Archive for October 19, 2011

Bad Chad and the B-Hop Flop

In this day and age of polarizing political standoffs, economic debates, and occupying protests, no subject is immune to the divisive, opinionated views that exist on even the most seemingly cut and dried topic.  People love conflict and for every issue out there you can guarantee that there are individuals lining up on both sides of the aisle to offer up their unintelligible two cents worth.  Unfortunately, the sport of boxing is once again immersed in such a two-sided controversy, following the contentious ending to the Bernard Hopkins-Chad Dawson fight this past Saturday night. 

In case you missed it, Bernard Hopkins lost his WBC title by way of a 2nd round TKO after suffering a fall that injured his shoulder and rendered him incapable of continuing (plug in old-man, broken hip joke here).  In most cases, that is the end of the story.  You fall down, get hurt, and the other guy wins.  However, due to the fact that Dawson played a large part in Hopkins’ fall, by picking him up and giving him a little shove, the fight concluded in a more indignant way than usual.            

Now, you are either one of the millions that feel Dawson was out of line in lifting Hopkins off the canvas (causing him to fall awkwardly on his arthritic shoulder), or you may be of the opinion that Hopkins simply found an easy way out and took full advantage of the opportunity presented to him.  Regardless, the fact remains that boxing, as an institution, is once again forced to reconcile the exasperation of a fan base that has been cheated by another pay per view charade.  For those of you that spent money on the fight, you have my condolences.  For those that were wise to enough to find an alternative use for your $55, I would like to personally congratulate you on having the foresight to recognize the waddling/and or quacking of a duck and the wherewithal to stay far away. 

In the end, it really doesn’t matter whether Dawson was to blame, or Hopkins, or the referee for ultimately rendering a questionable TKO decision in Dawson’s favor.  What does matter is that another major boxing event has ended under incongruous circumstances, leaving the buying public with another bad taste in their mouth.  To put it another way, imagine going to a strip club, plunking down $55 for a table dance and watching the “performer” do an awkward backward pike right into the DJ booth just seconds into the routine.  Would you feel cheated?  What if the same thing happened on three separate occasions’ within a several month period?  You might start to question the sensibility of your expenditure and eventually end up pursuing a more fulfilling outlet for your hard earned entertainment dollars. 

Well, right now, the sport of boxing is nursing a pretty banged up coccyx due to some unintentional ring acrobatics, and it is just a matter of time before fans start to renounce their patronage for a sport that appears incapable of getting back to full strength anytime soon.

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IBHOF INDUCTION BALLOTS ARE COMING OUT

I was very impressed with many of the nominees selected for this year’s possible induction into the International Boxing Hall Of Fame. First year eligible Thomas Hearns is more then likely to get in, and I am hoping Ceferino Garcia FINALLY takes his deserved place in the Hall Of Fame.
 
Some of my favorites were on the ballot like Betulio Gonzalez, Yoko Gushiken, Pone Kingpetch, Jose Legra, Rafael Herrera, Ernesto Marcel and Masao Ohba. I believe Cocoa Kid, Horacio Acavallo, Jimmy Carruthers and Joey Archer will get heavy support.
 
Outstanding boxers like Harry Jeffra, Johnny Bratton, Rinty Monaghan, Ken Overlin, and Yoshio Shirai were among many other fine fighters to round out the ballot.  I was very disappointed though to not see the names of Lupe Pintor, Chartchai Chionoi, Marvin Johnson and Iran Barkley.  To see a list of the nominees and a short bio on each go to www.bwaa.org and click on IBHOF.
 
                                                                                                                                          Jim Amato

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Neutral Boxing Results 10/2-10/8

Time for Special K to End Welter Wait

 

British welterweight prospect Kell Brook, AKA “Special K,” emphatically stamped out challenger Rafal Jackiewicz this weekend and moved himself one step closer to 147 pound pay dirt.  Brook came into the fight a huge favorite, despite the fact that Jackiewicz had won 23 out of his last 24 fights (including a two fight split with highly regarded Jan Zaveck), and he did not disappoint the hometown fans in Sheffield, winning by way of a 6th round KO.  Brook worked well behind a productive jab and used good combination punching to dictate the tempo and keep Jackiewicz from mounting any serious return threats.  He also used good lateral movement and head movement to slip punches and set himself up for numerous countering opportunities over the first five rounds.  At the start of round six Brook came out firing and gradually increased his offensive output throughout the round, forcing Jackiewicz into a defensive shell and giving the fight a one-sided feel.  With just under thirty seconds left in the round, Brook landed several overhand rights on the high guard of Jackiewicz that shook the Polish fighter just enough to prompt referee Howard John Foster to step in and stop the bout.  Questions regarding the premature stoppage abounded and amidst Jackiewicz’s protestations, Brook was declared the victor.

With the victory, Brook improved to 25-0 with 17 knockouts, and Jackiewicz fell to 38-10-1 with 19 KO’s.  Brook’s promoter Eddie Hearn stated that his fighter will make his first U.S. appearance by year’s end (possibly on the Carl Froch-Andre Ward undercard December 17th), and he stated that a matchup with fellow countryman Amir Khan was not out of the question for sometime in 2012.

Other Notable Titlist and Contender Results From Around the World

All Results Courtesy of Boxrec.com

 

 

 

 

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Neutral Boxing Results 9/25-10/1

Martinez Breaks Through Barker Earmuffs for 11th Round KO

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It wasn’t pretty, and it cost him a post-fight trip to the hospital to reset a broken nose, but after eleven wearisome rounds, Sergio Martinez finally broke through the seemingly impenetrable guard of his opponent to record his 27th professional stoppage.  His opponent, Englishman Darren Barker fought gamely, and gave the pound for pound champion little opportunity to score offensively; crowding him throughout and keeping his gloves glued at cheek level so as not to present any openings.  Martinez worked from the outside, touching Barker on the arms and gloves repeatedly, not landing terribly cleanly, but throwing at a more active rate, doubling Barker’s punch output by a total of 329 to 181.  In the end, the accumulation of punches began to take their toll, and just as the eleventh round approached the halfway mark, Martinez landed a right hand that, while partially blocked, still found its mark flush enough to send the previously undefeated Barker down for the ten count.  In all, it was not Martinez’s best performance, and he showed vulnerabilities of his own both defensively and stylistically, however, Barker proved to be a worthy challenger, and a difficult opponent to figure out, making a victory of any kind, impressive in its own right.   

On the night’s undercard, Emanuel Steward prodigy, and Kronk Gym regular Andy Lee put one of the demons from his past to rest, and avenged his lone professional loss, by decisioning Brian Vera over 10 lopsided rounds of action.  Lee used his exceptional jab to keep Vera at bay throughout much of the fight, while also finding a home for his straight left hand with regularity.  Vera pressured Lee more in the later rounds, but a sizable lead on the scorecards enabled Lee to hold off the late surge and coast to an easy unanimous decision victory by way of a 99-90, 99-90, and 98-91 margin.

  • In other news, cruiserweight top-dog Steve Cunningham lost his IBF title in controversial fashion this past weekend, losing by way of a sixth round technical decision to Cuban Yoan Pablo Hernandez.  Cunningham, dropped in the first frame, gathered himself and seemed to dictate the proceedings until a clash of heads prompted the eventual stoppage.  Factoring in the sixth and final round, the judges scored the fight 58-55, 59-54, and 56-57, in favor of Hernandez, amidst a chorus of protest from those that felt Cunningham had done enough to win.         
  • Also on the card from Germany was favorite Sebastian Sylvester, who lost to upstart Grzegorz Proksa by TKO in his bid to claim the vacant EBU middleweight title.  The veteran Sylvester was thoroughly outclassed, as Proksa’s hand speed and combination attack was no match for the much slower, former IBF champion.  In the second round, Proksa opened a cut over Sylvester’s right eye that bleed so profusely that Sylvester’s corner had little choice but to throw in the towel, pushing Proksa’s record to 26-0 with 19 knockouts, and dropping Sylvester’s record to 34-5-1 with 16 KO’s.
  • In Bayamon, Puerto Rico, junior featherweight Jonathan Oquendo, and former world titlist Juan Manuel Lopez were successful in their bids to acquire WBO Latino hardware.  Oquendo defeated Jose Luis Araiza by way of a second round knockout to improve to 22-2 with 14 KO’s, and Lopez produced a second round TKO over Mike Oliver to earn his 31st win against just 1 defeat. 
  • Top junior featherweight and WBC titlist Toshiaki Nishioka improved to 39-4-3 with 24 knockouts, after decisioning hard-hitting veteran Rafael Marquez over twelve rounds.  Marquez provided a solid test for the champion, but fell short in the end, losing 117-111, 116-112, and 115-113 on the scorecards.  The win was Nishioka’s 16th in a row, and it marked the sixth consecutive defense of his title.       
  • Gavin Rees held onto his EBU lightweight title this weekend after a clash of heads forced a technical decision draw in the fourth round of his fight against Derry Matthews.  Matthews suffered a broken nose as a result of the unfortunate coming together, and the draw left him with an overall record of 29-5-1, to Rees’ 35-1-1.              

 Other Notable Titlist and Contender Results From Around the World

All results courtesy of Boxrec.com

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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