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Michael Katsidis a warrior in, out of ring

Your weekly random thoughts ...

&#8226; I've been a Michael Katsidis fan since I saw his incredible fight against Graham Earl, a fifth-round knockout win in 2007. Katsidis is every boxing fan's dream. He's as aggressive as any fighter you'll see, always makes exciting fights, fights with emotion and has a huge heart. As easy as it is to root for him, it's now even easier considering what he is going through and the decision he has made. His older brother and best friend, Stathi Katsidis, died last week at age 31. Michael Katsidis was in Thailand training for a much-anticipated fight with lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez, which is scheduled for Nov. 27 in Las Vegas as a major HBO main event. It's a really big fight, easily the most significant of Katsidis' career, but it would have been easy to understand if Katsidis had elected to pull out of the fight and break training camp to spend time grieving with his family in Australia. But Katsidis, a warrior through and through, elected to fight on. Undoubtedly, he'll use his brother's death as a motivating factor going into the fight of his life. Having followed Katsidis for a few years and having met him and interviewed him several times, his decision did not surprise me one bit. When I heard that he was going to fight the first thing I thought of was Buster Douglas as he entered what became a gargantuan upset win against Mike Tyson to win the heavyweight title in 1990. Douglas had lost his mother just before the fight and the mother of his son was also ill. Douglas used the problems surrounding him as motivation and I suspect that Katsidis will do the same, even if he doesn't ultimately prevail against Marquez. But win or lose, he deserves the respect of all fight fans.

&#8226; I was talking to a boxing industry lifer the other night. The subject of a fantasy fight between Roberto Duran and Floyd Mayweather Jr. at lightweight came up. So who would win? The industry lifer's response was that he couldn't answer because Mayweather would never take the fight.

&#8226; With Roy Jones Jr. and Evander Holyfield desperate to continue their careers despite recent results that indicate that is clearly not a good idea, it has been suggested in some quarters that they fight each other. After Jones won a heavyweight belt in 2003, it was a serious possibility. They had seriously negotiated the fight and it looked as though it would get done. But it never did, falling apart over an inability to figure out how to whack up the pie between the fighters and promoter Don King. If Jones and Holyfield get together now and make the fight it would be a travesty. But if it does happen they should call it "The Fighting Fossils."

&#8226; So Ricardo Mayorga is returning to action after more than two years out of the ring to fight on King's Dec. 17 card. Let's party like it's 2003!

&#8226; I fully expect light heavyweight titlist Tavoris Cloud to annihilate Fulgencio Zuniga, who is really a middleweight, when they meet Dec. 17, but I am glad to see Cloud back in the ring after so many long layoffs in his promising career. Other than his crowd-pleasing style, another reason I enjoy Cloud is because he says stuff like this, and he sounded dead serious saying it to me Tuesday when we were discussing his upcoming fight: "After I take Zuniga out, I'm looking for any of those guys, wherever. [Jean] Pascal, [Chad] Dawson. [Beibut] Shumenov? We will knock him out in Kazakhstan or wherever he wants to meet at. [Nathan] Cleverly, [Jurgen] Brahmer. Tell them all to put the money up. I'll come to their hometown and knock them out." I love that attitude.

&#8226; Big props to ESPN's Doug Loughrey and Canadian promoter Yvon Michel for working out a deal that will allow American fight fans to see middleweight sensation David Lemieux's fight against Hector Camacho Jr. on ESPN3.com on Friday night (10 ET). ESPN3 is quickly becoming a significant platform to watch foreign fights not otherwise available live in the United States.

&#8226; With ballots due Nov. 1, I wrote a blog Tuesday outlining who I voted for in the annual International Boxing Hall of Fame elections. One thing I wish the Hall would do is kick out Jose Sulaiman, president for life of the despicable WBC. He has done way more harm than good to boxing and should never have been elected in the first place.

&#8226; I sure hope that the mandated match between featherweight titleholders Chris John and Yuriorkis Gamboa takes place as it is supposed to by April. But I see trouble down that road because John is with Golden Boy and Gamboa is with Top Rank. You've been warned.

&#8226; When I got the news release from Golden Boy announcing that it had signed former flyweight titlist Eric Morel, who is 35, a convicted sex offender and as boring a fighter to watch as there is, I had just one thought: Why?

&#8226; Paging Dmitry Pirog.

&#8226; Happy birthday, Zab Judah, who turned 33 on Wednesday, just a week before his important HBO fight against Lucas Matthysse.

&#8226; DVD pick of the week: I didn't have to go back too far to find this week's pick. With the heavily anticipated rematch between middleweight champ Sergio Martinez and Paul Williams on tap for Nov. 20 (HBO) at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J., I went back to their first epic slugfest. It was Dec. 5, 2009, in the upstairs ballroom at Boardwalk Hall where they met in one of the best fights of the year, or in any recent year. The fight started fast with both guys getting knocked down in the first round and never let up. It was blazing action for all 12 rounds and very close and competitive. In the end, Williams won a majority decision, the night ruined only by the foul and horrific card turned in by judge Pierre Benoist, who disgustingly had it 119-110 for Williams. But still a great fight, rotten card be damned. I can't wait for the rematch.