Tag Archives: london

Joe Joyce vs. Richard Lartey Preview


By: Ste Rowen

If March 2018 was the month of the heavyweight’s current elite, then June is surely it’s month for prospects…and Tyson Fury.

Last weekend saw the return of the lineal heavyweight champion from an almost 3-year hiatus; as well as 2016 Olympic bronze medallist, Filip Hrgovic moving to 5-0 (4KOs) with a 4th round stoppage over the previously unbeaten Mexican, Filiberto Tovar.


Photo Credit: Joy Joyce Twitter Account

Next week we’ll see 2016 gold medallist, Tony Yoka 4-0 (3KOs), take on former opponent of Luis Ortiz and Dillian Whyte, Dave ‘The White Rhino’ Allen in Paris; as well as Daniel Dubois taking on his biggest test in Tom Little at the O2 arena in London for the English heavyweight belt.

But this weekend, at heavyweight at least, belongs to current Commonwealth champion and 4-0 (4KOs), Joe ‘The Juggernaut’ Joyce who takes on 12-1 (9KOs), Richard Lartey of Ghana at London’s York Hall.

It’s been a sharp rise for the 2016 Rio silver medallist. Joyce started his pro career in a risky bout with Ian Lewison, who just 12 months previous to their fight, fought Dillian Whyte for the British belt, in which Lewison was eventually grinded down into a 10th round stoppage, of a fairly one-sided fight.

Even so, the risk was high for the ‘Juggernaut’, but the reward was eventually worth it. Overcoming a few awkward, early rounds until eventually finding his stride in his pro-debut and dominating his fellow Brit, forcing Lewison’s corner to throw in the towel in the 8th round.

From there, the talk from Joyce’s corner was big, including his promoter, David Haye eyeing bouts with the best of Britain, as well as attempting to goad Dereck Chisora into a fight with his protégé. More recently, Joyce called out Jerrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller on Twitter.

Joe was back out for his second and third pro bouts in February and March this year, spending just less than 4 minutes of combined time in the ring to knockout Rudolf Jozic, and America’s Donnie Palmer. Then it was onto his biggest fight yet, up against the Commonwealth champion at the time Lenroy Thomas, on the undercard of BellewHaye2.

The Jamaican turned up looking in great shape, he always seems to, but once the first bell tolled, his conditioning leant nothing to stopping the ‘Juggernaut’ hurtling towards him. Dropping his foe three times in total before the referee waved off the bout towards the end of the 2nd round, Joe Joyce was now the Commonwealth champion in just 4 fights. Quicker than Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury, Lennox Lewis and Trevor Berbick. Not a bad record to have, especially if Joyce manages to claim the British as well – currently held by Hughie Fury – within the next year.

It’s not just talent that’s seeing Joe put onto the fast track. At 32, even for a heavyweight, time isn’t exactly on his side if he wants his peak to coincide with facing the very best of his division.

His opponent on Friday will be fighting someone with a winning record for just the 4th time in his pro career.

Lartey knocked out 1-0, Nuzu Azuma in his 4th fight; was stopped by 11-0, Ergun Mersin in the 5th round of his one and only fight so far outside of Ghana; and in September last year he earned a 12-round decision over 13-7-1, Ibrahim Marshall in what would be his 6th fight of 2017.

It’s difficult to ascertain whether the Ghanaian is a worthy opponent for Joyce, his record, despite only 1 defeat, suggests not, and there’s next to no footage online of Lartey, but if nothing else, at least he’s active.

But on Friday night, if all goes to plan for Joyce, his opponent will play just a small supporting act in his performance. It gives the ‘Juggernaut’ an opportunity to defend the rainbow belt for the first time, and it keeps him active, and in the general boxing public’s minds for the future.

More Headlines

Live Report: Mayweather McGregor London Press Conference


Live Report: Mayweather McGregor London Press Conference
By: Thomas Nicholls

Conor McGregor yesterday revealed that he is set to “run boxing” once he dispatches Floyd Mayweather on August 26.

IMG_4232
Photo Credit: Esther Lin/Showtime Sports

Celebrating his 29th birthday, McGregor once again stole the show as the Media Tour come to a close at the SSE Arena, London. In a whirlwind press roadshow that has taken the stars to Los Angeles, Toronto, New York and London, the pair have been involved in a constant verbal warfare but now it’s time to let the fists do the talking.

McGregor is unrivalled when it comes to trash-talk, all four arenas have lit up as soon as he takes to the microphone, but for all his slurs at Mayweather, the 40-year-old self-proclaimed “TBE” has rarely looked phased. More than what can be said for ShowTime chief Stephen Espinoza who was called a “little f***ing weasel” on Wednesday’s show in Toronto. McGregor felt aggrieved as it appeared his microphone has been switched off on the tours curtain raiser in Los Angeles and he certainly let Espinoza feel the wrath of his anger.

Thousands filled the SSE Arena on Friday and both Mayweather & McGregor refused to disappoint. In an astonishing and sometimes hilarious seven-minute rant, “Notorious” let fly at almost every member of The Money Team, once again Espinoza was on the receiving end whilst Floyd sat relaxed playing on his mobile phone.

In London, the press table was set up in a ring, giving McGregor a taster of being in the squared circle and in just six weeks’ time he gets the chance to put his promises into action. Whilst the media tour has certainly captured the attention of the fight fans, very little are in belief that McGregor can upset the odds and get the better of Mayweather. Let’s not forget Gatti, De La Hoya, Hatton, Marquez, Moseley, Cotto, Canelo and Pacquiao have all fallen victim to Mayweather’s elite defensive mastery.
In typically boisterous fashion, UFC President Dana White announced his man to the microphone as the stadium erupted in anticipation, the trash talk king was set to unleash.

“What an honour”

“We’re 6 weeks out from the biggest fight in sporting history, 12 weeks ago I fought in front of the 500 people at the HMV forum and now I’m going to quadruple my net worth in half a fight”

“He was wearing high heels yesterday, you should’ve worn them from the first day you stupid baldy tw*t!”

“In 6 weeks’ I’m going to sleep this fool, I’m going to bounce his head off the canvas”

McGregor then gave Mayweather some reprieve and went for his security team, calling them “juice headed turkeys”

Both stars had their usual glitzy entrance as it became apparent that the London fan base was firmly in favour of the UFC champion. Mayweather was collected as usual, shrugging off the chants from the pro-McGregor fans in the arena, he spent most of his turn on the mic circling the press table goading McGregor. Leaning in to McGregor’s right hand man Dana White, Mayweather claimed, “You’re his pimp and he’s your hoe!”. Throughout the week Mayweather has lived up and revelled in his role as the villain, angering the fans with “point to the quitter, point to the quitter!” to a chorus of boos.

So, the verbals have come to an end for now, it’s time for both men to focus on their fight camps. Despite the flash suits, trash talk and KO promises, McGregor knows he has an almighty task on his hands if he is to end Mayweather’s perfect record of 49-0.

The MMA community and many of Mayweather’s haters have rallied around the Irishman and are willing him on to succeed. For every Mayweather fight, there has been a famous saying amongst the anti-Mayweather optimists – “but if he lands one of his big shots” yet Cotto, Canelo and Pacquiao etc, could never find “that” punch. Although now 40, Mayweather is simply a master craftsman and it would take one of sport’s greatest ever upsets to deny him that illustrious 50-0 status.

It is sure to be a truly fantastic spectacle on August 26, propelling the sport to an all new high, but you can’t help but think that the fight will be as one sided as the trash talking. For all McGregor’s wit, grit and heart he will realise early in the fight why the many men before him had failed to stop The Money Man.

Thomas B Nicholls

More Full Coverage: Floyd Mayweather vs Conor McGregor

Mayweather-McGregor Press Tour Wraps Up Nasty Fashion In London


Mayweather-McGregor Press Tour Wraps Up Nasty Fashion In London
By: Sean Crose

The Mayweather-McGregor media tour finally wrapped up Friday in London at Wembley Stadium. The entrances were done European style – in other words, they were high end and impressive. What’s more, the press conference was literally being held in a ring. “He’s being made to wait,” the British commentator claimed while McGregor waited for Floyd to slowly make his entrance. Once both men were in the ring, however, they stood face to face and talked smack – as has been the case all week. Then, a press setup consisting of tables and chairs was quickly and professionally arranged and things began in earnest before the thousands of gathered fans.

IMG_4224

Stephen Espinoza took to the mic, and was booed, as he had been for days. After came the combatants (introduced by Dana White and Leonard Ellerbe respectively). McGregor got on the mic first and, as always, had plenty to say.

In short, the Irishman got up and did his routine. He told Mayweather to act his age, to put down his cell phone, to get his “shit together.” He then abused Espinoza once more and even patted Mayweather’s head. The man didn’t look good, though. Sweating profusely and breathing heavily, he appeared moments later as if he were sick. Mayweather on the other hand, came out and abused his man for what seemed like forever. “You’ve done a hell of a job bringing this bitch to the table,” he told Dana White by way of an abusive compliment. Throw in a homophobic slur and the man called Money reminded people of how nasty he could be at these events.

Surprisingly enough, McGregor appeared a bit gracious during a brief Q@A with the press immediately after the smack talk ended. There was no prolonged staredown after, however, as both men quickly slipped out of the ring with their teams.

It’s no doubt been an exhausting affair for the combatants, along with those who are in their camps. Make no mistake about it, though, this was a circus, soup to nuts, a circus that got progressively uglier as time went on (though the second to last stop on the tour, Brooklyn, may have taken the proverbial cake).

Now all that’s left for both men to do is train and fight. Floyd is the heavy favorite. Conor is the crowd favorite.

The bout will unquestionably be a massive pay per view success. Will it be much of a bout, though? That’s the question discerning minds are undoubtedly asking.

More Full Coverage: Floyd Mayweather vs Conor McGregor

What a Beautiful Disaster: London Presser for McGregor vs. Mayweather


What a Beautiful Disaster: London Presser for McGregor vs. Mayweather
By Eric Lunger

The trains are on the track and barreling towards each other. Can you resist watching the crash? I hate to admit it, I hate to acknowledge it, but Mayweather vs. McGregor is actually happening. On August 26th in Las Vegas, if you didn’t already know.

IMG_4223
Photo Credit: Showtime Sports

Partly fueled by Mayweather’s undeniable charisma, partly by the impish weirdness that is Connor McGregor, but mainly by the enormous amount of cash that is being generated for the promoters and combatants, the “crossover” bout is set for Showtime PPV, with initial reports that the purchase price will be close to $100 for HD.

It comes at an interesting time for boxing fans, with some high level bouts on the immediate horizon. Maybe this is the shot in the arm that boxing needs. Can boxing capture some segment of the huge MMA market by putting on a great show? I wish, but I doubt it. The technical brilliance of boxing does not appeal to the instant gratification crowd that follows MMA. Defense and strategy are not what MMA fans want. They want to see McGregor “break his whole face,” as the Irishman claims he will do to the Flint, Michigan phenom.

The two men have been clashing verbally this week at a series of press conferences, if you can call them that.
The final round today in London was even more stage-managed and more choreographed than the others, complete with dramatic introductions and theatrical ring walks to the mock-up ring in the center of the SSE Arena. Predictably, the British fans were worked up into a frenzy of singing before either fighter even said a word. Then, inexplicably, tables, water bottles, and a lectern appeared in the “ring,” and the “press conference” began. McGregor was vulgar, sometimes almost funny, but a parody of himself.

Mayweather reverted to his role as the villain, which he used to do well. The crowd chanted “pay your taxes!” Coming from a British crowd, that was mind-breakingly ironic. Part of me hoped the Mayweather team would have re-enacted the Boston Tea party right then and there.

Unfortunately, they refrained, and we were then treated to some uninspired trash talk from Mayweather. “You’re a microwaved meal. I’m a home-cooked meal.” Wow. Really? There was little of the quick-witted but malignant charm that Mayweather had in his youth. Not that it matters, the whole affair is a joke, a cynical money-grab that can only tarnish the legacy of one the great boxers of all time. I guess it’s entertainment, but it’s disaster.

More Full Coverage: Floyd Mayweather vs Conor McGregor

Is Joshua-Klitschko II On The Way?


Is Joshua-Klitschko II On The Way?
By: Sean Crose

Last month, fight fans were treated to what was arguably the best heavyweight title fight in the past two decades. For Anthony Joshua gained heavyweight supremacy by besting aging icon Wladimir Klitschko in a terrific back and forth battle that had both men hitting the mat before Joshua finally blasted his way to victory in the 11th round. Not only was the bout itself thrilling, it was held before close to a hundred thousand fans in London’s Wembley stadium. The mood surrounding the event was absolutely electric and – for once – the match itself delivered.

MANCHESTER ARENA PIC;LAWRENCE LUSTIG IBF WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP ANTHONY JOSHUA V ERIC MOLINA

Soon afterward, almost immediately so, talking heads started proclaiming loudly that boxing was finally back. Hopefully, that proves to be true. But Klitschko may be coming back, as well. The man had a rematch clause in his contract for the first Joshua fight and now Joshua promoter Eddie Hearn feels like Klitschko will act upon it. This may disappoint some fans, who want to see Joshua move on to bigger and better things after finally disposing of Klitschklo in a thorough manner several weeks ago. Still, Klitschko is legally free to do what he wants. And, being a legit sportsman with a sense of honor, he would surprise few if he were to choose to give Joshua another crack.

The question, of course, is would Klitschko have much of a chance of winning a rematch? In all honesty, it might be hard for some to see how he would. The man gave Joshua everything he had the first time. Many are even saying it was Klitschko’s best performance in years – if not ever. Yet he still came up short. What could he do to improve upon the last performance? People also need to remember the fact that Klitschko is no longer a young man. He’s in his forties now and, like it or not, age does matter.

Regardless, Joshua-Klitschko II would be a must see event, even if it would prove incapable of matching the thrill of the first go-round. Klitschko, who has long been accused of being boring, was exciting enough the last time to indicate a second bout wouldn’t be sleep inducing (would he carry out the same strategy against Joshua again, though?). Add in the fact that it’s two big men fighting for big stakes and the bout becomes all the harder to resist.

And then there’s the rising star of Joshua, who is quite possibly the most exciting heavyweight since Tyson. In fact, he may be on the verge of becoming an international draw regardless of who he fights. That’s something the heavyweight division hasn’t seen in ages.

More Columns

WBA/IBF World Heavyweight Championship Round by Round Results: Joshua Stops Klitschko in Instant Classic


WBA/IBF World Heavyweight Championship Round by Round Results: Joshua Stops Klitschko in Instant Classic
By: William Holmes

Wembley Stadium in London, England was the host site for tonight’s highly anticipated heavyweight title fight between Wladimir Klitschko and Anthony Joshua.

Showtime televised the bout live from England and HBO televised the replay on the same day.

IMG_3560
Photo Credit: Sky Sports

For the first time in twelve years Wladimir Klitschko was the underdog in a fight. The crowd at Wembley Stadium was lively, loud, and ready for a good fight.

Wladimir Klitschko entered the ring first as the challenger underneath a backdrop of 90,000 cell phone lights. Anthony Joshua entered second to a loud and boisterous crowd.

Nataliya Klitschko performed the Ukranian national anthem and Louisa Johnson sung the British National Anthem.

Anthony Joshua (18-0) and Wladimir Klitschko (64-4) fought to unify the WBA and IBF titles.

Round 1:

Klitschko comes forward with a range finding jab while Sohua keeps his hands high and looks for a counter. Joshua lands a check left hook to the chin of Klitschko. Joshua is short with a two punch combination. Joshua lands a good jab to the body. Klitschko throws a left hook that’s partially blocked. Klitschko is keeping at a safe distance from the power shots of Joshua. Klitschko lands a good quick jab. Joshua lands a left hook to the body. Joshua lands a short jab. Joshua lands a good right to the body of Klitschko. Joshua lands a left to the body and has a follow up right partially blocked. Klitschko lands a good stiff jab. Klitschko lands a reaching jab.

10-9 Joshua

Round 2:

Klitschko lands a sharp straight right hand on the chin of Joshua. Joshua lands a short jab and misses with a two punch combination. Joshua lands a quick jab. Klitschko looks light on his feet. Klitschko snaps out a
quick jab. Joshua lands a short jab and punches the shoulder of Klitschko. Joshua lands a clean right hand to the chin of Klitschko. Joshua sticks a jab in the chest of Klitschko. Klitschko misses with a straight counter right. Joshua misses with a lead left hook. Close round.

10-9 Klitschko; 19-19

Round 3:

Joshua is short with several shots and gets a little wild. Joshua misses with another hard straight right. Klitschko misses high with a right cross. Joshua barely misses a huge uppercut and then lands a few hooks to the body. Klitschko clinches when Joshua gets in tight. Joshua is short with a double jab. Joshua misses a left hook and a two punch combination. Klitschko lands a lead left hook. Joshua lands a god jab to the nose of Klitschko.

10-9 Joshua; 29-28 Joshua

Round 4:

Klitschko lands a stinging straight right hand and follows it up with another straight right. Joshua lands a hook to the body of Klitschko. Klitschko lands two jabs to the face of Joshua. Joshua lands a sharp straight right hand. Joshua lands a jab to the body of Klitschko. Klitschko misses with a lead left hook and a straight right cross. Joshua lands a right to the body of Klitschko. Joshua lands a quick jab and later follows with a counter right hook. Joshua lands a stiff jab. Close round.

10-9 Joshua; 39-37 Joshua

Round 5:

Joshua comes out firing and lands several hard punches and combinations. Klitschko tries to hold on and looks a little wobbly. Joshua lands a hard combination including a stiff uppercut and Klitschko goes down. Klitschko has a mouse underneath his eye. Joshua comes forward and lands a left hook. Klitschko trying to hang on and survive. Klitschko misses a wild right hook. Klitschko has a bad cut over his left eye. Klitschko misses with a wild left hook. Klitschko lands a straight right to the chin of Joshua. Joshua looks tired. Klitschko lands a straight right and a left hook. Klitschko lands a straight right followed by a left hook. Klitschko lands a right uppercut and Joshua looks hurt. Klitschko lands a two punch combination on Joshua. Both guys look exhausted and are holding on. Klitschko lands a right cross and Joshua holds on. Klitschko lands a hard right uppercut and a left hook. Great round, Klitschko was coming on strong late.

10-8 Joshua; 49-45 Joshua

Round 6:

Both boxers look alert after the hellacious fifth round. Klitschko lands a good right hand on Joshua. Klitschko misses a wild left hook. Joshua spit out his mouthpiece and the fight is briefly stopped. Klitschko lands a jab and Joshua lands a right hook to the body. Klitschko lands a thunderous straight right hand and Joshua goes down! Joshua gets up before the count of ten. Joshua looks badly hurt. Klitschko misses a wild left hook. Klitschko lands two short right hooks. Klitschko presses Joshua back to the corner and lands a hook and a right cross. Klitschko misses a wild left hook. Klitschko lands a short jab. Another quick jab lands for Klitschko. Joshua holds on. Joshua lands a short jab. Great round.

10-8 Klitschko; 57-55 Joshua

Round 7:

Both boxers look alert at the start of the seventh round. Klitschko pressing forward though and looks a little more awake. Klitschko lands a sharp jab and is controlling the action. Klitschko lands a left hook to the head of Joshua. Klitschko looks patient. Klitschko lands a good jab. Klitschko lands another jab. Joshua is jawing at Klitschko. Klitschko misses with a sweeping left hook. Klitschko lands a short left hook. Klitschko lands another jab. Klitschko misses with a straight right and Joshua holds on. Klitschko bangs a left hook off the high guard of Joshua. Joshua lands a hook to the body.

10-9 Klitschko; 66-65 Joshua

Round 8:

Joshua didn’t take a lot of damage in the last round, but has never gone past the seventh before today. Klitschko lands two punches out of three while coming forward. Klitschko lands a reaching jab. Klitschko misses a missle of a straight right hand. Joshua comes forward with a double jab but touches air. Klitschko misses with another wild right. Joshua barely misses a straight right hand. Klitschko lands two jabs. Klitschko lands another jab. Joshua lands a jab but Klitschko answers with a stiff jab. Joshua throws a hook to the body and then ties up. Klitschko lands another jab. The pace favors Klitschko.

10-9 Klitschko; 75-75

Round 9:

Klitschko lands a right hook upstsairs and Joshua lands two hooks to the body of Klitschko. Klitschko lands a short left hook but eats two more body shots. They tied up after Klitschko throws two jabs. Klitschko lands a jab but Joshua lands a short left hook. Joshua lands a hard left jab and follows it with a short right hook. Joshua misses a lead left hook. Klitschko lands a quick jab on Joshua. Joshua lands a hard shot to the body. Klitschko is controlling the distance but appears a little hesitant to throw. Joshua lands a short right hand and two hooks to the body.
10-9 Joshua; 85-84 Joshua

Round 10:

Joshua opens up with a two punch combination. Joshua is short with a right cross to the body. Joshua gets tagged with a quick jab. Joshua digs a hook into the body of Klitschko. Joshua lands a short inside uppercut. Joshua throws a two punch combination upstairs and clips Klitschko. Joshua lands a hook to the body of Klitschko. Klitschko lands a good jab. Klitschko misses with a straight right. Joshua lands a jab upstairs. Joshua lands another short jab on Klitschko. Klitschko’s right hand is not finding it’s target. Klitschko lands a good straight right hand. Klitschko lands another good straight right as the round comes to an end. Could have scored it for either boxer.

10-9 Klitschko; 94-94

Round 11:

Joshua comes out firing and has Klitschko looking a little wobbly. Joshua is throwing bombs at Klitschko. Joshua throws a reaching jab. Klitschko lands a quick jab. Klitschko lands a straight right and Klitschko looks like he’s in bad shape. Joshua lands a straight right on Klitschko . Joshua lands a short left hook. Joshua lands a thunderous right uppercut on Klitschko and follows it with a left hook. Klitschko is wobbly and gets up before the count of ten. Josha tags Klitschko with another combination and Klitschko goes down again. Klitschko looks like he’s badly hurt. Joshua is chasing Klitschko around the ring and is firing off punches before the referee jumps in and stops the fight.

Anthony Joshua Wins Thriller by TKO at 2:25 of the eleventh round.

More Headlines

Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko Set To Meet In Heavyweight Superbout


Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko Set To Meet In Heavyweight Superbout
By: Sean Crose

This April, for the first time in what seems to be a long time, a truly big heavyweight title fight will be going down. For that’s when, on the 29th of that month, IBF champ Anthony Joshua will face off against the division’s former longtime kingpin, Wladimir Klitschko. Make no mistake about it, Klitschko was nothing if not a dominant force at heavyweight for years on end. Now, though, he’s in his forties. What’s more, he lost his last bout, as well as his heavyweight crown, to the bombastic yet under-rated Tyson Fury over a year ago. Is the Ukrainian still the fighter he was? That may well be the biggest question heading into this throwdown.

czw4wryxcaalh4t

For Josuha is undefeated. And, as if that weren’t enough, the man’s won each of his eighteen fights by knockout. In short, the Englishman is seen as the future of the division. Not only does he appear to have an impressive skill set, he has a statuesque physique and carries himself like a gentleman. In other words, he presents himself as the nice guy who can lay the bad boy out cold. There’s a lot of green to be found at the end of that kind of rainbow.

Yet there’s questions regarding Joshua, as well…as is can he stand the pressure of a major bout, can he deal with Klitschko’s power, and can he overcome Klitschko’s vast ring experience? To be sure, it’s the questions involved with this bout that make it so intriguing. It might be easy to write Klitschko off at this point, but that might be a mistake. Sure, Fury made him look second rate, but Fury’s bullying also got in Kltischko’s head. Joshua, on the other hand, let’s his fists do the talking for him, so mind games shouldn’t be an issue.

Promoter Eddie Hearn knows what a big deal this fight is going to be. That’s why word is already out that the match is going to sell out Wembley Stadium in London. To be sure, it’s hard to imagine a crowd showing up in April of less than 80 thousand souls. On top of all that, Dan Rafael of ESPN has tweeted that HBO and Showtime might be in a bidding war for the American television rights to the bout. When’s the last time you heard of anything like that happening?

Although Joshua-Klitschko is a thoroughly European affair between two European fighters in one of the continent’s great cities, this is a fight that should resonate here in America. For here are two of the best men in boxing’s big division, battling for dominance. Sure, there may be other heavyweight champions now, but everyone knows that the winner of this one will reign supreme over the division. Speaking of which, the former premiere weight class of the sport is looking very exciting lately, thanks very much.

This weekend alone showed terrific bouts between the likes of Dillian White and Dereck Chisora, as well as the likes of Joseph Parker and Andy Ruiz. It’s also good to keep in mind that American Deontay Wilder is swimming close to shore like a shark and that his countryman Shannon Briggs may be far from the joke some may wish he was. And then there’s Mr. Fury. Who knows what the former champ may bring to the table in the future, should he successfully slay his demons?

Things have gotten interesting.

More Columns

HBO World Championship Boxing Results: Chocolatito Wins by Decision, GGG Stops A Very Game Brook


HBO World Championship Boxing Results: GGG Stops A Very Game Brook
By: Sean Crose

In one of the bigger surprises of the year, undefeated welterweight titlist Kell Brook – 25-0 – agreed to face multi-middleweight title holder Gennady Golovkin – 35-0 – for middleweight supremacy on Saturday. The bout, which was broadcast live on HBO – to be replayed later – transpired in front of a huge English crowd in London’s O2 arena. Golovkin was a solid favorite, but Brook, who bulked up nicely, was clearly not to be written off. Here were two highly skilled, undefeated titlists, plying their trade in front of 20, 000 screaming British fans. Sure enough, the two fighters entered the ring to a blazing level of excitement that was a credit to British boxing promoters (American fight makers can take a lesson).

image

Right off the bat, Brook got hurt in the first. He survived, however, and didn’t look bad for the rest of the round. Indeed, it was something of a surprise to see Brook refusing to run from the feared GGG. Sure enough, a disciplined Brook took the second by employing a smooth defense that avoided Golovkin’s jab and by hitting GGG with sharp, clean shots. By the third round, it was clear that it was a very good fight indeed, with both men tossing off terrific shots. No doubt surprisingly to some, it was a close bout. What’s more, things remained close in the fourth.

Then came the fifth.

Golovkin started landing. Hard. And with a whole lot of frequency. Brook, for his part, wasn’t doing much. And so Brook’s corner threw in the towel. Some were surprised. No doubt, some were outraged. In truth, however, it was a smart call. Brook wasn’t looking good and the future of the fight seemed to hold a long, brutal decline for the man called “Special K.” This, however, is to take nothing away from Brook. He looked solid, overall. Indeed, he looked excellent. He even really gamed Golovkin a bit. The Kazakh warrior was simply too inflicting too much damage as time went on. It was as simple as that.

“Big drama show likes street fight,” Golovkin said afterward. “This not boxing. This street fight.”

Bernard Hopkins, working for HBO, asked if Golovkin felt Brook’s power at all. “I don’t feel his power,” Golovkin claimed, “I feel his distance. He has great distance.” Ultimately, Golovkin made it clear that Brook was literally up too far. “I feel after first round,” Golovkin claimed, “he’ s not middleweight.”

Ultimately, GGG gave himself a three or four for his performance out of ten. Abel Sanchez, Golovkin’s noted trainer, stated things more bluntly.

“He was trying too hard,” the cornerman said.

As for Brook, he was calm, but clearly unhappy, in defeat. Sure enough, he admitted that his right eye, which had clearly been bothering him in the bout, was the reason his corner threw in the towel. “A few rounds before that I told him (his trainer) my eye was gone,” Brook claimed.

“I’m very frustrated.” Brook admitted. Still, he had respectful words for Golovkin. “He’s a warrior,” Brook said, “I don’t want to take anything away from him.”

aturday night in California, Jesus Soto-Karass met Yoshihiro Kamegai for the second time this year in a super welterweight throwdown at Inglewood’s Forum. The two men had fought to a draw last April and were wanting to finish business. Kamegai – 26-3-2 – nailed the 28-10-4 Soto-Karass with a blistering body shot in the first, causing his opponent to nearly stumble about in pain. Soto-Karasss survived the round, but Kamegai managed to get the better of the two throughout the first four rounds of the bout.
The fight remained close throughout the middle rounds, but it was Kamegai who controlled the tempo. He also fired thunderous body shot after thunderous body shot. In the eighth, Soto-Karass went down from the brutality. Fortunately, the veteran warrior’s corner stopped the affair in the corner before the ninth.

It was the right call to make.

Afterwards, in the final fight of the night, Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez the undefeated twenty-nine-year-old multi-titlist, faced Carlos Cuadras the twenty-eight-year-old, also undefeated, WBC super flyweight champion. Nicaragua’s Gonzalez – 45-0 – was aiming for a title in his fourth weight class, something his mentor and former trainer, Alexis Arguello, was never able to do. Yet Mexico’s Cuadras – 35-0-1 – was a formidable foe…. plus, Cuadras was looking to really make his mark on the boxing world in a big way.

A fast paced first round showed that Chocolatito was in with a first rate opponent, but was still able to look a bit sharper. Gonzalez stormed into the second with a blistering, relentless attack. Cuadras was able to land – but pretty much only on the Nicaraguan’s gloves. Yet, while it was true Gonzalez controlled the first three rounds, Cuadras was there to fight. Indeed, the man had his moments in the fourth…enough to take the chapter, in this writer’s opinion.

What’s more, Cuadras really came alive in the fifth. Gonzalez was in a fight for himself. It was worth noting, however, that even when things weren’t going entirely his way, Gonzalez got his shots in and they were effective shots indeed. As the bout sped through the middle rounds, Gonzalez head the edge thanks to his clean punching. Cuadras, however, steamed on, still very much in the fight.

In fact, Gonzalez walked into the ninth with his face looking quite puffy. Cuadras may not have landed as many clean shots as he wanted to…but he was clearly landing clean on the challenger enough for the results to show on Gonzalez’ face. Indeed, the ninth may well have been even. What’s more, walking back to his corner at the end of the tenth, Chocolatito looked exhausted. Then again, Cuadras looked exhausted in his corner, too.

Whatever these men were paid to fight on Saturday – it wasn’t enough.

The championship rounds were something to behold. The two men went back and forth throughout the eleventh, and then – Chocolatito got hurt. It was a Cuadras body shot that did it and by the bell to close the chapter, Gonzalez was on the ropes. As HBO commentator Roy Jones had stated earlier: “You find a guy who’s not used to lose him, you’ve got to teach him how to lose.”

And the twelfth? An exhausted Gonzalez kept moving forward in the twelfth. He took the majority of it, perhaps, but Cuadras had his moments – especially towards the final bell. Indeed, it was quite a war. It was then also all down to the judges.

Sure enough, the judges gave it to Gonzalez, via unanimous decision. Chololatito won the title…and Cuadras won himself a whole new fan base.

More Headlines

Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Anthony Joshua v. Dominic Breazeale


Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Anthony Joshua v. Dominic Breazeale
By: Matthew N. Becher

In 2012 Anthony Joshua, then 22, and Dominick Breazeale, then 26, each represented their respective countries, the United Kingdom and the United States, in the 2012 Olympic Games, held in London, England. Both fighters competed in the Super heavyweight division, with Breazeale losing in the first round and Joshua eventually standing on the top of the medal podium, having a Gold Medal placed around his neck. This Saturday, from the O2 Arena in Greenwich, London, live on Showtime, both fighters will meet face to face as undefeated professionals, for the IBF Heavyweight championship of the world.

Anthony Joshua: The Next Dominant Heavyweight Champion?

Dominic Breazeale (17-0 15KO) got a late start in the boxing game. He was a football player, a Quarterback at that, who played division one for the University of Northern Colorado. When professional football did not seem like a valid option, the 6’8”, 250lb Breazeale found out quickly that he could turn that throwing arm into a pretty heavy knockout punch. After competing in the Olympics he immediately turned pro later that year and has amassed an unblemished records of seventeen wins, with fifteen coming by way of the knockout. He has wins over Amir Mansour, Fred Kasi, Yasmany Consuegra and Victor Bisbal in the last year. This weekend’s title fight against Joshua will be his toughest to date, and Breazeale has stated that this fight will end by KO, “We’re two knockout artists, so whoever lands first is going to win….I’m not some pushover like he’s had in the past. If I see an opportunity, I am going to take advantage of it”.

Anthony Joshua (16-0 16KO) has been groomed to become the heavyweight champion of the world, winning his first title earlier this year in April, in only his 16th professional fight. Joshua has faced a bit of better competition against the likes of Kevin Johnson, Gary Cornish, Dillian Whyte and Charles Martin, will all of them getting knocked out by Joshua. In only 3 years as a pro, the Gold Medalist and now IBF heavyweight champion has accomplished a lot, and sees Breazeale as just another mandatory competitor towards his ultimate goal of unified heavyweight champ, “I still have another couple titles I need to get my hands on. I’m still hunting. There’s still work to be done”.

This has the makings for a very exciting heavyweight fight, between two big sluggers. With the difference in competition that both have seen and the fight being in London, the edge is definitely in Joshua’s favor, but in the heavyweight division, it only takes one punch to change all of that.

More Columns