and how far he’s come in the past three years. You might be right about how Joshua-Chisora would end, but who cares? That fight ain’t happening, and styles make fights.
  4. Lennox Lewis is pissing on Joshua when really he doesn’t know the ins and outs like the rest of us and to a certain extent it is the job of the promoters to build and negotiate a fight and Hearn knows what he is up to. It seems a little sour grapes to me? Maybe. Or maybe Lewis is just holding Joshua to the same standards that he set for himself. Both are Olympic gold medalists. Nearly three and half years (June 1989 to October 1992) after Lewis turned pro, he got into the ring with Razor Rudduck and blasted the still-dangerous contender in two rounds to become the WBC’s mandatory challenger to then-undisputed champ Riddick Bowe. Lewis was ready to fight for all the marbles as soon as he got to the mountain top. But Bowe wasn’t ready to fight him (never would be), thus Lewis had to wait until 1999 (against Evander Holyfield) for the opportunity to become undisputed champ. I’m sure in Lennox’s eyes, Joshua, who has been a pro for nearly five years, should be ready and willing to become the undisputed champ. However, there are a couple differences between Lewis and Joshua, which makes their situations a bit different. Lewis, who was born in England but grew up in Canada, won his 1988 gold medal representing Canada. It took some time for him to earn acceptance from British fans and become an attraction in his native country. Joshua won his Olympic gold medal at the 2012 London Games. He hit the ground running as a pro and quickly developed into a bona-fide star in the U.K. As big as Lewis got with the victories over Holyfield and Mike Tyson, he was never as big as Joshua is now in the U.K. AJ isn’t in a position where he HAS to travel to the U.S. or make concessions to American standouts. (Of course, this doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t fight in America or at least be reasonable in negotiations with Team Wilder.)

 

CHANGE THE HEAVYWEIGHT TOP 10

Hi Doug,

By the time you read this I hope you will have had a great Christmas!

I’ve been taking a look at the different divisions. The Light Heavyweight division is looking GOOD! Five undefeated fighters in the Ring Top Ten! Who you see as the best of the best?

Another big question: When and if Usyk will move up to heavyweight? Is he big enough to compete with today’s behemoths?

Not much scheduled for the heavyweights until April. Who will AJ fight? I’m thinking Whyte or maybe Miller. Who do you think it will be and who will win? In my opinion The Ring should change their Heavyweight Top Ten list.

Ring Top Ten                                         What I think

  1.  Joshua                                                Fury
  2.  Fury                                                    Wilder
  3.  Wilder                                                 Joshua
  4.  Whyte                                                 Ortiz
  5.  Ortiz                                                   Miller
  6.  Povetkin                                            Pulev
  7.  Parker                                                Kownacki
  8.  Miller                                                  Povetkin
  9.  Kownacki                                          Whyte
  10. Pulev                                                Parker

What would your list look like? Would Joe Joyce be on it? Have a GREAT 2019 and keep us crazy fans informed and on the right track. – Mike

Thanks, Mike. I’ll do my darnedest.

My heavyweight top 10 would look a lot more like The Ring’s rankings than yours, no offense.

You got no love for The Body Snatcher (Dillian Whyte), which I don’t agree with. I think Whyte has earned a top-five ranking with his 9-0 run since providing Joshua with the future unified beltholder’s first gut test three years ago. And, while it seems like AJ is the heavyweight that hardcore fans (and some media) love to hate since the Wilder-Fury draw, I still view him as the No. 1 big man. He’s defeated more legit top-10 heavyweights (including two No. 3-rated contenders – Joseph Parker and Alexander Povetkin – this year) than Fury or Wilder, he’s unified three major world titles, and I think he’s been the more dominant of the Big Three (Joshua, Wilder and Fury).

No, I don’t think Joe Joyce is ready to be in the top 10.

The Light Heavyweight division is looking GOOD! Five undefeated fighters in the Ring Top Ten! Who you see as the best of the best? I gotta go with Eleider Alvarez – the Colombian has the best blend of athleticism, skill, experience and accomplishments – but Oleksandr Gvozdyk is a close second, and Dmitry Bivol (the most naturally gifted and the youngest beltholder) is a close third. I think Alvarez “paid the cost to be the boss” by icing The Krusher, but while the stoppage was sudden, it didn’t come easy, so we’ll see if he can repeat the feat in February. But if he does, you gotta agree that “Stormy” is the man at 175 pounds, which is one of the deepest divisions in boxing.

Another big question: When and if Usyk will move up to heavyweight? Is he big enough to compete

Doug Fischer with undisputed cruiserweight champ and Fighter of the Year front-runner Aleksandr Usyk. Photo by Matt Tucker

with today’s behemoths? I think the undisputed cruiserweight champ will take on his first heavyweight as a pro at some point in 2019. I don’t think he’ll drop his 200-pound belts or take on a top-five heavyweight in his heavyweight debut, but I believe he will face a credible big man and then assess his situation based on his performance. I think his ultimate goal is to challenge for the heavyweight title, but he might wait for Joshua, Wilder and Fury to settle their rivalry first before going for the heavyweight glory. Do I think he’s big enough to compete at heavyweight? Yes. But I don’t think he’s big enough to bang with The Big Three. He is, however, big enough and skilled enough to BOX them. And I’d probably favor him to outbox Wilder.

Not much scheduled for the heavyweights until April. Who will AJ fight? I’m thinking Whyte or maybe Miller. I’m thinking you’re correct.

Who do you think it will be and who will win? It doesn’t matter (I’m into both matchups), I favor Joshua.

 

BOXING CONTRACTS

Hello Mr. Fisher,

I have a question for you. Are all multi-year boxing contracts based on winning? Meaning the contract is void if the boxer loses?

Thank you. 🙂 – Etienne Ostiguy

A promotional (or managerial) contract is seldom void after a single loss, but there can be changes to certain terms in the agreement following a loss (such as the boxer’s minimum purses and fight dates per year) depending on the circumstances.

 

THOUGHTS ON THE CHARLOS TWIN BILL

Hey Dougie,

First and foremost, I would like to wish you and your family a very merry Christmas. As far as the fights were concerned kudos to Matt Korobov for being a tough S.O.B and to Jermall for taking the fight against a game and dangerous opponent. His brother seemingly got the short end of the stick, I thought he clearly outpointed Harrison and wobbled him several times throughout the bout.

However, I have to point out that the Charlo twins, who are under some scrutiny for the missed VADA testing, did not appear to be the destructive forces I have seen over the past few performances. Maybe they fell in love with their knockout power and appeared one dimensional. Or maybe they were missing a bit of the “sauce”? What say you my friend? Best regards. – Ben, Upstate, NY

No boxer is above suspicion in this era of performing-enhancing drugs, but nobody should accuse anyone of anything (especially fighters who have never failed a test) unless they have direct knowledge of PED use (and can prove it). I’m in the minority with this opinion, especially among the knee-jerk extremists that populate social media, but I don’t automatically assume or view a positive test as “cheating.” Having said that, the only boxers that openly claim to be “clean” athletes in my opinion are those who undergo year-round random VADA testing. Everyone else is just talking s__t.

Regarding the Charlo twins less-than-stellar performances last Saturday, I just think they have trouble with boxers. Simple as that. I said this before PBC on Fox show. I definitely believe it now.

As far as the fights were concerned, kudos to Matt Korobov for being a tough S.O.B and to Jermall for taking the fight against a game and dangerous opponent. Agreed. Korobov is a real fighter for jumping at the opportunity to take on a dangerous foe on short notice, and Jermall should be commended for accepting the challenge of a former amateur standout with difficult style on short notice. Despite Hazzard Jr.’s scorecard, it was a competitive and entertaining chess match in my view, and it was good for the fighters and the sport because it let us know where Charlo needs improvement, it reminded us that Korobov is still a player at 160 pounds, and clarified the standing/ranking of both middleweights. I view Charlo as being just outside of the middleweight top five, and Korobov as a lower top-10 or top-15 contender based on what they showed us last Saturday.

Photo by Stephanie Trapp/TGB Promotions

His brother seemingly got the short end of the stick, I thought he clearly outpointed Harrison and wobbled him several times throughout the bout. Fair enough. I missed the fight live and couldn’t immediately find the complete fight on YouTube, but I watched most of the 12 rounds (with Spanish commentary, so I wasn’t influenced by the broadcasters) and from where I was sitting (on the sofa of an Airbnb in Mesa, Arizona, with my laptop in front of me) I saw a competitive fight. I thought Harrison gave Jermell fits (not a surprise) and counter-punched the crap out of the defending titleholder down the stretch (which was a surprise, I figured he’d fade or get pulled into a fire fight). I did credit Charlo for his aggression, though, I could see a close victory for him. I get that. But I didn’t see a “robbery.” Maybe I need to watch it again and carefully score it for myself.

Thanks for the holiday wishes.

 

WHAT DOES DILLIAN WHYTE HAVE TO DO?

Hi Doug,

Hope you, the family and the team are doing well. What more does Dillian Whyte need to do to get a title shot? Seems the fight fans agree looking at the boos AJ got trying to explain why Dillian is 3rd on his list. I know, I get it. AJ wants all the straps. But between AJ, Wilder and Fury, surely Whyte is next on the list for one of them.

Since the three top dogs seem tied up, where do you see Dillian going from here? Could he be an introduction to the Heavyweight division for Usyk? Miller? I actually think that would be a decent fight. Both have attributes which can trouble each other. And the build up will be unmissable.

What’s your thought on Warrington Vs Frampton? 2 fights ago people would have been called mad to think he’d beat Selby and Frampton back to back. But here we are.

Warrington Vs Galahad?

Where does Frampton go from here?

All the best for the holidays and wish you, your family and the team a prosperous new year. – Tabraze, London, UKThanks, Tabraze.

I think Frampton is still a player at 126 pounds. He might be able to make some noise at 130 pounds due to his experience and skill, but if he found Warrington a bit to “physical” at times, he won’t like what monstrous junior lightweight boxer-punchers, such as Miguel Berchelt or Alberto Machado, bring to the ring.

I’ll take Warrington over Kid Galahad via clear decision. The Leeds Warrior has proven without a doubt that he’s an elite featherweight. Next stop: America. 

Dave Thompson/Matchroom Ringside Photography

What more does Dillian Whyte need to do to get a title shot? He shouldn’t have to do anything more in my opinion. The WBC and the WBO should make him their mandatory challenger. He’s been No. 1 in both organizations long enough and he hasn’t rested on his laurels.

Seems the fight fans agree looking at the boos AJ got trying to explain why Dillian is 3rd on his list. I can’t say that I blame them.

I know, I get it. AJ wants all the straps. But between AJ, Wilder and Fury, surely Whyte is next on the list for one of them. He’s the WBC’s and the WBO’s No. 1 rated heavyweight, but he WBC just OK’d an immediate Wilder-Fury rematch, and I’m pretty sure the WBO isn’t going to put a lot of pressure on AJ (they know how to make U.K. stars happy, just look into how long Juan Manuel Marquez was the WBO mandatory for Prince Naseem Hamed). So, while he should be next, he probably ain’t!

Since the three top dogs seem tied up, where do you see Dillian going from here? I don’t know. Perhaps he can have Eddie Hearn work out a deal with either the WBC or the WBO (as well as with the promoters of the No. 2 contenders in those organizations) to take part in a final-elimination bout vs. Luis Ortiz (for the WBC mandatory) or Bryant Jennings (for the WBO mandatory).

Could he be an introduction to the Heavyweight division for Usyk? Sure, but that’s a tall order for Usyk’s first heavyweight. I’d be into that much, tho.

Miller? I actually think that would be a decent fight. So do I, and it’s doable.

Both have attributes which can trouble each other. And the build up will be unmissable. No doubt about it. I’m not sure who I’d favor in that matchup. I see Whyte building up an early lead with a stick-and-move strategy, but then I envision Big Baby coming on strong over the second half of the bout. 

WERE THE CHARLOS EXPOSED?

Hello Doug,

Had a good time watching both Charlo twins in action. Think what you may about these guys but they’re entertaining and compelling. Now, are they good enough to be elite? Still don’t know but I’m leaning towards no.

I saw both win narrowly but could see a win for their opponents. I thought both wanted the KO so bad they forgot they had talented opponents in front of them. Exposed is a harsh word to use, especially considering that their opponents were good enough to be considered live dogs. But I do think both were exposed as overanxious boxers that definitely need their head back on the ground.

Calling out Canelo and GGG was and is still crazy. They bought in to their own hype.

This is something common in today’s youth, they think they’re ready by accomplishing little. They think they deserve things they shouldn’t have and that they don’t need to wait or actually climb the latter to earn their place. The Charlos are showing this and they’re clearly not ready. Korobov is a professional fighter with a lot of pedigree, yet he was inactive for a year and a half and fought on one week’s notice. Charlo was clearly not prepared to fight a southpaw (where was the straight right?) even though Monroe is a southpaw.

He thought he could go in there without a plan and just steamroll his opponent whoever it was. Well guess what? It doesn’t work that way.

On the other hand, the other Charlo had his hands full with Harrison, who outboxed him and made him look like a wild fool in plenty of rounds. I do think he found a way to edge it but looked sloppy and ko happy.

On a good note, I did see some midround adjustments with both guys and both tried hard to close the show. I still don’t buy into the hype but would like to see them grow into more complete and disciplined fighters before talking about a fight against Canelo, GGG or Hurd. These guys would comfortably beat them right now.

Well Doug, hope you have a Merry Xmas and a Happy New year.  See you next year! – Juan Valverde, San Diego

Thanks for the holiday wishes, Juan, same to you and your family.

I’m not 100% sure that Canelo, Golovkin or Hurd would beat the Charlos, but I’d favor the far more proven trio (especially Alvarez and GGG) to win those matchups. I still think Jermell can outpoint Hurd with the right gameplan. Styles make fights. Hurd’s aggression works better for Charlo than Harrison’s stick-and-move game.

Had a good time watching both Charlo twins in action. Think what you may about these guys but they’re entertaining and compelling. I agree. I also enjoyed watching them on Fox. I hope we don’t have to wait long before seeing them in 2019.

Now, are they good enough to be elite? Still don’t know but I’m leaning towards no. I say no. Nobody should have either Charlo twin in their pound-for-pound top 10 (sorry, but not sorry, Mike Coppinger). A fighter is elite when he or she proves it – either by defeating an elite boxer or by sheer dominance over the course of years (which should include numerous legit title defenses).

I saw both win narrowly but could see a win for their opponents. Fair enough.

I thought both wanted the KO so bad they forgot they had talented opponents in front of them. That’s not a good sign in terms of their future/potential “elite status.” I’m sure Coppinger would agree. (I’m pretty sure… not 100%… but fairly certain.)

Exposed is a harsh word to use, especially considering that their opponents were good enough to be considered live dogs. Nah, those were solid opponents, but let’s be real, that first PBC on Fox program was designed to be a showcase for both twins, which was reflected in the official odds on both fights and was understandable. They wanted Jermall to look as devastating as he was in previous bouts in order to help the PBC beat the drums for a big middleweight showdown vs. Canelo or GGG or maybe Daniel Jacobs. They wanted to set Jermell up for a unification bout vs. Jarret Hurd. Harrison was supposed to gas out and clipped late. Korobov was supposed to be rusty, maybe a little weight drained, and not at all confident. Credit to the “opponents” for flipping that script and reminding the PBC that they still need to work on their matchmaking skills.

Photo by Andrew Hemingway/Showtime

But I do think both were exposed as overanxious boxers that definitely need their head back on the ground. I can’t say they were “exposed” any more than Deontay Wilder was vs. Tyson Fury. We knew they were overanxious/impatient boxer-punchers going into those fights.

Calling out Canelo and GGG was and is still crazy. They bought in to their own hype. True. But it’s hard to hold it against them too much. They got a lot of people blowing a lot of smoke up their asses.

This is something common in today’s youth, they think they’re ready by accomplishing little. You sound like an old fogey stogey, but you’re right… (it takes one to know one)

They think they deserve things they shouldn’t have and that they don’t need to wait or actually climb the latter to earn their place. Well, they’re going to have change that attitude. Jermell’s going to have to get his title back in order to get back into the 154-pound picture, and Jermall is going to have to look like a REAL middleweight threat in order to create enough buzz to force the hands of the promoters and competing network/platforms behind Canelo and GGG to accept him as a legitimate challenger/opponent.

The Charlos are showing this and they’re clearly not ready. Korobov is a professional fighter with a lot of pedigree, yet he was inactive for a year and a half and fought on one week’s notice. Korobov wasn’t inactive for a year and half, he had fought an eight-round bout in March. However, that had been his only fight in a two-year span.

Charlo was clearly not prepared to fight a southpaw (where was the straight right?) even though Monroe is a southpaw. I think he was more prepared for Monroe than he was for Korobov. Not all southpaws are the same or created equal. Korobov was able to pull tricks from a very high-level and extensive amateur background. It wasn’t going to be easy to hit either lefty. Monroe can be elusive using lateral movement, which Charlo may have prepared for, while Korobov was able to be difficult to hit while in the pocket or from mid-range.

He thought he could go in there without a plan and just steamroll his opponent whoever it was. I think he had a plan, it just didn’t work out so well against Korobov.

On the other hand, the other Charlo had his hands full with Harrison, who outboxed him and made him look like a wild fool in plenty of rounds. I do think he found a way to edge it but looked sloppy and ko happy. I kept thinking “shades of Demetrius Hopkins” during the Charlo-Harrison bout, and I expected the judges to give the Detroit native about as much credit as the official judges gave D-Hop (which ain’t much), but they surprised me.

On a good note, I did see some midround adjustments with both guys and both tried hard to close the show. That’s one of the many things I love about the Charlos. They do want that KO, and I’m not mad at them for that. They just have to learn to relax and think more during their fights (both looked tight to me on Saturday).

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