Forget the first fight. This was the realistic outcome all along, but for perhaps two different reasons:
Either Arthur was always the superior boxer & had underestimated the hard punching Columbian, allowing Edison to drag him into a brawl first time out, or Miranda, who still has KO power in his right hand, has at last been exposed as the agro, limited slugger he always was.
Edison Miranda’s (30-3-26) fierce competitiveness & inner instinct for combat may have finally taken their toll. His first fight with Abraham was a bruising battle, but the KO at the hands of reigning middleweight champion of the world, Kelly Pavlik was devastating, and would be hard for any fighter to come back from.
Edison’s career seemed in question until KOing a 3rd tier, soft David Banks on ESPN’s Friday Night Fights in front of boxing advocates watching on national TV, which did much to help boost his fan base in the US, & delighted the rabid Columbian contingency. His one punch power was a definite, & so it seemed to most observers was Miranda was ‘back’.
He looked to be on the right track, & needed to fight a top 10 guy who’d take him some rounds before stepping back in with any world champion.
But instead, Miranda began calling out Mikkel Kessler, who had world title aspirations to fulfill (which he did via TKO12, vs. Dimitri Sartison for the WBA trinket) instead of taking a meaningless bout with Miranda with no belt at stake. Miranda continued showing absolute disrespect toward the former undefeated, undisputed super middleweight champ & reveling in delusion; stabbing for a big money fight by continuously claiming at the top of his non-stop voice, while simultaneously over-working his publicist, that everyone from middleweight through super was ducking him.
So in steps arch nemesis, former conqueror & IBF world champion Arthur Abraham (27-0-22) who didn’t have to take the fight, but wanted to put some closure on their first fight, where he fought Miranda’s fight & took his best shots, hence sustaining a broken jaw; and kept fighting back through every punch that landed on the aforementioned jaw to come away with a unanimous decision victory.
Edison & his camp cried ‘hometown decision’ (the bout was held in Germany) & milked their claim to the hilt, & it worked. But it looked to my eyes, regardless of the 5 points deducted from Edison for a number of illegal infractions, that Abraham had clearly done enough to beat Miranda at his own game.
But with the scores tallied closely enough to make most observers wonder what the outcome would’ve been if the 5 points hadn’t been deducted from Miranda, raising intrigue over who’d win in a rematch minus an over-officiating ref.
In Abraham’s mind, he’d already beaten Miranda before, so this time, with Miranda’s overblown protests making it one of the game’s more recent truly heated rivalries, it was time to cement his dominance over Miranda once and for all, & into the minds of all fight fans. With the fight being held in the US & televised on SHOWTIME, the worldwide exposure for the victor in this revved up rematch would be the obvious to land a unification bout of sorts with world champion Kelly Pavlik.
I know a lot of American boxing insiders & fans favored Miranda’s punching power to pull him through by way of KO. Just how long the fight would go, was solely up to him. And at first, it looked that way.
From the opening bell till the end of the third, Miranda threw hard, multiple combo’s while Arthur remained calm, and showed a sound, tight defense, deciding to cover up and let Miranda let fly with hard shots that rocked Abraham, who shook them off, showing a sturdy chin, however most of Miranda’s bombs were defended by Abraham’s gloves, or missed their mark due to the superior foot work of Arthur, who’d counter with single shots & range-finding left-hooks on occasion.
However, from the start of the third stanza, Abraham stepped up the pace & dominated with precise punches of all variety:
Drilling Miranda with fast-handed jabs & bringing the right hand behind them with perfect torque, then whipping a shortened-up left hook at the chin and gut of Edison, whilst continuing the use of consummate defense & beautiful ring generalship. His hand speed & surprisingly, his overall strength was looking painfully superior to a confounded looking Miranda at the bell.
In the fourth, “King” Arthur patiently took his time in the continuation of dissecting Miranda with methodical blunt-force determination, & then lowered the boom in the form of a right hand that clipped the chin of Miranda & deposited him on his ass in the corner of the ring with his feet coming up off the floor & into the air. He beat the count of referee Telis Asimenos only to be floored again by a follow-up barrage, & finally, with the coolness of an assassin, champion Abraham cracked Miranda with a left hook for the third and final knockdown, & the fight was waved off at 1:13 of the round.
For “King” Arthur Abraham, to disappear from American soil & defend his IBF middle belt in the obscurity of Europe is not an option in his mind, proclaiming:
“I love the American people. They are very nice. I love America.”
He also made it very clear that his next fights are hoped to be on US soil when he stated, “I want (to fight) Oscar De La Hoya & Kelly Pavlik.”
He later conceded, “I Love Florida so much, I’d like to buy a home here.”
It’s obvious he’s on a mission to prove himself the best in the middleweight division. Zeus knows he’ll fight anybody, & come in at tip-top shape. Fighting a unifying bout with Kelly Pavlik is said to be his desire, but that’s a tall order. Literally. Abraham would be the shorter man, but this could work to his advantage by using his knowledge & nuances to attack from angles & get inside over Pavlik’s long shots whilst getting his own shots in with fast, hard combinations. His size & defensive prowess may also pose a difficult target for Pavlik to hit. No matter how it unfolds, this is a necessary fight that deserves to be made for the good of boxing.
Edison Miranda’s future as a title challenger looks bleak to say the least. He needs desperately to take time off to re-consider his career.
Despite claiming to be in the best shape of his life, it’s sad to say, but for every muscle Miranda has in his questionably chiseled body, & for every mile he runs while training, if he remains the same squared up, straight forward scrapper, bet on him to lose. And fighting the elite at ANY weight he chooses should absolutely be out of the question.
The gig is up on Edison.
It’s too late to teach the ‘ol dog Edison how to box.
He’s been extremely easy to figure out by true students of the game.
His lack of basic boxing knowledge has all but deleted him as a contender.
If, and when he decides to step into the squared circle again, unless he’s matched with absolute caution, he’ll be cannon fodder for the next guy on the way up. Miranda is damaged goods after the beatings he’s taken, and a threat to himself, if he continues his well documented charade.
Heed this warning well Edison: if you open your big mouth again to say something along the lines about being some sort of badass & a threat, not only will it fall on deaf ears here, but after it’s all said & done, there’ll be no more television appearances, no more magazine interviews, nobody left to listen to your ludicrous rants, & you’ll be fighting in obscurity, wearing a permanent “J” across your forehead for all future opponents to zero in on.
Because that “J” will stand for “Journeyman.”
Philip H. Anselmo
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