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

Dan Rafael
  (12:01 PM)

Greetings Fight Freaks and welcome to the weekly boxing chat. Lotta stuff going and some fights this weekend too. Got Billy Dib in a title defense tonight vs. Gradovich on ESPN2 FNF and there's Abril-Bogere and Russell-Gusev tomorrow on Showtime and a lot of stuff coming up. So read all the stories, blogs, rankings and the updated schedule and let's get to it.

Cowboy Tex (Visalia, Ca.)

Be still my heart! Is it really true that Alvarez will meet Trout on April 20 in a regular Showtime event? I will be there with my Blue Moon brew. Its good for what "ales" me.

Dan Rafael
  (12:02 PM)

Yes, it's true. Love it.

John (Philadelphia)

Adrien Broner possibly as a co-feature on Floyd Mayweather's card, Dan?! Fact, Fantasy, Rumor or Possibility?

Dan Rafael
  (12:03 PM)

According to Richard Schaefer, that is not happening. I asked him about it the other day.

Bobby (Atlanta)

What's up, Dan! There's a rumor that came along that Miguel Cotto is planning on fighting three more fights! Am I correct to assume that we've seen the last of Miguel at 147?! And he's going to make a run at Sergio Martinez?

Dan Rafael
  (12:04 PM)

You have definitely seen the last of him at 47. He's been at 54 for a couple of years and I would think he'll at some point 60. As for three more fights, he may have said something like that but I never put ANY stock in a guy counting fights. It's always BS and never comes true. As for Martinez, I'd love to see that. I'd there's an outside shot of that happening at some point.

Ron (Tucson) [via mobile]

DTM. What's the latest on James Kirkland ?

Dan Rafael
  (12:06 PM)

Studying hard for the finals at the Winky Wright School of Boxing Business. In all seriousness, he's in a lawsuit with Golden Boy and his managers. I know GB would like to settle and get him back in the ring. I know GB reached out to his people to see if he was interested in a rematch with Angulo on the May 4 undercard. So far no word. Obviously, if that happened, would be a greta addition to that show.

Mike S., San Antonio [via mobile]

Since Showtime is covering Floyd's guarantee does that mean GBP has more to spend for the undercard?

Dan Rafael
  (12:06 PM)

It's a lot more complicated that that.

Craig D. (Philly)

Freak, Top Rank said it is paying the announcers more than HBO is paying them to show the fight...how is that possible? The announcers are under contract with HBO so wouldn't HBO pay them.

Dan Rafael
  (12:08 PM)

You misread. On this specific show in Macau, Top Rank is doing the production, which includes the announcers. It then has sold the rights to broadcast it to HBO for HBO2. It'll be the same telecast boxing fans will see in other countries. It's not an HBO production, which is why it's on HBO2, not regular HBO. When HBO puts on fights, it does the production (which is costly) which includes its own announcers. Foreman and Ryan are not under contract to HBO. Merchant has a contract with HBO with certain provisions but he is allowed to do shows for other networks and/or promoters' events under certain circumstances.

Carl (Richmond)

In retrospect, considering how good Tony Thompon's record was, how big of an upset do you think the David Price fight really was?

Dan Rafael
  (12:10 PM)

Major upset. Tony is 41 and got obliterated in his last fight, granted by Klitschko. But he was rightfully a big underdog against a guy many believed would be the next heavyweight champion. That said, great win for Tony. I am happy for him.

Adam (Salisbury)

So I suppose it's safe to say that Antwun Echols never suffered any permanent damage from a low blow...

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

Corrrect. If you dont know what he's talking about, there was a recent story in Echols' hometown paper about him trying to continue his career even though he is totally shot and lost like 14 of his last 15 fights or something. In the story he said he fights, in part, because he needs the money for his kids. Writer asked how many he had. He said it was a touchy subject. Writer pressed and then Echols uttered the money quote: "Twenty-three, I think."

Anthony (Sacramento )

Really awesome news that both the Macau and Monaco cards being shown in the US, and one for only 25 bucks and the other free on HBO2!!! I'm super excited!

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

Me too.

Javo (Florida)

Good Friday Dan! How much will affect Floyd's PPV profits , now that Canelo isn't fighting on the undercard.

Dan Rafael
  (12:12 PM)

I think it could cost the PPV at least 200,000 buys. Do the math. That's millions.

Bob (Philly)

Any word on who Berto's new trainer will be? Thanks

Dan Rafael
  (12:13 PM)

Not yet. Here's the blog on it: http://espn.go.com/blog/dan-rafael/post/_/id/3282/andre-berto-fires-trainer

Dan Rafael
  (12:13 PM)

Please check out this blog. Some great quotes from Canelo, who called Mayweather's bluff about the PPV: http://espn.go.com/blog/dan-rafael/post/_/id/3310/alvarez-calls-mayweathers-bluff-2

John (So Cal)

These chats are Dantageous!!

Jeff (Gilbert, AZ)

Dan,What's your take on Price over the weekend...bad chin or did he get clipped just right?

Dan Rafael
  (12:14 PM)

He didnt get hit on the chin. He got caught sorta behind the ear in a very vulnerable spot. It happens.

Juan (Bay Area, ca)

My cousin from Houston offered to pay for tix to the Canelo-Trout in San Antonio, I just got find a way from Cali to Texas. What's the best lie I could give my wife?

Dan Rafael
  (12:14 PM)

Why you gotta lie? Just say, I'm going to see Canelo vs. Trout!

SJ (Del City)

Any idea when tickets go on sale for Canelo-Trout?

Dan Rafael
  (12:14 PM)

TBA.

Lou (Detroit)

The Canelo-Trout fight is just one more reason I'm glad I dumped HBO and kept SHO.

Dan Rafael
  (12:15 PM)

I figured if they could afford it, all boxing fans would have both networks. But right now, Showtime has a far superior overall schedule than HBO. That's not hating, that is keeping it real.

Brandon (Jacksonville)

Hey Dan. I saw Victor Ortiz is going to be on Dancing with the Stars...I hope he learns to dance backing up!

Dan Rafael
  (12:16 PM)

LOL! Had a good interview with Victor about being on the show. Check this out: http://espn.go.com/blog/dan-rafael/post/_/id/3290/ortiz-ready-for-the-dance-floor

Devale (Chicago)

D$ whats up, so with no Canelo/Trout do you think the Mayweather undercard will be horrendous? Im hoping for the best.

Dan Rafael
  (12:16 PM)

I'd say wait and see. GB is putting it together. I think we'll see Angulo and/or Santa Cruz on the undercard plus one of Floyd's fighters, like maybe J'Leon Love.

Travis (San Antonio) [via mobile]

DTM any word on a new date for PDL-Mares?

Dan Rafael
  (12:17 PM)

Not quite yet.

Dan Rafael
  (12:17 PM)

Bat Phone.

Dan Rafael
  (12:22 PM)

Whoa. I got some big news Fight Freaks. Be right back.

Dan Rafael
  (12:24 PM)

On Bat Phone with Schaefer. Hang with me for a minute.

Dan Rafael
  (12:26 PM)

OK. I am back. Great news for the Fight Freaks -- Schaefer said done deal -- Ponce-Mares will be the co-feature on May 4 Mayweather-Guerrero Showtime PPV.

Dan Rafael
  (12:27 PM)

Got some other stuff from Richard as well. May 18 is locked in now for Devon-Kell Brook from Boardwalk Hall on Showtime. He wants to make Peterson-Patthysse for the main event. He said Matthysse is in and now he is talking to Peterson camp.

Kevin (Boston)

Great news. I thought it was going to be something bad, like the fight was off. It seems like usually when there is big news these days it is bad.

Dan Rafael
  (12:28 PM)

Not today!

Victor (Chicago, IL)

Great! What about Maidana-Lopez? Is there a chance that is added on the May 4 undercard too?

Dan Rafael
  (12:29 PM)

Glad you asked. Here is the deal with that fight. Richard just told me it will be on June 8 on Showtime at Home Depot Center and headline a tripleheader. The other fights are not set but that's a really good fight. For what it's worth, he said the fight will be for the WBA's interim 147 title.

Joe M (Dallas)

OH HELL YA!

Dan Rafael
  (12:30 PM)

Exactly.

Groce (Vegas)

Where you impressed with Jleon Love last saturday

Dan Rafael
  (12:30 PM)

Not overly to be honest.

Javo (Florid)

D$ have you seen all the tweeting and interviews between rios and Broner insulting each other??? Rios is pretty upset saying destroy Broner. What is your take on this trash talking?

Dan Rafael
  (12:30 PM)

Means nothing to me because I know there is no chance they will fight any time soon.

Dan Rafael
  (12:32 PM)

Some other stuff from Schaefer: GB will have a May 3 Fox show from Vegas, fights TBA. Also he said he has June 15 at Mandalay Bay on hold for Broner for an HBO fight. Good chance Seth Mitchell will be on the card, maybe the rematch with Banks. Also he said he is holding Barclays Center on June 22 for a Malignaggi fight.

Dan Rafael
  (12:32 PM)

That was a great Bat Phone call.

Jose Sulaiman (Washington)

Following a meeting with Congressman, I have decided to do away with the outdated policy of imposing sanctioning fees on fighters' purses. Instead, I will "sequester" those purses.

Dan Rafael
  (12:32 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Bruce (Alexandria, VA)

Over the weekend, you wrote that Richard Schaefer hoped to put the May 18 card back in DC. Did we DC folks not buy enough tickets last week to justify coming back to DC?

Dan Rafael
  (12:33 PM)

No, that is not it. To be fair to Matthysse, who has lost splits twice in his opponents' hometowns, he is going to AC for the fight if it happens.

Rags (NYC)

Surprised that Alexander-Brooks isn't being added to the undercard of the May 4 or April 20th show...have a hard time with this matchup drawing a crowd otherwise...

Dan Rafael
  (12:33 PM)

With Peterson-Matthysse on top, it will be a great show.

Horn (Vegas)

Props to Canelo for taking the challenge despite it being a unfavorable stylistic match up him.

Todd (Maine)

Any more details on Bute/Pascal you could share?

Dan Rafael
  (12:34 PM)

They are working to finalize everything. Not much else.

Jerrell (Alabama) [via mobile]

Do you know when tickets will go on sale for the mayweather-guerrero fight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:34 PM)

Not yet, not set yet. I would imagine they will go on sale around the time they do the formal presser to kick off the promotion.

Jake (Phoenix)

Wow, great news, Dan! Finally 2013 is getting some much needed fights on the schedule. I'm sad to see HBO getting their butts handed to them. I don't see Top Rank pulling anything close to what Golden Boy is doing right now, do you?

Dan Rafael
  (12:35 PM)

Top Rank is making some good fights, like Rios-Alvarado 2 and Donaire-Rigondeaux, but they dont have as deep of a stable right now to make the fights GB and Showtime are right now.

dave (utah)

not trying to to stir the race card.... but it seems that their is always a hipanic fighter in all ppv cards that produce 1mill buys?? just seems that way not that i care because i love boxing

Dan Rafael
  (12:36 PM)

That's not race, that's good business. Hispanic fans are the most loyal in boxing and they buy good fights with the best Hispanic fighters in them. Like I said, not racial, just good business.

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Does HBO have an opponent ready for Julio Caesar Chavez Jr?

Dan Rafael
  (12:36 PM)

No.

Victor (Chicago, IL)

We know Matthysse would fight anybody but how it is looking on the Peterson end?

Dan Rafael
  (12:38 PM)

He said after he beat Holt that Matthysse was an opponent he was interested in. I think they will get it worked out. He fought one week ago. I dont think there's any problem with him taking a few days or a week or two before getting deep into talks for his next fight. Patience. I think it gets done.

Jose Sulaiman (Mexico)

It has come to my attention that a Mr. Shirley has distributed large sums of money during these chats. This is to give notice that, from now on, those payments will be subject to a small sanctioning fee.

Dan Rafael
  (12:38 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Dan Rafael
  (12:39 PM)

Here's a blog on the May 18 situation: http://espn.go.com/blog/dan-rafael/post/_/id/3319/alexander-brook-to-get-new-date

Jonathan (Calgary)

Hey Dan, you always said Canelo-Trout wouldn't happen. Thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (12:40 PM)

No, I said I didnt think it would happen on the Floyd undercard. I ALWAYS believed if it happened it would have its own date, own TV money and own gate.

Joe M (Dallas)

Call me crazy but I am looking forward to Billy Dib's fight tonight. His last few fights have been more exciting and he is in with a guy who won't run away.

Dan Rafael
  (12:40 PM)

I agree. Gradovich is a perfect opponent too because he comes to fight. Here's the feature I did on Dib yesterday. Check it out: http://espn.go.com/boxing/story/_/id/8998229/billy-dib-gets-made-tv-makeover

@TruBoxingHeadz (Texas )

Will D$ making his return to Texas for Canelo vs Trout? We Welcome the king freak back in the lone star state #BoxingHeads

Dan Rafael
  (12:43 PM)

I will not be at that fight unfortunately but for good reason: That is the weekend Mrs. DTM is due with our first child.

Victor (Chicago, IL)

I don't know about you but Daniel Ponce de Leon has really grown on me, sure he has lost a couple of fights and is one dimensional but he will fight anybody and always shows up to fight. Got to respect the guy. He'll probably never be inducted to the Hall but he is good for the sport.

Dan Rafael
  (12:43 PM)

Agree on all points.

Joydeep (Philippines)

are u worried about the judges for the canelo - trout fight? i dont think trout will get a fair shake if it goes the distance but thats what i said about the fight with cotto

Dan Rafael
  (12:44 PM)

I wouldnt say "worried." I just hope for a quality panel of judges who do the right thing.

Will B (College Park, MD)

Congratulations on your first child! 22 more and youll be right up there with Antwun Echols

Dan Rafael
  (12:44 PM)

EPIC!!!!! LOL! Pay the man, Shirley!

Dave (Cincinnati, OH)

Congrats on the baby freak, Dan!!!

Dan Rafael
  (12:44 PM)

Baby Freak or Freak Baby?

Gary Burton (Beaverton, OR)

Dan, I can't believe ESPN had 50 Cent in their studios yesterday, and no one asked him about Yuri Gamboa!

Dan Rafael
  (12:45 PM)

Hey, I dont write the questions.

Michael C (Houston, TX)

I agree with Fiddy. I don't think Money completes all 6 fights inside of 30 months. You?

Dan Rafael
  (12:45 PM)

I would say there is almost zero chance of that.

Rick (San Diego)

Dan, in your blog post about Canelo-Trout you rightfully said that in multi-fight deals the big figth goes at the end. Do you think that means we see, say, Mayweather-Alexander or Mayweather-Bradley or Mayweather-Garcia before we get to Mayweather-Canelo?

Dan Rafael
  (12:45 PM)

Possibly. I dont know the exact terms of Floyd's deal so it's hard to say for sure.

Anthony (Sacramento )

Dan who do you like in the fnf main event tonight?

Dan Rafael
  (12:46 PM)

I think Dib toys with him.

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Do you feel like Bernard has a legit chance of winning next weekend?

Dan Rafael
  (12:46 PM)

Yes.

Ruben (Houston, TX.)

Dan, you really should've let all that good news marinate a little longer, don't know if we're quite ready for all that!

Dan Rafael
  (12:46 PM)

LOL!

Jeff (Las Vegas)

Congrats on the 1st child! Um, your life is about to change drastically

Dan Rafael
  (12:47 PM)

Ya think?

Bill (Baltimore)

Could you see Trout fighting Mayweather if they both win?

Dan Rafael
  (12:47 PM)

That would surprise me a bit.

Willy (BK)

Congrats to you and your wife. All hail Prince/Princess Freak!

Will (Miami)

Any truth to the rumors about Anselmo Moreno vs. Leo Santa Cruz on May 4th?

Dan Rafael
  (12:48 PM)

Nothing specific. I know it has come up at Golden Boy but just one of a variety of possibilities.

The Hard Y (PDX)

Would you ever let Freak (or Freakette), Jr. box? I'd let my kids work out, hit the bags, etc., but I don't think I could let them get hit.

Dan Rafael
  (12:49 PM)

I would not endorce my own child fighting professionally.

Antonio (Philadelphia)

WOW!! Congratulations to Dan Rafael! I want to address you as Dan Rafael because this is serious lol. Being a father tops anything. I know you LOVE your work and what you do, but being a father, boxing will come second to that!! I have 3 children of my own and if they want spongebob, well, DVR the fight and watch spongebob. Unless its a PPV then kids go night night lol. Baby Freak being born!!!

MacDaddy (Philly)

D$, 900K!!!!! that is one costly joint

Dan Rafael
  (12:50 PM)

VERY.

Barksdale (Baltimore)

Are you scared that your pal Mike Tyson is going to eat your children?

Dan Rafael
  (12:51 PM)

LOL! No. Mike is more mellow now.

Sun Devil (Los Angeles)

Please name your daughter Shirley.

Dan Rafael
  (12:51 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Paulo (Philadelphia)

Dan - Congratulations! Will you brush your Baby Freak's hair when he learns to walk?

Dan Rafael
  (12:51 PM)

I'll leave that to Broner.

Dieter (From Sprockets)

Dan, Dieter (or Dietera) Rafael has a nice ring to it. ... And, in honor of celebrating the baby news NOW is the time in the chat when the freaks DANCE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Brian SL, UT [via mobile]

Did you see 50 cent on first take? Have you ever talked boxing with him? Dude is sharp

Dan Rafael
  (12:53 PM)

I didnt see that but I will check out the video we have on the site. I have spoken with him briefly once about boxing. He obviously is a good business person looking at what he has done. I think he can make a mark in boxing if he sticks with it.

Joe (NY)

Regarding Trout getting a Mayweather fight....If you aren't with GBP, you aren't in line to fight Floyd. End of discussion.

Dan Rafael
  (12:54 PM)

I would generally agree with you, but Trout is with Al Haymon, so it's possible.

Doug (Green Bay)

Any idea on who Broner would fight on June 15?

Dan Rafael
  (12:54 PM)

Nope. TBA.

David (London, UK)

For all the hoopla over the Mayweather deal, would you agree that it could turn out to be much more significant if Canelo stays with Showtime long-term? He has huge PPV potential and could be at the top for another 10 years, while Floyd probably only has a couple of years left.

Dan Rafael
  (12:54 PM)

Absolutely. If HBO regrets one thing I would say it is more losing Canelo than Mayweather.

Eddy (Philadelphia)

When will you take your child to his/her first fight??

Dan Rafael
  (12:55 PM)

I wouldnt take a kid to a fight until he/she was at least about 10 or so.

Notorious JTB (Chicago)

HBO picking up the TR Macau card a good move. If you can't get the big names, find the great fights instead.

Dan Rafael
  (12:55 PM)

Couldnt agree more. It's a very good card in my view.

Juan Manuel Marquez (Mexico)

Congratulations! Please allow me to give you a special bottle of baby formula. Made with my very own recipe.

Bob Arum (Las Vegas)

Congratulations, but I suggest that convince your wife to wait a little longer than 9 months to give birth. It needs to marinate a bit.

Dan Rafael
  (12:56 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!!!

Andre Ward (Oakland)

Should I fight hopkins-cloud winner or froch-kessler winner?

Dan Rafael
  (12:56 PM)

You should get your shoulder better and then worry about it.

Charlie (Chicago, IL)

Read some rumors about Vasquez pulling out of the Burns fight, any truth to those?

Dan Rafael
  (12:57 PM)

That's been going around. As far as I know, no truth to it.

Ken (OH)

D$, what is Rios to do after Alvarado 2. He's kind of SOL in the 140 division since GB has almost every big name at 140. Maybe Manny or Bradley at 147 but who else?

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

Rios and Alvarado are in the same boat. Whoever, their options will be a little limited. But like you said, maybe Manny or Bradley or Marquez. Top Rank also signed Khabib, who has a belt.

Antonio (Philadelphia)

Dan, is this the actual Love Child here? Ahhhhhhhhh the Love Child!!!!!!!

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, the Love Child.

Rags (NYC)

Could a Bogere win tomorrow night put him in the Broner sweepstakes for June?

Dan Rafael
  (12:58 PM)

Possibly.

Frank (PHX)

Dan, have you seen all the beef between Guererros dad and Mayweather Sr? Lol its hilarious, I wanna see them on the undercard! Or. as Ruben Guerrero said. at the MGM parking lot

Dan Rafael
  (12:59 PM)

Yeah, but it's a little ridiculous if you ask me.

Ozair (NJ)

Whats your earliest boxing memory, mine is watching Tyson/McNeely at age 11

Dan Rafael
  (1:00 PM)

I remember watching Mancini-Kim on a black and white TV when I was about 12. Remember seeing Arguello fight on network TV around the same time, as well as Sugar Ray Leonard.

JJ (New Orleans)

What if Gale Van Hoy is selected as judge for Canelo-Trout?

Dan Rafael
  (1:01 PM)

I will probably go into my garage, close the door, turn on the car and fall asleep.

Devale (Chicago)

Showtime is making a real run at becoming the kings of boxing. HBO better step up.

Horn (Vegas)

You've had the LOVE CHILD for all these years, now you have your own. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh the biological child....

Ozair (NJ)

I'm confused as to why anyone would be interested in Khan/Diaz, it does nothing for Khan's career, he should just move up to fight 147 and fight Senchenko who just beat Hatton, it's still a fairly safe but competitive fight

Dan Rafael
  (1:02 PM)

He'll make money, the fight will probably sell in England. There are a lot of good fights on the schedule this spring and summer. That is not one of them.

Derek (Toronto)

Why is Malinaggi so keen on fighting in Abu Dhabi ? Is there a wealthy backer offering Paullie a big guarantee?

Dan Rafael
  (1:03 PM)

First off, I think that deal is dead but the reason it was possible was because somebody claimed to have a ton of money to put up. That's the only reason it was discussed.

Alfredo (Toronto, On)

Donaire - Rigondeaux, your opinion please?

Dan Rafael
  (1:04 PM)

Solid fight, but I have to admit -- I am not nearly as excited about it as some others are.

Matt (Tustin, Ca.)

Mine was Tyson/Spinks. I was 13. Huge deal. Dad took me to a venue where they had it on PPV. Where you bought a ticket to watch it live. Bunch of drunk guys. Lots of fun. Boxing was huge!!!

Matt [via mobile]

Will the HBO 2 card be on HBO GO and on demand later for those who don't have HBO 2?

Dan Rafael
  (1:05 PM)

Not a clue. You have to be in the minorty. I think almost everyone who gets HBO also gets HBO2.

Victor (Chicago, IL)

Now that you mention it why did GB take Canelo to Showtime? I remember a while back Schaefer said there was a reason but wouldn't elaborate on it.

Dan Rafael
  (1:06 PM)

It goes back to last fall's Sept 15 competition. He wanted the date for Canelo and HBO went with Chavez for the Martinez fight on the date.

Frank (Chicago)

Dan, how is it that Hershman went from being the scrappy underdog at Showtime to being the scrappy underdog at HBO?

Dan Rafael
  (1:07 PM)

Damn good question.

David (washington, DC)

What's next for DC's favorite son-Lamont Peterson?

Dan Rafael
  (1:07 PM)

Maybe Matthysse on Showtime on May 18 in AC.

Chris (Appleton, WI)

I got called into work today to work overtime. So what better way to spend it, but on the boxing chat!

Brent (Detroit)

Very stoked about Canelo-Trout. Major props to Canelo for making it. Better yet, I'm going to be in Vegas April 20th and plan on watching the Showtime card from the Sportsbook at Mandalay Bay. As much as I feel I'd like to put some money on Trout, as I feel he should be the favorite, but I'd be crazy to bet on a fight taking place in Texas wouldn't I be? Diaz-Malinaggi comes to mind among other horrendous decisions.

hector (chicago)

can you educate me on why N.Y still does not allow mma in there state

Dan Rafael
  (1:08 PM)

I have no idea. I'm not a major MMA fan or anything but it is ridiculous that NY doesnt allow MMA. Just stupid.

Mike (Homer Glen, IL)

Hey Dan. What's your take on Keith Thurman? There is quite a variety of opinions on him

Dan Rafael
  (1:09 PM)

Good prospect, crowd pleasing style and good personality who was handed HBO dates against lesser opponents without earning them in any way, shape or form.

Epic Dorito Emissions (Ogden, Utah)

So I'm assuming with your Donaire - Rigondeaux remark, you'd have rather seen Donaire - Mares?

Dan Rafael
  (1:10 PM)

Who wouldnt? It's not even close. Mares is more exciting, has a better personality and has a WAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY better pro resume.

JJ (New Orleans)

Does Canelo forcing a Trout fight lead to more fighters getting who they want instead of tomato cans?

Dan Rafael
  (1:11 PM)

No. Has nothing to do with other fighters.

Brandon (San Diego)

Dan, did you see 50 Cent on ESPN's First Take where he admitted Floyd ducked Manny?

Dan Rafael
  (1:11 PM)

That was his opinion, not an "admission."

Dan Rafael
  (1:11 PM)

Check out my story today on Gary Russell, who is on the Showtime card tomorrow: http://espn.go.com/boxing/story/_/id/9002306/is-gary-russell-jr-ready-more-2013

Dan Rafael
  (1:13 PM)

Here's an ESPN video with 50 Cent: http://bit.ly/50CentOnESPN

Buzz (Brookline)

Why is Brook Alexander the main fight, most people I would assume would rather see matthsye peterson

Dan Rafael
  (1:14 PM)

It's not. Peterson-Matthysse would be the main event.

Rob (Denton, Tx)

May 4th PPV going to be in the movie theatres ?

Dan Rafael
  (1:14 PM)

Good question -- I would imagine yes. I will ask for you.

Joydeep (Philippines)

will 50 cent rap when billy dib enters the ring?

Dan Rafael
  (1:15 PM)

Yes, that is the plan.

Epic Dorito Emissions (Ogden, Utah)

What kind of chance do you give Provodnikov against Bradley? I was ringside when lost to Herrera and I think he was robbed. I think Ruslan is a very live underdog who might pull it off.

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

Live dog, but I think Bradley beats him.

Joe (PA)

Any update on Wladimir or Vitali's next fight?

Dan Rafael
  (1:18 PM)

Wlad is fighting May 4 probably vs. Pianeta. Nothing new on Vitali.

Joe (San Francisco, CA)

How said is it when HBO2 has a better upcoming schedule than HBO?

Dan Rafael
  (1:19 PM)

Wow. Ouch.

Sun Devil (Los Angeles)

Dan, why aren't you hosting a weekly 30 minute show on ESPN or ESPN2? I think there is enough of an audience to warrant it.

Dan Rafael
  (1:21 PM)

Those decisions are above my pay grade.

Peter (NYC)

At least you will be able to sleep at night, just put John Ruiz fights on in the baby's room

Dan Rafael
  (1:22 PM)

Mrs. DTM is home from work today and I just told her about your post. She said that instead of Ruiz tapes I could put on Sven Ottke tapes. Yes, she knows who Sven Ottke is.

Dan Rafael
  (1:23 PM)

OK Fight Freaks I feel old today. 10 years ago today Roy Jones beat John Ruiz to win a heavyweight title. That was a big deal and a big fight. I covered it at Thomas & Mack Center. Quite a memorable night.

Rick (Marina CA)

Better defensive fighter, Winky or Pernell?

Dan Rafael
  (1:23 PM)

Pernell.

Matt (Virginia)

Congratulations to your wife for being the second woman on the planet who knows who Sven Ottke is.

Eric (PA)

Fantasy booking - Roy Jones vs Holyfield in their primes at cruiser. Who wins?

Dan Rafael
  (1:25 PM)

That fight was almost made. Roy was going to fight him in his first heavyweight title defense but the deal fell apart and he wound up fighting Tarver in their first fight instead. I always thought it was the worst mistake of Roy's career. He shoulda never gone back to 175. It took a massive toll on him and I think he woulda beaten that version of Evander circa 2003.

Mario (Houston)

Did Salgado-Mendez get moved to regukar HBO, or will it still be on HBO Latino?

Dan Rafael
  (1:26 PM)

It is confirmed by HBO -- the fight will stay on HBO Latino and the HBO show will be just the two bouts from Brooklyn followed by a live Fight Game with Jim Lampley from Brooklyn.

Sean (Richmond, VA)

Papa Dan, do you believ Schaefer when he says Gary Russell Jr is next in line for the winner of PDL-Mares?

Dan Rafael
  (1:27 PM)

Not sure about next but I think Richard would try to make that fight. Not sure if the winner will want that fight.

Ronak (NY)

Why no Flak against Wladimir for fighting ANOTHER bum and don't tell me there are no good heavyweight out there cause that's a lie.

Dan Rafael
  (1:29 PM)

They dont want to fight him. At least Pianeta is big, a southpaw, has a great record, is a little known in Germany. I dont love it but it's not like there is some other great fight out there.

Quinn (Pittsburgh)

Do you believe in promoter's momentum? It seems that there are spurts where Arum and Schaefer are just rolling, making huge fights very often. Right now, it's Richard's turn

Dan Rafael
  (1:30 PM)

I do think there is something to that. This is probably the most prolific time in Golden Boy's history in terms of the volume of fights they are doing and the amount of good ones.

Michael (Long Beach, CA)

OMG, Ronak with another idiotic post. What a shock.

RICHARD (MEXICO)

I CANT STAND YOU DAN! YOU SUCK! WHY DID YOU GET HIRED? THIS CHAT SUCKS! FIGHT FREAKS SUCK!

Dan Rafael
  (1:31 PM)

You need a hug?

Javier (Puerto Rico)

do you still believe the undertaker will make a wrestlemania apearrance

Dan Rafael
  (1:31 PM)

I dont know but I hope so!

Jim (Santa Monica)

Isn't Ronak great? "Don't tell me there are no good heavyweight out there..." and goes on to list zero notable names. Povetkin is probably the only person in the world who would have a chance of winning two rounds from either Klitschko and clearly wants none of them.

Dan Rafael
  (1:32 PM)

Ronak has been an idiot on these chats for years.

Tom (ATL)

Dan, do you think GB and TR will eventually patch things up and begin working together?

Dan Rafael
  (1:33 PM)

Doubtful. I see no remote evidence of it.

Scott (NYC)

Before his brain injury, how does Gerald McClellan fare against Jones, Toney, and the rest of that great era of 160 and 168?Dude punched like a mule.

Dan Rafael
  (1:34 PM)

He was one of the greatest punchers ever but I would pick Roy and Toney both to beat him.

Michael [via mobile]

Your thoughts on Thurman can easily apply to Canelo.

Dan Rafael
  (1:35 PM)

Incorrect because Canelo brings massive popularity, Thurman doesnt. Also, say what you want about Canelo's but he has faced MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH better opponents than Thurman. That is a fact.

Frank (PHX)

Any word on whats next for JC Burgos?

Dan Rafael
  (1:35 PM)

No. I need to check on that.

Quinn (Pittsburgh)

I kind of agreed with Nigel Collins's article about how fans now follow boxing business, because, well, I do. It's actually somewhat interesting, and admittedly kind of fills in the male soap opera void that gets left when our spouses no longer allow us to watch Monday night Raw.

Dan Rafael
  (1:37 PM)

Following the boxing is part of the sport. It's like following free agency in a sport, or labor negotations, or tv deals or trade rumors or the drafts. It is all part of it. Anyone who thinks the business is not the single biggest aspect of why you see what you see has no idea what they are talking about.

AAron (Hartford)

I am not only pumped for Canelo Trout...I am totally shocked they made the fight. Canelos wins 2 rounds AT MOST in my opinion...

Dan Rafael
  (1:38 PM)

It's funny -- I see a lot of people picking both guys and that is one thing that makes it an interesting fight.

kyle (kansas city)

you didn't really watch that last andrew golota fight did you? for real you did?

Dan Rafael
  (1:41 PM)

Yeah, I did. I felt dirty but I did it so you didnt have to. I took one for the Fight Freak team.

Mel (Philadelphia, Pa)

Dan do you think it would be best for boxing if Floyd actually loses a fight? I'm sick of fighter protecting their 0's. I think you can still be a star without an undefeated record..

Dan Rafael
  (1:43 PM)

I dont think it's good or bad for the sport.

Jamal (London)

Do you think Marquez vs Pac 5 will happen this year?

Dan Rafael
  (1:43 PM)

Yes.

Ace (Sactwon)

900k is a little steep. does Chavez get it knocked down afer appeal? if he appeals?

Dan Rafael
  (1:44 PM)

They will take it to court I am sure. It is a bit out of proportion to the offense, even if it was his second failed test.

Epic Dorito Emissions (Ogden, Utah)

I'm curious. If King Freak were to leave his BlackBerry on the shuttle to the Las Vegas airport would the lucky freak who finds it not only have promoter numbers, but cell phone numbers for some of the best fighters?

Dan Rafael
  (1:46 PM)

Yes. But if i did lose it I would be OK. I have backup phone lists that I have on my PC, on my laptop and I even am so obsessive that I often print out a paper copy of my master phone list every so often just in case. It's like 40 pages.

Dan Rafael
  (1:47 PM)

I got an answer for you about the May 4 PPV card, for those who have been asking: YES, it will be shown in movie theaters.

Greg (Canada)

Should Pacquiao take a tuneup fight before getting back in the ring with Marquez?

Dan Rafael
  (1:48 PM)

No.

Jim (CA)

Who is next for Fres Oquendo?

Dan Rafael
  (1:49 PM)

Ideally, a new manager.

Tyson (ottawa)

Broner at 23 vs Mayweather at 23 who wins?

Dan Rafael
  (1:49 PM)

Dont know. Interesting fight.

Reggie (New york)

Dan I love Danny Garcia, but do you think he may have lost a split decision to Ashley Theophane. That seems to be one fight a lot of people claim he has decisively actually lost.

Dan Rafael
  (1:50 PM)

I remember that fight. It was pretty close and I remember thinking it was too tough of a fight for Danny at that moment in his career. That said, I did think he eked it out. Tough fight. He learned a lot from that one.

Brett (Minneapolis)

Should Gary Russell take a tuneup fight before getting back in the ring for another tuneup fight?

Dan Rafael
  (1:50 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Ace (Sactown)

I heard Antwun Echols has to print out master copies of all his baby mammas just in case he loses his phone.

Dan Rafael
  (1:51 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley! Freaks are on fire today.

Peter (NYC)

Are you allowed to call a fighter directly? Or do you need to coordinate with the fighters manager?

Dan Rafael
  (1:52 PM)

I talk to fighters directly all the time.

robert (laredo tx)

happy friday DTM!!! congrats to you and your wife on your first child.... Ask hospital administration to hook you up with SHOWTIME in labor & delivery unit!!!

Ruben (Houston, TX.)

Will the Watson Bros. accompany you to the hospital Dan?

Dan Rafael
  (1:55 PM)

LOL!!! Oh, and that reminds me!! I got an answer to the question on who will walk out with Quillin and Guerrero for their fight on April 27. I asked their dad, Sam Watson, about it when we spoke a week or so ago. He told me his son Marcus will come out with Fernando Guerrero and Brandon will come out with Peter Quillin. Sam Watson wont walk out with either but will be in the middle of the ring. The reason each will come out with the guy they are coming out with is because they have a bit of a closer relationship with that fighter. The Freaks ask, I get answers!

Chris (Nashville)

I guess Antwun Echols wasn't listening when the ref said "Protect yourself at all times"

john (utah)

will your baby's weigh-in be live on espn?

Dan Rafael
  (1:56 PM)

LOL!

Rogers (Salem, Oregon)

Ronak is way off-base. Pianetta is no world-beater (yet) but his resume is that of a solid heavyweight prospect, and frankly at least as good or slightly better than Seth Mitchell's, Bryant Jennings, and Robert Helenius's.

Dan Rafael
  (1:57 PM)

I agree with what you said with the exception of him having a better resume than Helenius. Helenius' resume is better IMO.

Justin (LA)

Dan's baby now ranked #7 Super middleweight by WBC

C.M. (Toronto)

Is it true that The Undertaker is leaving WWE for Showtime too?

Dan Rafael
  (1:58 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Willy (BK)

Hardly a peep about BHop in this chat? No one seems to care about his upcoming fight. What does he even have to prove at this point? Any future stuff in the works for him, assuming he gets past Cloud?

Dan Rafael
  (1:59 PM)

When you are 48 and fight a tough guy much younger than you who is (officially) undefeated, you dont make plans for a future fight.

Chris (Oxnard )

Will your baby sign with Golden Boy or Top Rank?

Dan Rafael
  (1:59 PM)

Both have made offers. :)

C.M. (Toronto)

I was at Jones-Ruiz in Vegas ten years ago! It was the first live fight I ever attended. I will never forget that masterpiece, or how it turned out to be the last night we ever saw the great version of RJ!

Chris (NYC)

D$ I prefer the vitriolic posts that cite an actual reason for hating you. Richard was horribly unoriginal; though the caps were a nice touch.

Jeff (Tulsa)

Another reason the Klitschkos are so great: They've done to every opponent exactly what's been expected of them: destroyed.

Notorious JTB (Chicago)

Good luck on the baby, Dan. You're going to see dirty diapers that are almost as disgusting as the WBC.

Dan Rafael
  (2:01 PM)

ALMOST!

Bubba (Los Angeles)

Hey Dan, has Marco Antonio Barerra officially retired?

Dan Rafael
  (2:01 PM)

He has never officially announced it as far as I know, but I think it's probably safe to say he wont fight again.

Luis (Newark, NJ)

Why were Matthyse and Kotelnik robbed against Alexander? Alexander style sucks and stinks up every fight. I do not believe he has star power to be robbing other fighters.

Dan Rafael
  (2:02 PM)

I thought Alexander won both of those fights close.

Ricardo Mayorga (Nicaragua)

Are you passing out cigars?

Steve (NY)

When is Andre Ward coming back

Dan Rafael
  (2:04 PM)

No date set but he just got back in the gym this week. I dont think he will actually fight until the late summer/early fall. He is still rehabbing and recovering.

Gerald (Miami)

Tito Trinidad HOF??

Dan Rafael
  (2:04 PM)

Obviously. One of the easiest calls there is.

Gary Burton (Beaverton, OR)

Who do you think goes into the IBHOF in 2014 alongside De La Hoya and Trinidad?

Dan Rafael
  (2:05 PM)

Calzaghe.

John (El Paso, TX.)

Dan, How surprised was Austin Trout when you called him about his match with Canelo? Was his promotor sleeping or something?

Dan Rafael
  (2:06 PM)

He knew the fight was close and hoping it would get done, but he was pretty happy when I told him that Schaefer had just told me it was a go. He was pretty excited.

Rick (Marina CA)

DTM help me solve this debate. If Manny-Floyd doesn't happen, it will be bigger in their legacies then RJJ and BHop not fighting when they were both in their prime.

Dan Rafael
  (2:07 PM)

Roy and BHop fought when they were emerging top fighters. So no, not even close.

adam phx [via mobile]

Can you see Matthyse having a rise to superstardom much like pacquiao did if he keeps smoking his opponents and starts taking out bigger name opposition? Or do you think he lacks that dynamic or "IT" factor and will just be a boxing star not so much superstar

Dan Rafael
  (2:08 PM)

If you keep destroying top guys with knockouts, you'll get the recognition and make a lot of fans.

Todd (Maine)

Hey Dan, could you clarify exactly who 50 Cent has under contract with SMS Promotions, and who Floyd has under contract with Mayweather Promotions?

Dan Rafael
  (2:08 PM)

50 has Dib, Andre Dirrell, Caballero and Gamboa.

Roberto (Sylmar )

Who is to blame for not making the Mares - Donaire fight

Dan Rafael
  (2:09 PM)

Obviously, Top Rank.

Jevin (Dallas)

How much does a cab driver make when he fights Gary Russell?

Dan Rafael
  (2:09 PM)

Defintely better than a night's tip money.

Sun Devil (Los Angeles)

I know the Klitschko's won't fight each other, but has Bernard Hopkins indicated whether or not he would ever fight his grandson?

Dan Rafael
  (2:10 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

the duder (PDX, OR)

Dan, which functions better: congress or boxing?

Dan Rafael
  (2:11 PM)

Boxing.

Dan Diego (No longer in his chair!)

Damn D$, I just about jumped out my chair reading about all the upcoming fights. 2013 has been brutal so far but man what a few months ahead for the FREAKS!! I can't remember a stretch like this!

Paulo (Philadelphia)

Dan - Now that Ponce-Mares will be on PPV, do Ponce and/or Mares have any opportunity to get a small percentage of the PPV revenue?

Dan Rafael
  (2:17 PM)

No, they dont get % but what Schaefer told me was their manager, Frank Espinoza, negotiated a bigger purse to move to the PPV. Good for them.

Rags (NYC)

Good lord, between Antwun Echols & Antonio Cromartie, there are approximately 35 kids with names rarely remembered by their fathers....

Brandon (Jacksonville)

NOOOOOOOOO. Im getting married on the 18th and I love matthysse. There's no getting out of this one!

Dan Rafael
  (2:18 PM)

Set up a TV at the reception.

Marc (Fl)

Is berto vs malignaggi still a possibility?

Dan Rafael
  (2:19 PM)

It hasnt been specicially discussed as far as I know but since they are both with GB now and both in the same weight class I could see it being possible.

Keith (Philly)

Yo Dan,There's been some talk about a GGG fight on HBO in June. Do you have any idea which weekend that would be or does HBO not slot the date in that far ahead? Thanks.

Dan Rafael
  (2:20 PM)

June, yes, but I am not sure of the date.

Frank (PHX)

I've gotta admit that I love all the fights Showtime is picking up and the competition they're giving HBO, which is great for boxing, but I along with a lot of my friends I talked with highly prefer the broadcast team and the whole production of HBO. Maybe its just b/c we're use to watching more high profile fights on HBO all these years but I'm gonna miss not seeing Lamply call Mayweather, Canelo and all these other fights Showtime now has on their schedule.

Charles (Portland, OR)

Danosphere,Bit confused about everything I've been hearing/reading regarding Floyd's contract with Showtime. Is he REQUIRED to do 6 fights in 30 months? Someone was saying that if he didn't, he'd be in trouble with Showtime.

Dan Rafael
  (2:21 PM)

No, he is not required to have 6 fights.

Aaron (MI)

Why do you always say nobody thought Andre Dirrell beat Carl Froch when in fact it was a split decision in Nottingham England? I also thought Dirrell won the fight.

Dan Rafael
  (2:22 PM)

I never said I didnt think anyone thought Dirrell won. I said I thought that Froch won. Simple as that.

Juan (San Diego)

Dan, how does Martin Murray fare against Sergio in Argentina? I don't know much about him, but I can't imagine they'd put anyone meaningful in with Sergio and risk the September rematch with JR. Your thoughts?

Dan Rafael
  (2:25 PM)

Murray is a solid top 10 middleweight. He got a draw with Sturm. By no means, is Sergio fighting a bum.

Jere (Paradise Hills)

Hey Dan, Ring Magazine just reported that Bob Arum gave Juan Manuel Marquez three options for his next opponent: Manny, Brandon Rios, or Tim Bradley. Isn't it safe to assume there's ONLY one option on the table and that's Pacquiao?

Dan Rafael
  (2:26 PM)

It's such a ridiculous discussion. When it is all said and done Marquez will make BY FAR the most money against Manny. Everything else is just nonsense. Bob has to give him the options I suppose just to play the game but come on. I do not believe for one minute he is fighting anyone other than Manny for mega money. If he does, fine but I will believe it when I see it.

Nick (DE)

Thanks for being the voice of reason with Rigondeaux-Donaire. Why do people want to trash Nonito for ducking Rigondeaux, who got rocked twice by Robert Marroquin?

Dan Rafael
  (2:31 PM)

Anyone who thought he was ducking Rig in the first place is on drugs anyway. Rig was a great amateur. Maybe the best ever. As a pro, he's done nothing of real consequence. He beat Rico Ramos in a horrible fight. He beat the dude on the Cowboys Stadium card in a horrible fight. He crushed Teon Kennedy, who was more overmatched than a high school batter facing CC Sabathia and he got rocked by Marroquin. But Donaire should duck him? Well he wasnt and isnt because he is figthting him.

Victor (Chicago, IL)

Who do you got for tomorrow in Abril-Bogere?

Dan Rafael
  (2:31 PM)

Tough fight to pick but I think Abril can outbox Bogere.

Anthony (Sacramento )

Dan has HBO officially picked up Bute-Pascal?

Dan Rafael
  (2:31 PM)

They are certainly working on it, although I dont think everything is done yet.

Haris Syed Abbasi (Edison, NJ)

Hey Dan, which card would you rather attend? Garcia/Judah in Barclays or Martinez/Murray in Argentina or Khan/Diaz in the UK?

Dan Rafael
  (2:34 PM)

Garcia-Judah.

Ken (OH)

Abril-Bogere better or worse than last weeks main event? I fell asleep too during it.

Dan Rafael
  (2:34 PM)

Better, slightly.

Matt (Tustin)

I always heard the phrase hope springs eternal, but Echols takes it to a whole new level. He thinks he can win another title despite being something like 1-14-3 in his last 18.

Adam [via mobile]

D$, i'm looking forward to Maidana Vs Lopez. Thoughts on this fight?

Dan Rafael
  (2:36 PM)

Nice fight. Should defintely be exciting. I think I probably lean to Maidana, but Lopez is tough. Whoever wins I am pretty confident it will be a very solid fight.

Jeff (Gilbert, AZ)

Dude,I saw your column announcing your going to cover the upcoming fight for EPIX with Vasquez in the main event....I guess you're still paying your dues!

Dan Rafael
  (2:37 PM)

Im not sure what that means, but I am looking forward to going to London for the first time and coovering a good show over there. My first chance to see Burns, Groves, Cleverly and Chisora live.

Mauro Ranallo (The Schill-ton Hotel)

THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM THE MONEY TEAM!!!!!!!!

Dan Rafael
  (2:37 PM)

Pretty much.

Paulo (Philadelphia)

Dan - Dana White recently said he considers Tyson as the greatest heavyweight ever. Who do you consider to be the greatest heavyweight of all time?

Dan Rafael
  (2:40 PM)

All due respect to my man Dana, but that is crazy. There are only two guys even in the conversation and that is Louis or Ali.

Gary Burton (Beaverton, OR)

Dan, I was a bit disappointed that Skip Bayless had 50 Cent in the studios yesterday and didn't ask him about Yuriorkis Gamboa (roids and all). That wouldn't have happened if you were there, would it?

Dan Rafael
  (2:40 PM)

Im petty sure Skip has never heard of Gamboa.

Ryan (Baltimore)

One rule for all the freaks, never schedule a wedding on a saturday!

Anthony (Houston)

just curious, was today the day you planned to reveal your impending fatherhood to the Freaks?

Dan Rafael
  (2:42 PM)

No, it just sort of came up when the question was asked about if I would go to San Antonio to cover Alvarez-Trout. I decided to let folks know.

Lee (Los Angeles, CA)

Since Mayweather refused to sign a guarantee to fight Canelo in the fall (which would've helped his PPV numbers), isn't that a pretty clear sign that Mayweather's next opponent in the fall WILL NOT be Canelo?

Dan Rafael
  (2:43 PM)

I dont disagree.

Tim (Philly)

Dan did you have a second kid in the time this chat started? longest chat ever! Thanks for staying around

Dan Rafael
  (2:45 PM)

LOL, not even close to the record. Not even close. I believe the record was on the day of the Pacquiao-Marqgarito weigh in, where I did something like a six-hour chat from Cowboys Stadium. Took like a 15-minute break to do a SportsCenter report and then went back to chatting. I also did about a six-hour chat once from a hotel room at the Hartford airport before going out to the ESPN campus be in the FNF studio.

Anthony (Houston)

you said earlier that Cloud was "technically" undefeated, is there an actual fight you thought he'd lost?

Dan Rafael
  (2:47 PM)

The Campillo fight.

Ramon (IA)

when your baby is done with the pacifier, can you give it to david haye?

Dan Rafael
  (2:48 PM)

Pay the man, Shirley!

Dan Rafael
  (2:48 PM)

Thanks for chatting Fight Freaks. Hope you check out all the stories and blogs and enjoy the fights this weekend. Talk to you next week. Have a great weekend. Peace.