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Dougie’s Monday Mailbag (Jermall Charlo, Melikuziev-Rosado, Barrios-Davis, Justis Huni)

Age and experience beat youth and power when King Gabe Rosado blasted Bektemir Melikuziev in the third round of their crossroads bout.
21
Jun

BEK BLASTED

What’s up Doug hope all’s well,

Naoya Inoue got the job done (vs. Dasmarinas). How do you see him vs. John Riel Casimero going?

Really surprised with Bektemir Melikuziev losing the way he did. He fought the best in the world as an amateur with no headgear and never seemed to have chin issues although I don’t think he has a bad chin. I think it was just a perfectly placed punch and it didn’t help that he leaned into it hands down…still he’s only 24 and with Joel Diaz in his corner I’m sure he can iron out those problems like his hands low etc…where does he go from here? Would you like his chances in an immediate rematch?



What did you make of Jermall Charlo’s performance (vs. Juan Montiel) and how does he do vs. the other beltholders? Cheers. – David, Dublin

I gotta be honest, I expected Charlo to make short work of Montiel, not just because Montiel had been blown out by Jaime Munguia (in 2017 in a welterweight bout) but because it was evident that the Los Mochis native brought a built-up record into an undeserved WBC middleweight title bout. Apart from a first-round KO of the remains of James Kirkland in December and a draw with Hugo Centeno Jr., Montiel’s only other notable bouts (and there ain’t many) had been at welterweight and junior middleweight. And despite having won all of his previous bouts by stoppage, he never appeared to be a sharp or particularly impactful puncher.

Charlo had Montiel reeling at points but couldn’t put him away.

Having said that, Charlo arguably won every round, and while Montiel was deservedly unheralded coming into the Showtime main event, he comes from a proud fighting family and he proved to be ridiculously tough. (Who knows? Maybe he drained himself making 147 pounds for Munguia four years ago.)

I like Jermall. He’s got talent, he’s got personality, and he’s got an aggressive boxer-puncher style that’s fun to watch. But I don’t care to see him pummel no-hopers for 12 rounds. The best middleweight he’s faced so far is Sergey Derevyanchenko, the only Ring-rated 160 pounder on his resume. He needs more. I don’t care about the politics. If he or his team is not interested in a unification bout with WBO beltholder Demetrius Andrade (currently No. 3 in The Ring’s rankings, behind Charlo), they need to search for another credible opponent.

A hardcore fan/podcaster/uber-Twitter troll known as @mrboxingguru tweeted “So Charlo went to war with a bootleg Munguia?” Saturday night. That quip got me thinking: “S__t, I’d like to see that matchup!” It’s a natural main event for Texas and there’s no way it wouldn’t entertain. And Munguia, who brings the same amount of heart that Montiel exhibited but with better physical strength and punching technique, plus a glossy 37-0 (30) record, is the No. 1 contender for the WBC title that Charlo holds. So, f__k it, all we need is for the WBC to declare Munguia to be Charlo’s mandatory and then the different parties (PBC/Showtime/FOX and GBP/Zanfer/DAZN) can let it go to a purse bid and whoever wants it most will put their money where their mouths are.

Naoya Inoue got the job done (vs. Dasmarinas). And he did it in STYLE. “The Monster” is a fitting fight moniker, but if Inoue wanted to add “The Bodysnatcher” as a second ring nickname, I don’t think Mike McCallum would begrudge the Japanese star.

How do you see him vs. John Riel Casimero going? What makes you think Casimero is going to get past Nonito Donaire on August 14?

Rosado had taken the best shots of a prime GGG without going down, he wasn’t going to be bullied by Bek.

Really surprised with Bektemir Melikuziev losing the way he did. That was a huge upset, especially the way it happened. That one-hitter-quitter was shocking… and exhilarating. I felt sorry for Bek, but the overriding emotion was happiness for Rosado, who’s a cool cat and one that occupies a necessary status in boxing that I revere: that of the gatekeeper. I expected Bek to win the fight (like most did), probably by stoppage, but I knew he’d have to work to get it. Rosado doesn’t make it easy for anyone and he wasn’t going to be intimidated by a guy with a 7-0 pro record. Rosado has been facing big punchers for more than 10 years – from prime GGG to David Lemieux to Kid Chocolate to Alfred Angulo – and that experience matters even though he didn’t win those bouts.

He fought the best in the world as an amateur with no headgear and never seemed to have chin issues although I don’t think he has a bad chin. Time will tell if Melikuziev has a soft chin or certain “sweet spots” around his dome. I think he just got caught with the perfect punch – and not by accident, Rosado’s poise under fire, timing, accuracy and power made it happen. I saw a lot of “The Bully was bullied” Tweets on Saturday, but the fight didn’t go long enough for Rosado to get the chance to “bully” the Uzbekistan native. Bek simply got clipped.

I think it was just a perfectly placed punch and it didn’t help that he leaned into it hands down… Yeah, he was hunting for the KO vs. an experienced foe and not giving the veteran his due respect. Hopefully, he learns his hard lesson.

Still he’s only 24 and with Joel Diaz in his corner I’m sure he can iron out those problems like his hands low, etc… I think he can bounce back, but it might take him some to regain his mojo/career momentum. That’s OK if it does as long as he continues to learn and grow.

Where does he go from here? He takes a short rest from boxing and returns to the gym once he’s medically cleared to do so. Then he and Diaz have to sit down with Robert Diaz (Golden Boy’s matchmaker) and work out a rebuilding plan. I think it’s OK if his first fight back is a confidence builder, especially if he returns to the ring by October.

Would you like his chances in an immediate rematch? Yeah, I would slightly, but it’s risky. The matchup can be looked at as an even fight now and I don’t think it’s a good idea for Team Bek. Rosado is feeling himself right now.

 

BARRIOS VS. DAVIS

Hey Dougie,

Long time reader, 1st time writer. Been a pleasure following you all these years since Maxboxing and happy to see you progressing in your career and still being top notch in this frustratingly great sport of boxing.

Wanted to get your thoughts on the Barrios/Davis matchup. I see this as being in the same mold as Mayweather/Corrales where Mayweather was still not totally mainstream and was facing the taller more powerful undefeated fighter in Corrales who may have been more well regarded by some boxing purists and was favored in some circles to win that fight. That was a career defining victory for Pretty Boy at the time and I think one could argue that was the beginning of his superstar ascension.

I don’t think Davis will dominate the same way (not even close) however I view this as an even fight where a victory from either fighter will springboard them to big money PPV fights. Neither fighter has the best head movement but both are very good body punchers. I think Barrios’s jab makes the difference here.

Be well. Looking forward to hear your take on this. Thx. – B.

Thanks for being such a longtime mailbag reader, B., and thanks for sharing your thoughts on Barrios-Davis.

I wasn’t that into this matchup when it was first announced because there were quality matchups for Davis at junior lightweight and (especially at) lightweight that I wanted to see more than the Barrios fight. But as the bout gets closer I’m getting into the 140-pound matchup a little more. If nothing else it can serve as a measuring stick to how well Tank might fare vs. the taller lightweights, such as Ryan Garcia and Devin Haney.

But we shouldn’t count out Barrios, who is very good, as you noted. You’re right about both fighters needing better head movement and you’re correct that Barrios has a good jab, but I don’t think it’s good enough to help him win the fight. I’m feelin’ Tank in this one even though the Baltimore native is not even 5-foot-6 and unproven at junior welterweight (hell, he’s barely proven at lightweight).

Batyr Akhmedov had his moments against Mario Barrios, which makes Dougie wonder how the Texan will fare vs. Tank.

As good as Barrios is, Davis looks like the better talent and bigger puncher to me. We’ll find out how good the Texan’s chin is because I don’t envision him being that elusive. I was inside Staples Center for his entertaining 12 rounder with Batyr Akhmedov, a southpaw (like Davis) who isn’t much taller than Tank. Despite being at a height and reach disadvantage, Akhmedov was able to compete from the outside and have some success in close during their many heated exchanges. Barrios was a little busier and scored two knockdowns to clinch the victory, but Davis is a lot faster and hits with more authority than Batyr. My guess is that Davis is at least as tough as Akhmedov but we’ll see.

I hadn’t thought of the Mayweather-Corrales comparison. Perhaps The Money Team sees similarities with how straight-up (stiff in the upper body) Barrios is, and how methodical the San Antonio native can be, and they figure Tank’s got too many “special effects” (as young Floyd used to say) for him. But I don’t think it’s the same style matchup. Tank’s got Mayweatheresque counterpunching prowess but he lacks Pretty Boy’s defensive savvy and ring generalship. And while Barrios is a tall, rangy boxer-puncher, he’s not the savage that Corrales was. Barrios gradually breaks down most of his opposition from the outside. Corrales walked guys down (often without a jab) and whacked them out with bombs delivered in close. Chico usually preferred trench warfare. He was also 33-0 by the time he faced Mayweather, and more battle tested than the 26-0 Barrios is now. Chico had defeated five consecutive world-rated junior lightweights going into the showdown with Pretty Boy: Robert Garcia (the unbeaten IBF titleholder), John Brown, Derrick Gainer, Justin Juuko and Angel Manfredy. Not that any of that experienced mattered to Mayweather, who was at or near his offensive peak.   

 

PACQUIAO VS. SPENCE

Hi sir Doug! I’ve been reading your articles and mailbags for the longest time (since your maxboxing days) but first time to write in your mailbag.

Is the Pacquiao-Spence title clash also for the Ring Magazine belt? Cause Spence is the no. 1 ranked and the Pacman is the no. 3.

Do you think the Pacman enters top 10 greatest All time if he impressively defeat the Truth?

MM:

Donaire vs Jhonny Tapia at bantamweight

Donnie Nietes vs Danny Romero at flyweight

Jhonriel Casimero vs Fernando Montiel at bantamweight

Keep safe! – Allan Carreon from Bulacan, Philippines

Thanks for finally writing into the mailbag, Allan.

Your Mythical Matchups:

Donaire vs Jhonny Tapia at bantamweightFilipino Flash by close but unanimous decision

Donnie Nietes vs Danny Romero at flyweightDonnie by close UD.

Jhonriel Casimero vs Fernando Montiel at bantamweightMontiel by UD or late TKO.

Is the Pacquiao-Spence title clash also for the Ring Magazine belt? Cause Spence is the no. 1 ranked and the Pacman is the no. 3. Spence and Pacquiao are eligible to fight for the vacant Ring Magazine welterweight title given their rankings but it’s up to the Editorial Board and Ratings Panel to determine that. It would be automatic if it were No. 1 vs. No. 2. And, to be honest, if Terence Crawford wasn’t such a strong No. 2, it would probably be a no-brainer for this particular No. 1 vs. No. 3. But Spence is the clear No. 1 and Pacquiao proved against Keith Thurman that he’s still got it (at least he did two years ago when they fought). The Filipino icon is an oldie but goodie. We’ve still got some time. We’ll discuss it further, feel out the Panel’s opinions, hell, we’ll see how the FIGHTERS feel about it. Pacquiao has been there and done that in terms of winning The Ring championship. Spence may not give a s__t. Most fighters hold The Ring title in high regard, some view it as the absolute pinnacle of professional boxing, but some don’t care, and that’s OK. At the end of the day, just like the making of significant matchups, the fighters got to want it.

 

JUSTIS HUNI

Hi Dougie,

Been a while, I hope all is well. Not sure if you would have seen or heard about an up & coming heavyweight from Australia, Justis Huni? Wednesday night he defended the Australian heavyweight title against Paul Gallen – a limited fighter (and former top-notch rugby league player) but an absolute warrior who’s as tough as they come.

Would love to hear your thoughts on Huni’s prospects if you get a chance to look at some highlights (take note of the body work… sheesh!) – 22yo, solid amateur background, big guy who uses his length, quick feet & hands, throws in combinations, & not shy of taking a punch to give a better one. What he doesn’t have yet is a whole lot of power, which might hold him back at the higher levels. He’s a big fish in a small pond over here at the moment, but here’s hoping he can make the leap!

Thanks Dougie, and take care. Cheers. – Luke, Brisbane, Australia

Australian heavyweight hopeful Justis Huni.

I’ve seen some of Huni and I think he’s got a lot of potential for a prospect with only five pro bouts. If he continues to improve, and he can take a shot, and he’s willing to travel to the U.K. and the U.S. for significant bouts, I think he can evolve into a very popular heavyweight because he’s got personality, rugged good looks (kind of like a Jon Bernthal-type character actor), and a cool name (first name sounds like “Justice” and his last name will be fun with chants: “Hoo-nie! Hoo-nie!”)

Like you noted, he’s got fast hands, he moves around the ring well, he’s game, he knows how to attack the body and he’s got solid all-around fundamentals thanks in part to a decorated amateur background (he was World Youth Champ in 2016 and he won a silver medal at the 2019 World Amateur Championship). He’s got modern heavyweight size – 6-foot-4, 235-240 pounds – and he’s athletic. But what like best about him is his composure. He stays calm under fire and he doesn’t rush himself.

I’m also impressed that he turned pro against the Australian heavyweight champ (13-1-1 Faiga Opelu, who was game) in a scheduled 10 rounder. He’s not being babied.

 

Email Fischer at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter and IG at @dougiefischer, and join him, Tom Loeffler, Coach Schwartz and friends via Tom’s or Doug’s IG Live every Sunday.

 

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