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October 5, 12:00 PM ET
Chat with Dan Rafael

Dan Rafael
  (12:00 PM)

Greetings Fight Freaks and welcome to this week's chat. No a lot going on this weekend, although there is a small PPV show from Puerto Rico, some Spanish language TV fights (Linares) and some overseas stuff, but there is a lot on the fall sked, so plenty to discuss. Also please check out my interview with Miguel Cotto as well as all the news stories and blogs from the week, not to mention the updated schedule and rankings. Let's get to it.

Charles (DFW)

I actually wouldn?t mind seeing Wladimir Klitschko take on Kubrat Pulev next. I think Pulev?s movement for a large man, good jab and power in both hands would be a much better test for Wlad than another plodding stiff or blown-up cruiserweight.

Dan Rafael
  (12:03 PM)

I agree. I had seen Pulev before but was much more impressed with how looked against Ustinov. He has a very versatile attack. He looks like he has speed, defense, a good jab and good skills.

Aaron (Hartford)

Lots of credit and courage to Cruz for coming out...especially in this sport. I wouldnt expect you to name names Dan, but do you or any others closely related to the sport know of any other boxers who have not come out yet ?

Dan Rafael
  (12:03 PM)

None that have said so outright but there have always been a few that I have suspected. But I don't really care about that. As long as they can fight.

Dr. Rockso (Zazzblammymatazz)

Dan - do you think that when a story like the one about Cruz comes out that ESPN should disable the comments section? The amount of blind hatred being spewed is pretty sad and pathetic.

Dan Rafael
  (12:04 PM)

There are a lot of morons out there and I believe the moderators do look. I did not look at the comments on that particular story but I am not surprised there was a lot of hateful remarks.

Orlando (Miami)

I don't mind Khan facing a light hitting smaller fighter after a tough year, but please tell this fight won't be a main event. I don't even think it is worthy of co-main.

Dan Rafael
  (12:05 PM)

The fight with Molina is a main event as far as I know.

Power VCT (Planet Earth)

When will Mike Jones "who" return to the ring! He said he has unfinished business at WW. Can you confirm?Please advise,

Dan Rafael
  (12:05 PM)

Dont know, dont really care.

Matt M. (Worcester, MA)

Mr. Rafael, what is the likelihood of a proposed Pavlik-Ward matchup actually happening?

Dan Rafael
  (12:06 PM)

No one has actually proposed it. The Ward camp has said they'd be interested. I have not heard any interest from the Pavlik side or HBO yet. That said, I do think there's a decent chance it could happen. Pavlik has a big name, which is what Ward needs and Pavlik can make a lot of money for the fight and not have to travel to Europe.

Ron (Detroit)

We have seen Peterson lose every round to Bradley, I want to see Provodnikov get the fight.

Dan Rafael
  (12:07 PM)

I'm not huge fan of the rematch with Peterson because, like you said, Bradley won basically every round and knocked him down. As I recall, I had the fight 11-1 for Bradley. As for Provodnikov, I think that would be an OK fight too but he has never fought at welterweight and never beaten a top 10 guy at 140.

Rory (Vegas)

Does Khan beat Molina?

Dan Rafael
  (12:08 PM)

He should. He's smaller, not a big puncher and not experienced at the top level. That is why the fight was made. Molina will go in hungry and fight his butt off but I'm not sure it will be enough.

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Who is closer to facing elite competition? Thomas Dullmore or Karim Mayfield?

Dan Rafael
  (12:08 PM)

Mayfield is 31, Dulorme is 22. It better be Mayfied.

Kristian (Wall Street, NY)

If Ricky Hatton wins his fight (big IF), who would be three possible opponents for his next fight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:09 PM)

If he wins and Malignaggi wins Oct. 20, a rematch is like their next fight.

Dan Rafael
  (12:10 PM)

By the way -- was told today that Froch-Mack on Nov. 17 will be available in the US as an Integrated Sports PPV for $29.95 with a 3 pm ET start for the PPV.

Jose (Lennox, CA)

One of my closest friends and his wife decided to come to tawn next weekend and made plans for all of us to hang out that Saturday...the night of the Rios-Alvarado fight. I need new friends.

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

Yes you do. I will be at the fight to cover it next week and am really looking forward to it.

Corey (Petersburg, WV)

What are the chances Peterson-Judah takes place in DC rather than Bradley-Peterson 2 in Miami?

Dan Rafael
  (12:13 PM)

I would say there is very, very little chance Peterson-Judah happens. There is no network interest and the fighters I believe would ultimately not fight for the $50,000 combined money even though Judah said he would. Bradley-Peterson is almost done. Arum told me yesterday he was working to finalize it and he has a good relationship with Peterson and his team.

Chris (Berkeley)

Is there anyone on the up in Roach's stable? Pac, JCC Jr, Vanes, and with Khan gone anyone to get excited about?

Dan Rafael
  (12:14 PM)

Been a tough year for Freddie's guys. But all can rebound and Vanes has a big fight coming up.

Gary Burton (Beaverton, OR)

What prevented Andre Berto from being Timothy Bradley's next opponent on the Miami card? Berto AND Rigondeaux would've made that card huge since they're both from FLA. Was it licensing issues, or what?

Dan Rafael
  (12:18 PM)

The whole Al Haymon/Top Rank thing and the fact that Berto is with Golden Boy now. That said, Berto didnt sell any tickets when he fought in Sunrise, Fla. Like 900 plus, so he would not drive sales and Rigondeaux won't either. The Cuban fans are great but they have historically not shown any box office muscle.

Wiston (Sacaramento)

Besides Pavlik, has the Ward camp shown any interest in anybody else for his next fight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:18 PM)

I dont think they've gotten serious about his next figh yet. He just fought a few weeks ago. They have plenty of time to figure it out.

Richie (Bronx NY)

is there any talk of who will be on under card of Pac/Marq?

Dan Rafael
  (12:19 PM)

Nothing definite but Arum told me maybe Gamboa.

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Would you say that the Walter D.E Convention Center in DC was one of the worst venues you have ever seen a prize fight in?

Dan Rafael
  (12:19 PM)

It's not bad but for a major fight the Verizon Center is much better.

Larry (Boston)

Why do you think Pac did not rematch Bradley?

Dan Rafael
  (12:19 PM)

Marquez means way more money. Period.

Tom (NYC)

Dan, Is Zab a free agent or is he still with Main Events?

Dan Rafael
  (12:19 PM)

Free agent.

Robert (San Diego, CA (America's Finest City))

Was there a 10-count for Corrie Sanders?

Dan Rafael
  (12:20 PM)

There was on the HBO telecast, at the beginning.

Matt (Preston, UK)

Dan, a lot of people seem to be writing Khan off. Terrible chin but surely a better defence could see him do well again.

Dan Rafael
  (12:21 PM)

I dont know if people are writing Khan off. I certainly am not. But it is very clear he has problems taking a heavy shot.

Victor (Chicago, IL)

Is Alvarado-Rios 10 or 12 rounds? Varioues sources differ.

Dan Rafael
  (12:21 PM)

10 rounds.

Barksdale (Baltimore)

Wait, so is Berto/Golden Boy official? I wonder how Lou feels. Volcanic, by chance?

Dan Rafael
  (12:22 PM)

For his next fight, Lou agreed to step aside for a fee. That is Lou's point of view. In reality, he had no choice. He didnt have Berto on paper as I understand it and Al was going to Golden Boy for Berto's next fight period. So better for DiBella to get paid and let it happen than to protest, lose his mind, not get paid and not have the fighter either. Let's just say the relationship between Lou and GB is horrific these days.

Mike (DC)

What is the likelihood Don King defaults on his ridiculous 1.3 million purse bid of Arreola-Stiverne

Dan Rafael
  (12:22 PM)

Very possible. Even if he finds a network to put on the fight, I would be quite shocked if he found a package even close to that money.

Alex (Concord)

What are you hearing about Bryant Jennings next fight? I know Wilder is out but would love to see him take on either Tor Hamer or Mike Perez next.

Dan Rafael
  (12:23 PM)

Jennings will headline an NBC Sports Net card on Dec. 8. No opponent yet.

Michael (Claremont, CA)

Ward-Pavlik sounds amazing, but would there be any pluses to perhaps waiting till after Oct 12 and maybe giving us a Pavlik-Taylor rematch?

Dan Rafael
  (12:24 PM)

The two have nothing to do with each other. A Pavlik-Taylor rematcg is not being discussed and certainly wont happen in the near future. Forget about it.

Brooks (New Hampshire)

Dan - I like the Rafa-Mijares fight. Any chance the winner would get Darchinyan? I'd love to see Rafa-Vic.

Dan Rafael
  (12:24 PM)

Good fights you mentioned.

Brian (DC)

I certainly respect Arum's ability to promote a fight, but what makes him think Bradley-Peterson II will be anything but a huge ticket dud in Marlins Park? Rigondeaux isn't going to bring thousands of fans, despite being Cuban.

Dan Rafael
  (12:25 PM)

I dont know. Bob is a great promoter and we'll see what he can do but I agree -- selling Bradley-Peterson 2 in Miami at a baseball stadium is going to be very, very, very, very difficult.

Bret (England )

Dan, did you see Khan and Brook arguing on Ringside last night!? Funny stuff

Dan Rafael
  (12:25 PM)

Heard about it. Figure they will fight down the road. Big fight for the UK.

Ron (Detroit)

What's it going to take for Ji-Hoon Kim to get a meaningful fight and/or Lampley's Gatti List?

Dan Rafael
  (12:25 PM)

He should already be on the Gatti list.

Victor (Chicago, IL)

Dibella said Berto will only be with GBP for his next fight, but I doubt it. I think he will be with GBP forever.

Dan Rafael
  (12:26 PM)

I agree. The whole scenario reminds me of Darth Vader (Al) to Lando (Lou) at the end of Empire Strikes Back: Pray I don't alter the deal any further.

JoJo (Thousand Oaks, CA)

Lots of props to Vic Darchinyan for a really good performance last weekend. He has started to box more, which lends well to the higher divisions where his power doesnt translate like it did earlier in his career. Any idea what is next for him? I would love to see a rematch with Arce.

Dan Rafael
  (12:27 PM)

I dont think I saw him box more but, yes, good win and congrats to him. I've always liked watching Vic fight. As for next, not sure but there are plenty of solid options at 122 for him.

Abijheet Sirripokol (New London)

Is Amir Kahn the greatest Pakastani boxer of all-time in your considered opinion?

Dan Rafael
  (12:27 PM)

Honestly, besides Amir I am not aware of any other top pros from there.

Victor (Chicago, IL)

Imagine the atmosphere at Wembley in the UK for a Hatton-Khan fight. Would you go to cover it?

Dan Rafael
  (12:28 PM)

Would be incredible and, yes, I would want to go there to cover it in person.

Dan Rafael
  (12:29 PM)

Here's my story on the HBO Oct. 27 card that was just announced. I really like this show. http://espn.go.com/boxing/story/_/id/8465127/welterweight-prospect-thomas-dulorme-highlight-tripleheader

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Dan whos on the next HBO 2 days?

Dan Rafael
  (12:31 PM)

Next up is heavyweight Seth Mitchell. The 2 Days debuts Oct. 27 at 10 p.m. ET.

Brian (DC)

Do you know if there were any weight penalties put into the Broner-DeMarco contract to avoid Broner causing the same fiasco as he did last time? I know 135 should be less of a problem for Broner than 130, but that doesn't guarantee anything...

Dan Rafael
  (12:31 PM)

Not that I am aware of but remember -- it's at 135. Broner should have no issue with that. He made 133 last time.

Derek (Toronto)

I noticed Cotto didn't mention Martinez in your piece. That's too bad. I think Martinez has become a star and Cotto going for the legit middleweight title at 155 would be big.

Dan Rafael
  (12:32 PM)

One thing about Cotto is he doesnt look to far into the future. I did ask him about if he ever thought he'd like to go to middleweight to try to win another title and he just said he was focused on Trout.

Joe M (Dallas)

DTM, such a tough call on Gatti to the HoF. If this was any other sport I'd say hell no since he just doesn't have the wins over quality opponets. I see the boxing HoF a little differently and think Gatti deserves to be in there just for being the warrior and crowd pleasing fighter that he was.

Dan Rafael
  (12:34 PM)

I tend to agree with you. It's not just that Gatti was a warrior and crowd pleaser. It was that he was THE GREATEST ACTION FIGHTER IN THE FREAKIN' HISTORY OF THE SPORT with so many all-time action fights that he is on another level than everybody else. That means something. What also means something to me is having spoken to many star fighters over the years who would mention his specifically and talk about their utter respect for him. Coming from his peers that tells me something.

Slaterman (West By God Virginia)

DTM do you think bam bam and alvarado make it over or under 5 rounds? Its gonna be a war I doubt it makes it past the half way mark.

Dan Rafael
  (12:35 PM)

I have no idea. All I know is I will be ringside to savor every round, however many it goes.

Derek (Broolyn)

DTM - why no mention of Jennings matching up with Seth Mitchell? They seem to be at about the same place and it would be a good test for both

Dan Rafael
  (12:35 PM)

Because Mitchell has a fight scheduled for October already and because that fight is not on their radar yet.

Van (Phoenix)

What do you think of Showtime's all access compared to HBO? I find them more to the point of showing more aspects of boxing and letting them speak for themselves. HBO's 24/7 comes off more as a music video than and expository boxing documentary.

Dan Rafael
  (12:36 PM)

You hit it on the head. They are both excellent shows but are produced in different manners. There is room for both.

Brett (Minneapolis)

Lampley Can keep his Gatti List. You should make the "Rahman List". Advising us who to avoid watching. Faded former champions/Brawlers that can still collect a paycheck but can't fight their way out of a wet paper bag.

Dan Rafael
  (12:38 PM)

Not a bad idea.

Dan Rafael
  (12:38 PM)

Here's the story I wrote the other day about the new Hall of Fame ballots being sent out: http://espn.go.com/boxing/story/_/id/8458656/arturo-gatti-henry-maske-boxing-hall-nominees-2013-class

Jeff (Southwest cattle car on way back to Gilbert)

Dan,While I generally agree with you're rankings (who would agree all the time?) I believe ranking povetkin at all is curious. The man has fought really no one serious for going on two years and he flat out ducked the champ (fair money fight) when he had a chance. Can you help me understand why you take him seriously as a fighter?

Dan Rafael
  (12:39 PM)

He has fought some good opponents. He beat Chagaev not too long ago. He has solid wins, albeit a few years ago, against Chris Byrd and Eddie Chambers when both were legit fights. He's a worthy contender. An Olympic gold medal doesnt hurt either. To say he shouldn't even be ranked shows you don't know too much.

Tom (Las Vegas)

Dan, A lot of rumors out of the Top Rank offices to expect Judah vs Alvarado/Rios winner for the IBF belt since Peterson is taking the Bradley fight. Have you heard anything?

Dan Rafael
  (12:40 PM)

All you have to do is look at the IBF ratings. Obviously, that is possible.

Derek (Brooklyn)

What do you think of the Barclays card on Otober 20th? Will you be coming to Brooklyn to cover the fights?

Dan Rafael
  (12:41 PM)

I'll be there. Good show although the main event is curious since it has nothing to do with New York and is a rematch nobody is asking for. But overall, it's a good show.

Aaron (MI)

Any fights planned for Andre Dirrell and who is promoting him???

Dan Rafael
  (12:41 PM)

Is he still fighting?

Tom (Las Vegas)

Dan, In your eyes is Glenn Johnson a hall of famer?

Dan Rafael
  (12:41 PM)

No.

Charles (Ogden, Utah)

Will next weekend be the first time you've seen Nishioka live?

Dan Rafael
  (12:42 PM)

Yes.

Pedro (Puerto Rico)

What gives with Rafa bailing on Vazquez twice only to now fight Mijares? Did he just not want to come to Puerto Rico to fight? Looks like he punked out to me

Dan Rafael
  (12:42 PM)

Have no idea. Maybe the injury was enough to keep him from this week but the extra few weeks makes it OK?

Carlos (Houston)

May Maidana versus Bradley fight possible? And if so who do you think well win?

Dan Rafael
  (12:42 PM)

GB vs TR = No

Gary Burton (Beaverton, OR)

Dan, can you talk to Ken Hershman about staging an HBO BAD fight between Deontay Wilder and Bryant Jennings? Those two are having a big kerfuffle on Twitter, and I think many people want to see them match up in the ring!

Dan Rafael
  (12:43 PM)

I think it's an excellent BAD fight. I would say if Jennings wins Dec. 8 and Wilder wins his fight coming up that would be a terrific undercard fight.

brian (RI)

Is Lara/Martirosyan official? Do you think Canelo will actually fight the winner(Lara)?

Dan Rafael
  (12:44 PM)

Yes, the fight is official. Whether Canelo fights the winner depends on if the wretched WBC enforces the mandatory. #wbcisdisgusting

Mark (LV NV)

Any Joey Gilbert news ?

Dan Rafael
  (12:44 PM)

FUNNIEST POST IN WEEKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Paul (Concord, CA)

I'm kind of hoping Lennox Lewis hits some hard financial times so he unretires and takes on Vitali again. Selfish, I know, but it would make for a lot of excitement in the heavyweight division...the kind of excitement we haven't seen in a while.

Dan Rafael
  (12:45 PM)

LOL. Not happening. Lennox is doing just fine and enjoy a healthy and happy retirement.

Orlando (Miami)

With the addition of Moreno and the re-emergence of Darchinyan, would you agree the 122 division is the deepest?

Dan Rafael
  (12:45 PM)

No, it's a good division but not the deepest. I would say 154 is probably the best at the moment.

George (California)

lol, Mark said Joey Gilbert news

Aaron (Hartford)

Dan you made my day..... any and all Joey Gilbert questions crack me up.... thanks !!!

Charles (Ogden, Utah)

Any Joey Lawrence news?

Silva (San Diego)

Ahhhhhhhhhhh?

Dan Rafael
  (12:46 PM)

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, the Love Child?

Mike (Los Angeles)

Lara/Martosyian is a quality GB/TR card. If it does well, do you think we'll see another?

Dan Rafael
  (12:46 PM)

It isn't a GB-TR card. TR won the purse bid for an official eliminator. They never negotiated and GB has nothing to do with putting on the show.

Michael (Claremont, CA)

Straight up, no lie. Does it actually bug you when Fight Freaks question your p4p rankings? It's hard to tell. Do you welcome the discussion/debate or does it really grind your gears. Seems like it does...

Dan Rafael
  (12:47 PM)

I dont really care. Everyone has an opinion. It just so happens that mine is published for the world to see and the criticism goes with the territory. My view is if you dont agree with my list, wonderful. I couldn't care less. Make your own and have fun.

Bubba Gage (Ottawa Il)

Dan, I ask this question with respect. I kno how much u loved Gatti as a fighter.( we all did) but other then saying "he was a all action fighter that fought with heart and gave the fans what they wanted" what other case do u have to put him in the HOF? He just doesn't have the resume. He beat no great fighter, hell u could make the case he didn't even beat a very good fighter.

Dan Rafael
  (12:48 PM)

See my above answer combined with at least supporting facts of two alphabet titles. But he gets in in my view because he was the greatest action fighter of all time in a sport where that means a LOT.

RJ (OH)

Speaking of 154, great blog on Gabe Rosado this week. I'd be shocked if Golden Boy put him in with Canelo, because I would honestly favor Rosado to not only win the fight, but possibly even stop him. Your thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (12:49 PM)

Thanks. I dont think Canelo will give Rosado the fight. He doesnt have a big enough name yet.

Dan Rafael
  (12:49 PM)

Here's the Rosado blog he mentioned: http://espn.go.com/blog/dan-rafael/post/_/id/1993/rosado-has-come-a-long-long-way

Robert (San Diego, CA (America's Finest City))

Is Sergey Kovalev ready to fight top opposition?

Dan Rafael
  (12:50 PM)

I think he is ready to take another step up. Remember, he was supposed to fight Gabriel Campillo, a legit top 10 guy who got hurt and pulled out.

Peter (NYC)

Dan, Arturo Gatti vs Diego Corrales?!

Dan Rafael
  (12:50 PM)

Lord have mercy.

Alec (Nashville)

Saw the IBHOF ballot...pretty weak. In your opinion, does Naseem Hamed belong in the hall? Lost the biggest fight of his career and then retired...also pretty weak.

Dan Rafael
  (12:53 PM)

I have been voting for Hamed for the past few years so, yes, I believe he should be in. As for losing his biggest fight, so? Floyd Patterson lost his biggest fight, he's in. Tyson lost to some nobodies and he is in, same with Lennox. Tommy Hearns lost his biggest fights and was a first ballot guy. I am not comparing Naz to them just saying you need to look past one fight -- against Barrera, a guy who will be a first-ballot lock, and look at his career as a whole. For most of his career, he was the clear No. 1 featherweight and if not for politics of the organizations he would have been the first to hold all four belts at the same time. Not to mention he changed the economics of the sport in the lower weight classes. There is no eight-figure Pacquiao purses if Hamed does not pave the way.

mike (washington)

Who should floyd fight next?....... besides pac man

Dan Rafael
  (12:54 PM)

Pacman. Pacman. And Pacman.

Kermit Cintron (Acting school)

Do I get in Dan? I had plenty of in ring performances that nobody will forget? That says a lot.

Dan Rafael
  (12:54 PM)

Well you had at least one fell out-of-the-ring performance nobody will forget.

Fred (CT)

Myung Woo Yuh definitely belongs in the Hall of Fame (17 title defenses).

Dan Rafael
  (12:55 PM)

I have been voting for him for years.

Nick (Rialto, CA)

Hey Dan, what a complete PR Stunt by Orlando Cruz, why should we care what a man's sexual orientation is as long as he can fight, but I guess he had to try to do something to hype up his fights after getting beat up and knocked out by a mediocre fighter like Cornelius Lock.

Dan Rafael
  (12:55 PM)

The cynic in me did think maybe he was promoting his next fight. But whatever. It takes a lot of guts to do what he did regardless of the reason he did it.

Jose (Lennox, CA)

To piggy back off of the Joey Gilbert news, any news on Kevin Pompey? (old school ESPN)

Dan Rafael
  (12:56 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Angel (Yemen)

Hamed's entrances were Hall of Fame worthy alone!

Dave (San Jose)

How many poops do you take on an average day?

Dan Rafael
  (12:57 PM)

These are my readers.

Mike (NYC)

How often do you have to remind people that boxing does take place outside of the US as well when talking about fighters like Hamed?

Dan Rafael
  (12:57 PM)

Often.

Chris (Boston)

Dan, don't you think you give undue credibility to the wretched sanctioning bodies when you pump up Gatti's WBC 140 belt that he won when Tszyu was stripped yet still very much active?

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

I didnt pump it up. I compared it apples to apples by stating it as one of the elements of Gatti's resume.

George (California)

ohhhh I remember the Kevin Pompey vs. Harold Brazier fights! Classic

Koolkc107 (DeLand, Fl)

Is there actually a prescription medicine which contains cannibis? and if so, do you buy or sell JCC jr's excuse?

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

Junior is full of you know what. End of discussion.

Mike (Philly)

I suppose you will throw your support behind Acelino Freitas like you are Gatti because you named one of your cats after him too?

Dan Rafael
  (12:59 PM)

I love Popo as much as any fighter but I do not view him as HOFer.

Keith H (Seattle)

I'd vote for the Shower Door ahead of some of those Hall of Fame nominees.

Dan Rafael
  (1:00 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Charles (Ogden, Utah)

I couldn't read all the name on the picture of the HOF ballot you posted on Twitter. There are a lot of names on there, are most of them just hold overs?

Dan Rafael
  (1:02 PM)

They are all holdover -- 42 of them -- except the three new ones, Gatti, Hill and Maske.

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Any word on whats next for Golvokn?

Dan Rafael
  (1:03 PM)

Possibly a fight before the end of the year in Europe.

Gary Burton (Beaverton, OR)

Dan, Chavez Jr. is under no obligation to pay a fine to the WBC is he? Isn't this whole thing by the WBC and Jose Suliaman to influence or set a "precedent" so that the NSAC goes easy on the fines and easy on the length of suspension?

Dan Rafael
  (1:03 PM)

No he isnt. The wretched WBC has no authority over him whatsoever. #wbcisdisgusting

MikeRo72 (Chicago)

Dan,Are you buying JCC Jr's story about his alleged medicinal marijuana use for his sleep disorder.

Dan Rafael
  (1:04 PM)

No. I believe he is lying.

Robert (San Diego, CA (America's Finest City))

If Tap water can defeat Floyd, then Tap Water should be in the HOF.

Dan (DC)

You alluded to it at the top, but worth reiterating that for those that are willing to dig deep for non-US fights: Saturday has three fights(Calderon-Fuentes, Baysangurov-Konecny, and the Porpramook-Hernandez rematch) that all have the potential to be very good fights.

Dan Rafael
  (1:05 PM)

Fight Freak kinda fights.

Al (Nazareth, Israel)

Hey Dan, I wonder how come Yuriorkis Gamboa was never on your p4p list. The guys is super talented; he's undefeated.

Dan Rafael
  (1:06 PM)

He has been ranked on my list for a long time. Read it again. As an aside, the fact that he is undefeated does not mean much to me in terms of making a p4p list.

Chris (Detroit)

I've heard several mentions of Sergio possibly fighting his next fight in Argentina. Do you think theres any possibility of this? The last thing I remember about boxing taking place in Argentina was the riot a year or so ago.

Dan Rafael
  (1:07 PM)

It was mentioned by his people but I do not believe it will happen. They love to talk about these types of locations and then wind up in America for the HBO money or the PPV money.

George (California)

I obsiously understand drugs are illegal period here in the U.S. but is everybody really that angry at Chavez, Jr. Its weed for crying out loud, it slows you down not give you strength or energy

Dan Rafael
  (1:08 PM)

Seriously are you dumb? A) It's illegal. Agree or disagree that it should, fine, but it is. B) It is Chavez's 2nd failed drug test in Nevada after a fight. That has major consequences. And I didnt even mention the DUI. Well I did just there. The point is stop making excuses for Chavez. Kid needs to grow up.

Jose (Lennox, CA)

Shower door, tap water, Marquez' urine are all Fight Freak chat Hall of Fame worthy. The size of Valuev's poop and Bing from Philly are not.

Dan Rafael
  (1:10 PM)

LOL. Dont forget the BBQ and Shirley.

George (California)

lol, great comeback..I forgot about the first failed drug test and the DUI. Your point is taken.

Mark (Jersey City)

I'm a big Chad Dawson fan, but I was disappointed with him in the Ward fight. He kept bending down - giving up his height and reach. I think he made a mistake going with Scully. Any thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (1:11 PM)

Chad has changed trainers so many times overall that it cant be good.

Alex (Oakland, CA)

Hey DTM! Happy Friday! Any preference who your Bronx Bombers should face in the ALDS? Orioles or Rangers???

Dan Rafael
  (1:12 PM)

I'd prefer the Yanks face Baltimore. They held them off down the stretch, played solid against them in the regular season and it's a shorter travel trip than going to Texas and you know there will be a ton of Yankee fans at Camden Yards.

Orlando (Miami)

I think it is inevitable, Tap Water and Floyd will have a rematch.

George (California)

Dan, am I the only one that thinks Virgil Hill should be in the HOF? ..Im very serious...

Dan Rafael
  (1:13 PM)

Not at all. He will receive strong consideration I believe.

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

Bat Phone. It's Arum.

Dan Rafael
  (1:26 PM)

I'm back.

J in FLA (Cocoa. FL)

Is Maske HOF worthy? I view his record like that of Ottke. Lot's of set-up defenses.

Dan Rafael
  (1:27 PM)

No, I do not view Maske as a HOFer but I will take the time to closely look at his record before I vote.

John (VA)

Do you think guys like Arum will call you during on Friday during chats on purpose?

Dan Rafael
  (1:28 PM)

Some do but Bob didn't. Bob called because he read the Cotto story and wanted to say a few things.

Wes (NY)

Will Mayweather fight again soon or wait for pac marq winner?

Dan Rafael
  (1:28 PM)

Who knows? Floyd has not said what he wants to do.

Ron (Detroit)

What did Arum say?...The fans need to know

Dan Rafael
  (1:29 PM)

Bob disputed Cotto's version of the Pacquiao offer but did not blame Cotto. He blamed Cotto's attorney, who is the person Arum negotiated with. He actually had nothing but good things to say about Miguel.

Nick (LA)

Did he send you an emoticon flipping the bird?

Dan Rafael
  (1:30 PM)

LOL. No. We had a good conversation. No cursing, no yelling, no fingers. All good.

Jose (Lennox, CA)

How many F bombs did Arum use in those few minutes?

Dan Rafael
  (1:30 PM)

I wasnt counting but I would estimate about 4.

Nick (DE)

Did Arum use the word champeeen

Dan Rafael
  (1:31 PM)

LOL!!!!

Robert (San Diego, CA (America's Finest City))

Does Arum have you on speed dial?

Dan Rafael
  (1:32 PM)

Probably.

Cory (Albany, NY)

Edwin Rodriguez didn't look that bad. What's next for him?

Dan Rafael
  (1:32 PM)

He looked good but against an opponent made to order. He would like a title fight or something big. He's on his way to getting it.

Yarvi (St. Louis, MO)

Why didn't Cotto consider Top Rank to promote his MSG fight? They've been pretty successful together there.

Dan Rafael
  (1:33 PM)

If you read the story, Cotto said he was not happy with the deal. Had he faced Pacquiao though the fight would have been in Vegas not NYC.

Nate (TX)

Dream fight prediction: Oscar DeLaHoya VS. Tommy Hearns at 147 in their prime...who wins?? I like Oscar!!

Dan Rafael
  (1:34 PM)

Oh stop. Hearns all day long. It might be a decapitation.

Cho-be (Hayward, ca)

If JCC jr had an insomnia problem, he didn't need to use medical cannabis, he should've just watched a John Ruiz fight!

Dan Rafael
  (1:35 PM)

Epic. Pay the man, Shirley!

Fletch (Tybee Island, GA)

Duane Ford told me he thinks the Red Sox gave the Yankees a baseball lesson this year...

MikeRo72 (Chicago)

Don't forget ceiling fan....KO'd JCC Jr once already.

Peter (Ithaca)

Did you ever interview Meldrick Taylor?

Dan Rafael
  (1:36 PM)

No, he was done well before I began on the boxing beat. I have never interviewed him or met him.

Chris (Los Angeles, CA)

Is it true Edison Miranda knocked Chad Dawson out cold sparring a few weeks before the Ward fight?

Dan Rafael
  (1:37 PM)

Yes, that is the word.

Michael (Long Beach, CA)

Oscar takes a good shot, but come on, Hearns would toy with him then land that massive right. Lights out.

nate (austin)

you mention all of Hamed's accomplishments, and the 'politics' of boxing keeping him from holding all 4 titles, but what about Naz's 'politics' of ducking Marquez, his mandatory for years?

Dan Rafael
  (1:38 PM)

Cant argue that. He did. But that does not diminish what you actually do accomplish. Some will say Ray Leonard ducked Pryor for years. Does it take away from what Ray accomplished?

George (California)

Anybody know is there will be a Telefutura fight (Solo Boxeo) this Saturday Night

Dan Rafael
  (1:38 PM)

I believe it is a taped show of some older fights, not a new card.

Andrew F. (New York)

Dan, who is the most unlikable person you have ever met in boxing (fighter/trainer/promoter)?

Dan Rafael
  (1:39 PM)

There are myriad.

Chris (Boston)

To say Gatti was the greatest action fighter of all time is a blatant case of hyperbole.

Dan Rafael
  (1:40 PM)

Not at all.

Carlos (Houston)

In your opinion Morales vs Garcia 2 is it going to be any different than the first? Or is the old warrior going to pull an upset?

Dan Rafael
  (1:41 PM)

I dont see Erik having enough in the tank to beat Garcia in the rematch but I guess you can never count him out. So I dont.

Chris (Boston)

Dan, I have a great question for you. Unfortunately Showtime's restrictions prevent me from asking it.

Dan Rafael
  (1:42 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Gary Burton (Beaverton, OR)

Norman Stone is the most despicable, unlikeable person I've seen in boxing in the last 30 years.

Dan Rafael
  (1:44 PM)

I actually got along great with Stoney. He was crazy as a bed bug but I got along nicely with him. Of course, I also thought he died in front of me when Alton Merkerson punched him at the Jones-Ruiz weigh-in about 5 feet in front of me and he collapsed and was stretchered out of the room.

Matt (Charlotte)

You getting alot of hateful gay comments today that you are not posting ?

Dan Rafael
  (1:44 PM)

Surprisingly no.

Fred (CT)

Maybe Shirley should promote some fights. She seems to have a lot of money.

Dan Rafael
  (1:45 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Rob (Denton, Tx)

Unless i have missed something but is Mikey Garcia still fighting in November ?

Dan Rafael
  (1:45 PM)

Yes, but they still need to find a replacement opponent for Salido.

Berndawg (CHI)

Seems like the discussion about Gatti is among the most heavily debated HOF selection debates in a long time...if I had a vote it would be yes...

Dan Rafael
  (1:46 PM)

100% it is. By far.

Nick (DE)

Have you ever had any thought to expanding your rankings to reflect the top 10 at 122 it is pretty deep and the writeups are great?

Dan Rafael
  (1:46 PM)

It does reflect the top 10 just that 6-10 dont get caps.

Kristian (Wall Street, NY)

DTM, in all of the interviews you have done, who stands out as the most charasmatic?

Dan Rafael
  (1:50 PM)

Too many to name.

Juan C (San Diego)

Honestly, aren't catchweights a cop out? You're either champion at that weight or not, right?

Dan Rafael
  (1:50 PM)

I dont agree. In many instances a catch weight makes sense and they have been used throughout boxing history.

Bruce (Alexandria)

I would agree that Gatti was the greatest action fighter of the modern era but fans of Jack Lamotta and a few others from the old days might object.

Dan Rafael
  (1:50 PM)

Fair enough.

Bubba Gage (Ottawa Il)

Freak, your thoughts on the small PPV for Saturday? I'm getting it. Slow weekend and I kinda like the main event. Thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (1:52 PM)

Wilfredo Vazquez Jr.-Jonathan Oquendo is not as good to me as the original main event of Vazquez-Rafael Marquez. But it could be a nice little fight. I am a bit interested in seeing if Calderon can win another title over Fuentes. It's an OK card. At $39.99 it is overpriced in my view. At $24.95? I can see it. $40 is way too much for a card with a weak main event.

Alex (MA)

Are we really going to ignore Orlando Cruz doing something that no other fighter has ever done before, in this chat? Or is it just too controversial to talk about in a public forum like this/

Dan Rafael
  (1:53 PM)

If you read the transcript you will see it has been discussed. And honestly I have gotten very little overall about in the queue. I think that is because Cruz is not a known fighter and hopefully most people dont really care if a guy is gay or not.

Rob (Miami)

Danno, one of my coworkers asked if I thought that Trinidad was going in the HOF. The question was stupid but it got me thinking of whether he would be a 1st ballot HOF. I think yes, your thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (1:54 PM)

Absolute lock.

tom (R.I.)

were you at the Sergio Martinez/ Antonio Margarito fight? have you seen the youtube. i was stunned at how margarito had his way with sergio.

Dan Rafael
  (1:55 PM)

I was not there. That was RIGHT after I was hired by USA Today but before I actually started my job. But I have a tape of the fight and have seen it. Martinez was just so inexperienced he had no prayer. He was overmatched in the fight but got WAY better in the years that followed.

Gary Burton (Beaverton, OR)

Leo Santa Cruz vs. Vic Darchinyan. Buy or sell?

Dan Rafael
  (1:57 PM)

Damn good fight. I'd love to see it at 122.

Deiter (Sprockets)

Now is the time we dance!!

Dan Rafael
  (1:57 PM)

Thanks for the reminder.

Gino (The Bronx)

I would LOVE to see Golovkin move up in weight to fight Ward. Two Olympians. Speed vs Power. I think it would be an intriguing match-up.

Dan Rafael
  (1:58 PM)

Agreed.

Karl (NY)

Dan, will you vote for Gatti for HOF?

Dan Rafael
  (1:58 PM)

In the coming weeks I will write a story outlining my specific vote.

Sun Devil (Los Angeles)

Dan, I attended Chavez-Taylor (I) and Bowe-Holyfield (I). I will be at Home Depot next weekend and I hope to witness another fight of the year with Rios-Alvarado.

Dan Rafael
  (1:59 PM)

I think you have a chance.

RJ (OH)

Dan, do you have any problem with the fact that Orlando Cruz could have won his next 15 fights by spectacular KO's and won multiple titles in the process, and he still wouldn't have gotten nearly the amount of publicity he's gotten in the past 2 days for his "announcement?"

Dan Rafael
  (2:00 PM)

No, because a fighter winning low level fights is normal. A fighter making his announcement is news because it is so highly unusual.

C.M. (Toronto)

"Let's just say the relationship between Lou and GB is horrific these days." ......... Seems to me that the relationship between GB and everyone not named Al Haymon or Stephen Espinoza is horrific these days.

Dan Rafael
  (2:00 PM)

You said it, not me.

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Any word on where Khan-Molina will end up?

Dan Rafael
  (2:02 PM)

Not sure yet, but I would imagine either Vegas or Southern California.

Patrick (Montreal)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8TVi6qugGBw everytime someone brings up Stoney I have to watch this vid. Hilarious.

Dan Rafael
  (2:04 PM)

Absolutely epic and shows some people have WAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY to much time on their hands.

Charles (Ogden, Utah)

Ever met or interviewed Al Haymon?

Dan Rafael
  (2:04 PM)

Yes to both.

Justin (Seattle)

I would like to think that the volume on Orlando Cruz is low for his announcement because most of the Freaks are accepting people and just don't care what his orientation might be. If he fights a good fight, he wins, if he doesn't he loses, his orientation has nothing to do with it.

Dan Rafael
  (2:05 PM)

Yup.

James (Las Vegas)

I see in your schedule that Arthur Abraham has a date for 12/15...Any thoughts on who he is fighting?

Dan Rafael
  (2:05 PM)

Not set yet. I checked in with Sauerland Event the other day and was told nothing is set yet.

Dieter (From Sprockets)

Dan, don't be fooled by the fake Dieter (who spelled my name wrong, by the way) that posted previously in the chat. As you know, I missed last week's chat (and I thank you for asking if it was time we dance last week). You must excuse my absence last week because I broke my pinky toe during dance practice and was not able to perform at my usual chat level. I have taken off my dance shoe and sock and taken a picture in case anyone doubts me. That being said, I am a trooper, and NOW is the time in the chat when we DANCE!

Eddie (Dallas)

Dan- what are your thoughts on fights at Cowboys Stadium? I keep hearing rumors about plans for another, but they never seem to pan out.

Dan Rafael
  (2:07 PM)

They were great experiences to be at. It cant be a regular venue fights though. It is way too big. Need to pick the right fights. But covering both of Pacquiao's fights there was a very memorbale experience.

David Haye (London)

I would just like to congratulate Rahman on the great job he did, Saturday. What a performance.

Jesse (El Mirage AZ)

Great point brought up by C.M. I used to think that Top Rank was the "evil crotchety promoter". But now GB can't make deals with any other promoter it seems. And even has a fued going with a network(HBO)? what is going on with them?

Dan Rafael
  (2:07 PM)

No idea.

Tommy (Austin)

DTM! How much is your boxing card collection's estimated worth? And whats the best one?

Dan Rafael
  (2:08 PM)

I've never added it up. I have a PSA 9 1966 Panini Muhammad Ali, which is considered by many his legit rookie card (even though I also consider the 1965 Lampo). In any event, I never did it for money. I do it because I enjoy collecing them.

Roy (Reno)

Dan, is Golden Boy getting as much from Showtime as they were from HBO? It seems like an unusual business model to farm all your main fighters to a network with a smaller audience and a lower budget. I don't get it.

Dan Rafael
  (2:09 PM)

Obviously, Showtime has greatly increased its boxing budget to be able to afford all of the quadrupleheaders and tripleheaders.

Thunder (Dan's Home Computer)

MEEEOOOOOOOWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Dan Rafael
  (2:10 PM)

Here he is: http://twitpic.com/b0q6qc

Danny (Chicago)

Dan I am a fan of your work but respectfully disagree on Prince Naseem going into HOF. He fought one great , but beatable , fighter (Barerra) in his career. Got his but kicked ,and disappeared off the face of the earth

Dan Rafael
  (2:12 PM)

I have explained my reasons in detail in past columns.

Chris (Los Angeles, CA)

Are you still block on Twitter? CHIAAAAOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

Dan Rafael
  (2:12 PM)

Yes.

Bruce (RI)

Since it is a slow boxing weekend, will you be checking out Bautista's mma debut?

Dan Rafael
  (2:13 PM)

No. I actually am going to a wedding this weekend. Mrs. DTM is the matron of honor.

Bob (Detroit)

Any TV buyer for Viloria vs Marquez unification?

Dan Rafael
  (2:14 PM)

Not yet as far as I know, which is absurd.

Patrick (Montreal)

LOL. Me for posting it or the guy who made the vid?

Dan Rafael
  (2:14 PM)

Both.

Adam (DuPage)

Any developments on US TV for the Hatton fight?

Dan Rafael
  (2:15 PM)

I am sure it will be on in America somewhere. I've heard a few rumors but I am checking them out first before I say anything.

C.M. (Toronto)

Oscar said GBP was going to clean up the sport. If by relentlessly promoting paper titles, exclusively making in-house fights, deliberately dueling with other high-profile cards, announcing fake sell-outs to those cards, repeatedly revoking prominent media credentials, and monopolizing output deals with a single network is their idea of "cleaning up boxing"... then job well done!

Steve (Hartford)

Will there be anyone notable on the Cotto undercard?

Dan Rafael
  (2:17 PM)

I dont think the undercard is set but I'm sure there will be some interesting bouts on there.

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Is the Rios/Alvarado fight a title eliminator?

Dan Rafael
  (2:18 PM)

No officially, no. It's a 10-rounder. But the winner will be in a great position for a title fight, perhaps for the IBF title if it is vacated when Bradley-Peterson is finalized.

G Thomas (Olney MD)

Any idea when tickets for the Broner vs DeMarco are going on Sale?

Dan Rafael
  (2:18 PM)

It has not been announced yet.

Randy (NYC)

Didn't Lamont Peterson have a brother? What happened to him?

Dan Rafael
  (2:20 PM)

Anthony. He fights too but has been quite inactive since he was DQ'd against Brandon Rios.

U.S.A. BOXING (U.S.A.)

We don't need Obama or Romney, this country is really ran by Al Haymon.

Dan Rafael
  (2:20 PM)

LOL.

Mike (Los Angeles)

Any news if Vitali fights again if he's not elected?

Dan Rafael
  (2:21 PM)

No. Have to wait until the election is over.

Mac (NYC)

So far, how would you grade this year in boxing? In my opinion, it's been a very solid year despite a few bad decisions.

Dan Rafael
  (2:21 PM)

I think it's been a down year.

Tim (Philly)

Did Golden Boy and Wilder Dodge Jennings or was it just a bad offer?

Dan Rafael
  (2:21 PM)

Combination of both.

Vic G (San Antonio, TX)

Daniel Jacobs got a oppent yet? Its 2 weeks away man! lol

Dan Rafael
  (2:22 PM)

No. Dont expect anyone of any consequence. He will be in soft after such a long layoff and illness.

Jack (NYC)

I noticed that the Klitschko detractors still haven't come up with a valid reason why they brothers consistently fill up 40,000 seat soccer stadiums.

Jesse (El Mirage AZ)

If Donaire wins next week. Who do you feel are the top candidates for him moving forward?

Dan Rafael
  (2:24 PM)

Top Rank says it would like to match him with Rigondeaux but Donaire's manager is not interested in that fight at this point.

Horn (Vegas)

Did you make sure Manny and Floyd watched "Broke" on Tuesday?

Dan Rafael
  (2:24 PM)

Fantastic docu and must see for every fighter. Every pro athlete really.

Yarvi (St. Louis, MO)

Virgil Hill is on the Hall of Fame ballot and still wants to fight. Have there been any instances of actual elected hall of famers coming out of retirement and fighting?

Dan Rafael
  (2:25 PM)

Yes, Sugar Ray Leonad did it. So did Azumah Nelson and Jeff Fench -- to fight each other again.

The Met (T.O.)

Arum VS. Schaefer reminds me of Letterman VS. Leno. One crotchety, near-senile old-timer against one big-chinned schlub with a funny voice.

Dan Rafael
  (2:27 PM)

OMG that is hilarious. I am cracking up.

richard (croydon uk)

Lee purdy vs Carson Jones. Potentially an absolute classic

Dan Rafael
  (2:28 PM)

Whatever you say.

Lou (Detroit)

Gatti may not be a HOFer but I would gladly cough up my money to see him over some of the guys who ARE in the HOF.

Francisco (Austin)

Dan, can you explain what would happen if Don King can't secure a venue, TV Date, or the funds to stage Arreola-Stiverne fight by the end of the year. Have there been any interested networks so far?

Dan Rafael
  (2:31 PM)

He would probably default on the bid and it would revert to the 2nd-place bidder, which was Dan Goossen for $550,000.

Tommy (Detroit)

Still no KISS nomination for the RnR HOF. They are about as wretched as the WBC IMO.

Terry (Richmond)

Do you see any indications that Mayweather will fight again this year?

Dan Rafael
  (2:33 PM)

He isn't fighting this year.

Victor (Chicago, IL)

8 more days 'til Alvarado-Rios!!!!!

Scott (Los Angeles, CA)

When will the HOF winners be announced?

Dan Rafael
  (2:33 PM)

December sometime.

Cory (Albany, NY)

(sung Ricky Hatton style) "There's only one Chavez Jr. One Chavez Jr. Walking along, smoking a bong.Walking in a Junior wonderland"

Dan Rafael
  (2:34 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Bing (Banishment)

Dan, so if two promotional companies have fighter that goes to a purse bid, the winning promoter has full rights to a fight? Just wondering because Pac/Mayweather could of happened this way.

Dan Rafael
  (2:36 PM)

Yes, but your scenario doesn't work. Pacquiao-Mayweather is not a mandatory first off. Also, nobody can force a fighter into a fight. If it goes to a purse bid a fighter can decide not toparticipate. Pacquiao-Mayweather being made or not will have nothing to do with a purse bid.

Korry (Chalmette, LA)

Do you see the winner of Alvarado/Rios getting a fight with Danny Garcia?

Dan Rafael
  (2:37 PM)

TR + GB = No fight

C.M. (Toronto)

In regards to Chavez Jr.'s pathetic excuse to the marijuana..... I suppose the dog ate his training schedule too?

Dan Rafael
  (2:38 PM)

OK Fight Freaks, thanks for chatting today. I am going on a conference call with Donaire in about 20 minutes to check in with him before his fight next week. Hope you check out all of the week's stories and blogs and such and enjoy the weekend. Talk to you next week from Southern California, where I will be covering Donaire-Nishioka and Alvarado-Rios. Peace.