Welcome in fight fans to this Tuesday edition of our ESPN.com boxing chat. Plenty of huge fights on the calendar in the next few weeks to talk about. Thanks for having me and let's get right into it ...
Boxing is going to be SO GOOD over the next month or so. And I think boxing will forever be changed by the results. Which of the biggest names you think is most likely to lose out of Mayweather, Canelo, Donaire, Mares or S. Martinez?
Thanks for the question, Corey. Out of that list, I think the big-name fighter with the biggest chance to lose is Canelo Alvarez. But he also would earn the greatest reward with a victory.
Bri - you are the best. Thanks for mixing it up with us on Twitter. What's going on with this guy Paulie Malignaggi?? What does the future hold??
This guy, Frank. Paulie has got his title belt at 147 pounds and you'll be seeing him in a very, very difficult title defense later this spring against Adrien Broner.
Bruh, how bout JF Estrada this past Saturday? Wow. This guy is the real one, my friend.
Couldn't agree with you more. After really giving Roman Gonzalez a lot of problems in his last bout (a very close defeat), Saturday was Juan Francisco Estrada's coming out party against Brian Viloria. He proved to be one tough dude and he's only 22.
Both Donaire and Rigondeaux are hard punchers but are you worried that this upcoming bout might turn out to be a boring chess match?
There's clearly that potential given Rigondeaux's skill set and some performances we have seen out of him. But I'm prepared to enjoy it either way. Me, personally, I love a great chess match and if this one goes that route, it will be competed at the highest level. I can live with that.
How dare you challenge me with your primitive skills.
Haha. Considering my track record picking against Dan "DTM" Rafael in Hot Button debates, do you think I would try to one-up his chat longevity records?
Hey BC, love your show! Did you see WrestleMania? HHH beat down Brock Lesnar. That guy is top 5 all-time!! Your thought?
Haha, thanks for the love Cowboy. I actually did see HHH's victory and was pretty disappointed, in the end. Very predictable flow and outcome to that match. And now way he's top 5 all-time. Come on.
You ever think Devon Alexander can get things together and be a P4P type guy?
A P4P guy? No. He's very talented, of course, but if I'm Devon, I worry more at this point about looking exciting and getting myself into big-name fights.
Where's DTM!?!?! He's the real man of the chat world.
He'll be back in his normal spot on Friday, as usual. Although I think this week he might be making a special Thursday appearance, instead.
Hi Dan! Not sure what to do here. ...
We can still dance, just the same as always, haha. No worries in that regard.
Is Audley Harrison a good step up for Deontay Wilder? I like Wilder but would love to see him take on a Michael Grant instead.
I don't consider this current version of Audley Harrison a good step-up for any fighter. So, no. But as long as Wilder stays active and gets himself closer to a real test, I will hold off on criticizing.
Who was your favorite fighter growing up?
Good question, Bobby. I was a total mark and appreciator of Sugar Ray Leonard and Oscar De La Hoya while growing up. How can you hate on two guys who always took on the best and biggest challenge available?
I got some issues with y'alls P4P rankings. You don't represent the little guys enough. You telling me Roman Gonzalez aint' worthy enough?
Hold up there, Fred. We've got plenty of love there for the great Nonito Donaire and if you check out the vote totals, guys like Guillermo Rigondeaux, Abner Marez, Roman Gonzalez, etc. are right on the outside looking in. And if a guy like Rigo can come up huge on Saturday, you have to expect him to make a huge P4P leap.
What can we expect to see from Mayweather vs Guerrrero All Access show tommorow? I watched 30 Days in May last week and was really disappointed.
The "30 Days ..." show was VERY interesting to say the least. I think a lot of people on social media said it best when they said you will either love or dislike Mayweather that much more after watching it, depending on where your opinion was coming into it. I could have done without certain parts of it, for sure, haha. I expect the All-Access to be very good. Maybe I'm just a mark for that stuff, but I can't get enough of 24/7, All Access, etc. Even the bad ones are still good to me.
My favorite fighter has my same name. So I want to ask you about HOpkins. What you think his best win all-time is?
It's really hard to look back on all of the upset victories and identify one as more impressive than the other. But to me, nothing has topped his win over an unbeaten Felix Trinidad in 2001 because Hopkins dismantled him. He boxed circles around him and then finished him. The 2011 win over Jean Pascal, however, comes REALLY close.
Donaire-Rigo, what is your prediction on the outcome? It seems many writers are being foolish and picking Donaire by KO
I really see both sides to it and I think what makes people so split is that we still don't know how good Rigondeaux truly is or can be. My prediction is honestly a marriage of both beliefs. I think Rigo is better than we think and will give Donaire some trouble for a long stretch. But I also believe in Donaire's power and versatility. I think scoring 1-2 knockdowns will be the difference and Nonito will claim a close decision which leaves the door open for a rematch.
Can we please get Adrien Broner into a relevant fight!!!
We're getting there, be patient. The fight with Malignaggi is by no means awful and Broner is still just 23. You can argue at the pace or path of his rise to some small degrees, but he'll be in plenty of big fights when all is said and done.
I know you believe that fight between donaire and rigondeaux will be close, but have you ever thought that rigondeaux has only 1 weapon and that is the straight left and when ever he throws it he's wide open for left hands himself which was evident against marroquin who was innaccurate and unknown? he also still uses his jab like an amatuer to score points because it's a slap and an elite fighter like Donaire can walk right through that. I see this going no more than 6 or 7 rds. your thoughts now?
I think the criticisms of Rigondeaux from the people that believe Donaire will destroy him are acceptable because Rigo's only been a pro for 11 fights and he's given us such mixed results. So if he got blown out, I wouldn't be shocked, let's just say. But I am of the belief that he actually can (and will) live up to his own hype to a certain degree on Saturday (just short of winning the fight) and I think that comes down to him often playing to the level of his competition. I think he gets a bit bored and disinterested at times. He is going to have to raise the bar of course on Saturday to a VERY high level.
But I think Rigondeaux's just too talented not to be able to hang around and really make this a fight.
Anyone who thinks Rigondeaux "only has 1 weapon" has seen VERY LITTLE of Rigondeaux. Get real, kid!
Brian, the Rios- Alvarado was a great fight...but dont you think for a fight with taht type of hype a gate of 5k is dissapointing? that is like a tuesday at a Marlins game.
Yes, that was VERY disappointing. Look, their first fight had a ton of hype from everyone declaring it as fight of the year potential before the opening bell even sounded. And somehow, that fight lived up to and exceeded those expectations. I have no idea how the rematch could have attracted such little love at the live gate.
What are the chances that HBO starts showing more Heavyweight and Crusierweight fights. I enjoy watching the bigger guys in the ring and it seems like HBO turned into the home of lighter weight fighers.
That will, as always, depend on the potential matchups available in those weight classes that would be intriguing to an American audience. I think the fact that there is a real Next Generation of heavyweights on the rise is a positive thing and even if most won't end up amounting to being true title contenders in the long run, watching them fight it out against each other is going to be fun. Hopefully those type of fights will get picked up here in America. But props to channels like Wealth and Epix for showing a lot of those already.
Brian, ESPN needs to pick up your show and air it directly after FNF. I was wondering how you think Edwin Valero would have stacked up in a loaded 140 pound division had his life not been cut tragically short?
Thanks for the "Making The Rounds" support there, Roger. Much appreciated. Valero was such a wild card, as we know. But man did he have power and a mindset (which ultimately led to his demise outside the ring) that perfectly fueled him to be a dominant action fighter. I think he would have fit in just fine. Can you imagine him against Pacquiao or Matthysse?
Don't forget only a few fights ago Donaire was running from Concepcion's body shots. Rigo can hit to the body.
Indeed, Jon. I'm of the belief Rigondeaux can really do anything he wants. The thing I question from a distance is his temperament. Will he stand in there and go for broke and do what he needs to do in order to beat a guy like Donaire? That remains to be seen.
do you see Mayweather challenging for a middle weight belt, before he retires?
Unfortunately, I don't. I wish to heck he would, however. I'm as equally appreciative of how great his true talent is and critical of his matchmaking over the years. I just have this bad feeling we won't see him ever do that. I'm not even confident anymore he's still going to be willing to face Canelo down the line.
Ever since the hype machine HBO got behind Donaire I have not seen the results.
I wouldn't put any kind of blame on the hype machine. Look at the Narvaez fight and even the Nishioka fight. These guys have seen the tapes of him against Montiel and Darchinyan. Fighters don't want to go straight up anymore. But I personally think that has only helped round out Donaire's versatile and impressive skill set even more.
I can't help but wonder, will Mayweather go broke once he retires.
You obviously hope not for him and his family, but it seems like everywhere I go people make that same prediction.
rigondeaux only one weapon?????? is he talking about guillermo rigondeaux or somebody else? :) come on now!!!
I'd love to see Mayweather go for the middleweight title. That way Martinez drills him. Floyd doesn't fight people who will endanger his "and-0".
If I could pick one fight to make right now in the whole sport, it would be Mayweather-Martinez. Seriously, I'd give a kidney away to see that. Maybe even two.
With Marquez's obsession for beating Pacquiao now over, do you see him agreeing with a 5th fight?
Yes, I am very much of the belief that everything you hear now is just posturing and that Pacquiao-Marquez V will happen at the end of the year.
Is Guerrero a live underdog. Or will it be "easy work" for Floyd?
No, he's a live dog. No question. I still like Floyd, but that is going to be a great fight.
What is the best fight you have ever seen in person?
For my money, the best fight I have ever covered ringside is still Victor Ortiz against Andre Berto. It was not only a GREAT fight, but it had one of "those" moments in the 6th round where the whole roof almost fell off the place. I've never before or since seen people on press row losing it like I have when Ortiz got off the canvas and knocked down Berto. Still gives me chills.
Do you expect Pacquiao to return to his prior form? Can he do that especially if he makes the 5th fight against Marquez?
That's the $20M question, for sure. Enduring a knockout like that will obviously take things from Pacquiao that will never be returned. But if there is one fight that I think we, maybe for the last time, truly see the Pacquiao of old, I believe it's a potential fifth fight between the two. That fight is going to be unreal, if you ask me.
i dont blame marquez who fought many 4 times and saw how many took tons of money compare to him...is his time now..i think
It definitely is Marquez's time to "cash in" so to speak and really build himself a huge nest egg for the rest of his life. But I still think he doesn't make anywhere near as big of a paycheck as he would get in Pacquiao V.
What was the one fight that got you hooked on boxing?
Love these kind of questions. The Rocky movies really started to reel me in as a young fan, but it was Leonard-Hagler that hooked me for life. My dad has never been a sports fan, but the buildup for that fight was obviously so huge that even he caught the bug and I remember we went to my grandparents and bought the PPV there and had a bunch of people over. I must have watched our VHS copy of that over and over and over again.
Brian, if Guerrero beats Mayweather could he crack the top 10 pound for pound list? If so that would be 3 fighters from Northern California on the list (Donaire, Ward).
Absolutely. No question about it. That would be three impressive victories in a row at 147, including one against the best fighter in the sport.
Are you at all surprised that Victor Ortiz has not retired on his stool between dances?
Haha. They don't punch back on that show, from what I have gathered. So he's doing great.
Sergio vs GGG... does it happen later this year or early next?
I say it definitely happens and we see it in late 2014. Just a prediction. Sergio has no business ducking that fight in my eyes after how outspoken he was of people ducking him through the years. That is a great, great, great fight.
how do you answer people who say boxing is a dying sport? my boys all have switched to mma
There may not be many fights on free TV or as many boxing gyms on each corner in big cities but the sports is far from dead at the highest level. 2013 has been fantastic so far, as was most of 2012.
Hi Brian, it's great to see guys like you, and Eric Raskin, and Kieran Mulvaney, doing so much good work on the ESPN Boxing Page. You guys are doing a great job. How long have you been writing about boxing? I don't remember hearing of you until a couple of years ago.
Very nice of you to say, Dave. I have been working with ESPN since 2005, but started contributing boxing stories in late 2010. I've been very lucky to cover a bunch of fights in person the past few years since then. Best sport in the world.
Who are your top three announcers/broadcasters ever?
I think Jim Lampley is the best play-by-play guy I have ever seen in boxing, although I respect Steve Albert a lot and love me some Barry Tompkins. It's been great seeing him of late on Showtime. Brings back a lot of great memories.
Does boxing have a PED problem?
Larry is the best color commentator I have ever listened to. Hands down. No question.
Do you think Danny Garcia should move up in weight if he easily beats Judah? Who would be a good first test for him in Welter?
No, there's a lot of work to be done at 140 for Garcia if he gets past Judah. I think we really need to see him face the winner of Matthysee-Peterson and also see him in a rematch with Khan.
Yo Brian, For GGG's fight in June, I heard New York but then read MSG might not be available. Any info on whether or not NY would still be an option if MSG (Theatre) was, in fact, not available? Thanks!
Not sure exactly which venue will end up landing Golovkin's proposed fight against Macklin (which should be fantastic.) But for my hopes, I'd like to get a real home game out of it and see it at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods in CT. It's a very intimate venue. Love it.
You ever been in the ring?
I've done a little bit of sparring, but no, have never had a fight. I'm thinking about turning pro in a few years, though, if writing doesn't pan out.
whats your thoughtds on Canelo's future?
I think his future is very bright regardless of what happens on April 20, but I have an absolute ton of respect for him by maybe even going against the wishes of his promoters to land the Trout fight. Great stuff for the sport there. That fight is going to be so good. An absolute pick 'em if you ask me.
What are your thoughts on Broner pulling a "Mayweather" and by-passing a massively talent rich division?
I don't love it. Again, it's hard to get hyper-critical when he's only 23 and has been very active. And if you can guarantee me he ends up fighting the best of that 140 lot when they move up anyway, than it's not horrible. But personally I'd love to see him now start taking on names like Garcia, Matthysse, Khan, Peterson, etc.
boxing is not dying and never will....just like mcdonals will never close......no matter how many fast food people open mcdonals will always be there just like boxing...
Both are clearly bad for your health, too!
I'm worried PPV won't be as good with the Shotime guys calling the fights. What's your take?
It will be a change, for sure, but those guys do a great job. I have a lot of respect for Mauro Ranallo's ability to call a fight and know when to raise his level of excitement. Al Bernstein is a pro's pro and a legend and Paulie Malignaggi is, to me, an A-level analyst already.
Hiya Brian!!! Just wondering about your thought on who will win in the upcoming bout between Devon Alexander and Kell Brook? Thanks for your answer and all you do!!!
Jstats! My man. The only guy who might actually enjoy seeing the great Mariachi Skull Guy appear in a boxing ring as much as I do. As for as your question, I like Alexander in that one. I think it will be a great fight, but I think Devon's boxing wins out if he steps on the gas pedal a bit and shows us how good he can be again.
BC! Love the show!! Does Money May get it done vs. the Ghost?? Your prediction?
Thanks for the kind words. I do think Mayweather gets it done, but I think it's going to be his closest fight on the scorecards since the Castillo fights.
Give me a name I've never heard of who can punch that I should be watchign movign forward in boxing?
Light heavyweight Sergey Kovalev. He's got scary power. Nice guy, too.
Let's debate fight of the year: Dude, im all about Bradley-Provonikoov. How bout yourself, guy?
It's got to be Rios-Alvarado II for me. Rematches almost NEVER live up to the first one and I believe this one was actually better than the first. Better, I tell you. That says something to me. I loved Bradley-Provodnikov as much as anyone for the drama and sheer "how the heck is this guy standing" element, but pound-for-pound Rios-Alvarado just had more.
Do you think Chavez Jr has a chance to win a potential rematch vs Martinez? and also who do you see winning in a Jr. vs Golovkin fight?
I think Chavez has a better chance if he enters focused and in shape, yes. I would really love to see that rematch. I still like Martinez, though. And I think Golovkin has his way with him, as well. The answer to both changes only slightly to me if Chavez can fulfill his potential. But I think Chavez gives almost anyone else at 160 some problems if he does.
Heading to the Fury fight at MSG Theatre and then to Jack Dempsey's for Canelo/Trout. Gonna be a great 4/20... Haven't heard much about the Fury/Cunningham matchup, but Cunningham gave Adamek fits - think he can pull a Tony Thompson and show what America is made of?
I agree this is a great matchup at heavyweight and has been kind of lost in the Canelo-Trout talk. We really don't know what we will get from Fury. I give him credit for beating Dereck Chisora in the manner that he did. But I'm not sure I necessarily see him being able to defeat Cunninghim if Steve is on his game and boxing and moving. That's why it's a great matchup and I'm looking forward to it. I'll give Fury respect if he does and can continue to climb the ladder.
It's about time Canelo steps up and fights a live fighter.
Check Austin Trout's pulse, my friend. He's plenty alive. That's going to be an absolute blast to watch.
how do you feel about Laurence cole being named a judge for canelo-trout and stanley christodoulu being named the ref? pure incompetance no wonder they were selling $10 tix
Oh man, Texas can be rough sometimes, haha. They need to work some issues out.
anyone to watch on the floyd undercard?
Absolutely. We get Mares-Ponce De Leon for a featherweight belt, Santa Cruz-Munoz at 122 and Love-Rosado at middleweight. All three should be entertaining.
Hey Brian, it's nice to see fighters starting to get sponsorship opportunities like Guerrero has gotten with the National Rifle Association.
Oh man. As my co-worker the great Pezz likes to say, "You said it ... but you don't mean it."
Brian - Were there ever instances where you came to a boxing event with zero to no interest and then the ensuing fights have completely blown you away and exceeded your expectations?
Definitely not anything crazy on the "zero to no interest" level. But a big fight last year that I didn't expect to be that entertaining -- Cotto/Trout -- ended up being the exact opposite of that from ringside. That's one of my favorite, underrated fights I've seen live. Real good stuff back and forth before Trout peaked the championship rounds.
Good to see u with your own chat on here! Who do you WANT to see Ward in with next?
Many thanks Clay. I'd allow Ward some room to take a softer touch to see if he's rebounded fully from injury, but in the long run at 168, I'd still like to see him face the winner of Froch-Kessler II. I think both of those fighters would look better the second time against Ward than they did the first.
Brian - Am I the only one who notices Canelo has been consistently matched with smaller opponents? What happens against full size guys? Better yet, what happens at 160lbs?
You are not necessarily wrong in that regard and they have clearly matched him too slowly for most people's taste -- although some of that wasn't his fault when fights with Paul Williams and Victor Ortiz fell apart. All of this talk will end, though, if he beats Trout, who is a full-sized 154-pound fighter with plenty of skills. Have I said yet how excited I am for that fight?
Who is your favorite fighter in the game right now?
I definitely don't have favorites these days, but I really enjoy watching guys like Sergio Martinez, GGG, Amir Khan, Austin Trout and Floyd Mayweather fight off the top of my head. Love their styles and how they execute in the ring. And how could you not love watching a guy like Leo Santa Cruz, as well.
BC - Can you explain to me how Robert Hoyle gets the opportunity to judge Mares v PDL after his horrendous scorecard last weekend? 116-111 Magdaleno over Martinez? Wha?
I am out of explanations on that topic, haha.
Which fight was more brutal - Cotto/Margarito I or Rios/Alvarado II?
Now that's a great question. In terms of the brutality of both fighters combined, it was Rios-Alvarado. But man was Cotto-Margarito crazy, especially with the whole hand wraps thing.
Like I said, it's about time. All the time they spend "searching" for Canelo's opponents one might think they were solving world peace.
After JMM violently KOed Pacquiao, there was zero talk of JMM/Mayweather 2. The first fight was a 9lb step up for Marquez and Mayweather missed that weight by 3lb. Now, with Marquez obviously comfortable at 147, would you have any interest in a fight that would obviously be different than the first?
Do I believe Marquez would have a better chance in the rematch today against Mayweather than in the first fight when he was still a 135-pound fighter and Mayweather was buying extra pounds on the scale? Totally. You'll never see that rematch, but this new Marquez is obviously a different fighter with the bulk and his ability to retain some of his speed.
Maybe you can talk to the people at ESPN classic and get them to put some new fights in the rotation. I cant take watching Tyson/Johnson anymore
Haha. I'll send that up the line. Thanks.
lets be honest canelo had to get a tough fight...he had no more options...he knows people were getting sick and tired of his matchups so jcc jr did it he had to do it as well..enogh was enogh for both.
It was clearly time for him to step up, yes. But I am so glad we are seeing Canelo-Trout rather than something like Canelo-Angulo.
Speaking of fighting for a middleweight title, can you see Canelo stepping up and fighting a Gennady Golovkin or Kid Chocolate anytime?
No, not anytime soon. I wouldn't think Golden Boy would ever want Canelo anywhere near GGG.
Love the new boxing show "Making The Rounds". Keep it up. Boxing fans need more of that stuff.
Is it just me or does Rocky Martinez kind of remind you of Tito Trinidad?
No doubt about it. Tito is also his idol. I don't think Martinez is as devastating a puncher as Trinidad, but he shares that same style of relentless stalking and ability to stay in a fight even if he's getting out-boxed.
Who you want to see Cotto fight befroe he retires? I want Trout rematch.
Not sure we need a Trout rematch, but you know what fight I think would be a lot of fun? A rematch between Cotto and Pacquiao in another year. Both fighters aren't the same as they were, but both are still marketable and exciting and that could be a heck of a little war if they could agree on a weight.
Rocky Martinez certainly gets the benefit of the doubt on the socrecards just like Tito did...
Any chance Roman Gonzalez moves up and fights Estrada in a rematch
I think we will see that fight again at some point. Just not sure right away.
I'm not seeing a problem with a Canelo-Angulo fight; Am I missing something?. Although I agree, Canelo-Trout is going to be a barn burner
I don't hate Canelo-Angulo as a stay busy kind of fight, but not at this juncture when the time is now for us to see if Canelo is for real. You can say he is just 22 and that is a fact, but he's also been a pro for like seven years. The time is now and props to him for taking the plunge.
What do you see as Cotto's path forward? Is he in the "make $ as an opponant" phase of his career or do you see him as a legitimate factor at 154 moving forward?
Make money in big fights against big names. Yes.
Better Trout: mike or austin?
Definitely Mike. But you can't hate on Austin's recent run.
What are your thoughts and who are you picking for the upcoming Peterson Mattysse fight ?
I think Matthysse stops him late in a real fun fight. I respect Peterson a lot and I think he'll hang in there and try to slug with Lucas at times and that will be his undoing in the end. I call Matthysse the "Demolition Man" and he's got to be the scariest matchup in the sport right now.
Lets test your complete sports knowledge. Tiger or the field?
This year, I take Tiger.
Do you see Floyd fighting pass the 30-month deal he made with Showtime? At the final four he mentioned he's done after 30 months.
My personal opinion is that if Floyd makes it through the next two years unbeaten than we will never see him again. But if he loses, I could see him fighting longer than we imagine. Sometimes I wonder whether a loss earlier in his career (like, say, against Castillo) would have propelled him now to take on the biggest challenges available at all times. He has the kind of power to supercede any promotional issue and I wish he would use it.
The best nickname in boxing history has to be 'The Jackal' for Guillermo Rigondeaux. No doubt, right?
It's definitely a good one. Not sure I've ever heard a better one, though, than Juan "The Hispanic Causing Panic" Lazcano.
Best nickname is The Executioner
Had a ton of fun in the chat this week. Thanks for taking part and I look forward to talking with you guys again.
You can follow me on Twitter at @BCampbellESPN and check the ESPN boxing page every Tuesday evening for the latest episode of "Making The Rounds."
I'll see you at the fights.