Dougie’s Friday Mailbag (Crawford vs. Porter, Martinez vs. Arroyo, Canelo at cruiserweight)
CRAWFORD VS. PORTER, DAZN TONIGHT
What’s up Dougie?
Hope all’s good. I’m going to try to keep this short and sweet. What’s your prediction for Saturday’s fight? Even before the fight was announced I thought Porter provided the toughest test for Bud of any of the welterweights. I thought Shawn could use his strength and IQ to get inside and make it a rough fight and tough night for Bud.
However, as fight night is upon us, I think Shawn constantly coming forward is going to provide Bud the perfect opportunities to land big counters and I see Crawford getting a late rds stoppage. What do you think? I’m really looking forward to this one, Crawford is my favorite fighter and I think he makes a big statement Saturday night.
Last thing DAZN has a low-key good card Friday with Julio Cesar Martinez vs McWilliams Arroyo and MJ Akhmadaliev on undercard even if the Andrade matchup is underwhelming. Maybe Andrade at least keeps foot on the gas and looks impressive in the win. – Ryan, Cincinnati
Maybe, but that’s not really Boo Boo’s style or mentality, is it? Andrade is one of those frustrating boxing talents that is brilliant in spots but almost never puts together a complete performance – even when he’s in with sub-par opposition (which is common). I don’t know what the deal is, but Andrade can look razor sharp, even elite, for one minute of a round but then his focus and technique will dramatically fall off for a couple of rounds and he’ll get caught with stupid punches and display sloppy form. Anyway, the less said about Andrade the better until his level of opposition is stepped up.
I’m looking forward to seeing MJ do his thing. Too bad the Ronny Rios matchup will have to wait. I thought Akhmadaliev-Rios would be the fight of that DAZN/Matchroom card. Now Martinez-Arroyo is the fight I’m looking forward the most tonight. Martinez is your quintessential Mexican badass – aggressive and durable with big balls and underrated craft. The Mexico City native is on a good run and has defeated solid opposition. He’s the real deal, but Arroyo is by far the most skilled and experienced fighter the WBC beltholder has ever faced. McWilliams, who has never been stopped, has only lost to Roman Gonzalez (when Chocolatito was the P4P King in 2016) and Kazuto Ioka (who is now No. 10 in The Ring’s P4P rankings) in 2018. The Puerto Rican Olympian outpointed former titleholder Carlos Cuadras between those losses, and he’s currently riding a four-bout win streak (vs. good opposition) into tonight’s fight. I think it’s going to be a good one. I’d tab Arroyo for the upset, but he’s 35, which can be “old” for a flyweight, and Martinez is in his prime.
What’s your prediction for Saturday’s fight? I’m going with the chalk (Bud by decision), like pretty much everyone else, but I expect a competitive fight.
Even before the fight was announced I thought Porter provided the toughest test for Bud of any of the welterweights. I hadn’t given the matchup much thought before the WBO ordered it (good for them, by the way), but once it was announced I had two thoughts: 1. Porter is the first opponent with a realistic shot at upsetting Crawford since the P4P Top Fiver left the lightweight division; 2. I’d be surprised if Bud won by stoppage.
I thought Shawn could use his strength and IQ to get inside and make it a rough fight and tough night for Bud. If we’re lucky, he’ll try to do that from the get-go. I think they’re equals in terms of boxing IQ and versatility, but Crawford is a more relaxed and fluid athlete. I think Bud’s got the edge in punch accuracy and power. Porter is physically stronger and is more battle tested at welterweight. I think their hand speed is about equal (and Porter might have quicker feet). My question is who is the better infighter? Who has the better body attack? I’m not sure, but my hunch is that Bud will prove to be better in these areas, which could be keys to his victory.
However, as fight night is upon us, I think Shawn constantly coming forward is going to provide Bud the perfect opportunities to land big counters and I see Crawford getting a late rds stoppage. What do you think? On one hand, I think fighting Crawford with smart, explosive aggression as he did vs. Errol Spence will enable Porter to take the early rounds (when Bud typically lays back). But I agree that can be a dangerous tactic against a switch-hitting counterpuncher like Crawford. Porter’s going to have to find the right distance to get off if he hopes to catch Crawford off balance as he did Spence. Easier said than done because Bud has better balance and upper-body movement than Spence.
I’m really looking forward to this one, Crawford is my favorite fighter and I think he makes a big statement Saturday night. I think Porter’s going to box and move the way he did against Ugas, but he’ll mix in more sporadic attacks and rough stuff when in close. However, I believe Crawford will have an answer for everything and take over the fight down the stretch to earn a competitive but clear UD.
CANELO AND TIM TSZYU
Howdy Dougie, I hope all’s well.
What are your first thoughts on the Canelo/Makabu news? It’s no surprise to see Canelo’s getting a bit of heat over ‘cherry picking’ but c’mon folks! He’s going into unchartered waters here against a guy who’s not just gonna lay down in order to pick up a cheque. Credit where it’s due, in my opinion, and I’m intrigued to see how it plays out.
Did you happen to catch the Tszyu fight Wednesday? He looked pretty good in what was a ‘step up’ fight. Seems to me like he has a lot of the attributes, save for fight-changing one-punch KO power and I guess his chin hasn’t been fully tested yet. Is it time for him to look to ‘sink or swim’ at the top end at junior middle? While he’s still only 27 I’ve heard him talk about struggling with the weight cut, but some of the names at 160 would seem a bridge too far without possessing a true ‘weapon’. So it may be a case of now or never.
Thanks, as always! Cheers. – Luke, Brisbane, Australia
If what you say about Tim struggling to cut weight is true, I agree that he and team should go for the gold asap. I don’t think he’s ready for the likes of Jermall Charlo and Brian Castano (or even the aging Erislandy Lara) right now, but I wouldn’t pick many other world-class junior middleweights to beat him. (I believe he’d beat some of the fighters currently rated ahead of him in Ring’s rankings, including veterans Jarrett Hurd and Tony Harrison.) I think Takeshi Inoue was a good opponent for him to grow on. Every up-and-comer worth his or her salt needs to share the ring with a durable knucklehead who is going to force them to go 12 rounds no matter how many flush power shots they land. That experience then serves them well in world title bouts. Tszyu will soon be the mandatory challenger for the WBO belt that Castano holds. The PBC is working hard to make Charlo-Castano II for sometime in the first quarter of 2022. Tszyu should go for the winner. Charlo is a badass, but he’s been in a lot of tough fights and another go-around with Castano will likely add more wear and tear on his body. He might be ripe enough to be picked off by a young gun like Timmy by this time next year. The same can be said about Castano, who’s a bull but that’s a style that Tszyu should be able to take advantage of.
What are your first thoughts on the Canelo/Makabu news? It’s not a potential matchup I was expecting or ever imagined, but I like it and I view it as a real challenge for the Pound-for-Pound King.
It’s no surprise to see Canelo’s getting a bit of heat over ‘cherry picking’ but c’mon folks! He’s going into unchartered waters here against a guy who’s not just gonna lay down in order to pick up a cheque. Yeah, I’ve seen the “cherry pick” claims on my Twitter TL, and I’m not surprised by that brand of fanboy goofiness. After Canelo stopped Sergey Kovalev, I predicted (in several mailbags and my Ringside column in the pages of The Ring) that the Mexican star would never receive universal credit for any of his victories going forward, no matter who he faced. Even if he faces and beats the fighters some of the #SaltySociety claim he’s “ducking,” such as David Benavidez and Artur Beterbiev, those same fans will make up reasons not to give him any respect for those victories. What can I say? We just gotta pray for those poor deluded fools.
Credit where it’s due, in my opinion, and I’m intrigued to see how it plays out. Same here. Makabu, The Ring’s No. 2-rated cruiserweight, is on a nine-bout win streak – including two impressive on-the-road victories against unbeaten foes in Russia – since he was stopped by Tony Bellew in 2016. He’s defeated some quality cruisers He’s not going to be intimidated by Canelo, who’s going to have to put on at least 15 pounds of muscle, which may slow him down.
CANELO AT CRUISERWEIGHT
Were you surprised by Canelo and Eddy Reynoso’s request to fight Makabu for the WBC Cruiserweight title?
I think Canelo can compete with Makabu but I don’t know if he’s gone too far this time. Even if he wins do you think the increase in weight to near 200lbs and then coming back to super middleweight or light heavyweight might zap his punch resistance and strength permanently like it seemed to do to Roy Jones Jr.?
Also there seems to be this narrative among certain boxing media channels that Canelo is deathly afraid of Charlo and Andrade. I don’t really understand why people think this way because GGG was the most dangerous middleweight in terms of power and knockouts since Nigel Benn, G-man and Julian Jackson…and Canelo fought him twice! Whether you think he won or lost he got in the ring with him twice and went the distance both times. He’s now going up to Cruiserweight to fight a hard-hitting titleholder. Keeping that in mind do people honestly think that Canelo is shaking in his boots afraid to get in the ring with Charlo or Andrade?
Kind regards. – Barno, UK
The loudmouths who say Canelo is ducking Demetrius Andrade don’t even watch Boo Boo’s fights. They’ll tell you Canelo has “cherry picked” opponents his entire career but they can’t tell you who Andrade has fought. The loudmouths who say Canelo is avoiding Charlo don’t want to see that matchup for fear of the Mexican star folding their man in half with a body attack. They’re not as dumb as their Tweets and YouTube rants make them out to be. They have eyes. They watched Charlo go 12 harder-than-expected rounds with Juan Macias Montiel (a two-round KO victim of Jaime Munguia) in his most recent title defense.
All of these #salty haters talking s__t about Canelo know damn well that the fighters they’re jock-riding – from Andrade to Charlo to Benavidez to Beterbiev – haven’t don’t squat in comparison to the Ginger King. They know Canelo’s accomplished more in boxing than all of their pro resumes put together. This fact burns their asses, but it’s the truth. Beterbiev hasn’t done squat since beating Oleksandr Gvozdyk two years ago. The WBC/IBF light heavyweight titleholder needs to make a statement against Marcus Browne next month. I like Benavidez’s attitude. The young man is a real fighter and he wants to earn his shot at Canelo, but fighting Canelo’s sparring partner (Ronald Ellis) and a late-sub fringe contender (Kyrone Davis) ain’t gonna do it. Charlo and Andrade need to stop talking s__t and f__king around with no-hopers and fight each other. If they’re not willing to do that, they need to FORCE their promoters to make the most generous offer possible to the Golovkin-Murata winner and try to unify 160-pound belts. And if they can’t get that done, they need to emulate Canelo in other ways, such as fighting more often and rising in weight to knock off contenders in heavyweight weight classes.
Were you surprised by Canelo and Eddy Reynoso’s request to fight Makabu for the WBC Cruiserweight title? Absolutely! And I was impressed. It was a boss move. It sent a message to all the beltholders from 160-175 standing around waiting for Canelo to choose them for a career-high payday to get busy and make boss moves of their own between now and next May.
I think Canelo can compete with Makabu but I don’t know if he’s gone too far this time. I view it as a dangerous fight.
Even if he wins do you think the increase in weight to near 200lbs and then coming back to super middleweight or light heavyweight might zap his punch resistance and strength permanently like it seemed to do to Roy Jones Jr.? That’s one of the risks of putting on a lot of muscle weight to compete with world-class opponents who are naturally that much bigger/heavier. Sometimes the fighter who puts on the muscle can’t go back down. Michael Spinks remained at heavyweight after shocking Larry Holmes (and getting lucky in the rematch). Jones dropped back down to light heavyweight, and we all know that affected his body. He was a few years older than Canelo, and he had more mileage on his fighter’s odometer, so that could have been a factor in the steep decline but fighting above 175-180 pounds is still going to push Canelo’s body to the limit. We won’t know how it will affect him until he does it.