by Hans Olson
Former light heavyweight champ Jean Pascal hasn’t had much luck finding an opponent willing to face him in the ring lately—he hasn’t fought since his loss to Bernard Hopkins last May.
Jean’s hard luck continued yesterday when the New York Giants defeated the New England Patriots in Superbowl XLVI.
You see, the pride of Laval made a small, friendly wager…
He bet on Tom Brady and the Patriots, putting his Mercedes S550 on the line.
See, I thought it was awesome…but, apparently others didn’t.
Many felt Jean was acting irresponsibly, citing modern economic hardships and the reckless nature of sports gambling.
People were somehow offended.
We live in an age where if you say or do anything that offends someone (in any fashion) you’ll have to come back with the obligatory apology statement. Today through his Facebook page, Jean did just that.
“First and foremost I would like to apologize to anyone who was offended about my wager with my friend. As an athlete I am extremely passionate about sports and sometimes my emotions get the best of me. I really enjoyed the Super Bowl game; it was very intense! My friend and I made a friendly wager about the game. It did involve my car, but I neglected to mention that my friend would only keep my car for a month. Times are still extremely hard and different for all of us and I would never make a mockery out of these hard economic times by giving away a car. The wager I made was between a close friend of mine and it was simply that; a friendly wager. I do not condone gambling of any kind. This has definitely been a lesson for me. In the future I will be more responsible with what I choose to put on social media. Again, I apologize.”
So there you have it…people need to settle down. As long his friend doesn’t wreck the thing over the next month, all will be okay.
It’s funny that people don’t have a problem with Jean Pascal betting his life each and every time he steps in the ring…yet betting his car in a humorous incident is so terrible…
What does that say?
Lighten up folks.
Ok back to boxing…which is something that Adonis “Superman” Stevenson has been hard at work with.
Stevenson—who is now being trained by Hall of Famer Emanuel Steward at the Kronk Gym in Detroit—is in preparation for his February 18 bout against former NABF champion Jesus “El Martillo” Gonzales (27-1, 14 KOs) a 12-rounder that is also an IBF voluntary eliminator for the No. 2 position. If he wins, he will put himself in a great position to fight superstar Lucian Bute later this year.
“I’m going to prove in this fight that I deserve a world title shot,” said Stevenson in a press release Monday. “I’m going to make a statement because I want Bute! I called him out after my last fight. He said he wants to fight (Andre) Ward or (Carl) Froch, which I can understand but, if they are not available, I want to prove I am the best alternative. I’m not going anywhere and soon he will have to fight me. I will be the No. 2-rated contender after this fight and soon after I will be his mandatory.”
As far as Gonzales?
“My opponent is a good puncher who has good speed,” continued Adonis. “I’m going to box him and then catch him. When I do catch him, he’s going down. He can’t stay up with me.”
The addition of Emanuel Steward can only help the hard-hitting southpaw from Longueuil.
“I’m training in Detroit with Emanuel Steward. There are many good sparring partners there. I’m getting focused and will be ready for this fight. Emanuel is teaching me good techniques. I’m going to be faster and stronger, use my jab and left hand more, with better footwork, defense and more confidence than ever. I will be a more complete fighter. Emanuel Steward is the step-up I need to win a world title.”
Fighting on the same “Fast and Furious” card February 18 is Tyler Asselstine, who Boxing Insider caught up with Monday evening.
“Pain is temporary, pride is forever,” said Tyler when I asked how training has been going leading up to the 18th.
“Hans I’ve been training hard. My opponent just got changed—I’m fighting Nicola Cipolletta from Italy. His record is 8-0 (2KO) and I’m very excited to put on a great performance for all of the fans in Montreal at the bell centre on Feb 18.”
Asselstine himself is 8-0, with 5 of those wins coming by way of knockout.
Boxing Insider’s Hans Olson can be reached at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @hansolson.