In This Corner

In This Corner

Friday, February 23, 2018

Canelo vs GGG - The Rematch

This Could Be Fight of the Year

The first fight was a great fight. It wasn't quite what I expected. I really thought Canelo would stay with his aggressive nature and fight on the inside. Gennady Golovkin thought he would too. In my opinion that move cost him the fight. Canelo is not a bad counter puncher, but he's no Floyd Mayweather. He can't make a living on the outside countering a fighter as good as GGG. I think most of the realistic boxing fans know that GGG won that fight. That draw was a gift to Canelo. 

Canelo says that this time he would not leave it up to the judges. That is good news boxing fans, because that was what was missing in the last fight. Canelo is an inside fighter when he is at his best. Sure he can counter effectively, but that's not his specialty. It's not going to win him fights alone. He's a flat footed power fighter. He can box I'm not saying he can't, but he's no Ali to be laying on the ropes. He's got to be the Canelo that got to this mega fight. Defend and parry the punches on the inside and throw the bombs. 

GGG said he is not going to change anything. He was really the winner of the last fight, but he to says he doesn't want to leave it in the hands of the judges, and if anyone wouldn't want to it's GGG. Canelo went against the ropes and tried to out punch GGG by making him miss. That was fine for Golovkin as he went right at him all night. He was the aggressor, he pushed the action, and he was clean and effective all night long. GGG took a couple of Canelo's hardest shots during the contest, but his chin held up like granite. 

The next fight should be as good as the first. I still think GGG is the better fighter, and I think he will win the fight, but he's probably not knocking out Canelo any more than he would him. They've both got solid chins. GGG out boxes him again, but can he beat the corrupt judges? 

Monday, March 13, 2017

Danny Jacobs Looks to Defy the Odds Against Gennady Golovkin

The Battle at the Garden

If you don't know who the knockout machine Gennady Golovkin or Triple G is by now, then you've obviously been living under a rock. The guy has been storming through the middle weight division like a tornado in a trailer park. His knockout ratio is among the highest in boxing. He's humble and down to earth. You probably haven't heard of him because he's not loud or flamboyant. He's all about business and knocking the next opponent out. Most boxing fans believe GGG is going to beat Daniel Jacobs the way he has all the knockout. 

Danny Jacobs knows who GGG is and what he's all about. He knows if he's not on his A-game then he'll be beaten and knocked out like the others have been. I expect for this reason that he will be sharp and as ready to fight as he's ever been. I think he knew he needed to be sharp against Peter Quillin and he proved to be just that. I think that's how he will be against GGG, and making this the toughest fight Golovkin has faced to date. Jacobs knows that GGG will cutoff the ring and come right after him. He moves well enough to evade the damaging punches and create countering opportunities others haven't been able to find. 

In Golovkin's last fight he faced a blown up welterweight champion, Kell Brook. The added weight didn't hinder Brook and he was out boxing the middleweight champion. I suspect that Golovkin knew the shots weren't going to knock him out, but he made boxing fans wonder what would happen if a true middleweight put it on him like that? Danny Jacobs is the guy who could do that and answer that question. He's got the hand speed and the footwork to box Golovkin. GGG cuts the ring off better than any other fighter in boxing, but Jacobs has good pivots and faint moves that could keep GGG off balance. He can turn GGG and turn the aggression against him. 

My Prediction

I do think that Danny Jacobs has the abilities to test GGG. He could test him in ways that he hasn't been tested up til now. David Lemieux has arguably GGG's toughest opponent so far, and where Jacobs doesn't hit with the force that Lemieux does, he's actually got better movement and ability to box and counter. Jacobs doesn't have to try to beat him at his own game. Jacobs can move and box him essentially taking the fight out of his hands. The problem is that he has to keep from getting caught by a fighter who has caught almost everyone he's faced. 

GGG cuts the ring off and hits his opponents with shots that have been compared with those of a cruiserweight. When he corners and traps Jacobs he's going to land those powerful shots and he's not going to take them any better than any of the others have done. I honestly believe Jacobs will test him and make a competitive fight out of it, but I don't think he's going to be the first fighter to beat Golovkin. GGG may have trouble getting a solid shot on Danny, but he'll get him. I think GGG knocks him out mid to late fight. 

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Keith Thurman vs Danny Garcia: The Battle of Unbeaten Champions

This will be a fight that separates the top fighters in the 147 division. This is the biggest test Danny Garcia has faced since moving up to the welterweight division. Keith Thurman has answered every challenge put in front of him so far. That includes his biggest win to date over Shawn Porter. 

Both fighters have faced some tough opposition, but neither has faced the kind of fighter that they'll see in each other. Danny Garcia faced his toughest opponents at 140 lbs. There are those who believe he should have two losses on his record as he moved up to welterweight. It's my opinion that he lost to Mauricio Herrera and Lamont Peterson. I also believe that Garcia's 16th fight against Ashley Theophane should have been a draw. 

Despite the fact that I think Danny should have 2 losses and a draw on his record, he's still an incredible fighter. He may not wow you in any one area, but Garcia is a fundamentally a great fighter and does everything at an above average level. Thurman has faced a complete fighter in Shawn Porter, but I think that Porter is more limited in terms of skill than Garcia. I'm not saying that I think Garcia wins against Porter in a head to head battle, but I think Garcia is the better textbook fighter. 

Keith Thurman who goes by One Time, is exactly what his name indicates. He's got very powerful shots and knows how to land them. Some guys would have to land the perfect shot to knock a guy out, but Keith Thurman just needs to catch them a little. His body has been questioned, as he's shown that he can be caught there. I don't think that Thurman is necessarily weak to the body, but it's more of a case of him just getting caught in the body with good shots instead of the head. If they'd gotten in up stairs we'd be questioning his chin. I think all roads point to Thurman vs. Spence, and we'll find out for sure then whether or not Thurman can handle real body shots. 

Danny Garcia can box or he can brawl on the inside. He can be the aggressor and he can sit back and counter another top level fighter all night long. As I'd said earlier I don't think Danny's record should be perfect, but I do recognize him as an elite level fighter. He really is one of the most well rounded fighters out there. He isn't the best at any one thing, but he's well above average at everything. He's consistent and makes the right decisions and adjustments. Never mind what I might think Danny Garcia is undefeated and has passed every test put before him so far, but none of those guys were Keith Thurman. 

Fight Prediction

Danny Garcia can box with Keith Thurman. There is no doubt Garcia has the tools to give Thurman hell from the outside. The problem for Danny is that Keith Thurman is going to get in close and that's not where Garcia wants to be. If that's where it goes, and I think it will, Danny Garcia will want it to go there. He has a better than average defense, but if there was one thing that you had to find wrong with him it'd be his defense. He's there to be hit and hit hard throughout a fight. If he lets his guard down against Thurman he will be knocked out. The best thing that Garcia could do is counter off of a good defense, but that's not what I think he'll do. 

The Garcia camp believes the hype. They think Thurman is weak to the body and plan on testing him there. That puts him in a bad place against Thurman. To really test the body he'll have to fight Thurman on the inside, and that's all wrong for Danny. I think Thurman would knock him out in that type of fight. I think that's where the fight will end up because of both fighters willingness to go there. Garcia believes he really has a shot on the inside, and Keith would be all too willing to trade power shots on the inside with Danny. That's where I see the fight going and I don't see any way that Garcia wins that kind of fight. 

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Hopkins Was Dominated in Final Fight - GGG vs Danny Jacobs in March - Miguel Cotto Confirms Kirkland Bout

Bernard Hopkins Knocked Out of the Ring 

Bernard Hopkins is without question one of the best boxers in boxing's glorious history, but at age 52 he looked terrible in his final fight. He'd been on a 2 year layoff and it showed very soon after the opening bell. I'm not taking anything away from Joe Smith with my next comment, and he is a very hard puncher with range. There is no way he beats a younger Bernard Hopkins, and I'm not talking that much younger than last night. Joe was following Bernard around the ring. Hopkins took advantage of it as well as he could, but that 52 year old version of Bernard Hopkins was unable to get Smith's respect. There were times when Hopkins landed flush and clean. Anyone watching the fight could see that it drew no respect from the young 27 year old Smith. The task that Hopkins put before himself was too much to overcome at his age and a two year layoff. 

Hopkins confirmed in the post fight interview that this was his final fight. I think we can all agree that it should be. Regardless of how badly it may have ended for the legend it's easy to see that he's done. Could he come back and fight a fighter that he should beat easily? Sure he could, but why comeback to fight some journeyman that has no real value? As bad as it went for him that was the ending he chose. There's no reason to comeback and risk something worse. This is where Hopkins moves on into the second phase of his life. His contribution to the sport is undeniable. I'm sure he'll continue to impact boxing through Golden Boy. However, I think he'd make an incredible trainer. 

Danny Jacobs Will Fight GGG

Gennady Golovkin vs. Danny Jacobs is set for Mach 18th on HBO pay-per-view. This was the time for Jacobs to accept the fight. In fact there are a lot of fight fans that think he has a shot at upsetting GGG. I will agree that the fight could be super competitive, but I don't see Jacobs winning this one. Those who think that Jacobs could win base it off GGG's last fight against Kell Brook. Early in that fight Brook found success, but I think that Golovkin walked into a lot of shots because he knew that he could take them. GGG has done nothing to make me think he couldn't win this fight, but Jacobs has done nothing to make me believe he doesn't have a shot. This should be an incredible fight. We could very well be watching the fight of the year only three months in. Outside of GGG fighting Canelo Alvarez this is the fight they wanted to see. 

Miguel Cotto vs. James Kirkland

Miguel Cotto Confirmed today that he would be fighting James Kirkland on February 25th. The fight will be at a catchweight of 153 lbs on HBO pay-per-view. There are a lot of boxing fans that want to see Cotto fight better opposition, but at this point in his career they want to see if he's still relevant, or is it all over for another one of boxing best fighters. Both fighters lost to Canelo Alvarez and have been inactive since then. Kirkland hasn't been relevant in quite some times, and at the age of 32 now is the time. He's lucky to be getting a shot at such a well named opponent and needs to make the most of the opportunity. Cotto is hoping to get a rematch with Canelo. This might not be the fight that most fight fans wanted to see, but it will be a very telling fight. The loser will probably not get another big fight.  

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Ward Wins a Controversial Decision over Kovalev

In my last post leading up to the fight I predicted a decision for Ward. That's what the final result was, but I honestly think they got it wrong just as I did with my prediction. 

As the fight started Kovalev was in total control. He easily won the first two rounds as he dropped Ward in the second. I thought he easily won the first four rounds controlling the fight with his jab. The 5th round was a close round as Andre Ward worked better on the inside, but Kovalev still controlled the distance fairly well. The 5th round was the only round I gave Ward in the first 6. 

This is where the fight got real close and rounds became hard to call, however Kovalev had a 5-1 round advantage at this point with a knockdown in the 2nd. I'll say this...Andre Ward did not win the last six rounds of this fight. There were some close rounds 7-12, but there's now way those were all Ward rounds for a second half shut out. The harder and more effective shots had been all Kovalev through the first half, and that didn't stop in the second half. Even the rounds I scored for Ward, Kovalev was still hitting him with hard effective shots. 

The jab was effective for Kovalev, but late in the fight Ward used better angles than he had before, as he could see that Kovalev would follow him instead of cutting off the ring. Ward was able to out score him at this point. Kovalev was still able to close the distance and did so fairly well, but he really needed to cut the ring off better instead. This is where Andre Ward was able to score on him coming in, and no doubt where the judges scored all the rounds for Ward. 

I think the 114-113 Kovalev is as close as you could've had the fight. That's assuming that Ward won all the close rounds. Which I think anyone who watched the fight knows he didn't. When Kovalev wanted to close the distance and hit Ward he could do it at will. There were times he got caught coming in, but he scored himself every time and with harder more effective blows. 

Andre Ward was given credit for showing true grit and turning the fight around and making it close. He did not beat Sergey Kovalev in that fight. The American fighter got the decision on American soil in a close fight. I think anyone objectively watching this fight would agree that Sergey Kovalev won this fight. Decisions like this are not good for the sport. Andre lost that fight and should give Kovalev the immediate rematch. 

The Fighters

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Kovalev vs. Ward - The Battle of Pound-4-Pound Greats

Pound for Pound

The perception for this fight is that it's power vs. speed, but that's not necessarily true. Both Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev are both skillful in the art of boxing. Kovalev hits extremely hard, however he works well behind the jab and sets his offense up very well. Ward moves well in the ring and counters off his great defense. Fighters hang themselves against Ward when they're too aggressive. 

Both fighters bring undefeated (30-0) records into the ring. Kovalev has more experience at the weight class, but Andre Ward is the more experienced fighter overall. They have both faced elite top level competition. It's my opinion however that they'll be facing the best fighter on their resumes when they fight each other. Going into the fight most fight fans say this could be fight of the year. 

Sergey Kovalev 

Andre Ward

My Prediction for the Fight

I could see Andre Ward dropping the first couple of rounds. He will feel Sergey Kovalev out during the first couple of rounds to see what he has. Ward will find that Kovalev can box well behind the Jab, and he'll find out that the champion hits very hard. There is a chance that Kovalev could catch Ward, but knowing Ward's skill set that wouldn't be easy or likely. However, we do all know that Ward can be caught, and Kovalev has finishing power if he does get sloppy. 

Andre Ward knows how to neutralize the power of Sergey Kovalev. He knows how to move and take the sting off the shots. Whereas he can be caught, it's probably isn't going to happen. We know that Ward is not going to stand toe-2-toe with the naturally stronger fighter. Kovalev has game changing power and Ward knows it, and he will not get careless at any point through the fight. He will stay on point and take all the necessary adjustments against the power hitting Kovalev. 

Andre Ward by Unanimous Decision. 

Saturday, September 10, 2016

The Towel Was Thrown on Kell Brook - GGG Still the Middleweight Champion of the World

The Fight Nobody Expected

Kell Brook was an undefeated welterweight champion. He really had nothing to prove by moving up to middleweight and fighting one of the most feared champions in boxing history. The list of guys who've got a reputation and have ducked GGG is almost as large at the list of reputable fighters that he's beaten. Kell accepted the challenge and went for the champion's belts at 160, as he moved up from 147.

There was almost nobody that gave Brook a chance of beating the hard hitting middleweight champ. Most of the doubt came from a recent fight with Canelo Alvarez vs Amir Khan. I had scored that fight in Khan's favor 4-1, before he was viciously knocked out in the 6th round. Everyone figured that GGG could turn Brook's lights out when he wanted to. Similar to what Canelo did when he was done being out boxed by the weaker man.

Fighting the Most Feared Fighter in the Game Today

Kell Brook was buckled by a power shot that clipped him, but other than that I thought he won the opening round. It was close and some might have given it to GGG. The second round was not as close and clearly went to GGG. The 3rd round would be a clear round for Brook, and by this point he'd shown that good fighters with decent footwork could be effective against the middleweight champ.

Had Kell Brook exposed GGG?

I'm not ready to say he was exposed without more evidence to support the claim. However, Kell Brook was out boxing the feared middleweight champion. Those who thought GGG would just walk through Brook's shots were wrong. Kell Brook hit him with several shots that stopped him right there in his tracks. He felt the power that Kell had told everyone GGG would respect. On the other side GGG had hit Brook with power shots that most wondered if he could take, and he did although he felt the power as early as round one.

In the 5th round Kell Brook's corner thought he'd taken enough abuse. They threw in the towel on their fighter when he was taking as much abuse as he had all night long. Personally I didn't think that he was a beaten fighter. He was getting hit by flurries of punches, and he was having trouble getting out of the way of the punishment, but he hadn't been dropped, didn't take a knee to get a break, or show any sign that he couldn't continue to fight.

Golovkin would have probably beat Brook had the towel not been thrown, and that was what most boxing fans expected to happen when the fight was announced. We don't know that he would've but Kell was having trouble escaping GGG, who cuts the ring off as well as anyone. The power of GGG had been hard for the legit middleweight fighters to handle. Brook had absorbed it as well as any of the others had. There would be no reason for a rematch, but based off what I saw I think that Brook would do even better in a rematch. He exposed a few weaknesses in GGG game plan.

My Final Take on the Fight

I thought the stoppage was premature. That was the trainers of the fighter and part of their job is to protect him. I didn't see enough evidence to justify stopping the fight. He was moving and having trouble escaping GGG who was cutting off the ring. That could have gone Kell's way still, but his corner who knows him better than I do thought he was done. I think Brook had moved well against GGG earlier in the fight when he tried cutting him off. He also proved that a boxer who can move his feet and box well from the outside can have success against Golovkin.

When Kell used his jab, moved his feet, and controlled the range, he was having success against the most feared champion in boxing right now. Golovkin was able to cut the ring off, but Kell countered that with good pivot moves that kept him in punching distance. That's where he found himself catching GGG with counter shots. His movement toward the ropes up and down kept him in good shape, but when he stayed too long in the corners or his back to the ropes it got dangerous. By the time Brook's corner threw the towel into the ring he was having trouble getting away from the pressure Golovkin was applying.

Kell Brook was able to frustrate GGG in a way that none of the other true middleweight fighters had done. The power of Golovkin was on full display, but the elusiveness of Brook rarely offered him a chance to just pound on him. When Golovkin did unload on him the effects were clear that he was hurting Brook. In the 5th round the corner thought he was hurt too bad to continue. His ability to get away from GGG had clearly diminished, but he was still game and appeared to be ready to fight. There's no way to know what might have happened, but Kell Brook made GGG look as bad as I've ever seen him look.

 Note: Kell Brook reportedly went to the hospital with a fractured bone on his face.