Dear Kuya Manny: Please Retire at 60
By: Benre Zenarosa
Dear Kuya Manny,
In a true Filipino fashion, can I call you ‘Kuya’ since I’ve always seen you as an older brother? How are you? How are the bruises? I hope you’re recovering well.
I learned that you had another bout when my sister’s husband called and inquired about its result while we’re having lunch last Sunday.
“Have you watched the fight?” my sister asked while holding her smartphone. “Who won?”
“What fight?” I responded.
“The Pacquiao fight” she replied. “You don’t know?”
I paused for a moment not just because of cluelessness but also because every little reason why I stopped caring about any news about you all came back to me. The horror you single-handedly inflicted into my consciousness three years ago saw the light of the tunnel again. Piece by piece. Detail by detail. Pound for pound.
May 3, 2015. Sunday. “The Fight of the Century.” It’s you versus Floyd Mayweather Jr. SM Megamall Cinema 3. Pay per view. 2 tickets. I was sitting next to my younger brother Ronnel. The 12-round match has ended. Jimmy Lennon Jr. announced the winner. Cheers were replaced by sighs. Nobody wanted to leave the theater. We were shocked. “Is that it?” the old man sitting across me shouted in exasperation. We waited for the climax of the movie pictured mentally by hundreds of millions of fans all over the world: Mayweather, the nemesis – blank-faced, defeated on the canvas after being hit by you in a barrage of uppercuts and right hooks. It never happened.
No, it’s not that we lost that made it unforgettable. It’s the difficult truth hidden behind the curtain that consumed me. You made me despise boxing. The sport died for me on that day.
During a post-fight interview, you revealed that you had entered that fight with a pre-existing shoulder injury and then further injured that area during the fourth round of the contest. When I heard this, my heart wanted to explode. I couldn’t believe it. It felt like I have been deceived with my two eyes wide open by you, the same man who had told in his pre-fight interview: “Don’t get nervous… I’m the one fighting, so relax.”
I watched every possible discussion that one can view online because of the hype everyone has poured for that momentous event. Boxing greats, analysts, and even superstars from other sports became involved and gave their take on who would emerge victorious. It was billed as the modern era’s Joe Frazier versus Muhammad Ali contest. But nobody saw it coming – the lie of the century.
Kuya, it was the first time in my entire life that I decided to buy tickets and watch a fight of yours on pay per view. I had watched all your previous fights on tv and on Youtube. To me and probably just like the million others around the world, it was an attempt to be part of history; to be able to tell myself decades later, if God will permit, that I was there with you in every blow, in every jab, in every hook. It was my humble way of supporting you. But again, I was wrong. You and your camp had a different view the entire time. The world expected a clash of titans with no injury report divulged to the public. Everyone assumed that you were at 100% or almost at the peak of your strength and so tickets have been sold out.
Kuya Manny, a few days after your Mayweather fight, I tried to convince myself that you had hidden the truth for the fight to not be postponed because the other camp might use it a reason to back out. I understand that you had been luring Mayweather for the fight to be realized for so many years. Is that more important than your integrity, reputation and dignity as a man? And just like that, you moved on from one fight to another as if nothing happened.
Sports breathes from hope and to engage in sports is a way to relieve the different forms of stress of life. However, if used the improper way, it can be lethal. A promise of solace can be turned into a nightmare that can haunt the minds of people. That’s exactly what you did, Kuya.
But who am I compared to your greatness? Why should I hold a grudge to you after everything that you’ve done? Is it too hard to forgive another human being and forget all the heartaches?
Whenever I see you in the news or whenever your name surfaces in my conversations with my colleagues and friends, I remember how you made me feel. You brought another exceptional dimension to the word “Filipino” in the international stage. You’re “The Filipino Pride” and “The People’s Champ” and you’ve shown the world what we’re made of.
Yours is a beautiful rags-to-riches story: a mighty warrior who became affluent because of his grit, passion, persistence, and determination. As a storyteller, I fell in love with it. Is it too much to ask for a story book ending in your part?
In his final NBA game, your good friend Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant astoundingly scored 60 points on 22 of 50 shooting against Utah Jazz in 2016. A number of spectators were standing and jumping in the Staples Center arena out of excitement. The mood was festive. Hollywood A-listers were in attendance. He was blessed with an epic ending which is rare for sports legends in history. He retired a winner. After bagging your 60th career win, you have the power to retire a champion.
At 2:43 of the 7th round, you convincingly showed the world what’s left in your tank after defeating the much younger Argentine boxer Lucas Matthysse by TKO and earned the WBA Welterweight title.
But just like a younger brother to his kuya, I hope you retire now from boxing and enjoy more time with your family and loved ones. I’m worried that you might seriously get hurt on your next fight and bid goodbye to the sport you’re passionate about because your mind and body have given up on you. I’m concerned about how your wife Jinkee, your kids, and mommy Dionisia would react if they’ll see you in an unspeakable state. You have nothing else to prove.
Also, please reach out to the LGBTQ+ community and all of those you have offended before. Embrace them with open arms and patiently search for the common ground for us to move forward. I believe you have the heart to spark a real change to the sufferings of our fellowmen. I pray that your health will be at its summit to battle against the more valuable, salient, and pressing issues and challenges that we face as a people in the future. Because your loss is our loss and your win is our win.
Finally, I hope you lend your ears this time.
Benre J. Zenarosa is a freelance writer. He’s the recipient of the 2016 Lasallian Scholarum Award for Outstanding Published Column Article on Youth and Education in a Nationally Circulated Publication. His works have appeared in the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Rappler.com, and The Nation. He’s from Makati City, Philippines.
Andre Ward Retires From The Ring
By: Sean Crose
Andre Ward, the light heavyweight mutli-titlist, former Olympian and one time king of the super middleweight division has announced his retirement from the sport of boxing. The news took the fight world by surprise, as Ward is currently regarded by many as being the pound for pound best in the sport of boxing at the moment. Still, the thirty-three year old made clear in a message on his web page that it was time for him to move on from the dangerous sport which has made him famous. “As I walk away from the sport of boxing today,” he wrote, “I leave at the top of your glorious mountain, which was always my vision and my dream. I did it. We did it.”
Ward steps away from the ring with an unblemished record of thirty-two wins and no defeats. His last fight was a rematch against light heavyweight powerhouse Sergey Kovalev, who he beat decisively by way of a viscous body attack. That fight confirmed that Ward was indeed one of the smartest boxers in the sport, but also showed that the man had power to hang with the hardest of hitters and still emerge victorious. Such battles, however, have clearly taken their toll on the man. “I want to be clear,” he writes, “I am leaving because my body can no longer put up with the rigors of the sport and therefore my desire to fight is no longer there.”
Although Ward may technically be just slightly removed from his prime, at best, he has proven to be the rarest of athletes in that he’s stepping away from the sport which has earned him enormous sums of money and accolades while remaining on top of it. Future big fights, perhaps with middleweight powerhouse Gennady Golovkin or fellow light heavyweight titlist Adonis Stevenson might remain, but it’s clear that Ward, who would be a certain favorite against either fighter, no longer feels the need to prove himself. Most would agree he doesn’t have to. “MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!” Ward posted in a tweet that was accompanied by an impressive one minute video.
Along with two wins over Kovalev, Ward bested former light heavyweight titlist Chad Dawson, and esteemed junior middleweights Carl Froch, Arthur Abraham and Mikkel Kessler, among others. Although he never became the household name that contemporaries Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao did, the reserved, spiritual Ward left a huge imprint on the sport of boxing.
“Above all,” he wrote on his site, “I give God the Glory, for allowing me to do what I’ve done, for as long as I have.”
Pacquiao Opts For Horn Rematch As Bradley, Marquez Retire
By: Sean Crose
Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez – arch foils of the great Manny Pacquiao – have announced their retirements. Good for both men. They’ve earned their keep in the sport. Sure enough, both fighters deserve Hall of Fame status upon becoming eligible for induction. As for Pacquiao (59-6-2), word is out that he aims to keep fighting – and that he plans to rematch Jeff Horn (17-0-1), which he is contractually permitted to do. Horn, for those with short memories, bested Pacquiao in highly controversial hometown fashion this past Fourth of July Weekend in Australia.
The problem for Pacquiao now may be the fact that it looks like he’ll be fighting Horn in Australia yet again. This, of course, means that the Filipino legend will probably once more find himself at the mercy of the judges. To say Pacquiao should simply knock his man out is to arguably divorce oneself from reality at this point. Pacquiao hasn’t had a knockout or stoppage in ages and he certainly didn’t seem his old self when he battled Horn this past summer. In all likelihood, a rematch will go to the scorecards, much as the first fight did. And that might not be good news for Pacquiao.
The bout will be for the WBO welterweight title which Horn lifted from Pacquiao, but it’s really for Pacquiao’s legacy, Horn’s future and for lots of money. Pacquiao isn’t the pay per view draw he used to be. Indeed, he’s not a pay per view fighter at all anymore. What the man remains, however, is a hugely popular, internationally known athlete. ESPN was rewarded for broadcasting the first Pacquiao-Horn fight with millions of viewers. No doubt the rematch, which may go down in November, will bring in some good ratings, as well.
Many believe Pacquiao has been on the downslide for years, and it’s hard to argue against that line of thought after seeing the man’s ring performance last month. The buzzing, dominating, angle maestro who threw punches in bunches with piston-like speed was nowhere to be found. Having said that, it certainly seemed like Pacquiao had done enough to win the fight after the final bell rang. Horn was tough, determined and more skilled than perhaps most people thought before the fight, but defying expectations doth not a winner make. Not in a fair world, at least. Life, however, isn’t always fair.
That’s something that’s painfully evident in the sport of boxing.
As for Pacquiao’s former foes, both Marquez and Bradley have opted to remove themselves from such ugliness. Both have earned a ton over the course of their careers. Marquez leaves the ring a legend. Bradley seems poised to perhaps become a legend as time moves on. He’s one of those fighters who looks to grow in stature as the years pass by. There are analysts who feel Pacquiao is at the point in his career where he too should hang up his gloves. A brilliant performance against Horn might change a lot of opinions, but does the man have another brilliant performance left in him?
Klitschko retires – what next for Anthony Joshua?
By: Thomas Nicholls
Anthony Joshua’s much anticipated rematch with Wladimir Klitschko is OFF as the legendary Ukrainian has called time on a prestigious 64-fight career.
Since winning a gold medal at the Atlanta Olympic games in 1996, Klitschko has established himself as one of the all-time Heavyweight greats.
Retiring with an admirable record of 53 KO wins in 64 bouts, Klitschko burst onto the heavyweight scene with older brother Vitali in the mid to late 90’s, bulldozing his way through his first 24 opponents before a shock defeat against much unfancied Ross Purity in Wladimir’s hometown of Kiev in December 1998.
Amidst the renaissance for Klitschko, he captured his first world title in October 2000, beating America’s Chris Byrd via Unanimous Decision. Klitschko set his sights on unifying the division and was on course to fulfill his ambition until another shock defeat to South Africa’s Corrie Sanders. Another rebuilding process was underway yet just three fights later he was stopped once more, this time it was Lamon Brewster who had Klitschko on the canvas. A career which held such promise was in turmoil. Klitschko was at his lowest ebb.
It was back to drawing board for “Dr Steelhammer”, under the tutorship of the late Emanuel Steward and they had found the winning formula. A much lamented “Jab & Grab” style, as effectively crafted as it was uneasy on the eye, Klitschko was formidable.
By 2010, Klitschko’s resurgence had seen him capture the IBO, IBF & WBO versions of the Heavyweight crown, pummeling his way through Tony Thompson, Ruslan Chagaev and Samuel Peter in the process. Up next was WBA belt holder David Haye, Hamburg was the venue and many had tipped the Londoner to expose the vulnerability of Klitschko’s chin. For all of Haye’s promotion and promise, he failed to land a glove on the champion.
Klitschko had conquered the Heavyweight division, he would defend his four world titles against Wach, Povetkin & Pulev in spectacular fashion before being outfoxed by a gamely Tyson Fury.
As Klitschko seeked redemption and in what was his final fight, he captured the admiration of the millions that had their focus on Wembley Stadium in April 2017. Klitschko engaged in a titanic battle with “little bro” Anthony Joshua, sending the Brit to the canvas with a huge right hand in the sixth round. Joshua, with youth on his side, had showed exceptional powers of recovery and seeked and destroyed a tiring Klitschko in round 11. Klitschko, at 41, showed wonderful heart and courage to rise from the canvas twice to fight on, but his time was up.
Klitschko’s retirement spells the end of a remarkable career and of course the possibility of a rematch with Joshua, who is now seeking his next opponent.
Yesterday, the WBA ordered Anthony Joshua to defend his WBA heavyweight title against mandatory challenger, Luis Ortiz.
The governing body released a statement telling both parties they have 30 days to come to an agreement, or the fight will go to purse bids.
IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev seemed set to fight “AJ”, but the WBA had previously confirmed in January that Ortiz would face the Wembley winner.
Eddie Hearn has recently spoke of his desire to take the Joshua roadshow to the states, as a fight with Deontay Wilder gathers momentum, besides the “Bronze Bomber” there isn’t a host of stand-out candidates that have the ability to dethrone the British champ.
Other prospects that will have Joshua in their sights are of course Dillian Whyte, the winner of Parker vs Fury and Jarrell Miller – it’s hard to see Joshua being dethroned any time soon.
Joshua has the heavyweight division at his mercy, as did Klitschko for many years, the torch has been passed and Joshua is the new era.
Wladimir Klitschko: A Man Who Represented His Sport In Respectable Fashion
By: Sean Crose
And so Wladimir Klitschko, one of the longest reigning heavyweight champions in history, has decided to retire. Good for him. We should wish him all the best. He was, make no mistake about it, a credit to his sport. While Klitschko was never able to engross all of western society the way Mike Tyson, Muhammad Ali, Joe Lewis or Jack Dempsey had before him, he was able to show that a gentleman could also be a tough guy. That’s saying something – especially right now, at this point in boxing history. The fact that Klitschko is retiring in the leadup to the insanely hyped and sadly beloved Mayweather-McGregor matchup signifies, in a way, exactly where we are in the road.
While Klitschko believed a champion should represent his sport in respectable fashion, Mayweather and McGregor engage in gutter speak for the roar of the crowd. While Klitschko believed that practicing an incredibly violent sport didn’t mean you had to act like a narcissistic headcase outside of it, Mayweather and McGregor recently turned their seemingly endless press tour into a cross between a circus act and a bad LSD trip. Whatever his flaws may be, a parent might actually point to Klitschko as a source of inspiration. Anyone who wants their kid to act like Mayweather or McGregor needs a psych evaluation. Now, though, Klitschko is gone, leaving the fight world with a loud mouthed Irishman who acts unhinged and a gleeful American hedonist who looks forward to making some serious “easy money.”
Only there’s more to it than that.
There are, believe it or not, fighters out there who act like, you know, adults. Canelo Alvarez is one. His future opponent, Gennady Golovkin, is another, Shawn Porter certainly appears to be role model material. Last weekend’s big winner, Mikey Garcia, clearly treats his work, life and public image responsibly. There are others in boxing who could be on this list, as well. Count on it. They simply don’t get the attention Mayweather and McGregor do. And that’s partly understandable. For part of boxing is salesmanship. What boxing shouldn’t be, however, is bottom of the barrel, base entertainment. Sadly, that’s where some think it is at the moment – at the bottom of the barrel – thanks to two less than sportsmanlike characters and the legions who adore watching them.
The point of this piece isn’t to be Puritanical, however. It’s to point out the fact that fighters don’t have to behave in an antisocial manner in order to be successful. The truth is that Klitschko might have earned more fans had he been a bit more colorful – not idiotic, just more colorful. That wasn’t the man’s personality, though, and I’ve got to respect him for it. Better Klitschko, in my humble opinion, than the Pop Culture Event Of The Summer we’re heading towards. Is it August 27th yet?
Wladimir Klitschko Announces Retirement
By: Sean Crose
Wladimir Klitschko, the former longtime heavyweight champion who recently engaged in an all out war with current heavyweight king Anthony Joshua has announced his retirement. Klitschko, who failed in his attempt to regain his crown in front of 90,000 fans in London last spring was expected to rematch Joshua in Las Vegas in November. In a bit of a surprise, however the Ukranian decided enough was enough.
Klitschko, one of the longest reigning heavyweight champions in history, never caught on with American fans due to his methodical ring style. Still, his many knockout wins spoke for themselves and his respectful personality earned Klitchko much respect in return. In an era of Mayweather-McGregor, the gentleman warrior will surely be missed.
Wladimir Klitschko: “I deliberately took a few weeks to make my decision, to make sure I had enough distance from the fight at Wembley Stadium. As an amateur and a professional boxer, I have achieved everything I dreamed of, and now I want to start my second career after sports. I would have never imagined that I would have such a long and incredibly successful boxing career. I´m very thankful for this. Thanks to everyone who has always supported me. Especially my family, my team and my many fans.”
The Rise & Fall of Tyson Fury
By: Thomas Nicholls
Tyson Fury has once again announced his retirement, but only this time I feel it is for good.
Tyson, is quick to remind the world and rightly so about his status as the “lineal” heavyweight champion, the holder of the Ring Magazine belt which is by far the most desired and prestigious amongst the world’s fighters. Since his crowning night against WladimirKlitschko in November 2015, before his impressive rendition of Aerosmith, he spoke of how he’d love to be half the champion that Klitschko was – it becomes more apparent with each passing saga, unfortunately that will never be the case.
Before that night in Dusseldorf, where let’s not forget, Boxing’s “experts” never gave Fury a prayer, he was establishing himself as somewhat of a pantomime villain, an enigma and an uncompromising controversial rising star that hailed himself “The Gypsy King”. Fury enjoyed his role as the outlaw, he took great pride in swimming against the tide, in a world where sportsmen and women are under such media scrutiny, they very rarely speak their mind – instead they just say the things that people want to hear. Tyson is different.
At 6ft9, Fury is a giant and a giant with an equally enormous sense of vulnerability about him, a vulnerability which in previous times has captured the hearts of the nation i.e Paul Gascoigne & Ricky Hatton, but despite all of his successes, he never got the praise, respect & recognition he felt he deserved. A British Heavyweight that conquered the unconquerable, a new world champion from the British shores was jeered at the Sports Personality Of The Year Awards. People campaigned for him not to be allowed through the doors. Britain’s most successful sport’s star from the year 2015 and without a shadow of a doubt the biggest personality, was being ousted by the media & frowned upon by the public.
Laughably, Andy Murray was handed the trophy. Time to rethink the name of the competition perhaps?
Fury has been fighting from day one, a premature birth resulted in him being born weighing just 1lb, as he battled on to stay alive, his father John saw a fighting spirit that earned his son the name Tyson. Born into a family with a deep history of bare knuckle fighting, Tyson’s path in life was to emulate those before him and make a stir in the heavyweight scene. In a recent interview with Gareth A Davies, Tyson highlighted how he’d always wanted to become the most controversial sports star on the planet. Whilst, he’s certainly made a good attempt of it, it seems his career is coming to a close.
Two schoolings against the then highly regarded Dereck Chisora, a knock out win over the accomplished Steve Cunningham and a convincing win against Christian Hammer had propelled Fury into the mandatory position for a shot at Klitschko, but he was certainly made to wait. Team Fury had always said they had the formula to stop Klitschko and to do a number on him in his own back yard where many men had failed, most notably David Haye – who incidentally postponed two scheduled bouts against Fury which has since left an extremely bitter taste in the mouth.
Recently, it’s seemed the rebirth of Tyson Fury was in effect, a number of social media posts of him in the gym, a training camp in Marbella with old pal Billy Joe Saunders and a detail of his hunger to derail the Anthony Joshua “hype train”. Yet, in a surprising twist yesterday, Peter Fury & promoter Mick Hennessy were present in the HayeMaker gym, laying down the foundations for a possible fight next year should Hughie beat Parker in September. Peter, Tyson’s coach & uncle, has often stressed his dislike to the Haye camp following the two postponements which left Tyson in a world of lost time. Tyson clearly had no idea about this surprise rendezvous and after seeing the pictures online, he took to twitter to announce his retirement.
In reference to the picture of Peter & Mick Hennessy, Fury took to Instagram –
“Can’t believe you’re in that pr***s gym & even considering doing business with that piece of ****. I’m totally disappointed in you both #JUMPINGINBEDWITHTHEENEMY “
He followed that post with an upload signaling his retirement, “Been very blessed in my life & career to achieve the utmost in Boxing, was an epic journey along the way. Thanks to all the fans that supported & believed in me along the way, Hope you enjoyed it as much as I did. THE END.”
Fury, is still in the middle of a UKAD investigation into doping dating back to 2015, he has claimed he has been taking cocaine since being out of the ring, he has a battle to get back to fitness should he ever wish to lace up the gloves again, but now most hurtful of all, he feels betrayed by coach & uncle Peter.
Previously, I’d been confident that he would return to the ring, there was a glint in his eye as he bid to silence all his critics and reclaim what he believes is his – the status as World’s number one. Now, however, It seems he may have fought his last fight in the ring, but certainly not out of the ring, by his own admission Tyson has been plagued by depression, he’d previously stated “I’m seeing psychiatrists. Everything. They say I’ve got a version of bipolar. I’m a manic depressive.”
“I’ve not been in a gym for months. I’ve not been training. I’ve been going through depression. I just don’t want to live anymore, if you know what I’m saying.”
“I’ve had total enough of it. They’ve forced me to the breaking edge. Never mind cocaine. I just didn’t care. I don’t want to live anymore. So cocaine is a little minor thing compared to not wanting to live anymore.”
“I am seeking help, but they can’t do nothing for me. What I’ve got is incurable. I don’t want to live. All the money in the world, fame and glory, means nothing if you’re not happy. And I ain’t happy. I’m very far from it.”.
For all the controversy, all the foul-mouthed rants, all the social media slurs, Boxing needs Tyson Fury and Tyson Fury needs Boxing.
Tyson climbed his Everest when he beat Klitschko in 2015, he had hit his peak at just 27 and now it seems we may have the seen the last of him as a sporting entity and if we don’t see him in the ring again, let’s just hope he wins his most important fight of all.
Tim Bradley to Retire
By: Sean Crose
News is out that Tim Bradley is retiring from the sport of boxing. The high level welterweight last fought Manny Pacquiao over a year ago but hasn’t returned to action since.
Mike Coppinger of ringtv.com broke the news. Although nothing official has been announced, word has since been making it’s way around the internet. Having earned millions of dollars and lots of accolades, Bradley – who is also a broadcaster – may have simply decided enough is enough.
Boxing Insider will keep readers updated as more details arise.
Tyson Fury Appears To Retire From Boxing – At Least For The Moment
Tyson Fury Appears To Retire From Boxing – At Least For The Moment
By: Sean Crose
“Been very blessed in my life & career achieve the upmost in boxing, was a epic journey along the way. Thanks to all the fans that supported & believed in me along the way, Hope you enjoy it as much as I did. THE END.”
The above words came from the Instagram page of one Tyson Fury, former heavyweight king. Fury, who stunned longstanding heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko in Germany back in late 2015 to sit atop boxing’s Mount Olympus, never defended his hard earned championship once. Indeed, the man ended up being overwhelmed by a cocktail of depression, drug use and perhaps alcoholism. Since giving up on a rematch with Klitschko over a full year ago, the 25-0 Englishman has been all over the place with his statements and actions.
Perhaps that’s why Wednesday’s abrupt announcement (if that’s really what it was) should be taken with a grain of salt. The truth is no one, perhaps not even Fury himself, is sure what he may say or do next. Fury, to be sure, is a controversial figure, yet he’s also a fascinating one. Even more tellingly, the man is a vastly underrated craftsman in the ring. Incredibly tall and oftentimes quite heavy, the awkward Fury knows how to fight and fight well. Should this announcement prove to be the genuine article, fans may end up wondering what could have been with the colorful boxer known as the Gypsy King.
The heavyweight division is now in the most exciting place it’s been since at least the time Lennox Lewis decided to hang up his gloves over a decade ago. With Anthony Joshua ruling supreme and Klitschko most likely lined up for a rematch of the war the two men had in London last spring, there’s lots to talk about. For instance, American powerhouse Deontay Wilder is a big part of the contemporary heavyweight picture, as are Luis Ortiz and Joseph Parker. Joshua may be the next heavyweight great, but it’s going to be a while before all the dust settles.
For it to finally settle without the bombastic Fury would be a loss for boxing – and for the current revved up heavyweight era. Perhaps with time, Fury will decide he’s ready to return (he’s still a young man at 28) or perhaps he’ll decide the life of a famous boxer isn’t good for him or for his family in the long run. Either way, the man will always be known for casting quite a shadow on the world’s most famous weight division. Just how long that shadow will end up being remains to be seen.
Five Post Fight Thoughts from Pacquiao vs. Horn
Five Post Fight Thoughts from Pacquiao vs. Horn
By: William Holmes
A legend in the sport of boxing lost to a man that nobody thought he would lose to on Saturday in Brisbane, Australia.
Manny Pacquiao is a sure fire first ballot hall of famer and is an eight division world champion. Since 2005 almost all of his fights were made available exclusively on Pay Per View. However, many were stunned to see Jeff Horn be named the victor and were left in disbelief. Many, including the announcers on ESPN, strongly felt that Manny was robbed and clearly won the fight.
Is this the end of Pacquiao’s career? What does this mean going forward?
Here are five post fight thoughts from the Pacquiao vs. Horn fight.
1. Pacquiao Was Not Robbed
This may come as a shock to some, but Pacquiao was not robbed. I’m not saying he didn’t win the fight, but you can’t argue with the judges who felt Horn won the fight. Pacquiao didn’t dominate any round with the exception of the ninth, and many, many, rounds were “swing” rounds and could have been scored either way.
Fans have to remember that crowd reaction affects judges and this fight took place in Horn’s home country. Most of the fans in attendance were rooting for their fellow Australian and were reacting positively to every punch that Jeff Horn threw. Yes, judges are supposed to be able to block out the sound and view a fight objectively, but that’s easier said than done and no judge is completely immune to the vocal support that surrounds him.
Fans also have to realize that viewing a fight live is much different than viewing a fight on TV. When you’re watching a fight on TV you can be swayed by the commentary of the announce team and you have a much better view/angle on the action inside the ring than those who are watching the fight in person. Ring side judges do not have the advantage of wide camera angle and often their views are obstructed by the ropes, ring, competitors, and the referee.
Additionally, Jeff Horn pressed the action and was able to dominate the exchanges when they were in tight or when Pacquiao’s back was against the rope. Ring Generalship and effective aggression are two criteria that judges use to judge a fight, and it was clear that Horn was dictating the pace to Pacquiao and never stopped coming forward.
Again, I’m not saying Pacquiao didn’t win the fight, I’m merely stating he wasn’t robbed.
2. CompuBox Stats Are Overrated
Many upset boxing fans point to the CompuBox statistics as evidence that Pacquiao was robbed. They note that Horn only landed 15% of his punches and that Pacquiao landed almost 100 more punches.
However, fight fans have to understand that CompuBox punch totals are done by a person sitting ringside keeping a manual tally. There is nothing scientific or reliable about CompuBox, at best it is an estimation. CompuBox also doesn’t take into consideration the visible effects of the punches landed.
As a general rule punches are more noticeable when a bigger man lands against a smaller man, and Jeff Horn was clearly the bigger man. When his punches landed they visibly moved Pacquiao and many of Pacquiao’s punches were not noticeable to the untrained eye.
3. More Big Fights Need to Happen Outside of Las Vegas
As a fight city, Las Vegas is overrated.
Yes, it’s the gambling capital of the world and very few locations can compete with the purse sizes that Las Vegas provides. But, if you’ve ever gone to a fight in Las Vegas you’d know that most of the fans who attend a big fight in Las Vegas are more concerned with the glitz, glam and celebrity that Las Vegas provides instead of the action in the ring.
I’ve been to Vegas several times for big fights, and a good 95% of the fans in attendance do not show up until a few minutes before the main event starts. Most of the fans at a Las Vegas fight do not know the difference between a jab and a cross and are more concerned with looking good at a big event.
The Pacquiao Horn fight was held in an outdoor stadium in Australia and came across great on television. 50,000+ fans were in attendance, a number that currently can not be reached in Las Vegas. The excitement and anticipation of a fight comes off much better in a big stadium when compared to Las Vegas, and makes it more attractive to the casual sports fan.
The Klitschko vs. Joshua fight was held at Wembley Stadium and was one of the best fights of the year. The crowd was unbelievable and that fight also looked great on television.
The most entertaining fight that this writer ever attended live was when Pacquiao fought Margarito at the home of the Dallas Cowboys, AT&T Stadium. The venue was a big reason as to why that fight was so entertaining.
Granted, there will still be fight fans who only show up for the main event if a good boxing card were to be held outside of Las Vegas, but the overall experience is much better when it’s held in a stadium.
4. Pacquiao Needs to Drop Down in Weight
Ever since Pacquiao made the jump to the junior welterweight division and higher he has been the smaller man inside the ring. His walk around weight is near the welterweight limit and he often has to fight someone who has cut 10-20 pounds to make the welterweight limit.
When Pacquiao was in his prime his movement and endurance was good enough to run circles around his opponent so that they couldn’t catch him. He’s no longer in his prime and Jeff Horn was able to capitalize on his size advantage and trap Manny on the ropes with effective body work. If Jeff Horn was able to trap Pacquiao imagine what some of the other top welterweights could do to him.
Keith Thurman, Errol Spence Jr., Kell Brook, Shawn Porter, and even Lucas Matthysse are all opponents that are bigger than Pacquiao and would probably inflict more damage on him than what Horn did on Saturday.
Even though the current version of Pacquiao would still be competitive with most of the welterweights ranked in the top ten, he is risking serious damage to his body and health if he continues to campaign against bigger and stronger opponents when he is pushing 40.
5. An Aged Version of Pacquiao is Still Entertaining
Should Pacquiao retire? That’s a tough question but at the very least it should be discussed amongst him and his team.
But one thing that we learned on Saturday night is that even the faded and aged version of Manny Pacquiao is still exciting in the ring. His fight with Jeff Horn dominated social media and ESPN and has been the talk of the sports world for the past two days.
Fight fans were on the edge of their seat the entire fight and the ninth round was one of the most thrilling rounds of the year.
The ratings support the entertainment value of Pacquiao. ESPN recently released a press release indicating that the fight delivered a 2.4 overnight rating and was the highest rated fight for a cable network this decade. The release also indicated that the Battle of Brisbane was likely to be the highest-rated fight on ESPN’s networks since the mid 1990s.
The current version of Manny Pacquiao may have difficulty reclaiming a world title in the welterweight division, but he still draws eyes to the TV.
When Will A Losing Record Boxer Know When He Should Retire?
When Will A Losing Record Boxer Know When He Should Retire?
By: Ken Hissner
The UK’s 36 year old Kristian Laight is now 12-248-8 but only stopped 5 times. He is third on this writers 100 Club losers list in total defeats only behind Reggie Strickland 66-276-17 and Peter Buckley 32-256-12 but both are retired. Matt Seawright of the UK is 5-146-5 stopped 22 times and still fighting.
Matt Scriven of the UK is 14-91-1 stopped 20 times. Dan Carr of the UK is 3-85-2 but only stopped once. Kalman Vagyocki of Hungary has a “perfect record” of 0-45 stopped 34 times. Then there is Marius Sorin of Romania 0-42-2 stopped 27 times.
How about Dmitrijs Avsijenkovs of Latvia who is 0-29 stopped all 29 times? Petr Jasukievic of CZ is 0-27 stopped 25 times. The Dominican Republic is known for some really losing boxers like Dionisio Rodriguez 0-42 stopped 29 times. Alexis Castillo 0-35 stopped 31 times. Miguel Tavarez 0-32 stopped 25 times. Gregory Esteves 0-34 stopped 18 times. Jose Guzman 0-28 stopped 22 times. Jose Ramon Tejada 0-19 stopped all 19 times and Junior Rodriguez 0-19 but “only” stopped 12 times. Juan Ramon Santos is 0-18 stopped 17 times. Marcos Martinez is 0-18 stopped 15 times. Zuleidiy Diaz Meja 0-18 stopped 17 times. Modesto Felix 0-18-2 stopped 11 times.
Poland has Slawomir Latopolski 0-18 stopped 17 times. Ukraine has Vitaliy Charkin 0-18 stopped 16 times who fought this past weekend. Also fighting this past weekend was Milan Ruso of CZ 1-46 stopped 41 times.
Jose Amaral of Brazil 1-69 stopped 41 times. Lajos Orsos of Hungary 1-54-2 stopped 21 times. Cristian Nicolae of Romania 2-76 stopped 16 times finally retired. Rudolf Murko of CZ is 3-80-2 stopped 40 times. Qasim Hussain of the UK is 4-76-2 but only stopped once. Moses Matovu of the UK from UG is 5-64-4 stopped 7 times. Stefan Stanko of Slovokia is 6-67-1 stopped 59 times. Dan Blackwell of the UK is 7-63 but only stopped once.
Looking at a boxer from Mexico that seems to win “every other fight” you have Roberto Valenzuela 69-75-2 stopped 40 times.
Other active boxers who qualified for the 100+ loss club are Kevin McCauley a Hungarian out of CZ 13-142-11 stopped 11 times. Ibar Rivas an Albanian out of the UK is 34-119-4 only stopped 3 times. Jozef Kubovaky of Slovokia is 13-109-14 stopped 36 times. William Warburton of the UK is 23-114-9 stopped only 3 times. Elemir Rafael also from Slovokia is 34-106-4 stopped 34 times. Finally Yousef Al Hamidi of the UK 14-109-3 stopped only 3 times.
The bottom line is “when will a losing record boxer know when it’s time to retire?” How about the commissions in the UK and DR?