Jaime Munguia Set to Return Against Takeshi Inoue
By: Hector Franco
The return of one of 2018’s breakout stars will take place this weekend when Mexico’s Jaime Munguia (31-0, 26 KOs) attempts to make the third successful title defense of his WBO super welterweight championship against Japan’s Takeshi Inoue (13-0, 7 KOs).
Munguia was first heard of by a majority of boxing fans last year as a potential opponent for former middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin. Golovkin ended up facing Vanes Martirosyan instead when the Nevada Athletic Commission did not approve Munguia due to his young age and lack of experience of fighting in the middleweight division.
It may have been a blessing in disguise for the 22-year old Munguia as he instead went on to face Brooklyn’s Sadam Ali for the WBO super welterweight title. The Brooklyn, New York native, was coming off of the most significant victory of his career in defeating future Hall-of-Famer Miguel Cotto by decision in Madison Square Garden. Munguia was not intimidated by Ali and made quick work of him scoring two knockdowns in the first round and two more in rounds two and four en route to a dominating fourth-round stoppage.
After the bout with Ali, Munguia made a quick return in July 2018 when he faced former super welterweight champion, Liam Smith. Once again Munguia dominated his opponent dropping him in the sixth round to win a clear unanimous decision victory. Against Smith, the young Mexican showed that not only does he pack a punch, but has the ability to go a full twelve rounds.
Following the fight with Smith, Munguia faced Brandon Cook on the undercard of Golovkin’s rematch with Saul Alvarez in September 2018. The fight only lasted three rounds with Munguia proving his superiority from the sound of the first bell.
Munguia’s opponent on Saturday is undefeated and seven years his senior. Inoue will be fighting for the first time in the United States and only his second fight outside of his native Japan. He is relatively unknown outside of Japan making him a mystery for many boxing fans. The odds are heavily against Inoue to defeat Munguia; however, bigger upsets have taken place in the sport. Japan has seen a recent influx of great fighters such as bantamweight champion Naoya Inoue, flyweight champion Kosei Tanaka and super featherweight champion Masayuki Ito. Against Munguia, Inoue will look to place himself on the list of the latest set of Japanese world champions.
Munguia will look to add another title defense to his ledger. Unfortunately for Munguia, he may be on the wrong side of the fence in his division with the majority of the champions falling under the Premier Boxing banner. The young Mexican’s goal is to one day step in the ring with Canelo Alvarez. Should he continue winning, it is a possibility that the fight can take place in the near future. The two men are both promoted by Golden Boy Promotions.
The broadcast’s co-main event will feature “regular” WBA featherweight champion Jesus Rojas (26-2-2, 19 KOs) taking on China’s Can “Monster” Xu (15-2, 2 KOs). Rojas is coming off a unanimous decision loss to Joseph Diaz. Rojas was able to keep his title per WBA rules due to Diaz not making the featherweight weight limit of 126 pounds.
The Puerto Rican won the title against the Dominican Republic’s Claudio Marrero scoring a seventh-round knockout in Las Vegas the day before the first encounter between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin.
Rojas’ opponent is also unknown in the United States having fought a vast majority of his fights in China. Xu will be making his second appearance in the U.S. and holds some physical advantages over Rojas. Xu is 24 years of age making him eight years younger than the Puerto Rican (32). The Chinese fighter also has the edge in height and reach. It has been shown that Rojas can be outboxed. With just two knockouts in 17 professional bouts, it is likely going to be the game plan for Xu to use lateral movement to offset any of Rojas’ oncoming attacks.
On paper, the card in Houston looks to be one to showcase two world champions who will go on to bigger and better things. However, boxing matches are not fought on paper they are fought in the ring.
The card will begin at 5 pm ET on Saturday, January 26, 2019, on the DAZN streaming app.
DAZN Boxing Results: Cano Stuns With First Round KO Of Linares, Andrade Dominates Akavov
By: Sean Crose
New York native Amanda Serrano made an enormous splash at the Theater at Madison Square Garden Friday night as she won her 7th – that’s 7th – world title in stunning fashion, stopping Eva Voraberger within seconds of the first round of their title bout with a tremendous body shot. By besting Austria’s 24-5 Voraburger within 35 seconds, the 36-1-1 Serrano earned herself the WBO super flyweight title. A high profile bout with the undefeated Katie Taylor may be in Serrano’s future.
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
Chris Algieri stepped into the ring next to face former sparring partner Daniel Gonzalez. Since New York’s Algieri was essentially fighting on his home turf, it was easy to consider the match not much more than a tuneup walking in. Gonzalez held his own, however. What’s more, the 23-3 Algieri looked like, at 34, he had aged a bit. Ultimately, it didn’t matter. Algieri earned a unanimous decision win against the 17-1-1 Gonzalez. Surprisingly, some in the crowd booed at the decision.
Next up was Irish/Australian IBF junior featherweight champ, the 20-0 TJ Doheny. His opponent was the 16-3-1 Ryohei Takahashi of Japan. Takahashi took the fight on a few weeks notice, and looked outclassed by his stronger, sharper punching foe. In the third, Doheny sent his man to the mat. Takahashi got up, but Doheny continued to land powerfully and essentially dominated. Referee Michael Ortega stopped the fight in the twelfth while Takahashi was receiving punishment.
In the co-main, Jorge Linares, 45-4, fought Pablo Cesar Cano, 31-7-1, in a scheduled 12 round super lightweight affair. A Cano right hand took Linares down in the first. Linares got up – and then went down again later in the round. He went down once more, got up once more, and took more punishment. The referee wisely stopped the fight. It was a stunning upset and a brief, brilliant performance from an impressive ring veteran.
It was time for the main event. The 26-0 Demetrius Andrade stepped into the ring to defend his WBO middleweight title against the 19-2 Artur Akavov. Andrade looked like his athletic, sharp self in the first, dominating the tempo and landing effectively. The second round was a close affair, though Andrade seemed to have edged it. The third round was close, as well, with Akavov catching Andrade with a quick uppercut.
Andrade came around at the very end of the fourth, but it was proving to be a close fight, with Andrade’s skill and Akavov’s awkwardness playing well off one another. Andrade’s jab told the story in the fifth, as it was becoming clear that Akavov couldn’t land cleanly or often on his man. The sixth saw Akavov unable to get in range. By the seventh, things had become completely one sided, with Akavov simply looking outclassed and perhaps a bit wiped out. Andrade continued his pattern of hitting and not getting hit in the eighth.
Akavov actually had a few moments in the ninth where he looked to be starting to dominate. Andrade, however, was able to keep his range. Akavov did so little in the tenth, that one had to wonder if he’d actually make the final bell. The eleventh was more target practice for Andrade, who seemed to want to stop his helpless foe, but simply may not have had the power to at middleweight. However, with Andrade banging away at his man, the fight was stopped by the referee late in the twelfth. The fans and the DAZN broadcast team seemed unhappy and perplexed, but referee Arthur Mercante was clearly willing to err on the side of caution.
“You put GGG in front of me,” said Andrade after the win, “I’m gonna destroy him.”
Daniel Jacobs: “I Have An Opportunity To Make History!”
By: Sean Crose
“It is such an honor and privilege to be a part of DAZN and Matchroom Boxing,” IBF middleweight titlist Daniel Jacobs recently said, “thank you guys for believing in me.” Jacobs, who is set to face Canelo Alvarez in a May 4th, Cinco de Mayo weekend superbout, was clearly happy with how is career is now panning out. “Displaying my skills on such a platform,” he said, “would do wonders for my career I have an opportunity to make history! Plus I have the best team to ensure the best possible opportunities for my career.” Jacobs, who threw in his lot with Matchroom honcho Eddie Hearn not that long ago, is being rewarded by getting a chance to take down Canelo, the biggest name in all of boxing.
“This is the moment that I’ve been waiting for my whole entire career,” Jacobs said. “I’ve been through so much in life just to get to this point, I look forward to taking advantage of such an amazing opportunity. Canelo is a great champion and a worthy opponent to ensure an epic fight the fans will remember for ages!! In order to be the best, you have to beat the best – this with this fight represents to me.”
Hearn himself had high praise for his fighter. “Danny is where it all started for us in America,” he said, “and I want to thank him for believing in us…it has been a pleasure working with him and his manager Keith Connolly who has fought every inch to get Danny the best opportunities and position within the sport.” Hearn also had favorable words for DAZN, who Matchroom has a deal with. ““For DAZN,” said Hearn, “this is another major signing as we continue to build an emphatic team of fighters – Jacobs vs. Canelo is a wonderful addition for subscribers and fans, it truly is one of the great fights in boxing today.”
Connolly also weighed in on the matter, expressing his happiness with how things have been working out for Team Jacobs. “We are super excited to have re-signed with Matchroom Boxing,” Jacob’s manager claimed. “Eddie has done a fabulous job guiding Danny to a World title and now a mega fight. He has delivered on everything he said he would when we first met him…we are grateful that DAZN has such belief in Daniel Jacobs as they look to push him into superstardom over the next chapter of his career.”
DAZN Boxing Preview: Andrade vs. Akavov
By: Michael Kane
It’s Friday night fight night this week as WBO middleweight champion Demetrious ‘Boo Boo’ Andrade makes the first defence of his title when he takes on Artur Akavov (19-2, 8 KOs).
Andrade won the belt by beating Walter Kautondokwa for the vacant title after champion Billy Joe Saunders vacated due to facing a ban for an adverse drug test.
The 30 year old Andrade (26-0, 16 KOs) will be looking to put on a show at the Madison Square Garden Theater on a card that features several title bouts.
The 33 year old Russian, Akavov, beat Gonzalo Gaston Coria by unanimous decision in May 2018. He is a former WBO European champion and has faced former champ Billy Joe Saunders, falling to an unanimous decision defeat in 2016.
Andrade will be looking to put on a good performance to open up the chance of unifying the division against the likes of Canelo Alvarez, Rob Brant and Daniel Jacobs.
Irishman TJ Doheny (20-0, 14 KOs) defends his IBF super bantamweight title when he takes on Japan’s Ryohei Takahashi (16-3-1, 6 KOs).
This will be Doheny’s first defence having won the belt in August last year by unanimous decision against Takahashi’s compatriot, Ryosuke Iwasa.
Takahashi is on a 5 fight win streak which includes winning the IBF Pan Pacific super bantamweight title.
The third world title fight on the card will see Amanda Serrano (35-1-1, 26 KOs) bid to become world champion in a 7th weight class. Serrano will face Era Voraberger (24-5, 11 KOs) for the vacant WBO super flyweight title. The Austrian, Voraberger has also won a couple of titles at different weight classes.
Also on the card, and likely to be chief support to the main event is the ever popular Jorge Linares (45-4, 28 KOs) who is on the trail of another world title shot. Linares takes on Mexican Pablo Cesar Cano (31-7, 21 KOs). Both men will be fighting for Cano’s WBC International Silver title.
Another former world champion Chris Algieri (22-3, 8 KOs) faces Daniel Gonzalez (17-1, 7 KOs) on the card.
The event will be shown live on DAZN in the U.S and on Sky Sports in the UK.
Daniel Jacobs To Fight Canelo Alvarez As Part Of Three Fight Deal
By: Sean Crose
Canelo Alvarez, the biggest fighter in the world today, will be facing a top opponent in Daniel Jacobs on a major card to be aired live on the DAZN streaming service this May 4th, Cinco De Mayo weekend. Canelo-Jacobs, which perfectly fits the bill of a Pay Per View fight, will be seen for free by DAZN subscribers. It’s all a part of a three fight deal Brooklyn’s Jacobs has inked with DAZN and promoter Eddie Hearn.
“This is the opportunity I have been waiting for,” Jacobs says. “The opportunity to achieve greatness inside the ring, I have always believed I can beat Canelo, and on May 4 live on DAZN, I will get my chance to play it out. It’s been nearly four years since Canelo has faced an American challenger. It’s going to be a huge event where I believe I will cement myself as the best middleweight in the division.”
Jacobs, who fought an impressive battle against Gennady Golovkin in March of 2017, will be stepping into the biggest fight of his career. Although many felt Jacobs won the Golovkin fight, Golovkin walked away with a controversial decision win. Golovkin then went on to fight Canelo twice, drawing once and losing once, both in controversial fashion. With a third Canelo-GGG fight apparently not happening (at least for the time being) a very interesting throwdown between Canelo and Jacobs now awaits.
For the Canelo-Jacobs match will essentially decide who the top fighter is in the middleweight division. Three out of the four major belts are at stake, along with the Ring Magazine lineal championship. Although the location of the match has yet to be announced, Las Vegas might look to be a sure thing, with New York and Dallas also being in the running. “What a fight!,” says Jacob’s promoter, Hearn. “I can’t tell you how happy I am that Danny Jacobs gets this opportunity to fight Canelo on Cinco de Mayo in a massive unification fight.”
Although Canelo-Jacobs is a top level bout by anyone’s standards, the fact that it is the first truly major match to be aired on DAZN makes the pairing particularly intriguing. “On any other network or platform, Canelo vs. Jacobs would be an expensive pay-per-view,” Joseph Markowski, DAZN EVP of North America, says. “At DAZN, we believe the best fights should be available to our subscribers at no extra charge.”
Jacobs has stayed busy since the Golovkin fight, earning the IBF middleweight title by besting Sergiy Derevyanchenko last fall. Canelo, on the other hand, won the WBC and WBA titles via his win over Golovkin in September. The WBO middleweight strap is held by Demetrius Andrade, who will be fighting Artur Akavov this Friday in New York in a match to be aired live on DAZN. One of the reasons the signing of Jacobs to DAZN is so significant is that now every major titlist in the middleweight division fights on the streaming service. That means a battle for all the major belts and titles could very well arrive in the near future.
The missing piece to all this is, of course, Golovkin, who has not declared what his next move will be now that HBO, which regularly hosted his fights, is out of the boxing business.
Artur Beterbiev To Leave DAZN For New Deal With Top Rank and ESPN
By Jake Donovan
A new year, another new platform for Artur Beterbiev.
Just one fight into his recently signed deal with Eddie Hearn and sports streaming service DAZN USA, the unbeaten light heavyweight titlist from Canada has decided to sever all ties and start fresh in 2019. That path will lead to a lucrative pact with Top Rank and ESPN.
Le Journal de Montreal was the first to report this development.
Photo Credit: Artur Beterbiev Twitter Account
Beterbiev (13-0, 13KOs)—who has for years has held a tumultuous relationship with promoter Yvon Michel signed a three-fight co-promotional agreement with Hearn last summer, leading to his appearance on the stateside launch of DAZN USA’s boxing content.
The 33-year old retained his perfect 100% knockout-to-win rate, but had to climb off the canvas before putting away previously unbeaten Callum Johnson in the 4th round of their title fight last October in Chicago, Ill.
His next fight was to come in December at New York City’s Madison Square Garden, where Beterbiev would’ve faced Long Island’s Joe Smith Jr. The light heavyweight title fight would’ve been the perfect complement to the debut of Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez both at MSG and on DAZN, but Beterbiev balked at the fight, instead electing to sit out the rest of 2018.
The new year only produced the same tricks.
A second attempt to reschedule Beterbiev-Smith led event handlers to tentatively set aside a late February date at Nassau Coliseum, less than an hour from Smith’s eastern Long Island hometown of Mastic, New York. Beterbiev once again reversed course, this time with the real reasons revealed—his intentions to fight elsewhere.
Despite a three-fight deal in place, the light heavyweight titlist found a loophole that could potentially end the deal. According to a report from The Ring senior writer Mike Coppinger, Beterbiev’s promotional pact with Michel only remained in place through his alignment with adviser Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) platform.
Haymon agreed to release Beterbiev in lieu of going to court over failure to meet his mandatory minimum of contractually guaranteed fights, which in turn nullified the boxer’s existing agreement with Michel. In turn, it would also effectively terminate any such arrangement with Hearn and DAZN, although that side is still being sorted out.
While there remains a chance that Beterbiev and Michel—who has a strong relationship with Top Rank founder Bob Arum—will remain in business together, his next move in the ring won’t take place until past business is cleared up.
What’s abundantly clear is that his next fight won’t come against Smith Jr., who is now being steered towards a March 9 title challenge of unbeaten Dmitry Bivol.
Demetrius Andrade: “My Job Is To Win”
By: Sean Crose
“It feels great to be out so soon,” says WBO middleweight champ Demetrius Andrade. “It’s the first time that has happened to me for so long…it used to be eight months or once a year, so it just goes to show the difference between the levels of promoters that you go with.” The 26-0 Rhode Island native is set to face the 19-2 Artur Akavov this Friday night at New York’s Madison Square Garden Theater in a bout that will be aired live on the DAZN streaming service. Since teaming up with British super promoter Eddie Hearn, the once inactive Andrade is on the road to being one of the more active name fighters in the business.
“Eddie is keeping me active and he knows that the more active I am the better the fighter I am,” says Andrade, whose last bout was a sound decision win against Water Kautondokwa at the TD Center in Boston last October. “Eddie wants to make a statement, show people that the way it’s done in the UK is how it should be done in the US, he’s young and I am too – we have the same hunger, he wants to be the top promoter and I want to be the top fighter. Knowing I can be one of the leading fighters on DAZN and they are doing a great job all around.”
Although well regarded, undefeated, and in possession of a title, Andrade still feels he has something to prove. He’s not, however, letting some dry spots on his resume get the better of him. “I’m undefeated,” he says, “(a) 2008 Olympian, and everyone has their time and obstacles to get over.” Matchroom Boxing, the force behind the Andrade-Akavov fight, states that “ Andrade’s clash with Akavov is part of a huge triple-header of World title action at Madison Square Garden, as TJ Doheny defends his IBF World Super-Bantamweight title against Japan’s Ryohei Takahashi.”
“I’m not satisfied,” Andrade says. “I’ve always been at the top but now I’m growing in the top of the mainstream. The boxing world knows I’m the baddest man out there but not having the right promotion behind me putting me out there has hurt me and that’s why I’ve made the changes and Matchroom and DAZN know what I can bring and they can move me to the next level – my job is to win.”
Joshua Franco: “I Want All The Champions”
By: Sean Crose
Joshua Franco has but one loss on his record. Now the Texan has a chance to even the score. For the 14-1-1 Franco will be facing off against the 12-2-1 Emmanuel Fernandez (the man who bested him last March) at the Toyota Center in Houston for the NABF Bantamweight title on the 19th of this month. Winning the belt, of course, can lead to bigger things. Yet Franco makes it clear that the NABF title itself is nothing to sneeze at. “Even having that title itself,” he says, “that’s a big accomplishment in boxing.” Interestingly enough, Franco is interested in becoming top dog at Junior Bantamweight, where some very notable names reside.
“I don’t have a problem making 115,” he says, “115 is what I have my eyes on right now.” Some of Franco’s neighbors at Junior Bantamweight will be none other than Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez, and Srisaket Sor Rungvisai, two of the biggest names in the entire sport of boxing. “I’m really just focusing on the champions at 115,” Franco claims. The man is clearly hungry. “Right now at 115, I want all the champions,” he says. “Whoever has the belts I feel I can compete and even dominate.” First, though, there’s the matter of Fernandez.
Even though Franco’s last fight ended up being a draw against Oscar Negrete, he’s a man willing to learn from his mistakes. “I learned the hard way,” he says of the first Fernandez throwdown. After dropping Fernandez, Joshua claims his corner told him to simply break his man down. He didn’t listen, and the results ended up speaking for themselves. “To be honest,” he claims, “I feel like I got a little bit winded.” Franco doesn’t intend to make the same mistakes twice. “Just training even harder,” says the fighter. “I’m pushing myself to the limit.”
Franco also wants to make a good impression. “The draws,” he says, “they don’t give me the excitement that a win does…I’m going to be more dominant.” A plus for Franco, who is backed by noted and powerful Golden Boy Promotions, is that he’ll be on a major card for the Fernandez rematch. For the main event that evening in Houston will be the Jaime Munguia-Takeshi Inoue WBO Super Welterweight title fight. “People will get to know me better,” he says of the opportunity to be on cards of note. “Right now,” he says, “being on big cards is probably what’s good for me.” Ultimately, however, Franco feels winning a title will be the best thing for him in the future. “Just get a world title,” he says for his plan for 2019.
Franco-Fernandez will be aired live on DAZN streaming service as part of the Munguia-Inoue card on January 19th at 8:00 PM Eastern Standard Time.
Super Bantamweight Titlist TJ Doheny Teams Up With Matchroom Boxing
By: Sean Crose
“I am absolutely ecstatic to be joining the principal team in professional boxing today,” says Ireland’s TJ Doheny, the IBF super bantamweight world champion. Doheny, according to Matchroom Boxing “has signed a promotional deal with Matchroom Boxing USA and will make the first defense of his IBF World Super-Bantamweight title at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York on Friday January 18, live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports in the UK.”
“I believe with Matchroom Boxing and my management team at MTK Global I have the perfect blend to help me achieve my ultimate goals in the sport of boxing,” says Doheny. Doheny, who won his belt by besting Ryosuke Iwasa in Japan last summer, boasts an undefeated 20-0 record. His opponent for the 18th has yet to be announced.
“I’m delighted to welcome TJ to the team,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “TJ is always in great fights and he is coming off a huge win in Japan to capture the title.” Doheny is one of numerous fighters of note in recent memory who have teamed up with Hearn. “He (Doheny) will make the first defense of his title at Madison Square Garden on Jan 18,” the promoter continues, “and if he comes through will attempt to unify the division against WBA champ Danny Roman in the spring. There are some great fights to be made at 122lbs and we expect to see all of them on DAZN.”
Doheny, who now lives in New Zealand, has fought most of his matches in his homeland, though this will be his fourth time fighting in the US. Although not well known to American audiences, Doheny’s a belt holder in a division that includes Guillermo Rigondeaux. Isaac Dogboe, Rey Vargas, and Diego De La Hoya. Fighting, as he will be on the undercard of the Demtrius Andrade-Artur Akavov WBO middleweight title bout, should help expose the man to a wider audience.
This will be Doheny’s first fight in Madison Square Garden. New York, with it’s large Irish population, could present a comfortable audience, as Boston has in two of Doheny’s previous American fights. ““I am really excited to getting the ball rolling with my first defense on January 18 at Madison Square Garden,” he says. “This fight will give me the momentum I need going into (a) really big year.”
What’s Next for Former Middle Champ Gennady “GGG” Golovkin?
By: Ken Hissner
Going into 2017 Gennady “GGG” Golovkin was considered one of the best P4P boxers in the world if not the best. He had scored 21 straight stoppages and was 36-0 (33) when he defended against Danny “Miracle Man” Jacobs 33-1 (29) in March of 2017.
Jacobs refused to come to the day of the fight weigh-in. Golovkin had gained ten pounds that day coming in at 170 lbs. Rumors were Jacobs was between 180-185 lbs. when he entered the ring that night. Another surprise was he fought the fight southpaw.
Though a close fight, Golovkin got the decision by scores of 114-113 and 115-112 twice. The WBC was in no hurry to order a rematch that Jacobs could have asked for but didn’t push for it.
The WBO and WBC World Super Welterweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, then 48-1-1, who had rarely weighed over 155 lbs. during his entire career was being groomed for a shot at 160 lbs. His promoter Oscar de La Hoya decided he should fight Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr., 50-2-1, at super middleweight with both fighters coming in at 164 lbs. Alvarez won every one of the twelve rounds on all three score cards and Chavez hasn’t fought since.
It was decided by Alvarez’s promoter to take on WBC, WBA and IBF world champion Golovkin in Las Vegas which was a “second home” for Alvarez who fought there in seven of his previous nine fights only losing to Floyd “Money” Mayweather. It had been a year to the day since Alvarez defended his two titles defeating Liam Smith by knockout while receiving a fractured right thumb and received a cut.
The fight with Golovkin didn’t make a lot of sense except financially for the state of Nevada, the promoter (Golden Boy) and both fighters. Alvarez may have been ahead after five rounds winning three of them. Suddenly when the sixth round started Alvarez had enough of trading punches with the hard hitting Golovkin and ran the next seven rounds. If Golovkin had run like Alvarez they would have called him “chicken” but Alvarez seemed to get a free pass.
At the end of the bout the scores were announced as 118-110 by one judge Adalaide Byrd. Had she actually watched the fight? Afterwards there was a rumor she would be under temporary suspension but it never happened. Byrd was a Nevada resident and a “house” judge. Another judge Dave Moretti scored it 115-113 for Golovkin. Close but still it was a fair decision going to the obvious winner. Then the third judge Don Trella came up with a 114-114 score giving Alvarez a “gift draw” with the WBC ordering a rematch between Alvarez and Golovkin that would make Nevada and Golden Boy richer. The fight with Jacobs was closer for Golovkin than the Alvarez match but no one ordered a rematch after that one. This writer had it 116-112 for Golovkin and being generous to Alvarez in their first match.
Then it was found that Alvarez was using a banned substance and yet he stayed in the rankings. How in the world was he then taken off suspension and given a title fight? It took a year before the rematch came about with Alvarez inactive and Golovkin having one match knocking out forty fight veteran and former Olympian Vanes Martirosyan in two rounds being the only time he was stopped and hasn’t fought since.
So, in September the rematch between Golovkin and Alvarez happened. Golovkin was satisfied boxing Alvarez almost at will landing his jab. His trainer told Golovkin to go and take it to him but Golovkin didn’t follow his instructions. Then came the decision with Moretti back as one of the judges along with well-regarded Steve Weisfeld calling it for Alvarez 115-113. Glen Feldman the other judge had it 114-114. The IBO didn’t recognize the fight since Alvarez wouldn’t pay their fee. This writer had it 115-113 for Golovkin.
To avoid a rubber match Alvarez moved up to take on ordinary WBA World Super Middle champ Rocky Fielding with a built-up 27-1 record stopping him in three rounds. Afterwards Alvarez said he had no intentions to stay at super middleweight. He even fought this one at MSG where he wouldn’t fight Golovkin figuring he wouldn’t have the protection that the Nevada commission and the WBC would give him.
The WBC goes out of their way not insisting on a third Alvarez-Golovkin fight but tells Golovkin to fight interim champ Jermall Charlo. Since when does an organization tell a non-champion who to fight? If Alvarez isn’t fighting Golovkin then why didn’t the WBC tell Alvarez, not Golovkin to fight Charlo? The WBA dropped Golovkin to No. 2 behind David Lemieux whom Golovkin has stopped in eight rounds in one of his title defenses. Lemieux had even lost in a title challenge for the WBO title since being stopped by Golovkin.
This is more than a conspiracy against Golovkin with the Nevada Commission, Golden Boy and the WBC behind it. So where does Golovkin go from here? Rumors have him signing with the DAZN as did Alvarez recently. A title fight with new WBO World champion Demetrius Andrade who claims to want to fight Golovkin in the past would make more sense. Even a rematch with Jacobs who now has the IBF title would make sense. The IBF had the nerve to rank Golovkin No. 10.
It seems the WBC, WBA and IBF all have it out for Golovkin while the WBO had never ranked him. Maybe Golovkin should drop to 154 lbs. or go up to 168 lbs. where in the past he said he could fight. Fighting for the vacant WBC title or the WBA super middle title that Alvarez said he won’t defend. There are many options for Golovkin but it seems if he doesn’t knock out his opponent he can’t win a decision.
One thing for sure Golovkin should never fight in Las Vegas again where he cannot get a fair decision.
Alvarez to Unify Super Middleweight Division in 2019?
By: Daniel Smith
Alvarez, to unify Super Middleweight division 2019?
Last night at the Garden, Canelo Alvarez was razor sharp, formidable and devastatingly accurate as he peppered Rocky Fielding with a torrent pounding and punishing body shots to force the stoppage within three rounds of boxing.
Photo Credit: DAZN Twitter Account
Fielding struggled to ignite the engine, let alone move out of first gear as Canelo smothered, suffocated and obliterated the Liverpudlian’s offence and game-plan by deploying his brutal artillery throughout the rounds.
Meticulously targeting and thudding away at Fielding’s long, skinny flank; dishing-out lightning-bolt shots to the liver, one after the other, relentlessly zapping the former WBA champion into submission without even breaking a sweat. Incidently, whether it’s Tyson Fury or Anthony Joshua, a sickening shot to the liver ultimately instructs the body to take a knee, no matter how big, bulky or solidly conformed you are – so no discredit to Rocky in that regard.
Although it was the Mexican who stepped up a weight-class; it certainly seemed as though Rocky Fielding was the one who’d brought a knife to gun fight, as every attack and combination he fired-out seemed fruitless.
So what’s next for the cinnamon-haired, super middleweight smasher? After skillfully bulldozing through the division’s WBA champion with such ease and cool; could Canelo continue on his 168lb division ascent and lay down the gauntlet for a clash with the WBA and WBSS champion, Callum Smith? A fight with Smith would be a an electrifying clash, an enticing prospect with another belt to add his collection, but ultimately, it would be a gruelling night’s work for the now, three weight-class champion.
There may be other fish to fry in the division such as WBO Gilberto Ramirez, IBF Jose Uzcategui and WBC David Benavidez. Or, alternatively, he could have a third dance with GGG which I’m sure would rake-in the fans and financial spoils.
Who knows? But one thing’s certain – 2019 will be explosive.
Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez: What Are the Options for Him Next?
By: Waqas Ali
Mexican superstar and world champion ‘Canelo’ Alvarez delivered a stunning performance when he knocked out Rocky Fielding in three rounds at Madison Square Garden on Saturday night.
The bout which was attended by over 20,000 spectators in attendance was for Fielding’s WBA ‘Regular’ title which is the minor version of the belt.
British world champion Callum Smith holds the ‘Super’ version of the belt.
Photo Credit: DAZN Twitter Account
Alvarez making his first bout under the 168 pound weight limit/ super-middleweight, started fighting on the inside with Fielding and connecting immense haymakers to the head and body.
Fielding who had the height advantage of 6 feet 1 inches and the reach of 75 inches did not utilise the range and distance of the fight and therefore paid the price.
Each round consisted of a knockdown of Fielding tasting the canvas. Courtesy of body shots.
But now the question remains is what opponent is next for Alvarez (51-1-2)? Is it back to 160 or staying at 168?
Canelo’s promoter, Oscar De La Hoya of Golden Boy Promotions, believes his boxer is now fully capable of competing against anyone at middleweight or super middleweight.
Canelo will return to the ring on Cinco De Mayo weekend in Las Vegas.
“Canelo fighting at 168 showed he can fight at either 168 or 160. We’ve already set aside the T-Mobile Arena for Cinco de Mayo in Las Vegas. We have no opponent whatsoever – zero. We’re not thinking of nobody,” De La Hoya said.
“We’re going to enjoy the holidays and enjoy our families. After the holidays, as a team, we’ll collectively determine who Canelo is going to fight. Whether it’s 168 or 160, there are plenty of challenges out there for Canelo.”
Should he jump back to 160, one of the opponents which could be a good match up for him in terms of styles and techniques is Demetrius Andrade. His record consists of 26 wins (16 KOs) and zero defeats.
In the amateurs, he defeated future world champions like Keith Thurman, Austin Trout and Daniel Jacobs.
The 30-year-old, who holds the WBO middleweight belt has a great sense of style of being cautionary with his combinations and as a southpaw can be a limit for his conventional opponents on landing their jab. His body movement is a positive asset, considering the fact that he is able to move away from any return shots.
Alvarez has not faced a competitive southpaw with lateral foot movement since Erislandy Lara in July 2014 in which he only landed five jabs out of his 97 landing total. A bout with these two would be interesting.
Another opponent is Daniel Jacobs (35 W, 29 KOs – 2 L). His knockout ratio stands at 78%. Jacobs, who holds the IBF middleweight belt, has great utilisation of speed, power and versatility.
He is able to provide thrilling excessiveness of combinations and has rapid foot movement. Likewise with Andrade, this effect of foot movement, quickness of punches and by keeping the range, can be a great effect on their behalf.
His resume of credible opponents consist of, Ishe Smith, Caleb Truax, Sergio Mora (twice), Peter Quillin, Dmitry Pirog & Gennady Golovkin.
In the 168 division, one of the opponents that could be a good match for him is Gilberto Ramirez. He has an exceptional record of 39 victories with zero defeats.
He is the current WBO super-middleweight title champion and has defended his belt six times. He stands at 6 feet 2 ½ inches with at 75 inch reach.
Ramirez is known for his long reach and power. He’s more of a 12-rounded fighter and is able mix and match up his punches. In his last 10 bouts, eight of them were decision wins and only two by stoppages.
His two notable opponents Arthur Abraham, whom he beat for the title and Jesse Hart twice.
Another opponent is Callum Smith. The Liverpool-born fighter has a record of 25 wins and no defeats.
He’s also tall with a height 6 feet 3 inches and a reach advantage of 78 inches. Smith is known for his active punching ability and body shots. Ironically, body shots are also favouritism of Alvarez’s punching of expertise.
Especially the left hook to the body.
This style of fighting could be compatible between the two, considering the height similarity between Fielding and Smith. It could be a question of, could Alvarez wear down the taller man of Smith? How would they react to each other’s body shots?
His notable opponents that he defeated are Rocky Fielding & George Groves.
The final opponent of my choosing is Gennady Golovkin. There is no need to describe the power and chin of him. An exceptional power ratio of 87% and known for activeness, punching ability, calculating puncher and haymaker hunting.
He had a 23 knockout win streak dating from June 2008 – March 2017.
Both fights with Alvarez were close in their respected styles and performances.
With a potential trilogy with GGG, Alvarez stated:
“For me, I feel like on September 15, I showed that I was best. But it was two great fights and if the people want it, we can make it.”
According to a poll conducted by Editinking, out of 6,700 plus voters 49% of them picked Gennady Golovkin to fight Alvarez and 32% of them picked Daniel Jacobs.
Who next for Canelo?
— EditinKing Boxing (@EditinKing) December 16, 2018
With regards to what Alvarez’s future he stated:
“We’ll have to see. I have to talk to my team, enjoy the holiday and then I’ll talk to my team. But right now, without a doubt, what I want are the best fights.”
Jamie Moore Explains Why Canelo Had to Have His Hands Wrapped Twice
By: Michael Kane
Rocky Fielding put his WBA Super Middleweight title on the line on Saturday against Mexican superstar Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez.
Ultimately it was not Fielding’s night as he was knocked down four times in the three rounds that he contested as Canelo added a world title at a third weight division.
However Fielding’s coach, British coach of the year, Jamie Moore was unhappy with Canelo and his team before the fight due to how much tape was being used.
Photo Credit: Golden Boy Promotions Twitter Account
Moore told Boxing News, “As you can imagine because of the superstar he is, he gets the rub of the green. I’d seen somebody getting wrapped up on DAZN, they put it on Twitter, I’d seen it earlier on and I said that’s not right in this state. They were wrapping the tape numerous times round the wrist and hand. It’s stacking, you’re not allowed to do it. We raised it as an issue, the commission agreed, said, ‘No, you’re right, you can’t do it.’ I sent Nige [Nigel Travis] in and Nige got there, they’d already done it. So made them take it off, said you’re not allowed to do that. The commission agreed to take it off and then they done it again. No, take it off again. So they started going crazy. Sent five people into my room saying take the tape off his hand, I said no problem, I don’t want tape on.”
“We knew we were going to walk into those sort of situations when we were coming here so we weren’t surprised. But Nige did the exact right thing. He didn’t bow to them,” Moore continued. “He went out and got the main guy [from the New York commission] and said tell them to take that off twice. He had them do it twice. It had to be rewrapped twice and rightly so. At the end of the day there are rules and regulations and people have to stick by them. You can’t just do your own thing because you’re Canelo.”
Moore was not sure if the fight went the way it did due to Fielding not sticking to the gameplan or that Canelo was that good that he negated any plans they had.
“I knew if it came down to that [Rocky] was always going to be brave but the plan wasn’t to attempt to sit in the pocket as early as the first round. I said you need to keep it long. Use your best attributes. Take the sting out of him. Before you sit in the pocket you need to at least take the sting out of him and then start to use your natural size advantage,” Moore said. “I’ll have to watch it back but maybe Canelo made him sit in the pocket, put his presence on him, established himself really quickly inside and hurt him straightaway downstairs. So when you’re in with probably the best pound for pound fighter on the planet, then the gameplan and the tactics are easier said than done. These guys are real good at negating stuff that you’re good at. So if he had done what I asked him to do, it might not have made a difference. We don’t know.
“What he didn’t allow Rocky to do was relax and let his shots go with full intent because he was always half-thinking about the next shot coming back and the reason he was half thinking was because [Alvarez] hurt him straight away downstairs.”
Moore was proud of his fighter, “All I can say is I’m proud of him. He’s got a 13 week old baby girl who he’s not really seen much of because he’s dedicated himself to this. He’s dared to try and do the impossible and unfortunately he didn’t pull it off. I’m proud of him. He kept getting up, I knew he’d keep getting up and the referee called it really well. I’ll be honest with you. Because as I was thinking if he lets him carry on, I’m going to start watching him really carefully and if he starts to get overwhelmed, I’ll step in. You’re not allowed to towel them here, you have to stand on the edge of the ring and I was just about to walk up the stairs so it was a good call and he lives to fight another day.”
“As far as longevity’s concerned it wasn’t a nine, 10, 11 round beat down,” Moore said. “He’ll be alright. He’s disappointed, I’m gutted for him because I know he could have done it better… We knew were up against. We believed we could have won before, if we’d done it right, but watching that now it was a big ask. He wanted to test himself against the very best. And that’s all you can want from a fighter.”
Canelo, Fielding Make Weight For MSG Headliner; Two Bouts Scratched
By Jake Donovan
Two originally scheduled bouts never made it to the scales, but those who made the final cut for Saturday’s show at Madison Square Garden all managed to escape unscathed from Friday’s weigh-in.
Mexico’s Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez and England’s Rocky Fielding both easily made weight for their super middleweight showdown Saturday evening at MSG, which will be carried live by sports streaming application DAZN.
Alvarez’s 5’8” frame packed a rock-solid167.4 pounds for just his second career bout above middleweight, where he still reigns as the true World (lineal) champion. His motivation for moving up the scales on Saturday is in attempting to snatch a secondary super middleweight title from the clutches of the 6’1” Fielding, who checked in at 167.6 pounds.
Photo Credit: DAZN Boxing Twitter Account
For Alvarez (50-1-2, 34KOs), the night represents a series of firsts. The 28-year old from Guadalajara, Mexico makes his MSG debut, in fact having only fought once before on the East Coast, coming in Dec. 2008 on a Telemundo-televised show in Miami, Florida.
The night also serves as his first on a DAZN-streamed show, earning $15 million for Saturday’s show before venturing into a record-breaking $350 million contract with the streaming service spanning 10 fights. With a win on Saturday, he will also become the first-ever boxer from Mexico above 140 pounds to win titles in three weight classes—although the legitimacy of belt at stake is rightfully called into question.
Regardless, it’s the latest step in the career of the most bankable active boxer in North America—and possibly the world. Regardless, he joins his only other competitor on that list—England’s unbeaten, unified heavyweight titlist Anthony Joshua—in aligning himself with DAZN, the move coming after having 10 of his past 11 bouts headline on Pay-Per-View.
For Fielding (27-1, 15KOs), the adventure marks his first career fight in the United States and outside of Europe in general. The 31-year old from Liverpool hit the road for the first time in his career in his last fight, scoring an upset 5th round knockout of Tyron Zeuge to win his portion of the super middleweight title this past July in Offerburg, Germany.
The win was Fielding’s 6th straight after suffering the lone loss of his career in Nov. ’15, a 1st round knockout at the hands of Callum Smith, who holds the “super” version of the super middleweight title to Fielding’s “regular” version.
Even on the heels of his current hot streak, the visiting Brit still comes in as an 8-1 betting underdog (Alvarez is a 16-1 favorite).
The originally scheduled co-feature would’ve likely produced Alvarez’ next opponent for his planned May 4th headliner at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Alas, the hunt remains after David Lemieux—the rumored leading candidate—was scratched from the show due to being hospitalized to treat dehydration.
News came less than 30 minutes before the start of the weigh-in, thus cancelling his planned 12-round title eliminator versus Tureano Johnson, who is now owed a fight and payday by Golden Boy Promotions, who promotes all three middleweights.
Elevated to the chief support is resurgent Tevin Farmer, who attempts the second defense of his super middleweight title Francisco Fonseca. Both fighters made weight, although Philadelphia’s Farmer had to strip down to his birthday suit in order to hit the 130-pound mark. Costa Rica’s Fonseca—whose lone other title bid resulted in an 8th round knockout loss to an overweight Gervonta Davis for his only career defeat—came in at 129.4 pounds.
A lightweight title bout dripping with historical implication pits unbeaten defending titlist Katie Taylor versus Finland’s unbeaten 130-pound beltholder Eva Wahlstrom, who moves up in weight.
Taylor checked in at a fighting fit 134.2 pounds as she becomes the first-ever boxer from Ireland to defend a major title at Madison Square Garden. It’s also the first time fighting in the venue for the 32-year old, a two-time Olympian who captured a Gold medal for Ireland in the 2012 London Olympics, whose games were the first to feature women’s boxing.
The Garden party marks a quick turnaround for Taylor, who is coming off of a 10-round shutout of a disinterested Cindy Serrano this past October in Boston, which also streamed live on DAZN.
On the challenger side, Wahlstrom (22-0-1, 4KOs)—who weighed 133.5 pounds—comes in as the only boxer from Finland to capture a major title in the pro ranks. The now-38 year old managed that feat in April ’15, picking up a vacant super featherweight strap which she has defended four times including a points win over Melissa St. Vil in April.
Saturday’s show was also due to feature unbeaten super lightweight prospect Vergil Ortiz (11-0, 11KOs). However, the knockout artist from Texas was denied a license by the New York State Athletic Commission due to having Lasik eye surgery performed this past October, a procedure which serves as medical disqualification in the commission’s view.
The development killed plans for his New York and MSG debut, which was due to come versus Mexico’s Omar Tienda.
DAZN Boxing Preview: Canelo vs. Rocky, Farmer vs. Fonseca
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night Golden Boy Promotions top promotional star, Canelo Alvarez, will make his debut in New York City and on the DAZN Streaming Network when he faces off against Rocky Fielding for Fielding’s WBA Super Middleweight title.
This bout will take place at the famed Madison Square Garden and features a rather stacked undercard. The co-main event of the night was originally supposed to be between David Lemieux and Tureano Johnson, but Lemieux had to withdraw due to dehydration issues and the bout between Tevin Farmer and Francisco Fonseca will take it’s place.
Other notable undercard fights include a welterweight bout between Sadam Ali and Mauricio Herrera, an IBF/WBA Women’s Lightweight Title bout between Katie Taylor and Eva Wahlstrom, and two bouts featuring high rated prospects Ryan Garcia and Lamont Roach Jr.
DAZN has gone all in with their partnership with Golden Boy Promotions and Canelo Alvarez, and this is the first of an eleven fight contract that they have with Canelo.
The following is a preview of the co-main event and main event of the night.
Tevin Farmer (27-4) vs. Francisco Fonseca (22-1-1); IBF Junior Lightweight Title
Tevin Farmer is one of those feel good stories in the sport of boxing. He wasn’t a heralded amateur and started his career with a 2-2 record, but he has shown significant improvement since his professional debut and was able to win the IBF Super Featherweight Title.
Farmer only had sixteen amateur fights so he had to learn quickly on the job. He’s not known for his power, he has only stopped six of his opponents and was stopped twice in his career. He lost by TKO in his very first professional fight and was later stopped by Jose Pedraza.
His opponent, Francisco Fonseca, has stopped sixteen of his opponents and was only stopped one time in his career, a knockout loss to Gervonta Davis. Fonseca will have a slight inch and a half height advantage and a two and a half inch reach advantage.
Fonseca has fought mainly in Panama and Costa Rica against suspect opposition. He lost his only fight outside of Central America. His biggest win to date was against a 13-3 Daniel Miranda. He’s been fairly active and fought once in 2018 and four times in 2017.
Farmer fought twice in 2018 and twice in 2017. He’s shown significant improvement since his debut, especially defensively, and has beaten the likes of James Tennyson, Billy Dib, Arturo Santos Reyes, Ivan Redkach, and Angel Luna.
This is a bout that Farmer should win by decision. Farmer is angling for a future fight with Gervonta Davis and he’ll need an impressive performance to get the boxing community talking about a potential fight with Davis.
Rocky Fielding (27-1) vs. Canelo Alvarez (50-1-2); WBA Super Middleweight Title
Canelo Alvarez is arguably boxing’s biggest, active star. He’ll be chasing history on Saturday night as he looks to win a title in his third weight class, and become the ninth Mexican boxer to do so.
Canelo is in the midst of his prime at 28 years old and is three years younger than his opponent. However, Canelo is the smaller man and will be giving up height, reach, and size to Fielding.
Canelo turned pro at the age of fifteen, so Fielding has more amateur experience than Canelo as he experienced some success as an amateur on the English circuit.
Canelo also has significantly more power in his punches than Fielding. He has stopped 34 of his opponents while Fielding has only stopped fifteen. Fielding also has a TKO loss on his record when he was stopped by Callum Smith. Canelo’s lone loss was to Floyd Mayweather Jr. five years ago and he has never been stopped.
Both fighters have been fairly active. Canelo fought twice in 2017 and once in 2018 while Fielding fought twice in 2018 and in 2017.
Canelo has a long list of accomplished opponents that he has beaten. He has defeated the likes of Gennady Golovkin, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., Liam Smith, Amir Khan, Miguel Cotto, James Kirkland, Erislandy Lara, Alfredo Angulo, Austin Trout, Shane Mosley, and Carlos Baldomir.
Fielding’s biggest wins were against Tyron Zeuge for the WBA Super Middleweight title, David Brophy, John Ryder, and Brian Vera. This will only be his second fought outside of the United Kingdom and his first fight in the United States.
It’s likely Fielding’s size advantage will give Canelo some problems early on, but Canelo’s skill is levels above Fielding and he should win quite comfortably in his New York City debut.