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July 1, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Dan Rafael

Dan Rafael
  (12:01 PM)

Greetings Fight Freaks and welcome to the weekly chat. We are on the eve of a massive fight, Klitschko-Haye for the heavyweight championship. 29 hours to go. We have plenty of stuff on the site about the fight plus a big notebook and plenty of news stories, so check it all out and the updated schedule and let's get to it.

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

King Dan, I have to be honest here. I am still nervous that The Ducker is going to back out at the last minute w/ some sort of "illness"

Dan Rafael
  (12:01 PM)

They have weighed in. I think we're good to go. #dontpulloutnow

Lamont (Kansas City)

I think the best thing for boxing is if Haye KOs Klitschko. That's because of his big mouth and having a villain as champ is good for business. Do you agree?

Dan Rafael
  (12:02 PM)

I dont agree. Haye says he's retirining after this fight so how is that a good thing?

rob (jersey)

28hrs 45mins #DontPullOutNow

Rob (@brewhfx) (Halifax, Canada)

Happy Danada Day!!

Dan Rafael
  (12:03 PM)

If you want to watch today's Klitschko-Haye weigh in, here is a video of the coverage on England's Sky Sports: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-IezKRfLF8 #dontpulloutnow

David Haye (Germany)

Someone get me out of here. Please.

Anthony (Bronx, NY)

DTM, super excited for tomorrows fight. When was the last time you were really excited about any fight? For me its Pac/Cotto.

Dan Rafael
  (12:03 PM)

It's been awhile.

Jake (Homewood, IL)

Danny Boy,Over/under 100k buys on Hopkins PPV?

Dan Rafael
  (12:03 PM)

Probably right around that number.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

Wlad: ?I will bitch-slap him for 12 rounds.? ? My friends, that there is a gem.

Dan Rafael
  (12:04 PM)

I was surprised when Wlad said to me in our interview. Great quote.

rich (cape cod)

hey Dan, listening to "Creatures of the Night" album and thinking that Wlad ko's Haye in 3. I don't see Haye realizes who he is fighting. This is not the slow motion 7 foot pile of poop. Happy BBQ! RIP Nick Charles!!!! You were GREAT inside the ring and out!!!

Dave (Bethel, CT)

David Haye came in pretty light! Do you think he is overtrained or is trying to make the most of his biggest (and only) advantage, Speed?

Dan Rafael
  (12:06 PM)

He came in about where I expected, about what he's been. Speed, of course, is his best asset in this fight.

Joe M (Dallas)

no company picnic today, ready for the chat!

R! (Bay Area)

I just hope Haye comes to fight and doesnt pull a Kevin Johnson tomorrow

Nick (LA) [via mobile]

This is as pumped as you've seemed in awhile for a fight. Klitscko via easy domination?

Dan Rafael
  (12:08 PM)

I have been picking Wlad since Day 1 and nothing has changed. Read this for my take on why: http://espn.go.com/boxing/hot?id=6719894

Duff (Boston, MA)

Hey Dan, July is going to be an awesome month. Klitschko-Haye tomorrow, Rios-Antillon next weekend, and Khan-Judah in 3 weeks. What more could a freak want?

Dan Rafael
  (12:08 PM)

Life is good.

Jeff (Iowa)

What are your thoughts on Devon Alexander moving up to 147? Do you think he will make noise in that weight class?

Dan Rafael
  (12:09 PM)

I'm not sure. If he was really having weight issues, it could be a great thing for him. His power hasn't been all that great at 140 so I wouldnt expect him to have better power at 147, but it could help him with stamina if the weight was an issue. I think he has the boxing skills to still become a contender in that division.

Steve (Hartford)

Danno any update on the Marquez us tv outlet?

Dan Rafael
  (12:09 PM)

We won't know until Arum makes a deal with HBO or Showtime, so no.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

If they get Matthyse/Holt on the B-Hop/Dawson undercard, I'll have to make the trip to Jersey to see it live.

Dan Rafael
  (12:10 PM)

Would be a tremendous undercard fight. Will come down to the money, if they can afford to put it on.

Chris (Kirkland, WA)

What do you make of the "humbler" Floyd? Did he come off a little unsure about himself to you?

Dan Rafael
  (12:11 PM)

Not really, I think maybe he has nothing really against Ortiz and, perhaps, he's on good behavior because of all the legal issues he's facing and who would want to annoy a judge with outlandish public outbursts?

Michael (Berlin)

Any reason your not in Germany covering the fight this weekend, this is the biggest European fight that can be made and no one from ESPN will be live covering it?

Dan Rafael
  (12:11 PM)

Wasn't my call. I wanted to be there.

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

By the way, I will be appearing via telephone on SportsCenter at 1:30 pm ET, so I will still chat, but just take a couple of minutes break for the interview, so tune in to ESPNEWS.

Butt Cheeks (Detroit)

Any word on who Erik Morales might be fighting on the Mayweather-Ortiz undercard?

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

He will be on the card, but opponent is TBA.

Charles D (Inkster,MI)

Happy belated freak birthday to Iron Mike and Nick Charles!!

John (San Fran)

"He denied to shake my hand," Klitschko said. "The Dalai Lama shook this hand. President Clinton shook my hand. This same hand shook hands with the president of Ukraine, Max Schmeling, Joe Frazier, Muhammad Ali, Lennox Lewis, Larry Holmes, Steven Spielberg. I can go on forever. None of them denied to shake my hand. David Haye denies to shake this magic hand. The man doesn't give any respect." I love Wlad right now

Anthony (NY)

Do you think Alexander-Malignaggi is next? Paulie is really on the offensive now in his twitter feed.

Dan Rafael
  (12:13 PM)

They are talking trash with each other. I think it's a possible fight.

Christopher (Kalamazoo, MI)

Dantastic, King of the Freaks, from all of us freak, we just want to say thanks for the incredible notebook, blogs, random thoughts, and articles. You're the James "the Hardest Working Man" Brown of boxing writers.

Dan Rafael
  (12:14 PM)

Thanks, and I know you are a regular, longtime Freak. Really appreciate it.

Johnny (North Carolina)

Is Klitschko's dislike of Haye legitimate, or is he promoting a fight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:14 PM)

I think Wlad really does not like Haye.

Bubba Gage Ottawa il [via mobile]

Dan, what was your thoughts on stiverne? Future champ at some point? I mean their are 20 belts out there lol. I don't see it.

Dan Rafael
  (12:14 PM)

Very average and very beatable, but great power.

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

Is HBO showing any of the undercard or just the Main Event

Dan Rafael
  (12:16 PM)

One fight -- Klitschko-Haye. Telecast starts at 4:45 pm ET / 1:45 PT. Figure the fight will actually start about 5 pm or a few minutes after because of buildup, ring walks and intros.

WinceCarter (Canada)

Dan - the Champagne of Freaks - dude great notebook today. Do you think they will stack the undercard of Hopkins-Dawson to make it more lucrative of a PPV card? The main event may need assistance

Dan Rafael
  (12:17 PM)

No. In fact, it may not be a great undercard because they will be under strict budget constraints.

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

How much of a chance do you give Ortiz vs Mayweather? I think it is a much better fight then the National "casual fan/media" is giving it credit

Dan Rafael
  (12:18 PM)

The betting odds have Floyd about a 7-1 favorite. I think that is WAY too high. Put it that way.

Dan Rafael
  (12:18 PM)

If you have not read the notebook yet here is the link: http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/boxing/columns/story?columnist=rafael_dan&id=6728123

Brian (Ontario)

Who wins Helenius or Povetkin?

Dan Rafael
  (12:19 PM)

That would be a pretty interesting fight. Povetkin has so badly stagnated and has been fighting bums and not been active that if that match was made I would give Helenius a very good chance to win.

Brian (Ontario)

What do you think of the Maidana v Guererro fight? Maidana by decision

Dan Rafael
  (12:20 PM)

Haven't made a pick but I LOVE that fight.

Sean (Southside)

What is the latest on Mike Lee, the boxer from Notre Dame?

Dan Rafael
  (12:20 PM)

He fights on next week's Rios-Antillon undercard. Top Rank likely will stream his fight, and the rest of the untelevised bouts, on its website.

John (Brooklyn)

Just watched the video you posted for the weigh-in and the crowd in Hamburg is hugely in favor of Haye. What do you make of that?

Dan Rafael
  (12:21 PM)

The Brits who traveled for the fight are really excited and turned out for the weigh in. I suspect on fight night the crowd will be way more Klitschko since they are in Germany. But the Brits are usually really loud at fights while if you watch German fights the crowd is much more laid back like they are at an opera. It will be interesting to see.

Joe (Chicago)

Dan, who would you prefer as Canelo's next opponent? Bundrage or Mayorga?

Dan Rafael
  (12:22 PM)

Given the choice between the two, I would take Bundrage.

Flip (NYC)

Can you admit that you screwed up with your Alexander/Matthyse scorecard? You can't have it 5 rounds a piece and have it for Alexander.

Dan Rafael
  (12:23 PM)

I didn't have it 5-5. I had it 6-4 for Alexander (and Matthysse gets a point for the knockdown), 95-94.

@TheBoxingEmpire (Twitter)

Is Tommy Zbikowski still fighting?

Dan Rafael
  (12:24 PM)

No, back to football.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Does HBO owe Alexander another fight? If so who at 147 do you think they would approve?

Dan Rafael
  (12:25 PM)

To my knowledge, HBO does not owe him a fight. The obligation ended with the fight last week.

Steve (Hartford)

Danno do you know how many ppvs BHop/Dawson would have to sell to make a profit?

Dan Rafael
  (12:26 PM)

Not sure.

ATRAIN (BROOKLYN NY)

I see that Jermaine Taylor is returning at 160. I thought he could not make that weight anymore. Interetsed how circumstances chnages things.He better get back to big volume punching like he did to BHOP or he will run inot another knock out by Sergio Martinez

Dan Rafael
  (12:26 PM)

Fighters say a lot of things they don't mean. If he has been walking around lately at 164 after some training there's no reason he can't make 160 with a full camp.

Quincy Q (Hotlanta)

Dan $$$ do u think it is disrespectful for Mayweather to continue to bring up fighting Pac next I do what is the thinking behind that?

Dan Rafael
  (12:27 PM)

It is what it is.

JOE M (N.h)

a friend of mine said he heard that there are some talks about a possible match between Bute and Hopkins down the road. Any truth?

Dan Rafael
  (12:27 PM)

Nothing to that at this point. BHop has mentioned wanting that fight, but it's nothing legit at the moment since both guys have plenty of other plans at the moment.

Jeff (Gilbert AZ)

Someone should take Mr Wilbon to Germany this weekend and as the 50k people walk in he should share his wisdom about how boxing is dead.

Dan Rafael
  (12:28 PM)

Agreed. And Mr. Tony too.

Charles D. (Inkster,MI)

Dan i'm a long time freak and have seen you take heat..but this Alexander v Matthysse score card issuse is crazy!!!! seems like the lames are out for blood in this one.

Dan Rafael
  (12:28 PM)

Couldn't care less.

Ron (Boston)

Can you make the arguement that Haye's last three opponents (Ruiz, Valuev, and Harrison) are better than Klitschko's last three (Peter, Chambers, and Rahman)?

Dan Rafael
  (12:29 PM)

No.

victor (north jersey)

are we gonna see a top rank fighter fight a golden boy fighter this year?

Dan Rafael
  (12:29 PM)

Decent chance. They are working on Gamboa vs. Ponce De Leon for Sept. 10.

Erik (Huntsville, AL)

The Most interesting Dan in the World,Heard Wongjongkam won today. Is there any chance at all that a fight between he and Segura could ever get made?

Dan Rafael
  (12:30 PM)

Doubtful. Pongsaklek next has to fight Edgar Sosa.

Edju (Salisbury, MA)

Would you have had Povetkin fight Vlad when he was the mandatory if you were his trainer?

Dan Rafael
  (12:31 PM)

All I know is that when you can make $2 million or $3 million, or whatever his purse was, for a fight, the biggest payday of your life by many multiples, and get a shot at the heavyweight title you take it. There are no guarantees it comes around again. And Povetkin has done absolutely nothing in the interim. So he should have taken the fight. If he did and lost so what? You get back in the gym and work harder.

todd (toronto)

looks like mayweather pacquiao is gonna happen next year, whats your prediction ?

Dan Rafael
  (12:33 PM)

Please. Been down this road too many times. Ring the bell and I will believe.

Alex (Louisville)

A DECENT HEAVYWEIGHT FIGHT!!! I'M SO EXCITED!!!

Dan Rafael
  (12:33 PM)

I KNOW!!!!!!!!!!!

Lee (Ireland)

Wlad's last opponents-Chagaev (30), Chambers (27), Peter (30).

Dan Rafael
  (12:33 PM)

Exactly. And now look up the ages of Haye's last three opponents -- late 30s.

Ian (FL)

Floyd is 34 years old and hasn't exactly been so active in the fight game the last few years. Would it be a shock to you if some of his physical gifts have slightly diminished?

Dan Rafael
  (12:34 PM)

Not at all.

ROB (WASHINGTON DC)

What is Golden Boy's financial interest in Haye? Considering he does not fight in the US and I believe this is his first fight on US tv?

Dan Rafael
  (12:36 PM)

Golden Boy makes money on all of Haye's fights even though the Haye people don't really show GB much respect or involve them in anything of consequence. Frankly, I have no idea why Haye signed with them since they do nothing for him because Haye's people won't let them.

Floyd Mayweather (Vegas)

Dan, I just want to thank you for stepping to the plate, and taking the test

Dan Rafael
  (12:36 PM)

I TOOK THE TEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

JOE M (N.h)

will Hopkins make less money on PPV against Dawson? Seems like a HBO after dark fight at best.

Dan Rafael
  (12:37 PM)

My notebook explains the economics very clearly. They are guaranteed the license fee of $3 million whether it sells 1 PPV or 1 million.

Dan Rafael
  (12:38 PM)

Here's my feature on Klitschko-Haye: http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/boxing/columns/story?columnist=rafael_dan&id=6727780 #dontpulloutnow

Clay (Chattanooga)

Dan-O, call me crazy, but i think the Haye talk isn't just getting into Wlad's head. He is quick, but i see this just like all the other Wlad fights with him jabbing Haye to death & knocking him out around 9 or 10. Am i crazy to think that b/c i honestly do not say Haye winning this fight any other way than a freak KO like Brewster

Dan Rafael
  (12:39 PM)

I dont think Haye is truly in Wlad's head either. And I expect Wlad to be on his game. He KNOWS this is his legacy fight even if he wont talk about it publicly.

@PappaFeez (Dallas)

If Haye thinks cuz he knocked out Enzo Maccarinelli is comprable to what he will face this Saturday night, he has another thing coming. #7rdKOWlad

Dan Rafael
  (12:39 PM)

Yeah, that's not a good comparison. Enzo, nice guy and all, but ZERO chin. Less chin than my cat.

MikeRo72 (Chicago)

I say bad move my Dawson's people letting this fight go to PPV. He should have taken less money and banked on the HBO exposure rather than fighting in PPV obscurity again.

Dan Rafael
  (12:40 PM)

You're insane. They don't have a choice. And why should they take a dime less than the contract says?

Edju (Salisbury, MA)

Bill Simmons some time back gave us his "Mount Rapmore", which was the 4 guys most influential in rap history. Who would be on your Mount Boxmore? I'd go with Ali, Louis, Robinson, and Tyson

Dan Rafael
  (12:41 PM)

Ali, Robinson, Louis and Ray Leonard.

Mike (Los Angeles)

"Less chin than my cat." Which one, Popo or Thunder? I would think Thunder would have a better chin.

Dan Rafael
  (12:41 PM)

Neither of the cats have much of a chin.

Keith (Clifton Park NY)

I find it funny that the Haye fans keep saying how fast Haye is and that Vlad won't be able to catch him. But hasn't Wlad always been known as a very fast, athletic big man? I think the Haye camp is underestimating that part of Wlad's game.

Dan Rafael
  (12:41 PM)

My hometown in the house!! Wlad is very fast for a big guy.

Sam (Chicago, IL)

For all the times we criticize boxers for making bad business decisions (Winky Wright school, etc), can we give Haye an A+ on the business side? He has maximized the buildup of this fight to generate interested and maximized his share of the pie (50/50 of all revenue).

Dan Rafael
  (12:42 PM)

Agreed, he did play it ver smart in business.

Brooks (New Hampshire)

Hay Danno - I'm intrigued by the proposed Linares-DeMarco fight. I think it's a pretty good scrap. What are your thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (12:43 PM)

Agreed, very interesting fight and probably would not cost all that much.

Eric (Miami)

Dan, need your input on the MGM Grand. Want to take wife (a boxing fan) to Vegas for the Floyd-Ortiz fight. Obviously, can't spend 1200 a pop on tix. Are all the seats in the house relatively good for purposes of watching the fight or, apart from the atmosphere, would I be throwing away $100 or $300 for the cheaper tix.

Dan Rafael
  (12:44 PM)

MGM has great views from everywhere. Plus there are large screens in each corner of the arena. The $300 tix should be pretty darn good.

bpor001 (Hermosa Beach, CA.)

Dan, big fan and loyal follower. I may be misunderstanding but I respectfully disagree with Floyd back in your PFP Rankings. He's only scheduled a fight. I think we need to wait to see how he actually fights/performs following his long lay off before ranking him again..

Dan Rafael
  (12:45 PM)

He is not in the rankings. He dropped out after a year of inactivity and won't go back in until after the Sept. 17 fight, assuming he is worthy of going back off his performance.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Do you think Haye will shake Wlad's hand when Wlad visits him him in the hospital?

Dan Rafael
  (12:45 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!!!

Dan Rafael
  (12:47 PM)

Besides this afternoon's SportsCenter appearance I will also be on SportsCenter tonight at 8:40 pm and on Saturday at 10:40 am. All to talk about Klitschko-Haye. #dontpulloutnow

ROB (WASHINGTON DC)

I understand Devon Alexander is a promotional free agent now. Any idea on who may want to sign him?

Dan Rafael
  (12:47 PM)

Nothing yet. He'll take a break and then his manager will start to talk to promoters to see their interest. Somebody will be interested.

Matt (Newfoundland)

Since Haye's trash talk is a big part of why we're talking about him, what's some of your all-time favorite trash talk?

Dan Rafael
  (12:48 PM)

Rahman's trash talk against Lennox Lewis before their rematch was legendary. I always remember that.

DR 2KAN (OC)

If he doesnt wanna shake his hand, I'm sure Shane Mosley will do it for him!

Dan Rafael
  (12:49 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!! #dontpulloutnow

Victor (Chicago, IL)

I've read too much on the Alexander-Matthyse fight and even though I believe Matthyse won a close fight, I still see people scoring for Alexander. So no crying here, but I believe the 7th and 8th rounds were Matthyse dominated gave most people a false sense of who was winning the fight.

bk don (Brooklyn)

Do you know if Bhops was still close to Bouie Fisher? I had read that they had a dispute a few years ago about money, around the time that Fisher stopped training him.

Dan Rafael
  (12:52 PM)

First off, RIP to Bouie. They were not close and had been estranged for several years. But although Hopkins did not want to be quoted in my obituary on Bouie last night, BHop told me James Fisher, Bouie's son, had told him Bouie was in the hospital and in bad shape and Bernard visited him in the hospital a few days before he died.

Shirley (Germany)

Freaks, I've decided to pay the man, David, early just to show up!

Dan Rafael
  (12:52 PM)

#dontpulloutnow

Brent (Cleveland)

Come on guys, Dan is almost at 20,000 twitter followers. Let's get him over the top. Tell him where DanO

Dan Rafael
  (12:53 PM)

@danrafaelespn #letsgo

Ivan (Winton (CA))

Dan the Man have you heard anything about Andre Berto's next possible fight? Thanks

Dan Rafael
  (12:53 PM)

Maybe September against Jan Zaveck, who has a belt.

Justin (Sactown,CA)

DTM, troubling but predictable to see the return of Jermain Taylor. I'm wondering whether any major promoter would be willing to sign him?

Dan Rafael
  (12:54 PM)

As long as his medical reports are good, I am sure somebody will work with him.

Ty (Portland, OR)

legendary promo by CM Punk, will he leave the WWE?

Dan Rafael
  (12:55 PM)

That was an epic promo on RAW the other day. Incredible. Not sure if he's going to leave for real, but I hope not. He's consistently one of the most interesting characters (and performers) in all of WWE.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

Classy move by B-Hop, and thanks for sharing the news.

Luke (LA)

Has Lou Dibella said what is next for Zsolt Erdei?

Dan Rafael
  (12:56 PM)

Not yet. I know DiBella and Erdei are hoping for some kind of notable TV fight. I'd be down with Erdei vs Cloud or Pascal.

Brian McCue (DC)

Lennox Lewis tweeted that he thought the size difference wasn't as great as he anticipated. Your opinion on that? Does Klitschko appear much bigger? To me, 30 lbs is a lot! Thanks as always for a great service with the Chat that Beats All Chats!

Dan Rafael
  (12:57 PM)

The difference is what I expected. I actually spoke to Lennox this morning. He's in Germany. We talked about the fight quite a bit. He is saying his heart says Haye and his head says Wladimir.

Dustin (Maine)

Pippa sighting at Wimbledon!!!

Dan Rafael
  (12:57 PM)

YES!!!!!!!!

cody (montana)

i see pavlik is slated to possibly fight august 6th, do you know the opponents that are being discussed?

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

Somebody did not read the notebook or look at the schedule. For shame.

Justin (Seattle)

Bill Simmons wants ideas for who to have on his podcast. I said it has to be DTM. How can we make this happen? We already know he cannot match your chat skills, will he test himself on a podcast?

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

He's been ducking me.

David Haye (Hamburg Germany)

I feel like I may be getting sick. Im not sure if im going to be well enough to enter the ring tomorrow night. I need to be at 100%.... Maybe next year....

Dan Rafael
  (1:00 PM)

28 hours until Klitschko-Haye #dontpulloutnow

The Rock (It Doesn't Matter Where!)

I noticed in your blog you mentioned Haye accused Wlad of using performance enhancing drugs, when was this?!?

Dan Rafael
  (1:00 PM)

He's called him roided up.

Blake (Portland)

a DTM - Simmons pod would RULE!

TheBiggestFreakOfThemAll (NY)

Haters gonna hate Dan! I had Alexander winning as well. People dont understand you score individual rounds, not the fight as a whole.

Anthony (Bronx, NY)

Saw that Kimbo Slice is going to try boxing. In a crappy heavyweight division, do you think he can succeed? Boxing is way different than street brawling. Especially at age 37, I don't really give him much of a chance.

Dan Rafael
  (1:02 PM)

I don't either, but I can't blame a man for giving it his best effort.

Max (Montreal)

I looked at your piece on Arum auctionning Pac-Man and was shocked. How did HBO Sports let that last fight slip by ? Far to profitable to risk not havin it. Am I right in saying Bob's got them by the balls ?

Dan Rafael
  (1:03 PM)

HBO was arrogant and thought Arum would never have the stones to up and leave. They neglected the relationship and played favorites and Arum basically went elsewhere. Who could blame him?

Khalil (Atlanta, GA)

Aside from shaking all those hands, Wlad forgot to mention that it is the same hand that was 'intimate' with Hayden Panattiere.

Dan Rafael
  (1:04 PM)

An excellent point.

Cricket (North Carolina)

I think Haye is going to be the reason this fight is boring....for the simple fact, who wants engage with this giant. He will circle and look for a counter.....what do you think???

Dan Rafael
  (1:04 PM)

Not sure. It will be interesting to see if Haye tries to be aggressive early to get Wladimir's respect.

Joel Julio (Colombia)

How have I been shut out of this chat? I feel betrayed!

Dan Rafael
  (1:05 PM)

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, the Love Child.

KOCB4ever (Baltimore)

Dan the Legendary Freak - Outstanding coverage this week as always. What did you think of Tavoris Cloud's performance this past week? Think he can hang with the big boys of Light Heavy?

Dan Rafael
  (1:07 PM)

He looked good. Cloud is a rough, physical guy with good power, great conditioning and I also think a good chin. He's a handful for anyone in the division.

Power Pellets (Las Vegas)

Since you work for Epix now as well, have you ever though of having your RAD chats there so they can be uncensored?

Dan Rafael
  (1:08 PM)

LOL. No. But I hope you had a chance to catch the Epix telecast. We had a great fight with Sturm-Macklin even if the decision was horrible. I will be part of the broadcast team going forward and am excited about it.

dabone (Santa Barbara)

I see Vlad getting off the canvas and coming back and knocking Haye out late Round 10 or 11.

Dan Rafael
  (1:09 PM)

Wouldn't shock me. I definitely respect Haye's power.

Isaac (NC)

Do you think boxing will ever be popular again?

Dan Rafael
  (1:10 PM)

Do you ever think you won't be an idiot?

Timo Perez (dominican republic)

Dan, I read on your twitter MAyweather/Ortiz tickets go on sale 7/8, any idea on when GBP will make a formal announcement? Any chance I can nab some of those 1200 seats???

Dan Rafael
  (1:10 PM)

Next week.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Wouldn't it be cool if Wlad could walk out with the chilling mechanical "Terminator" theme, then right before they touch up say "I must break you." Hey it can happen...

Dan Rafael
  (1:11 PM)

No, Wlad will come out to the same music he ALWAYS comes out to. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzeCEC7DJFo

Banishment (Winky Wright's Career)

Isuck (NC), welcome!

Doc (NB, Mass)

I never thought I would say this, and I'm ashamed to admit it, but I actually found myself rooting for Ray Austin to knockout Stiverne. Have I lost it?

Dan Rafael
  (1:13 PM)

Back away from the computer. Everything is going to be OK. Nobody is going to hurt you.

Gene (Denver)

Gotta give Arum props on his business savvy. Going to showtime and what they offered looks like it has HBO putting everything they have to get pacman back.

Dan Rafael
  (1:14 PM)

And that, my Freaks, is why Bob Arum is a genius and should NEVER EVER EVER be underestimated or taken for granted.

Guy (California)

Love it how you tried to talk Sergio Martinez out of paying the wretched WBC a sanctioning fee....he is the lineal Champ..the peoples champ. Any response from him? Why do the fighters pay them???

Dan Rafael
  (1:14 PM)

Not specifically, but I will continue that discussion with him next time I see him.

Matthew (Dallas)

You're tweeting and chatting simultaneously. This is the pinnacle of boxing! #dontpulloutnow

Joe (San Francisco, CA)

Arum says he isn't talking to HBO Sports at all anymore? So, who is negotiating for non-Pac TR fighters like Gamboa?

Dan Rafael
  (1:15 PM)

Carl Moretti, who works for Bob, speaks to HBO Sports on those smaller matters.

Tincho (Los Angeles)

I swear if HBO interrupts Klitschko's LEGENDARY entrances, I will cancel my subscription.

Dan Rafael
  (1:17 PM)

They better shut their yaps or the King Freak gonna to go freakin crazy. #dontpulloutnow

Dan Rafael
  (1:17 PM)

Best part of Klitschko-Haye is that the WBC won't make a dime. #wbcisdisgusting

Power Pellets (Las Vegas)

Speaking of the BobFather, does he still plan on doing that "package deal" where whoever gets the rights to Pac-Marquez gets Cotto-Marg as well?

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

Yes, that is the plan.

Aaron (MI)

Remind me again what Rahman did to get his fight chance against Wlad? KO'd by Maskaev, KO'd by Toney and then a shot against Wlad Klitscko????

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

He took it on short notice when the scheduled opponent (Povetkin I believe) pulled out.

Clark (Madison)

Dan, I gotta ask you. ... will Harold Lederman be on-site tomorrow?

Dan Rafael
  (1:19 PM)

I assume so, yes.

Brooks (New Hampshire)

Danno - Is Greenburg feeling some heat at HBO? It can't be good that he's being bypassed for big fights.

Dan Rafael
  (1:19 PM)

Obviously, not a good sign. It's kind of like a baseball owner making a major player transaction without consulting with his general manager.

Charles D. (Inkster,MI)

Stump The King: What was archie moore's real name?

Dan Rafael
  (1:21 PM)

Archibald Wright.

RJ (MPLS)

James Toney didn't KO Rahman

Dan Rafael
  (1:21 PM)

I know, but that other goof didn't know that.

C-Dash (Atlanta)

Monte Barret never hurt David Haye in that fight. I'm trying to figure out why you would say something so far from the truth.

Dan Rafael
  (1:22 PM)

He absolutely hurt him in that fight. Watch it again chief.

Jim (Santa Monica)

At no point ever watching Dawson fight on HBO did I think, "I really want to see this guy on HBO again." PPV is not a better alternative.

Dan Rafael
  (1:23 PM)

It's on PPV because that is the only way to live up to the contract. STRICTLY a business decision. What HBO should have done is better take care of its budget.

Gene (Denver)

"Best part of Klitschko-Haye is that the WBC won't make a dime." AMEN!

Dan Rafael
  (1:25 PM)

All Freaks should brace for this -- the winner of Klitschko-Haye is going be unified and likely declared a "super champion" by the revolting WBA, which will then sanction another fight for the "regular" heavyweight title. #dontpulloutnow

Milton (Raleigh)

Read that NSAC is looking to use replay in boxing now. What are your thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (1:26 PM)

It's been on the books for more than a year. It's good, although only can be used in very specific situations.

Doc (NB, Mass)

Monte Barret didn't hurt David Haye and Jose Sulaiman's sanctioning fees are small and reasonable. In other news, the rapture has been re-scheduled for October

Bert (Minneapolis)

Is Cotto-Margarito signed? No chance Margs pulls out again?

Dan Rafael
  (1:26 PM)

No, not signed.

Clay (Chattanooga)

DTM - "What HBO should have done is better take care of it's budget" WOW this is a yearly freaking thing! you can pretty much just sit back & wait on it!

Dan Rafael
  (1:27 PM)

They spend something like $35 million a year on license fees. Need to take care of it better to avoid these situations.

Bert (Minneapolis)

Face Off's on HBO are awesome! Any news on what went down on the Mayweather-Ortiz one? HBO needs to do those for all the fights, they can't be that expensive.

Dan Rafael
  (1:30 PM)

Freaks, put on SportsCentr. I'm going on momentarily to talk Klitschko-Haye. #dontpulloutnow. I'll continue that chat in a couple of mintues.

Dan Rafael
  (1:31 PM)

I'll be right back.

Dan Rafael
  (1:37 PM)

And we're back.

JOE M (N.h)

DTM I just want to say I used to hate your chats but now I am addicted like a coke adict. The good news for me is you have not beat me up lately so your cool in my book.

Dan Rafael
  (1:38 PM)

LOL. And the chats are not illegal and are free.

Gabe Saginaw Mi [via mobile]

Where can I read your blog and notebook at?

Dan Rafael
  (1:38 PM)

Ya know the giant spot right in the middle of the front of the boxing page where it is every week?

Carlos (Gilroy)

Was K-9 classless and/or clueless for expectorating on his opponent last wk?

Dan Rafael
  (1:40 PM)

K9 sent me a private message very upset about that being reported in the AP wire story on his fight with Powell last week. He said he did not spit at Powell and claims Powell sucker punched him.

Gabe (Mi)

Dan where can I find some oxygen?

Dan Rafael
  (1:40 PM)

Exactly.

Tony (Tampa)

Dan,Hyped about the Klitschko-Haye fight tomorrow. Trying to convert these eggheads here at the office to check it out on HBO. If this fight produces might have created some new Fight Freaks.

wlad (ukraine/germany)

i dont have time for david haye's flashy flash

Dan Rafael
  (1:42 PM)

Whenever he says "flashy flash" I crack up.

Doc (NB, Mass)

haha can we at least agree that Stiverne's performance was real disappointing?

Dan Rafael
  (1:43 PM)

Absolutely. Definitey.

Newt (Jacksonville)

I hope CM Punk comes out in Round 3 and cuts a red-hot promo on both of them.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

Any word on whether or not Floyd will be on rollerblades for this upcoming 24/7?

Dan Rafael
  (1:44 PM)

TBA. And no word on segways either or if he will make it rain or if Uncle Roger will buy Kool-Aid.

Vargo05 (Florence, CA)

Dandependence Day - First I wanted to say I love your work, you always do a great job. I really like how Arreola is staying active. How long do you think it will be before he gets a title shot? He's one of my favorite fighters

Dan Rafael
  (1:46 PM)

LOVE the nickname. Cris fights next week again on the Williams-Lara undercard and after that probably twice more this year. I think he will have to wait for a bit. I don't see him getting a title fight in the near future. Vitali wont fight him again -- no point -- and he will be in line for the winner of Klitschko-Haye, but who knows what they will do next?

Tincho (Los Angeles)

Roger tried buying Gatorade in Mayweather-Hatton. Sr. made Kool-Aid in Pac-Hatton :)

Dan Rafael
  (1:46 PM)

My bad.

Joe (NY)

Obviously Wlad's strategy is to out box Haye; which he will. But here's how confident I am Wlad wins; even if they did go toe to toe, Wlad's size, power, and Haye's having an equally bad chin would probably still lead to a Wlad KO. Do you agree Dan?

Dan Rafael
  (1:48 PM)

I think that is a reasonable way to view the fight. I do not see a way Haye can seriously win unless he just lands some tremendous flush shot.

Luke (Alderaan)

Dan, Can you shed some light on the 2000 IBF Bribing Scandal? How are they allowed to still sanction fights after that?

Dan Rafael
  (1:49 PM)

It's called Google.

Ron (Boston)

I have a treat for you Dan. Check out who comes in at number six for most polarizing figures in boxing. http://bleacherreport.com/articles/721478-6-most-polarizing-figures-in-boxing

Dan Rafael
  (1:50 PM)

Epic and hilarious.

JOE M (N.h)

Have you ever meet Pacquiao and is he really as humble as he appears to be?

Dan Rafael
  (1:52 PM)

Yes, have known Manny for years. Very much a humble man.

Biggestfreakofthemall (asylum)

Dan I can't stand how people are hating on you how do you handle it? I would have banned most of the chatters already

Dan Rafael
  (1:52 PM)

LOL. Goes with the territory. It sort of amuses me that anyone would take my opinion so seriously to the point that they get angry about it. That's their problem, not mine.

Dax (Pomona)

Drinking game on Floyd-Ortiz 24/7. You take a shot everytime Floyd mentions Pacquiao. Drink twice if Floyd says the word "Drug"

Ron (Boston)

Dan, my name is Ronhpatel and you recently blocked me on twitter. I want to apologize for my inappropriate comments.

Dan Rafael
  (1:55 PM)

You probably got what you deserved.

Clay (Chattanooga)

DTM - just shoot these morons a link b/c they clearly don't understand the definition of the word!http://www.thefreedictionary.com/opinion

Anthony (Los Angeles)

Dan$$$, your thoughts on Ortiz tweeting that he doesn't normally run his mouth at press conferences and he was just doing what his promoters told him to do..Isn't that something he shouldn't share with the public?

Dan Rafael
  (1:56 PM)

Perhaps. Victor is young and impressionable.

Danny (Washington D.C.)

What was up with Adrien Broner saying Shelly Finkel is his new promoter.Is Broner making a change and is Finkel now a promoter?

Dan Rafael
  (1:57 PM)

Adrien made a mistake! Al Haymon is his manager. Shelly used to be, but he is close to Shelly.

Marty (Granada Hills)

Boxing drinking game: take a shot/sip when Freddie Roach says "and so forth," DLH says "well, obviously"....

Anthony (Los Angeles)

Dan, which fight do you think will be a bigger war- Rios/Antillon or Maidana/Guerrero?

Dan Rafael
  (1:58 PM)

Both are outstanding fights.

Angel (LA)

Dan, I like the Caballero Barros matchup this weekend, any thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (1:59 PM)

Good match between feather contenders for a fake belt. Barros probably has the edge being at home.

KOpunchblog (Earth)

Dannibal Lecter, I LOVE your stuff. Where do you plan on watching the fight? And do you really think Haye will retire if he wins?

Dan Rafael
  (2:01 PM)

I plan to watch the fight alone in my living room on my big screen TV in HD. And, no, I don't buy Haye will retire after the fight whether he wins or loses.

Ronny (Long Island, NY)

Could Seth Mitchell be a possible opponent for the winner of tommorows fight?

Dan Rafael
  (2:02 PM)

Maybe WAY down the road. Not even close at this point.

Kevin (LA)

How does HBO run out of money for Hopkins-Dawson? It's not as though this fight is a surprise.

Dan Rafael
  (2:02 PM)

DING DING DING!

Joe (San Francisco, CA)

As you expand into doing additional media work like with EPIX, how hard is it to maintain journalistic integrity? If EPIX decides to put on a total blowout, how hard will it be to rip them off the air and then have to call the fight for them?

Dan Rafael
  (2:04 PM)

Wont be hard at all. I am who I am and I'm not changing for anyone. That, I believe, is one of the reasons I was hired by Epix to do their shows. That said, in talking to the folks at Epix, I know they want to buy solid shows. They don't want terrible matches. You should hear some of the crap they have been pitched and turned down.

el (Vegas) [via mobile]

ANy word on potential Jermain Taylor opponents?

Dan Rafael
  (2:05 PM)

Are you available?

Kevin (LA)

Next time anyone says boxing is dead, you should point out that people were threatening your family over the scoring of a non-title junior welterweight fight. Clearly there is an enthusiastic audience.

Jim (Santa Monica)

As much as we say things about David Haye, he's still the biggest challenge for Wlady since Sam Peter I.

Dan Rafael
  (2:06 PM)

Agreed.

Jim (Santa Monica)

Next time we see Gennady Golovkin fight, will it be in the states?

Dan Rafael
  (2:08 PM)

Good question. He'd like to, but there are still contractual issues with Universum that need to be ironed out.

Doc (NB, Mass)

Jermain Taylotr - Winky Wright pt. 2 anyone?

Dan Rafael
  (2:09 PM)

About five years too late.

Clay (Chattanooga)

DTM - i think EPIX is going to be excellent for boxing. have really enjoyed seeing some out of country fights by some of the better/ fighters in the world (Macklin, Sturm, Groves, Degale) that are not very hyped!

Dan Rafael
  (2:09 PM)

Agreed, although Epix also plans to do its own fights in the US, not just pick up good international bouts.

Jose (SF, CA)

Dan, have you heard if HBO will televise more than one fight from the Maidana/Guerrero card?

Dan Rafael
  (2:10 PM)

Somebody didn't read the notebook. #dontmakemebanyou

John (Salt Lake City)

Holy crap those British fans have retrofitted the Ricky Hatton song to David Haye. I suppose we'll soon be counting how many David Hayes there are.

Dan Rafael
  (2:10 PM)

They used to sing the same thing for Lennox too. Those Brits are great fans, but lack imagination. What they lack in imagination, however, they make up by the ability to drink beer 24 hours a day.

Quincy Q (Atlanta GA)

Dan didn't the Salido test positive for PEDs in a past fight.

Dan Rafael
  (2:13 PM)

Yes, in Nevada against Guerrero.

Boxing Newbie (Hong Kong)

HI Dan, the fight is finally on tomorrow, you have mentioned this in your article and I quote "biggest heavyweight fight boxing has seen since then-champion Lennox Lewis defended the title", is there any reason why you are not there to cover the match? Would be so good if you there covering the event for the freaks.

Dan Rafael
  (2:14 PM)

Like I said earlier in the chat, not my decision.

Alvaro (Miami ,Fl)

what do you think about the 108 pds division ? and what do you think about Ramon Gonzalez from Nicaragua

Dan Rafael
  (2:16 PM)

There are some good and exciting fighters at 108. As for Gonzalez, I love him. Seen many of his fights. GREAT puncher for a little guy.

Dan Rafael
  (2:17 PM)

Did you miss my random thoughts blog from yesterday? Hope this entertains you: http://espn.go.com/sports/boxing/blog/_/name/rafael_dan/id/6723134/enjoy-big-heavyweight-fight-can

Patrick (California)

Hey Dan I hope you and your family have a happy safe forth of july. I was wondering, I have been reading alot about David Haye having a questionable chin, with only one loss, how do people come up with that? I admit I havent followed him much.

Dan Rafael
  (2:18 PM)

Because in that loss he lost by knockout to an old opponent and he was also stopped in the amateurs.

Dustin (Wichita, KS)

UGH I misread your quick hits and thought Pirog was going to defend his title against Gennady Golovkin, but instead it's just Gennady Martirosyan. How disappointing.

Dan Rafael
  (2:18 PM)

Reading comprehension is rough sometimes isn't it?

Anthony (Long Beach, CA)

Did you see when Tony Kornheiser called the Haye-Klitschko fight a bad fight that nobody wants to see. Talk about a stupid statement.

Dan Rafael
  (2:20 PM)

I'm a Tony fan. Massive respect for him. Great columnist and excellent on TV. I've met him. I like him. We went to the same college. I even interviewed him while I was in college and wrote a feature about him for the college newspaper. So that's the background. So as for his comment: WHAT A DOPE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Shockingly ignorant and just stupid.

Dustin (Maine)

As good as PTI is, those guys need to stop with the boxing talk.

Patrick (Mexico)

Tony and Michael: Boxing trolls. #PTIhasnothingtoadd

JOE M (N.h)

Whats the deal with Andre Dirrell ?

Dan Rafael
  (2:22 PM)

In the works: Aug. 5 at Chumash resort in Santa Ynez, Calif. on ESPN2 against Sebastien Demers. Not done, but they're working on it.

Gabe Saginaw Mi [via mobile]

If Maidana beats Guerrero would love 2 see him fight Mattysse. That would be a barnburner!

Dan Rafael
  (2:25 PM)

If he loses to Guerrero I'd still like to see it. LOVE that fight and have been talking about it for awhile.

Jose Suliaman wbc [via mobile]

Dan u r hereby elevated to emeritus super duper diamond silver chat wrap champion!

Dan Rafael
  (2:25 PM)

For a small sanctioning fee, of course. And Mauricio Sulaiman will also try to shake me down for my chat-used keyboard.

lou dibella (freaking out)

I can't find my car keys!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Demetrius (cincinnati) [via mobile]

R.I.P. Bouie Fisher we lost a great man!!

JOE M (N.h)

when is the next time your at Foxwoods?

Dan Rafael
  (2:27 PM)

Wouldn't that depend on the next time it hosts an important fight?

Dan Rafael
  (2:28 PM)

Not particularly. Maybe on the long list.

Dan Rafael
  (2:28 PM)

BK is supposed to be back tonight. He was on vacation for a little summer fun.

DanielSam (Nova Scotia)

Hey Dan any chance you can keep this chat going till fight time tomorrow? #dontpulloutnow

Dan Rafael
  (2:29 PM)

I'm good, but not that good.

Lou DiBella (Brooklyn, NY)

THAT WASN'T ME POSTING EARILER IN THIS CHAT!! EVERYONE KNOWS I TYPE IN ALL CAPS!!

Jose Sulaiman (Mexico City)

Belts for sale!

Craig L (Leeds, UK)

Hi Dan, Long time reader and occasional question thrower! With the Mike Jones fight going cold, do you think there's any chance of Kell Brook against Mallinaggi? Maybe Alexander in the New Year?

Dan Rafael
  (2:31 PM)

Sounds doubtful to me.

Steve (Hartford)

Does BHop/Dawson being in Newark means there will he no Cloud/Pascal fight?

Dan Rafael
  (2:32 PM)

My understanding is that is still POSSIBLE that Pascal could be on the PPV card, but almost certainly not against Cloud. Way too expensive.

Ronny (Long Island, NY)

I respect you Dan but how can you get all over Wilbon and TK for their opinion when you bash people who criticize your opinion.

Dan Rafael
  (2:33 PM)

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, but it should be an educated one. To say nobody is looking forward to Klitschko-Haye is ignorant.

miguel (los angeles)

This is what is wrong with boxing, "pascal vs cloud is too expensive" instead of lets put pascal vs cloud and well get more ppv buys make more money and start a pattern of stacked cards.

Dan Rafael
  (2:35 PM)

You dont understand the economics. Cloud-Pascal is an excellent fight but its cost would not beef up sales of the show the extent it would be needed to cover the cost. That is the truth no matter how much we may like the fight.

Alex (Lancs, UK)

Aside from Haye, were you a bit surprised at how good Macklin was last week?

Dan Rafael
  (2:36 PM)

Nope.

Kevin (LA)

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Everyone is not entitled to their own facts.

Dan Rafael
  (2:37 PM)

Amen.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

Everyone is entitled to a title belt, whether it's interim, in recess, emeritus, regular, intergalactic - Jose Sulaiman

Stanislas (Poland)

Why you hate Tomasz Adamek? He better than David Haye, who too scared to fight him at either cruiser or heavyweight.

Dan Rafael
  (2:40 PM)

Where do you come up with the stupid notion that I "hate" Adamek? Jeeez.

Charles D. (Inkster,MI)

no Cloud/Pascal cause the money dont work....But the ufc can have 2 or 3 title fights on one card ??

Dan Rafael
  (2:41 PM)

Because UFC pays the fighters probably 20 percent of the revenue and boxing promoters pay the fighters probably 80 percent of the revenue.

Edju (Salisbury, MA)

You should hit up Coach for some insider WWE info

Dan Rafael
  (2:42 PM)

I did an interview with him on SportsCenter a few weeks ago and before we went on we were chatting a little WWE.

Brooks (New Hampshire)

Danno - Which fight are you going to cover? Rios-Antillon or Williams-Lara? I have my DVR set for both but I hate when HBO and Showtime counter program each other.

Dan Rafael
  (2:44 PM)

I'll be at Williams-Lara. Quick drive up to AC.

Michael (Long Beach, CA)

Wow, you have been one of the biggest proponents of how Main Events and Adamek have conducted business and stayed busy fighting and not sitting on the sidelines. Just because you don't give much of a chance against Vitali doesn't equal hate.

Dan Rafael
  (2:45 PM)

Exactly but some people are too stupid to get that. Having an opinion about a guy not winning a fight does mean I hate a guy.

TheBiggestFreakOfThemAll (Clifton Park, NY)

Why are you rooting for all these fights to be on PPV? Hopkins-Dawson is NOT PPV caliber, I'm sorry. And I'm a loyal freak. Don't you know we're not all millionaires working for ESPN dan?

Dan Rafael
  (2:46 PM)

Who is "rooting" for fights to be on PPV? Seriously? Are you a moron? Or just not able to read? Tell me where I "rooted" for a fight to be on PPV. You may be from my hometown, but you should be deported from Clifton Parrk.

Duff (Boston, MA)

Pascal made more money in his last fight than about 99% of UFC fighters do in a year. That's why that fight doesn't work on an undercard.

Dan Rafael
  (2:47 PM)

Thank goodness not everyone in here today is drinking Kool Aid. #blessyoufreak

Gerardo (AZ)

"What they lack in imagination, however, they make up by the ability to drink beer 24 hours a day." Not only is this quote hilarious, but it's also metasemantic (just made the word up), as it itself explains the reason for the lack of imagination. #dontpulloutnow

Anthony (Los Angeles)

Wow, I guess all the morons and people who can't read are all coming out late into the chat.

Charles D. (Inkster,MI)

Lmao i ducked under my desk when TheBiggestFreakOfThemAll (Clifton Park, NY) asked that question...I knew the king would not be happy....lol

Eric (Tampa)

I think the Kool-Aid everyone is drinking was made by Mayweather Sr.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

Metasemantic? #WhenFreaksMakeUpWords

Corey (Petersburg, WV)

Dan, why do you hate oxygen?

Dan Rafael
  (2:49 PM)

Supposedly, I hate the oxygen David Haye and Floyd Mayweather breathe than regular oxygen too.

Edju (Salisbury, MA)

Everybody's wasted now - imagine how bad this would be if this was an RAD chat

Dan Rafael
  (2:56 PM)

Thanks for the chat Freaks. Hope you enjoy the huge fight on Saturday and make sure you check out all the coverage and new notebook and blogs. And remember to follow me on Twitter @danrafaelespn. And I will be on SportsCenter at 8:40 ET tonight and at 10:40 am ET Saturday. Talk you next week. Peace.