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December 9, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Dan Rafael

Dan Rafael
  (11:58 AM)

Greetings Fight Freaks and welcome to the weekly boxing chat. The new notebook is up, along with this week's blogs, updated rankings and schedule and multiple news stories. And shortly my preview of tomorrow's Khan-Peterson fight in Washington will be up, so check it all out. There's much to discuss. Let's get to it.

Mike (Miami)

Hey Dan any news on the next opponent for Gamboa & Lara ? Thank u

Dan Rafael
  (12:00 PM)

Not yet, although Lara is due to fight on Showtime on Jan. 21 on the same card with Paul Williams, who I am told will be facing Nobuhiro Ishida.

Ken (Baltimore)

Dan, I will be attending the Khan-Peterson fight with a group of friends and was trying to get some insight of where the place to be after the fight is?--i.e. where the boxing-types will be hanging out.

Dan Rafael
  (12:01 PM)

Hope you have a great time. Golden Boy folks told me at the press conference yesterday that the card was almost sold out (a few hundred tickets left). As for postfight, no idea. Even though I live in the area I am not that familiar with that area of DC and will be driving home after the fight.

Dan Rafael
  (12:01 PM)

Hope you have a great time. Golden Boy folks told me at the press conference yesterday that the card was almost sold out (a few hundred tickets left). As for postfight, no idea. Even though I live in the area I am not that familiar with that area of DC and will be driving home after the fight.

Raj (London )

I've got Khan with a middle-late stoppage. What about you?

Dan Rafael
  (12:02 PM)

I definitely like Khan to win the fight, but I think it's more likely to be a decision.

Michael C. (Westport, CT)

What's up with Kelly Pavlik? Is he done?

Dan Rafael
  (12:03 PM)

As I wrote in my notebook today (which you should read), he is supposed to head to California in the next couple of weeks to begin working with new trainer Robert Garcia and then they will look for a fight next year.

Anthony (Bronx, NY)

Has Miguel Cotto cemented his place in the boxing hallof fame with last weekends performance?

Dan Rafael
  (12:03 PM)

Even before he beat Margarito down I viewed Cotto as a likely Hall of Famer.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Danomite, Good work on Epix last week. I enjoyed it and hope to see more. Chisora has increased his stock for hardcore boxing fans. Where does he go from here?

Dan Rafael
  (12:04 PM)

Thanks. The crew at Epix is great to work with and was nice to work alongside Freddie Roach. It helped that we had a good card too. As for Chisora, yes, his stock went way up as far as I am concerned. His promoter, Frank Warren, is trying to get him a rematch with Helenius. I could also see him being given a shot by a Klitschko at some point next year.

Al M (NYC)

Dan, Are you surprised at malignaggi's ability to stay relevent? , i thought after the kahn fight that would be the last of him in a major fight now he may get a crack at a world title

Dan Rafael
  (12:05 PM)

He talks a good game and he has fought well at welterweight so far, even if he has faced weak opposition for the most part. He also has a powerful promoter. It all goes hand in hand.

Jack (Boca raton FL)

Thoughts on Delvin Rodriguez vs Kirkland?

Dan Rafael
  (12:05 PM)

Not happening. Kirkland will face Carlos Molina Jan. 28 on HBO on an undercard.

CB (PA)

Just wanted to say thanks for the twitter updates during the Cotto fight.

Dan Rafael
  (12:05 PM)

Glad you enjoyed.

Norton (Dothan, Al)

Hey Dan, If you had to BET your savings on it.. Who will money face on May 5th? Khan, Cotto, or Pacman?

Dan Rafael
  (12:06 PM)

I'm not stupid enough to bet on anything boxing related.

armando (nj)

Tommy the hit man in the hall - one of my faves all time. Any words you can share with the rest of us freaks about your thoughts on the Hitman?

Dan Rafael
  (12:08 PM)

Like most boxing fans, just always enjoyed watching him fight. He won some, lost some, but always delivered a good fight. Was a great puncher. I've had a chance to meet him several times in recent years and he's always been a cool guy to be around. One funny story was last year before the Cotto-Foreman fight, a night or two before, the New York Friars Club had a roast for Bob Arum that I attended. I was seated next to Tommy. So they showed some highlights of some of the great fights Arum promoted. And when they showed hili of him getting knocked out by Hagler he jokingly shouted out to Arum something like, "Why'd you have to show that?" He had good humor about it. Was just nice to hang with him.

Joe (NJ)

Assuming Mitchell beats Ibragimov this weekend and HBO invites him back, who could be the next reasonable opponent that is a step up for him.

Dan Rafael
  (12:09 PM)

That is a good question. It's slim pickings. Really have no idea.

Garth (Norwalk, CT)

Happy Friday Dan, I missed the fight last week so really looking to the replay tomorrow night along with Khan and Mitchel fights. I like and Khan by decision and Mitchel by possible late TKO.

Dino (NYC)

Dan, on a scale from 1-10, how bad was the Chisora-Helenius decision?

Dan Rafael
  (12:09 PM)

I had it 10-2 calling the fight. It was horrific. I'd put it at a 10. He didn't just win, he DOMINATED.

Lucian (Portland OR)

Who will be the broadcast team for NBC's Boxing show?

Dan Rafael
  (12:10 PM)

Not sure. Has not been announced yet.

Sammy (Seattle)

Any chance we will see Linares-DeMarco II in 2012?

Dan Rafael
  (12:11 PM)

I asked Richard Schaefer about that yesterday. He said Gary Shaw (DeMarco's promoter) did not want to do it. I think it will depend on whether the wretched WBC orders it officially or not and the wretched WBC convention is next week, so we shall see.

Rick (Marina, Ca)

Is David Stern related to Jose Suliman ?

Dan Rafael
  (12:11 PM)

This is a rumor. I cannot confirm.

Rafael (Arizona)

Hey Dan, who do you like coming away with the title in the Viloria-Segura fight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:11 PM)

Great matchup. I think Segura knocks Brian out.

jose (mexico)

Any update on the never ending Pacquiao-mayweather rumors?

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

There is no update because there are no real negotiations right now.

Tyson (ottawa)

Mark "Too Sharp" Johnson vs Johnny Tapia primes, who you got?

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

Johnson EASY.

Todd (Florence, SC)

Williams-Ishida, huh? Dan, with Greenburg out at HBO, is Stephen Espinoza Al Haymon's new cabana boy?

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

That remains to be seen.

Richie (Bronx NY)

How was it working with Roach last sat.?

Dan Rafael
  (12:13 PM)

Great. Freddie is a pleasure to be around and he did a good job, especially when you consider it was his first time calling a fight. He really enjoyed it he told me and I know the Epix folks were very happy with our team of Bruce Beck, Freddie and me. I hope to work with him more in the future on the telecasts.

Justin (Seattle)

Thanks for tweeting out the Hearns-Duran link. Duran was completely out before he hit the ground. Sick, sick KO. I, of course, got the tweet @danrafaelespn.

Dan Rafael
  (12:14 PM)

After Tommy was elected to the HOF I went on a bit of a Hearns fight binge. Was fun. I watched the Duran fight, Cuevas, Hagler, some of Leonard II (which he got robbed in with a draw) and the HBO Legendary Nights episode about the Hagler fight.

Justin (Denver)

I am excited to see Merchant and Kellerman together--two great historians and analysts in my opinion.

Dan Rafael
  (12:15 PM)

Me too. They will call the fight together tomorrow night for the first time. I can't wait to get home and watch the broadcast. Here's the blog I wrote about it: http://espn.go.com/blog/dan-rafael/post/_/id/611/merchant-kellerman-pairing-should-be-fun

Dan Rafael
  (12:16 PM)

Here's my newest blog about Seth Mitchell, who fights on the Khan-Peterson undercard tomorrow: http://espn.go.com/blog/dan-rafael/post/_/id/617/mitchell-u-s-s-next-heavyweight-contender

Derek (Brooklyn)

D$, great atmosphere inside MSG last wknd, have to say Top Rank puts on a great show, that was boxing as a major league sport, i encouraged several friends to go and made some new boxing fans

Dan Rafael
  (12:16 PM)

Excellent. Yes, it was a great atmosphere and Top Rank does a great job in the arena with the music and lights. So much fun last week.

paul (austin,texas)

yo dan any chance hbo does a year end recap like they have in the past?

Dan Rafael
  (12:17 PM)

Not really sure. If they do one it would be on tomorrow's show as it is the last of the year.

Erik (Atlanta, Ga.)

Thoughts on the stoppage? Yes Cotto was clearly winning but I thought Margarito didn't seem impared by the eye?

Dan Rafael
  (12:18 PM)

I thought the fight could have been stopped even earlier. His eye was literally completely closed and, given the issues with the eye just to get the license, it was a perfect stoppage. He had lost every single round in my view (all but one according to the judges). He got stopped because Cotto messed up the eye as he said he would do. End of story.

Jorge (Honduras)

Is Donaire-Vazquez Jr. a done deal for February? And if so, do they have a venue?

Dan Rafael
  (12:18 PM)

Yes, the fight is made for Feb. 4. It will take place likely at the Alamodome in San Antonio with Chavez Jr. on top vs. TBA on HBO.

Bubbles (Los Angeles)

Who is more of a freak, Larry Merchant or Max Kellerman?

Dan Rafael
  (12:19 PM)

They are both incredibly Freakish.

Juan Castruita (San Diego, CA)

Erik Morales - Danny Garcia. Is that happening? Your thoughts on the match up if it does?

Dan Rafael
  (12:19 PM)

Yes, the fight is made. Ultimate crossroads fights. Old veteran with some fight left against young, hungry kid looking to make his name.

Anthony (Sacramento )

Dan any chance one of the networks picks up Jones vs Bailey?

Dan Rafael
  (12:20 PM)

If not, I would imagine it will wind up on a Top Rank PPV undercard.

Aaron (Hartford)

Have you started to put together your end of the year awards ?

Dan Rafael
  (12:20 PM)

Been making some lists, but nothing has 100 percent been decided. After the Super Six final I will really dig into it.

Karen (San Diego)

Is there any chance Showtime will revive their Dec 31. show? Regardless who do you like Rico Ramos vs Guillermo Rigondeaux?

Dan Rafael
  (12:21 PM)

Revive? No. It was canceled the other day. It's dead. Done. Over.

Kramer (Little Rock)

Winner of the Super Six your pick for fighter of the year?

Dan Rafael
  (12:21 PM)

I would say the winner of the fight, assuming it's a clean legit win, is a likely candidate.

JP (Columbus, OH)

We will never see Margarito in a fight of consequence again. Agree?

Dan Rafael
  (12:21 PM)

Probably not, but never say never. I could see Arum serving him to Chavez at some point.

Greg (L.A.)

Wow, Vanes or Rubio? Not bad opponents for Chavez, if one of them does get the fight. What do you think of those options?

Dan Rafael
  (12:22 PM)

I think it will be offered to Vanes.

Rick (Marina, Ca)

Is it true Cotto is leaving Top Rank to get the Mayweather fight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:23 PM)

Not necessarily. That has been rumored and some have talked about it. But Cotto has repeatedly said Arum is his promoter. He seems like a loyal guy, so we shall see if his words match his deeds.

Peter (Los Angeles)

Who is greatest defensive fighter you've seen in person?

Dan Rafael
  (12:23 PM)

Probably Mayweather.

Dan Rafael
  (12:24 PM)

Did you read today's notebook? http://espn.go.com/boxing/story/_/id/7334615/wladimir-klitschko-surgery-only-brief-setback-jean-marc-mormeck-fight

Marc (Malden, MA)

I know it was only 3 rounds, but Hagler-Hearns is still my favorite fight ever.

Dan Rafael
  (12:25 PM)

It's way up there and I love it but it is not my No. 1 fight.

Ry (OH)

Cheato has been such an embarrassment and disgrace to the sport. It was great to see a class-act like Cotto put the proverbial nail is his plaster-filled coffin . . .

Alexis (Barcelona)

Who is next for Canelo?

Dan Rafael
  (12:25 PM)

Nothing decided yet. Schaefer said he was coming to LA in the next week or so to meet with the GB folks to discuss plans for his next fight.

Patrick (Boynton)

Any chance Paulie vs Senchenko gets US TV?

Dan Rafael
  (12:26 PM)

If the fight is in the US, it will wind up on TV somewhere. I think you can count on that.

JP (Columbus, OH)

Dan, inspired by what you wrote of the Rios-Murray weigh-in, I think we should start calling him Brandon "Potato Chip" Rios. That was a scary sight. He looked like a zombie from The Walking Dead.

Dan Rafael
  (12:26 PM)

He really, really looked bad. As bad as I have EVER seen a fighter at a weigh in. I thought he was going to collapse. It was amazing to see him go 11 hard rounds the next night and still have all kinds of energy in the final rounds. That is the benefit of being 25 instead of 35.

Silva (San Diego)

I think Ward wins this fight pretty easily. Froch is a very tough guy with a good chin but I just think he will be totally outclassed

Lucas (Danbury, CT)

I was not impressed by Jones...seems like he could have stepped up the pace and put Lujan away.

Dan Rafael
  (12:27 PM)

Jones won easily but it was poor performance from the standpoint that he didnt gain any fans at all. It was a negative performance.

Lucian (Portland OR)

Was Epix higher ups, happy with the Boxing they broadcasted?More next year?

Dan Rafael
  (12:28 PM)

Definitely. There will be more fights next year. At least that is what they have told me. The schedule is not set, but they will look to pick up worthy fights like they have been doing.

Charlie (Chicago, IL)

Whats the most extreme thing you've ever heard fighter doing in order to make weight? Not eating for 5 days seems pretty insane to me

Dan Rafael
  (12:28 PM)

That is up there. I forget which fighter it was but I was told once about a guy who spent like 5 hours in a sauna.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

Never seen Senchenko fight, but I've known for a while that he has a belt. Does his style resemble any other current fighter?

Dan Rafael
  (12:29 PM)

He's a stanard Euro standup boxer. Nothing fancy, not big power. Good technical ability. Not all that exciting.

Brutus (Detroit)

Khan vs Bradley in 2012. Reality or dreaming?

Dan Rafael
  (12:29 PM)

Dreaming I think.

Joe (NJ)

Dan are you going to have your father brush your hair after this successful chat.

Dan Rafael
  (12:30 PM)

Considering my father is thousands of miles from where I am, no.

Dan Rafael
  (12:30 PM)

Considering my father is thousands of miles from where I am, no.

clay (chattanooga)

Dazzlin Dan - i know the division is VERY weak, but i think the sky is the limit for the Broner kid & the Perez fight will be as solid of a fight as can be made n that division! agree?

Dan Rafael
  (12:31 PM)

It is a weak division and I see Broner's fugure for bigger fights at 135 or even 140 eventually. But Golden Boy probably will make the Eloy Perez bout at some point, maybe next for Broner. If it is made, no disrespect to Perez, but I think it is an easy fight for Broner.

cj (toledo oh)

Is b-hop gonna bounce bac from the Dawson incident

Dan Rafael
  (12:32 PM)

I talked to BHop yesterday at the Khan presser and he said his shoulder was about 80 percent and he was doing some light training although no actual boxing. The hearing about the Dawson fight is next week. Whatever happens, BHop said he would like to fight around March.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

The Freaks come out at night. True or False?

Dan Rafael
  (12:32 PM)

True.

Jim (Santa Monica)

Thanks for all the memorable fights Pawel Wolak!

Margarito's right eye (Mexico)

Good stoppage!

fabien (london)

dan would you watch margarito v mayorga i think thats a fun fight on an undercard somewhere

Dan Rafael
  (12:33 PM)

I'd watch it. They'd beat the crap out of each other. It wouldn't mean anything but, yes, it would be fun.

Carlton (Bel Air)

Does Paulie have enough magic left to beat Senchenko?

Dan Rafael
  (12:33 PM)

It is a winnable fight for Paulie, yes.

Mike (Los Angeles)

I enjoyed Showtime's bantamweight tourney and was impressed by Moreno and Mares. Any chance GB matches them up next?

Dan Rafael
  (12:34 PM)

There is a chance, yes, that they will meet. With Donaire leaving the division there is really no other good name for either to fight but each other and since they are both with Golden Boy, it should not be a hard fight to make.

Bubba Gage (Ottawa Il)

Dan, what was your thoughts about Staredown Ward/Froch?

Dan Rafael
  (12:34 PM)

I watched it just before this chat. It was OK.

Jeff (Las Vegas)

Nice job on Epix! Will there ever be a fair decision in Europe?

Dan Rafael
  (12:34 PM)

Damn, I hope so. I was having flashbacks to the Sturm-Macklin fight.

Will (West Philly)

If the commission rules in favor of BHop can we expect a rematch?

Dan Rafael
  (12:35 PM)

Whatever the commission rules, I do not think we will see a rematch.

Aaron (MI)

Any update on Vitali vs Haye getting done?

Dan Rafael
  (12:36 PM)

When I spoke at length with Wladimir on Wednesday, I asked him about it. He said they were still negotiating but nothing was done. Only thing was that whomever Vitali fights, the bout will move off March 3 to make room for Wlad to reschedule the Mormeck fight on that date.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Dan, Just curious where did you cover the Epix broadcast then fly out to MSG?

Dan Rafael
  (12:39 PM)

We called the Epix fight from the same studio we have done all the Epix shows -- literally across the street from MSG. The timing could not have been better. I got to the studio when I was supposed to at noon. Walked over from the hotel with Freddie. We were on the air at 3:30 and off the air about 5:50. I then walked across the street and down into Penn Station. Came out the other side right at the media entrance and was in my seat inside MSG as the first fight was about to be walked into the ring. Could not have worked out better.

Ruben (El CENTRO)

Why is Leo Gamez not in the hall of fame he is a four division champion?

Dan Rafael
  (12:41 PM)

Because he has never been on the ballot. But even if he ever is, he doesnt deserve it. He was a good fighter in his day but never remotely close to a top fighter in his division. He was handed several WBA shots against average opponents.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Any updates with Arthur Abraham? Wouldn't you agree that Maravilla/Abraham would be a good fight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:41 PM)

Abraham's next fight is scheduled. I forget the particulars off the top of my head but there is a section in today's notebook about it.

Chris (Seattle)

How can we stop the Roy Jones Jr fight tomorrow from happening? I can't take it anymore

Dan Rafael
  (12:42 PM)

Try not to think about it. Sick thing is, Roy will probably beat Max Alexander easily and think it means something.

Tommy (Detroit)

Alright... someone has to... Jones/Alexander.. who ya got?

Dan Rafael
  (12:42 PM)

All I got is a headache even thinking about it.

Micah (Mobile-Washington)

I heard rumor that BHOP is game for a BUTE match up.

Dan Rafael
  (12:43 PM)

BHop has said many times, including against yesterday, that he would like to fight Bute.

Christopher (Kalamazoo, MI)

So Dan, was the atmosphere last Saturday as great as it was for the Bradley/Alexander fight at the old Silverdome?

Dan Rafael
  (12:43 PM)

LOL. I didnt realize there was ANY atmosphere in the Silverdome.

Charles (Ogden, Utah)

I'm glad to see someone at least voted for Myung Woo Yuh. I wonder how much homework the other voters actually do -- seeing he's a no brainer for the Hall...

Dan Rafael
  (12:46 PM)

Agreed. I know I do my homework. I take it seriously.

Sal (El Paso, TX)

ANy news on Joel Julio?

Dan Rafael
  (12:46 PM)

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, the Love Child. Nothing specific but I would think he's a solid bet to appear on the new Main Events series on NBC Sports Net.

Al M (NYC)

Where does Saturday night Rank for you all time atomosphere at a live event??

Dan Rafael
  (12:47 PM)

It was up there but honestly, not close to the very top, which was a surprise.

Jerome (Orlando)

When will see Pascal back in the ring?

Dan Rafael
  (12:47 PM)

His promoter told me last week probably February.

Charles (Ogden, Utah)

Roughly how many get a ballot for the Hall of Fame...and at what point did you become a voter? At USA Today or ESPN?

Dan Rafael
  (12:48 PM)

I have been voting since about 2001 or so, when I was at USA Today. I am not sure of the total number of voters but it's probably a bit over 100.

Stuart (Beaverton, OR)

Dan, I don't know if I've missed something, but what in the heck has happened to Welter/Junior Middle contender Shawn Porter? Seen and heard nothing about him for countless months

Dan Rafael
  (12:48 PM)

Good question. I have no idea.

Jim Lampley (Las Vegas)

Now let's cut away from this chat to further look at and discuss Margarito's handwraps!

Dan Rafael
  (12:49 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley.

Devmann Lee (Jakarta)

Will Chris John be in the Hall of Fame? He is currently the longest active belt holder. He also has a win against JMM.

Dan Rafael
  (12:49 PM)

Indonesian HOF I would imagine.

Anthony (Sacramento )

Better chance of becoming the the next network to join the big leagues in boxing: NBC or EPIX?

Dan Rafael
  (12:49 PM)

Not sure either will make that kind of $$ committment to truly compete at the highest level.

Craig (MD)

Can we get your offical prediction in the Mitchell bout? I like him by a late KO

Dan Rafael
  (12:50 PM)

I like Seth via decision. I would be very impressed by a KO. Ibragimov is no world beater, but he has never been stopped and faced some quality opponents.

Budge Rodriguez (Manhattan beach, CA)

YOYO DAN, all time reader, first time question-er.. If Martirosyan gets Chavez, whos Freddie gonna train???

Dan Rafael
  (12:51 PM)

Dont know for sure but I would bet Chavez. He makes wayyyy more money training Chavez.

Liam (UK)

is @THEREALMAYORGA his real twitter? i never thought it was but then i think it was Chris Mannix who said he understands it is his real account, either way, it's entertaining stuff to read!

Dan Rafael
  (12:51 PM)

It is a fake account.

Lucian (Portland OR)

Is Seth Mitchell the real deal? Can he easily be a top ten fighter?

Dan Rafael
  (12:52 PM)

We dont know yet. He is a prospect. Part of the purpose of tomorrow's fight is to see if we can find out a little more about his potential.

Besim (Staten Island, New York)

Dear HBO, Please bring back Legendary Nights. Sincerely, The Freaks.

Isai (OKC)

The Epix production is awesome by the way. I really hope they pick up more cards, especially mid-level American fights.

Dan Rafael
  (12:53 PM)

Agreed.

Jim (Santa Monica)

Who's fault is it that Rios was so ridiculously drained last weekend? Is this on Rios, or his training team, or Top Rank not realizing how big Rios is?

Dan Rafael
  (12:53 PM)

Ultimately, it is the fault of the boxer. He is a grown man and has take responsibility for his own actions.

Michael (Zion, IL)

Hi Dan, who wins this mini tournament at 147lbs.?Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Felix TrinidadThomas Hearns vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Dan Rafael
  (12:54 PM)

Leonard.

Gary (Ft. Wayne, IN)

any more involvement for you on FNF this season, other than the normal clips or in-studio analysis?

Dan Rafael
  (12:54 PM)

TBA.

Ry (OH)

Dan, I noticed it's no longer listed as being televised on the schedule, but I just want to confirm, no ESPN3 coverage of Golovkin today?

Dan Rafael
  (12:55 PM)

Correct. When Klitschko fight dropped out so did ESPN3.

Chris (Seattle)

Absolute GENIUS move on Cotto's part to try and get Naseem Richardson to watch the hand wrapping, even though it didn't worked out, that was an all-time great psych out.

Dan Rafael
  (12:56 PM)

I think it was the greatest psych move of all-time.

Tim (Denver,co)

You DAN THEE MAN! Heard anything about the next Alvarado fight? How's his cut mouth?

Dan Rafael
  (12:56 PM)

Nothing, he is out for awhile after that last fight.

Liam (Brooklyn)

Epix is doing a great job showcasing quality fighters --especially Europeans -- who previously had been forgotten by American TV.

Dan Rafael
  (12:57 PM)

Agreed. I hope Epix picks up even more of those fights.

Dan Rafael
  (12:57 PM)

Agreed. I hope Epix picks up even more of those fights.

Paul (Bay Area)

Given Dunkin's comments, how realistic is it to believe Rios can stay at lightweight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:57 PM)

They will make that determination after getting together with Conte.

KK (GR)

Is it safe too say Margarito's rise to the top was a complete fraud?

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

Who knows? But it is not an unreasonable thought that maybe it was.

Craig (MD)

Has Sturm dropped off alot, it seems like 3 years ago he would have won those fights easily and now hes escaping with bad decisions

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

He is obviously on the downside.

Van (Phoenix)

CaveDan Lee, have you seen the new documentary on McClellan vs Benn, and if you have what are your thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

I have not seen it but heard it's very good. My trading partner in the UK said he is sending it to me this week.

Anthony (Bronx, NY)

British fans have to leave you alone for a while. You sided with Chisora.

Dan Rafael
  (12:59 PM)

LOL.

Aaron (Hartford)

Amazing how Margarito was once dubbed most feared fighter...now hes a disgrace..

Niall (Dublin Ireland)

hi Dan, any word on whats next for Andy Lee?

Dan Rafael
  (1:00 PM)

He probably will fight on the next Sergio Martinez undercard in March. DiBella told me has been talking to the people at Hatton Promotions about possibly matching Lee with Murray, who had the draw last week with Sturm.

Lionel (Stavanger, Norway)

Will it be a boxing crowd for Peterson v. Khan tomorrow night, or are there a lot of D.C. comps and all for staffers and friends of those on the Hill?

Dan Rafael
  (1:01 PM)

From what I'm told these are legit ticket buyers who will fill the place up. A good boxing crowd.

Tom (Kingston ont)

It has been awhile so I am not sure but how many Ricky Hatton's are there?

Dan Rafael
  (1:01 PM)

Just to be clear: ONLY ONE.

Bryan (NYC)

Dan, read your blog about Seth Mitchel and am excited to see him fight tomorrow night. Even if he wins, is he in the realm of possibility of get a Klitschko fight and making it competitive?

Dan Rafael
  (1:01 PM)

If he ever gets a Klitschko fight he is still a ways away from that.

Lenny (Lynchburg tn)

What happens if you gotta poop during a fight?

Dan Rafael
  (1:02 PM)

These are my readers.

Dylan (Vancouver)

Will Top Rank even entertain the possibility of a Pacquiao vs Cotto II?

Dan Rafael
  (1:02 PM)

I think it is on the list but not the priority at this point.

Andre (La Verne, CA)

After losing to Amir Khan, will Zab Judah get another shot at a big fight?

Dan Rafael
  (1:04 PM)

Unlikely.

Trips (NYC)

Dan, do you know if Showtime plans to do a post Super 6 episode of Fight Camp 360?

Dan Rafael
  (1:04 PM)

Yes, there will be one. It is scheduled to debut on Dec. 31.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Do you think if Paul Williams hired Emmanuel Stewart and trained him with a defensive posture (and not be exposed to the counter left) he could be a force again?

Dan Rafael
  (1:05 PM)

No, I think that ship has sailed.

Newt (Jacksonville)

Sat behind Holyfield at MSG on Saturday night. Man, seeing that ear in person is crazy ...

Dan Rafael
  (1:06 PM)

LOL, yes it is! I remember standing at an interview session inside Boardwalk Hall the night before Evander fought Rahman. He had gone there just to shake out and some of the writers were allowed in. After ward, he came down to ringside to talk to the writers for a bit. I was standing right next to him on the side with the chewed up ear and I could not help but to stare at it.

jon (san bernardino)

Dan the man with the master plan, do u know what ever happened to the boxing velardez brothers, Bobby boy, armando, and alex?

Dan Rafael
  (1:06 PM)

They're retired.

Charlie (Chicago, IL)

Thoughts on the Kirkland/Molina matchup?

Dan Rafael
  (1:07 PM)

Solid match, but also not overly exciting. But Molina is a tough guy with a good chin but not a lot of pop. If he is still standing after about 5-6 rounds, it could mean trouble for Kirkland.

Dave (San Jose)

Which boxer smells the best and which smells the worst?

Dan Rafael
  (1:08 PM)

Seek help.

Matt (Gainesville)

Dan any updates on Maidana-Alexander?

Dan Rafael
  (1:08 PM)

Golden Boy is working on finishing it up. Nothing really new.

@Vicmatic_TKO (north jersey)

how do rate cotto's performance on saturday..one of his top 5?

Dan Rafael
  (1:09 PM)

I thought he fought a brilliant fight, fought exactly how he needed to and looked pretty damn good doing it. I thought it was the best Cotto looked since the first six rounds of the first fight against Margacheato.

@Vicmatic_TKO (north jersey)

thought on wolak's retirement?

Dan Rafael
  (1:10 PM)

Good for him. If you are not dedicated 100 percent what's the point? It's too dangerous of a job to not treat with 100 percent focus.

Bryan (NYC)

Do you have any insight into Pawel Wolak's retirement? I was excited to see what was in store for him after his rematch with Rodriguez.

Dan Rafael
  (1:11 PM)

Nothing other than he felt like he didnt want to fight anymore. He has a job outside of boxing and he felt like -- I think -- if he couldnt beat Delvin what was the point of going on?

Bruin (Westwood)

Mares looked solid in the late rounds against Agbeko.. and didnt fade. WHat are your thoughts on his performance? I think he did well to win, however, I feel he gets hit a bit too much and doesn't show enough pop in his punches for his skill set?

Dan Rafael
  (1:12 PM)

Mares fought very well against a very quality opponent. He does get hit some, but that makes him vulnerable and better for the fans. He's never been the biggest puncher and that's not going to change. With Donaire leaving 118, Mares is clearly No. 1 in the division at this moment.

Chris (Bay Area)

I know you don't condone betting on Boxing, but I took your advice on Anselmo Moreno last weekend and it paid dividends. I owe you one. Thanks Dan!

Dan Rafael
  (1:13 PM)

It's not that I dont condone it, it's that I personally do not partake in betting on boxing.

Silva (San Diego)

Dan, 9 months ago I announced for the first time my wife was pregnant in your chat! Now I'm sitting in the hospital room with my wife and new son participating. Freak status?

Dan Rafael
  (1:14 PM)

Freak status, but you need help.

Mike (Anahiem, California)

Could a Brandon rios vs Morales happen next year?

Bryan (NYC)

I know Mike Lee is an up and coming fighter. I was impressed by his TKO last week at MSG. Do you think he can maintain the knockout power he has displayed so far once he faces some serious competition?

Dan Rafael
  (1:16 PM)

Remains to be seen. He had a nice knockout but he was fighting just an abysmal opponent.

Gerardo (AZ)

Why does he need help? His wife and baby are probably so tired they're asleep. I did the same thing a year and a half ago. Freak.

Dan Rafael
  (1:17 PM)

OK then.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Who do you have for the JuanMa/Solido rematch?

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

The fight is supposed to be in the works for early next year. If it happens, I think I would go with Lopez avenging the loss but Salido is so tough and takes a great shot. I think he could repeat too. Toss up to me.

Desmond (San Diego)

What up Dan, any suspicion behind Erdei's or Klitschkos injury?

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

None whatsoever on either one.

Charles (Ogden, Utah)

Did you catch a glance at Mrs. Cotto's infamous cleavage live?

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

How could miss it?

Vince (Atlanta)

Would Golden Boy give Delvin Rodriguez a look as Canelo's next opponent?

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

I think they would consider him, yes.

Reid (Cleveland)

How did you like this week's Fight Camp 360 - pretty solid once again....and a lot of Froch's girlfriend.

Dan Rafael
  (1:19 PM)

It's been a good show and you can never have enough Rachel in there.

Dave, NJ [via mobile]

Madison Square Garden cut off beer sales before the Rios fight. I guess they remember what happened with Bowe and Golota.

Dan Rafael
  (1:19 PM)

Interesting. I did not know that. I was down in my seat basically the entire show and did not have a chance to walk up to the concourse.

Todd (Grand Rapids)

how important a roll will the outstanding Pacquiao defamation lawsuit against Mayweather play in making the fight? Do you believe Money will demand it be dropped?... would it make sense for pac and his advisors concede?

Dan Rafael
  (1:20 PM)

I would imagine IF the fight is seriously being negotiated that the lawsuit being dropped would be one thing that would have to be addressed and that ultimately it would be dropped if the fight was made.

clay (chattanooga)

Dan - any news from Cloud? seems like this guy is either extremely avoided, horribly promoted or now...unlucky! all resulting in very little ring time!

Dan Rafael
  (1:20 PM)

Nothing other than he just had his fight canceled at the last minute. Feel bad for the guy.

Charles (Ogden, Utah)

Something that isn't addressed a lot, but I'm impressed with how much Cotto has focused on becoming more fluent in English. I remember him early on and he's really come long way...

Dan Rafael
  (1:22 PM)

Miguel has been good with English for awhile now. I recall before the Mosley fight meeting with him before a pre-fight press conference with one or two other reporters he was very familiar with and he felt comfortable enough with us to speak in English. At that time he still mostly spoke Spanish in public. Now he can easily in front of anyone and not be self-conscious. He has come a long way. I respect his ability to do that and the importance he placed on being able to speak to the English-speaking press.

maniroc (Cicero, IL )

So has Roger Mayweather english over the years.

Dan Rafael
  (1:26 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley.

Mike (NJ)

Battle of the one hit wonders...a prime Rahman vs a prime Buster Douglas. Who do you pick?

Dan Rafael
  (1:26 PM)

Douglas.

Brendan (Philly)

Assuming Lemieux beats Accline..Then you think we can get a Lemieux vs Pirog clash?

Dan Rafael
  (1:27 PM)

I would think unlikely but that would be a nice fight.

Rawly (Sweetboxing world)

To add to what Charles from Utah said: This is something I find to be great about Cotto and if you notice Juan Manuel Marquez has also made it a point to improve his English and has done a good job at doing so.

Dan Rafael
  (1:27 PM)

Yup, Barrera did the same thing later in his career.

Richie (Bronx NY)

Cotto is one of the most professional fighters out there. Great thing to watch..

Matt (Naperville, IL)

I can't believe this NBA trade mess, Dan. Promoters would never hold up something fighters/the public wants...Oh wait.

Dan Rafael
  (1:28 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley.

RonMack (Cincinnati)

Dan,Is it fair to say that Antonio Margarito's boxing career is a wrap?

Dan Rafael
  (1:28 PM)

Nice.

Fernando (Ft Carson)

I saw a tweet the other day that read Prince Hamed would have been dominated by the bantam and featherweights of today Juanma, Gamboa, Donaire do you agree with that?

Dan Rafael
  (1:28 PM)

No, I laugh at it.

MArkos (Chicago)

Do you think Cotto will return to 147?any news on a new contract with anybody?

Justin (Denver)

What happened to Ricardo Torres? He lost to Cotto in '05, and his only other loss was from a head butt by Kendall Holt. He hasn't fought since '09

Dan Rafael
  (1:30 PM)

Miguel Diaz, his cutman, told me ages ago that he retired.

Anthony (Sacramento )

I laughed at that tweet too about Hamed. Dude knows absolutely nothing about boxing.

Kyle (Madison, Wi)

Why no mention of the the awesome RJJ vs. Max Alexander fight for the prestigious vacant UBO Cruiserweight championship this weekend?

Dan Rafael
  (1:31 PM)

Please, please. Dont make me ill.

MArkos (Chicago)

Do you troll on HBO Boxings Facebook page?

Dan Rafael
  (1:31 PM)

No, I have never used Facebook ever for anything boxing related. Is it any good?

buflo_dolla (east coast)

Anything of note on ward/froch undercard?

Dan Rafael
  (1:32 PM)

Probably the most notable thing is welterweight Kell Brook making his US debut.

Ryan (London)

What did you think of John Murray? I'd like to see him fight Katsidis, would be a war.

Dan Rafael
  (1:32 PM)

John's a tough guy and I have been following his career for some time. You can match him up with anyone at lightweight who comes forward and it will be a great fight.

Abel (OKC)

Speaking of Prince Hamed, Dan, did you ever see that documentary "Little Prince, Big Fight"

Dan Rafael
  (1:32 PM)

Yes, I have a tape of it. Very good.

Todd (spring Lake NC)

WOW a question about Rahman v. Douglas gets answered but not one about Gushiken v. Chang. Last chat for me im out

Dan Rafael
  (1:33 PM)

Dont let the door hit you on the way out.

Mike (NJ)

Where is Michael Katz writing nowadays or is he retired?

Dan Rafael
  (1:33 PM)

He is retired. Was just elected to the HOF and I am glad you reminded me. I need to call him this weekend to congratulate him.

RonMack (Cincinnati)

Dan,Allan green is at 175 now and threw out the challenge to Cloud since his fight was scrapped. What do you think about that fight?

Dan Rafael
  (1:35 PM)

I have no interest in seeing Allan Green fight ever again.

Gary (Ft. Wayne, IN)

yes Todd, legions of fight freaks stand in anticipation of a spirited discussion on Gushiken Vs. Chang. Holy crap I think more people care about Bald Bull Vs. Little Mac

El Bori (Tampa)

David Stern has just vetoed the Mayweather vs Pacquiao fight!

Geoff (Burlington, ON)

How about Margarito vs Alvarez or Chavez?

Dan Rafael
  (1:40 PM)

Margarito is done as far as I am concerned. He didnt deserve the Cotto payday but I understood it and, like a lot of us, I wanted to see the rematch. Now that it is over, good riddance.

Joe (San Francisco, CA)

Hopefully Silva wasn't participating in the freak chat during conception....

Dan Rafael
  (1:40 PM)

Too much information.

Rob (Denton, Tx)

21K last weekend at MSG, and now over 9K and a sellout in DC. Man boxing is on life support !

Dan Rafael
  (1:41 PM)

Yeah, funny isn't it? Dont forget a sellout last month for Pacquiao-Marquez and two fights (Mayweather and Manny in Sept and Nov that both sold well in excess of 1 million buys).

maniroc (Cicero, IL )

Is Pujols now officially part of the Money Team?

Dan Rafael
  (1:41 PM)

A fine question.

Dan Rafael
  (1:43 PM)

You're sick.

MArkos (Chicago)

just found out the real reason why Nonito was not allowed to stay with Golden Boy was because Stern didnt think it was in the best interest of Boxing and Vetoed it

AJ Pesh (West Fargo ND)

Now that the Super Six is nearly over, what grade do you give it? I am going with a B-.

Dan Rafael
  (1:44 PM)

Why would I grade it before it is 100 percent over? One more fight to go. Let's see what happens.

Tom (Pittsburgh)

If no real negotiations have taken place what actually went down then when Koncz was at Mayweather's gym? I agree the fight is far from a done deal, but I also don't think koncz was there for cookies and milk.

Dan Rafael
  (1:44 PM)

Going to a gym is not a negotiation.

Tom (Pittsburgh)

touche DTM...touche

Justin (Denver)

I personally love the Super Six. So guys dropped out, and the structure was a bit convoluted, but those things are beside the point: six of the top guys signed to fight nobody but each other for three years. Isn't that what we want as fans??

Trips (NYC)

Dan, what do you think about Chavez-Sturm? I'd really like to see Sturm tested against outside of Germany bc he can still punch

Dan Rafael
  (1:46 PM)

Nothing wrong with it but there are several other fights that would interest me more at middleweight.

maniroc (Cicero, IL )

Have you ever been inside of Arum's office at top rank?

Dan Rafael
  (1:48 PM)

Yes and Don King's office in Fla. and Richard Schaefer's office in LA and DiBella's office in NYC and at Showtime and at HBO.

MArkos (Chicago)

Is Brother Nazim available to come with me to get some chicken wraps for lunch. I want to make sure theres no illegal substances involved

Dan Rafael
  (1:49 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley.

Kevin (Phoenix,AZ)

I'd like to see Jhonny Gonzalez get a nice fight with Broner. Would get knocked out, but would go out on his shield and would be good for Broner's development. Your thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (1:50 PM)

No interest. Why would I want to see a bigger, faster, better guy like Broner decapitate Gonzalez, who was at his best as a bantamweight? Silly and aint gonna happen.

Dan (NC)

Larry Holmes cracks me up. How does he come off in person?

Dan Rafael
  (1:51 PM)

Larry is a cool guy.

Kevin (Boston)

Dan, I'm not gonna lie, I was on the Helenius bandwagon. Probably because I fooled myself into wanting to believe there was a heavyweight out there that could at least challenge the brothers. I guess I better hope for big things from Seth Mitchell tomorrow.

Dan Rafael
  (1:51 PM)

Just dont put up unreasonable expectations.

MArkos (Chicago)

Is Delvin under Arum?

Dan Rafael
  (1:52 PM)

No, he is promoted by Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing.

Mike (Los Angeles)

I hope Showtime will stick with 4 man tournaments instead of 6 (too complicated), Maybe they can get the GB Welterweight tourney Alexander/ Maidana/ Ortiz(after Berto)/ Malignaggi(?) going.

Dan Rafael
  (1:53 PM)

If anyone does another tourney, I would also prefer four-man.

bk don (brooklyn)

So what gives with a little over 1,000 tickets being sold for Mares ,the undefeated champion fighting at home against a worthy challenger? Is it just simply the fact that Cotto v margarito was happening the same night?

Dan Rafael
  (1:55 PM)

No idea, but I was pretty shockd how pathetic the sales were for that fight. Let's put it in perspective. The gate for the Mares-Agbeko show (in Mares' home region with reasonable ticket prices and a solid card) was slightly more than $70,000. DiBella's average gates, he said, for his little Broadway Boxing club shows at BB King's in New York (a tiny little room that holds maybe 1000 at most) are about $55,000 and he said he has had several that have been more than $70,000.

juan (Indianapolis)

any news on JMM?

Dan Rafael
  (1:56 PM)

Just kicking back with a glass of pee I think.

Horacio (New York)

Any chance we will see Morales vs JMM before they retire (for good)?

Dan Rafael
  (2:00 PM)

I would like to see that fight. Have always wanted to see it. Thought we were close and now we are not.

juan (Indianapolis)

no Toe jokes today?

Dan Rafael
  (2:00 PM)

Maybe toe-morrow.

El Bori (Tampa)

Pay the Man, Shirley / on any news on JMM / Just Kicking back with a glass of pee I think....That was hilarious Dan

John (El Paso, TX.)

Noticed you left David Rodriquez off last weekend's scorecard. Do you think he is a scrub who fought a scrub or was the fight simply overlooked?

Dan Rafael
  (2:01 PM)

He has an utterly padded record against nobodies. Dont think much of his potential at all. I've seen him a few times. Padded record.

Patrick (Boynton)

HBO does a series called 24/7....Showtime copies it with Fight Camp 360....HBO does a series called Faceoff....Showtime copies it with Staredown. Maybe you can convince Showtime to copy one more HBO Boxing show. A 30 minute show about famou boxing matches. They can call it "Memorable Evenings"

Dan Rafael
  (2:03 PM)

LOL!!!! Imitiation is the sincerest form of flattery isn't it? Besides, 24/7 and Fight Camp, while similar, obviously, have totally different looks and feels. I, for one, have enjoyed both. As for Staredown, the one for Froch-Ward was a blatant rip of HBO that not executed nearly as well.

Tom (OH)

DTM have you polled your boxing colleagues on whether or not they voted for Hamed? Any idea how close he is to getting into the Hall of Fame?

Dan Rafael
  (2:04 PM)

I have no idea the vote totals and have not asked anyone. I know I will continue voting for him as long as he is on the ballot.

MArkos (Chicago)

Showtime just signed and unofficial scorer name Arnold Bedderman!

Dan Rafael
  (2:05 PM)

LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THAT was hilarious.

juan (Indianapolis)

B-hop vs Sergio Martinez- your thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (2:06 PM)

I have none because it is not a realistic fight to be made. Now if you mean at middleweight in a fantasy fight, I would have to go with Hopkins all day long.

Joe (PA)

Do Max and Larry get along?

Dan Rafael
  (2:08 PM)

Yes.

Roy (Reno)

Finally HBO gets it right and has both Max and Larry on the same card. I can't wait.

Dan Rafael
  (2:09 PM)

Will be very intesting.

Dan Rafael
  (2:10 PM)

OK Fight Freaks, thank for chatting today. Hope you read all the new stuff on the site today and enjoy the Khan-Peterson show tomorrow. Talk to you next week from Atlantic City, where I will be covering the Super Six final between Ward and Froch. Peace.