By: Sean Crose
“The Contender” Season Five on Epix concluded on Friday night at the Forum in Inglewood, California. Things started off with a scheduled 8 round middleweight affair between 17-2 Michael Moore and 17-2 Eric Walker. The first round was close, but Walker’s wide stance looked as if it might become problematic. The second round saw Moore seeming unwilling to pull the trigger, his hesitation giving Walker the round. Walker went on to showcase some strong body work in the third.
“I’m really concerned,” said ringside commentator Andre Ward in the fourth, “that Michael Moore has accepted defeat right now.” Ward was right to voice his concern, for Moore’s performance had become listless. Moore landed hard and effectively in the 6th. Walker, however, came on strong at the end of the round. The bell sounded with the two men firing bombs. The truth, though, was that Moore never employed an effective enough attack to earn the victory. Therefore, the UD win ultimately went to Walker after eight.
It was time for the main event. Shane Mosley Jr., the 13-2 son of a legend, faced off in a scheduled ten round middleweight bout against the 13-2 Brandon Adams. The first round was rather cautious and uneventful. Adams landed a sharp left in the second that changed the tempo. Adams continued to control the tempo in the third. By the fourth it was clear that Mosley simply wasn’t being aggressive enough. Adams, on the other hand, was starting to aggressively apply pressure.
The fifth and sixth made it obvious that Adams was the more dominant of the two fighters. In fact, by the halfway point of the sixth, Mosley began to get in trouble as a result of Adam’s blows. At the bell to end the round, Mosley seemed to be in serious danger of being stopped, or – worse yet – getting hurt. In the seventh, Adams was landing hard, accurately, and effectively on Mosley’s head. “I don’t think Mosley wants any more,” said Ward after the round had ended. The look on Mosley’s face said Ward was correct.
To his credit, Mosley tried to get back into the fight in the eighth, but it looked to be too little, too late.
Barring a knockout, it appeared as if Mosley was on the road to losing. Mosley tried to assert himself again in the ninth, but he was simply outgunned. Adams continued to land solidly on his man in the 10th and final round. Needless to say, Adams walked out with a well deserved win, “The Contender” title, a ranking in the top ten, and a cool two hundred fifty thousand dollars.
Mosley Is Still A Warrior, But Can’t Get Past Avanesyan
By: Sean Crose
The Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona hosted the biggest fight of the legendary Shane Mosley’s comeback on Saturday evening. For Mosley 49-9-1 was, at 44 years of age, fighting an eliminator against the 21-1-1 David Avanesyan. Sure enough, the winner of the fight was going to be the mandatory for a title shot against the winner of this summer’s Shawn Porter-Keith Thurman WBA welterweight title showdown. Indeed, this bout was relevant.
First, however, the CBS Sports Network presented cruiserweights Dimar Ortuz, 10-0-2, and Ricardo Campillo 9-9-1. Clearly, Ortuz was the favorite, but he wasn’t able to finish his man off after hurting Campillo in the first. Still, Ortuz went on the dominate the fight. It was a boring affair to be sure, though Campillo certainly seemed happy to be hanging in there round after round. By the 6th, however, Ortuz was finally able to stop Campillo with a somewhat wild attack.
Afterwards Mosley’s son, Shane Jr, 6-1-0, took on Roberto Yong, 5-7-2, in a super middleweight throwdown. The fight was at times a somewhat chaotic affair, with both men tagging each other wildly. That being said, Mosley Jr effectively kept his range and was skilled enough to take the fight by majority decision. The younger Mosley isn’t a bad fighter, but his last name and pedigree may simply lead to expectations that exceed his talent.
Assured that at least one Mosley would walk away from the night with a victory in tow, Mosley Sr. finally entered the ring to face his Russian opponent (who was the “interim” WBA world welterweight champion – for what that’s worth). Mosley climbed through the topes with the legendary Roberto Duran (who looked pretty good for his age, thanks very much) in his corner. He may have been an advanced 44 years old, but Mosley most certainly looked to be in prime condition.
Mosley also appeared sharp and in control during the first, his jab allowing him to keep distance. Avanesyan was able to land a few times cleanly in the second, yet Mosley remained disciplined, his movements practiced and smooth. It was a tough round to call. Avanesyan continued to land in the third, however, before being taken down by a Mosley low blow. By the end of the third it was clear that the fight was becoming a rough affair.
Mosley picked up the pace to start the fourth. After Mosley appeared to take the first half of the round, however, Avanesyan began coming on strong, landing hard and pushing forward. It was a close fight, a good fight, but Avanesyan was clearly landing the harder shots. A more energetic Mosley rolled through the fifth, however, thus continuing to make things interesting. Mosley then owned the sixth, though he almost lost it due to a late rally by Avanesyan. Still, it appeared the aging legend had done enough to take the chapter.
With the first half of the fight essentially even, things moved into the 7th round, which Mosley dominated. Avanesyan retaliated by chopping his way through the 8th through grinding aggression, though the 9th was far tougher to call (I gave Avanesyan the slightest of an edge). Then, in the 10th, possible disaster struck for Mosley when the referee deducted him a point for hitting low.
Both men went for broke early in the 11th with an explosive flurry of punches. This had become more action fight than chess match. Mosley ended up going back to his corner breathing heavily, however, as Avanesyan had clearly tough guyed his way through the chapter. After getting clinical instructions from Duran, Mosley went out for the 12th and final three-minute clip.
Long story short, Mosley fought gamely until the end. It appeared, though, as if the old warrior was simply too far past his prime to earn the win. Or was he? Whaling away, the former champion landed hard on his foe, making it clear that he wasn’t there to lose. Indeed, I gave Mosley the last round. Who would the judges give the entire fight to, however?
Ultimately, it went to Avanesyan, who won by scores of 114-113, and, inexplicably, 117-110 on two of the judges’ cards. Avanesyan claimed afterward he could best Keith Thurman. Mosley, on the other hand, was a class act in defeat.
CBS Sports Net Boxing Preview: Mosley vs. Avanesyan
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night “Sugar” Shane Mosley’s GoBox Promotions will present a televised card on CBS Sports Net live from the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona.
Shane Mosley will be featured in the main event of the evening when he takes on David Avanesyan for Avanesyan’s WBA Interim Welterweight Title.
Several prospects will be featured on the card, including Dimar Ortuz (10-0), Shane Mosley Jr. (6-1), Victor Castro (16-0), and Luis Oliveras (10-0). The only other bouts scheduled to be televised will be Victor Castro against Carlos Zatarian (6-2-2) in the lightweight division as well as Dimar Ortuz (10-0) against Ricardo Campillo (9-9-1) in the cruiserweight division.
Several pre fight activities were planned this week. The promotion attempted to break the Guinness world record for the largest boxing lesson in history on May 24th and they held a ring girl search on May 25th. The promotion will also hold a public workout on May 26th with celebrity guests.
Additionally, the official weigh in will be open to the public on May 27th at the Westfield Shopping Center and a publicized flash mob will be held on the same date following the weigh in.
UFC fighter Brendan Schaub and boxing journalist Steve Kim are the scheduled broadcasterse for the bout.
The following is a preview of the main event of the evening.
David Avanesyan (21-1-1) vs. Shane Mosley (49-9-1); WBA Interim Welterweight Title
Despite the fact Shane Mosley is forty four years old and has nine losses on his record, he gets another shot at a world title when he faces David Avanesyan for the WBA Interim Welterweight Title.
The winner of this bout will be next in line to face the winner of Shawn Porter and Keith Thurman which is scheduled for June 25th in Brooklyn, New York. The winner, no matter who it is, will be a significant underdog against Porter or Thurman.
Avanesyan is seventeen years younger than Mosley, but will be giving up a half an inch in height and approximately two and a half inches in reach. On paper, Mosley appears to have more power than Avanesyan. Mosley has stopped forty one of his opponents while Avanesyan has only stopped eleven. However, Molsey’s last two fights were stoppage victories in 2015, but before that he hasn’t had a stoppage win since 2009. Avanesyan last two fights were also by stoppage victory.
Mosley has the better professional resume and amateur resume. Mosley won the US Amateur Championships as a lightweight but failed to qualify for the 1992 Olympics when he lost to Vernon Forrest in the light welterweight semifinals.
Mosley’s recent record has been subpar as he defeated a clearly past his prime Ricardo Mayorga and fringe contender Pablo Cesar Cano. His other notable victories came earlier in his career, and include Antonio Margarito, Luis Collazo, Fernando Vargas, Oscar De La Hoya, Antonio Diaz, and Jesse James Leija.
Mosley’s nine losses have come against some of the best in boxing. They include Vernon Forrest and Winky Wright twice each, Miguel Cotto, Floyd Mayweather Jr., Manny Pacquiao, Canelo Alvarez, and Anthony Mundine.
Avanesyan lone defeat was to Andrey Klimov early on in his career. His notable victories pale in comparison to Mosley, but they include Charlie Navarro, Dean Byrne, Kaizer Mabuza, and Carlos Herrera.
Mosley has hired the legendary Roberto Duran to be his trainer for this bout and they are calling themselves the “Sugar and Stone” team. Mosley is clearly past his prime, and he hopes that pairing up with Duran will help recapture that magic he had earlier in his career.
If this bout happened five years ago Mosley would be a clear favorite. But his recent fight against Mayorga was considered by many to be a farce and he looked terrible in his loss to Anthony Mundine.
Avanesyan doesn’t appear to have the power to stop Mosley, but the seventeen year difference in age should make a difference if the bout goes all twelve rounds.
It’s a tough fight to pick, but father time is not on Mosley’s side.
Shane Mosley’s Raging Tweets May Reveal War with Himself
By Ivan G. Goldman
Shane Mosley, recently waging a twitter war against unnamed people and forces, claims he was “set up” back when he was using performance-enhancing drugs.
Precisely what he means by these words it’s difficult to determine. Is he recanting previous testimony? He admitted under oath in 2003 and elsewhere that years ago he took PEDs but also said at the time he was unaware they were illegal. As part of his testimony, he said he injected EPO with a syringe on both sides of his navel. EPO is an infamous banned substance that enhances endurance.
Victor Conte, who eventually did time for operating BALCO, a steroid stand in the San Francisco Bay area, estimated that Mosley endured about 20 of these double injections. Mosley also has said that Conte warned him of possible harmful effects. Mosley’s testimony, used in criminal procedures involving BALCO, wasn’t made public until 2008.
During the recent twitter rampage Mosley, 49-9-1, 41 KOs, who once sat atop the sport as the Number One fighter pound-for pound, also says he was offered bribes more than once to throw fights. Some of the characters who made the offers were clearly dangerous, perhaps even murderers, he says. You can follow his series of tweets at @ShaneMosley_ on twitter.
Mosley, who turns 45 in September, has retired at least once, but he’s scheduled to fight May 28 in Glendale, Arizona for David Avanesyan’s interim world WBA welterweight title. The winner could eventually face champion Keith Thurman or Shawn Porter if he bests Thurman in their June 25 match on Showtime.
Mosley’s promotional company financed his PPV fight against Ricardo Mayorga last August. Mosley scored a kayo, but the Los Angeles event may have lost money.
It appears Mosley got his clock cleaned in 2011 divorce proceedings. His wife Jin was also his manager and intimately acquainted with the whereabouts of assets. Famously, she even took his championship belts, though it was a temporary arrangement until the children reached adulthood.
Before their marriage struck the rocks, the Mosleys had shared a mansion about fifty miles east of Los Angeles. Mosley traveled hundreds of miles north to obtain the substances from BALCO, which was later involved in a multitude of scandals in several sports.
Mosley’s tweets about shady, sinister characters seeking to fix fights is nothing less than fascinating. You have to wonder whether some prosecutor somewhere will look into the allegations. On the other hand, in one tweet Mosley says, “Disclaimer* the stories on my timeline are for entertainment only and should not be construed as facts…. my attorneys said.” Once someone declares something like that it doesn’t enhance the person’s credibility.
So what does it all mean? I’m not sure Mosley knows himself. I imagine he looks back at a career he once hoped would be stainless and magnificent and has regrets. After his BALCO testimony became public some folks thought his decision victory over Oscar De La Hoya in their second fight should be stricken from the record. Mosley admitted taking the substances before the bout.
But prizefighting is a forgiving sport. It’s a safe bet Mosley will be voted into the Hall of Fame after he retires for good. And he’ll no doubt continue hashing it all over in his mind — what he did right and what he did wrong. Don’t we all?
Ivan G. Goldman’s 5th novel The Debtor Class is a ‘gripping …triumphant read,’ says Publishers Weekly. A future cult classic with ‘howlingly funny dialogue,’ says Booklist. Available from Permanent Press wherever fine books are sold. Goldman is a New York Times best-selling author.