Get some! It's the Tuesday Boxing Chat. And when you're four days out from a fight as amazing as Bradley-Marquez, you really don't need to write a long introduction paragraph to the chat. It's go time, folks. Let's do this ...
If Bradley/Marquez makes you shadowbox at your PC, does a Klitschko fight make you jab and hold at your PC?
Haha. Well played, James. I think we can all agree that Klitschko-Povetkin was the ultimate buzzkill. Credit to the champion for simply doing what he had to do in order to move the chains and bring home another victory. He also shut out an unbeaten titlist who was probably the best opponent available to him, along with knocking him down four times. But with that said, what an absolutely dreadful fight to watch. And as much as you can give Wlad credit for using his size and dominating, I think you can criticize him equally. With his talent level, he shouldn't have to win that way. I know the referee allowed it. But that performance did nothing to win him greater respect or more fans.
Are we suppose to believe Cotto is back when he could not defeat Trout
I think there are a few factors you have to consider here. Can we go to far in throwing confetti in the air after Cotto finished a fighter of Delvin Rodriguez's class? No question. But you have to love the aggressiveness he showed, the recommitment to the body and just his overall posture. This is a different Miguel Cotto and, frankly, it was great to see. Part of it is him feeling comfortable under Freddie Roach and part of it may simply be that Miguel is in a better place right now personally. He likely didn't shave five years of wear and tear off his body with one win, but he clearly put himself back into the conversation for big fights with a few big-name options in front of him.
Isn't it Povetkin's responsibilty to try to punch instead of lean in?
No question about it. Povetkin, I felt, had an excellent strategy early on and clearly made Klitschko uncomfortable with his pressure. But his output stopped almost completely as Klitschko began to lean on him and wear him down. Povetkin definitely appeared to just succumb to it without putting up too much of a fight in return. There appeared to be moments where simply throwing a punch would have helped him and although, overall, I praised his effort and heart, he left a good deal on the table.
If you had to handicap the race who does Miguel Cotto fight next; Sergio Martinez or Canelo Alvarez?
Our senior writer and "King Fight Freak" Dan Rafael wrote a blog this morning about Sergio Martinez's team openly wanting a fight with Cotto for the real middleweight crown. Obviously, Cotto can go with whichever promoter he pleases, but it would be a convenient fight to make right now considering Cotto just reconnected with Top Rank for the Rodriguez fight. Martinez's promoter, Lou DiBella, and his manager, Sampson Lewkowicz, would obviously on board. To me, that's the clubhouse leader unless the money is just too goo for a shot with Canelo.
I don't think Klitschko deserves any credit for that fight. I've often defended him, but that was a disgrace. He cheated and the ref let him get away with it. He should have been warned in the first round. He would deserve credit for a boring win if it was based on the jab and a technical outside game, not for hanging on Povetkin. That was nonsense, he cheated.
I'm not going to go too hard on the "he cheated" angle because the referee was allowing it. Not to mention that all of the leaning and clinching is a strategy that all Emanuel Steward taught big men have employed. I just think in this fight, with all the accolades Klitschko is piling up of late and all of the title defenses, you just naturally expect more out of him. He could beat Povetkin straight up. And he probably had a nice opportunity there to take him out in spectacular fashion should he have really gone for it and pressed forward. To me, there's no excuse. Klitschko isn't a light-hitting defensive specialist. He's a puncher. And he's the real champion of the world. Get your opponent out of there.
What up Brian? What do you think of Sergio Martinez vs Miguel Cotto? In my opinion I'm going to have to go with Sergio Martinez. Sergio is just to quick, to elusive for Cotto. The problem I see with Cotto is that he can't cope with boxers faster than him. I see a hell of a fight there. What's your opinion on this fight?
I think this is a heck of a fight and I really hope we see it. Not only would the promotion be great between two top-end and respected fighters, but there would be plenty on the line with Cotto moving up in weight to pursue a world title in another weight class. Depending on how healthy and prime Martinez appears when he is set to return, this could be a real even fight.
Hey, no offense here guys. But can we get to Bradley-Marquez already? Where's the questions? I'm about to shadow box through my computer screen right now I'm so pumped for this fight.
Soup!, thoughts on Terrance Crawford? Lots of skill but did nothing to promote his brand, I could care less if he's on TV again, do you know if the suits at HBO were pleased with that stinker?
To have the Klitschko-Povetkin replay followed by this absolute stinker of Crawford-Klimov was seriously a worst-case scenario for HBO. I really don't know what Crawford was thinking fighting that defensively. He's getting a REAL serious push right now from the network and had an opponent in front of him who simply wasn't throwing punches in return. Outside of an injury, how could Crawford not have put on a show there? By definition, this was a showcase fight. You have to believe this sets his brand back a bit. The kid has so much talent and didn't show it.
Brian: Isn't Sergio's biggest payday with a Cotto fight instead of a Chavez rematch where the weight is in doubt?
I would agree with you there, Al, that because of Cotto's fan base and the fact that he'd be moving up in weight to dare to be great in pursuit of the middleweight title that this fight would be Sergio's best choice financially.
Prediction at 2:48ET for Marquez-Bradley is.....??? (knowing you might change your mind by Friday)
As you guys know, I have been ALL OVER THE PLACE on this fight. And that's a great thing. How often in this sport do you really get a true 50/50 fight between two top 10 P4P fighters? Almost never, is the correct answer. And even though my good friend DTM heckles me for taking this much long to make a prediction, I literally sat down for an hour late last week going over every single scenario in my head and finally came up with a prediction I can be confident about. I believe, in a truly great fight that will be in the running for FOY that Bradley's speed and other-worldly determination carries him past Marquez by disputed decision.
I think Bradley is going to have to get up off the deck late after building a lead on the scorecards and it's going to be one of those fights where the crowd favors the streaking Marquez who came on late, while the judges award Bradley for winning more rounds.
Are you worried about Tim considering he said his speech was slurred for a time and he's ripe for a big Marquez counter shot?
That's clearly a HUGE side angle to this whole fight that simply can't be ignored. In the end, I think taking the kind of damage that Bradley accrued in the Provodnikov fight will, in fact, shorten his career, especially should he do something similar against Marquez. But I don't think this will be the fight where he just falls off the cliff and looks 10 years older. I think Bradley will have to walk through some legit fire in order to win this fight. But I also think he doesn't know any other way.
I disagree with you completely Brian regarding your position on Crawford how can you say that, it happens all the time you dominate an opponent for most of the fight and then relax go for the KO and then you yourself get KO.
I definitely respect your opinion here, Jules. But you have to understand he was facing a guy in Klimov who was not only far from a big puncher (which is partially why he became an attractive opponent at this point), but was basically sleepwalking throughout this fight even as his corner was urging him on relentlessly. I'm not saying Crawford had to drop his guard and go for the knockout, but pecking from the outside with jabs as the crowd boos in your own showcase fight isn't going to get it done. You have to be throwing more than one punch at a time.
I like your prediction. I'm going to go a little but the other way a bit. I think this will be a close fight but I think it turns into more of a brawl late and TB gets stopped on the ropes. Either way I agree, it's going to be one heck of a fight!
Exactly. I think what you said is true: Either way we are definitely going to see an amazing fight. I really can't imagine it going any other way than that because of how hungry these two fighters are and due to how much is at stake. As I mentioned, this is a hard fight to pick. I really could see it going either way, but am comfortably settled in that Bradley, with advantages in speed, footwork and 10 years of youth, will barely hold him off.
Despite taking a hit in his brand last Saturday, who do you think is a more skilled boxer, crawford or broner?
I think Crawford is quicker and has better pure skills. Broner appears to be much more of a puncher.
Brian, This version of Cotto vs Trout. How does this one play out?
I think it would be an interesting fight, as was their fight last December. I was ringside at MSG and it was one of those fights that kind of takes you by surprise. There was some decent action and both fighters made adjustments. But, again, it's not as if Cotto is suddenly five years younger simply by defeating Rodriguez. But ... if he can go back to being an attacking fighter who punches with conviction and attacks the body, he probably gives Trout a better fight. I actually thought Cotto was doing well in the middle of his fight with Trout until he began to fade just as Trout stood his ground and really peaked throughout the championship rounds.
Soup! Representing Naugy well on ESPN. Keep up the great work. I ask this as a boxing fan that just hasn't been into the sport nearly as much as I used to be - would it be possible to have boxing be governed under a more unified, centralized organization? With some many competing groups & individuals more interested in promoting individual fighters, the sport suffers as few have promoting the entire sport as their number one goal.
This guy Mark! Thanks for the question, my friend. I think, without question, a lack of a centralized governing body is the main thing holding back boxing in so many areas. But with so many competing entities currently making money off the sport, it's not something you can just snap your fingers and everyone will agree to. I think, similar to when Dana White and Zuffa rescued the UFC from the ashes over a decade ago, boxing would really have to suffer the kind of hard times that we haven't even come close to seeing before something like this could happen. And I don't think, barring some kind of tragic run of deaths in the ring, you will ever really see the sport sink that far.
Macklin v. Nelson on the Rigo v. Agbeko undercard. Your thoughts?
All things considered, I think it's an intriguing fight. Clearly we are going to see some action in it. And we really don't know yet what we have in Nelson. He's been so up and down. This is a REAL test for him at 160 against as tough an out as they come in Macklin.
Freddie said He could of led Cotto to victory over Mayweather, what you think?
It's hard to say. I need to see more of this partnership and see them defeat some big-name fighters before I can believe Cotto would improve on what was an inspired performance from him against Floyd. In theory it sounds right, but I thought Cotto really showed himself well that night, anyway, and probably got as close as this post-prime version of him could get against the sport's best fighter.
As successful as Oscar De La Hoya was, do you think he should have been better in big fights such as Trinidad, Mosley & Hopkins?
Absolutely. You are also talking to one of the biggest Oscar fans back in the day in history.
I hate to say it but the one thing, maybe even the only thing we can count on from this fight like you said earlier BC (dispute decision) and I am going to go one step further and just say some type of controversy it just seems every fight has some aspect of controversy to it nowadays you agree BC?
Well, Jules, it is kind of crazy to think about this: Bradley has been a guy who people believe has consistently received the benefit of the doubt on the scorecards in the biggest fights of his career (Pacquiao and Provodnikov). Meanwhile, Marquez is a guy who has basically been the opposite. How does that affect their fight on Saturday? I'm not sure. But we have seen some crazy scorecards recently and really anything can happen from this point forward. Even moments before they announced Klitschko's shutout of Povetkin I started to get nervous that maybe one judge had given it to the hometown fighter.
Less we forget, styles make fights. And Trout's style is not suited for Cotto. He's a tough out for Miguel at any stage of his career.
I agree with you on that. Trout is big for a junior middleweight. He not only used his size well to impose himself physically on Cotto, he really had that jab working. But, again, Cotto really started to fade in that fight just as he had battled back to pull even on my scorecard. There were rumors that his training camp was problematic before that fight. If being with Roach gets him to a better place mentally, I certainly believe we will see better results out of him in the ring.
for that matter I think Freddie is thinking of his bank account every time he opens his mouth hahahaha
Hey BC, I have a major problem with this proposed Cotto/Martinez fight when Austin Trout beat both Cotto and Rodrigeuz and to me, Trout beat Canelo. How come Trout doesn't get another big fight, I have my suspicions why but your thoughts BC??
Because boxing is a business and Miguel Cotto moves product like almost no other fighter. That's about as simple an answer as you can find. In fact, Trout nearly got passed over for the Canelo fight because of that exact reason.
Soup! Trivia time. This is the 8th anniversary of Corrales-Castillo II.
This guy KT is always on the ball as our resident historian. I remember that fight well and remember being very disappointed because of the astronomical expectations I had at the time. But, hey, how could any two fighters top what they did the first time around?
if boxing had had a strength of schedule rating, would Oscar's be the highest?
Clearly he would be right at the top of that list and I think that's probably, outside of his ability to sell tickets and attract swarms of women to the sport, his greatest legacy. Say what you will about him -- and you might even be right in your criticism -- the guy dared to be great almost every time out.
if Marquez and Pacquioa both win this year do you think there will be a fifth fight
I sure hope so, David. Unless JMM calls it a career.
Who did you have winning the Oscar vs Pernell Whitaker fight? It was very close and could have gone either way.
You know what, I could definitely use an update on my scoring of that fight. I always had Oscar winning by one round, but admittedly always scored it through the eyes of a fan. I'm going to get on that and get back to you for next week's chat.
When Marquez wins on Saturday, where do you rank him among the best boxers of Mexico?
Well, Slater, I would definitely put him right behind Chavez at the top of the rankings. I believe he has eclipsed his contemporaries like Barrera and Morales and really feel the titles in five different weight classes and the enormous work he has done late in his career, well above his prime weight, make it hard to keep him out of the top three.
Better jab, in your opinion... Quartey, Winky, or W. Klitschko?
Ike's really hit with a thud. I always thought he had the best job. Oscar's was pretty underrated, too. Obviously Winky, Wlad and Lennox were great in that regard, too.
No reason Oscar should have done better against Hopkins, you're talking about a guy who has since won the title twice at 175, plus outclassed Oscar on technique and determination as well.
Yeah, I'll give you that. He was over his head and he reached for it and came up short.
You mean... aside from Gatti and Ward, right? :-)
As outrageously large of a fan as I am of the Gatti-Ward trilogy, the rematch was pretty much a stinker outside of Round 3. And as much as the third fight was fantastic and bookended the rivalry perfectly, the third fight wasn't even CLOSE to as good as their first one.
With Martinez calling out Cotto, I dont think we will see a Martinez/GGG fight
As long as Martinez plans to keep going, it wouldn't be out of the question. But if you Sergio, you probably want to tangle with Golovkin sooner rather than later.
what does GGG have to do to get himself into some of these big fights?
Staying busy and continuing to impress are obviously important strategies to employ when you are an awarded fighter. But there is only so much he can do, obviously. I think as long as his people do their best to continue to match him with the toughest opponent available that eventually the door will open for a big fight. His exciting style is something that will never hurt him, which is the reason staying busy is so important. The more times people tune in and see him record a knockout, the bigger his fan base will grow.
Brian, just want to say thank you for the Tuesday Boxing Chats. This is the only reason why I come to school on Tuesdays with a smile. haha
You got it, brother. It's the highlight of my week, too.
GGG has to show weakness to get a Big fight
Sometimes that is, indirectly, the best path to a big fight, as well.
If I am Sergio Martinez I want to avoid Gennady forever.
Can't blame you for thinking that. But Sergio has always been a standup champion and a guy who, himself, has been one of boxing's most avoided the past few years. Short of retiring, I think Sergio gives him a shot.
you don't look impressive enough, you worry about getting fights (RIGO/CRAWFORD) your too impressive and no one wants to fight you (GGG) LOSE-LOSE situation #boxing
That is why you have to stay busy and keep putting guys away. You can only control so much. Eventually the door will open.
Hi Brian! Why do you think Roy Jones faded so quickly, while fighters like Hopkins and Mayweather are wearing their age so much better?
Good question, Pete. Jones relied on athleticism so much more than Floyd and Hopkins, who, along with taking TREMENDOUS care of themselves, use technique and smarts to offset any breakdowns in speed as they grow older. I also believe Roy came back too quickly from bulking up to heavyweight for the Ruiz fight and his body was never the same after losing all that muscle so quickly.
If Andre Ward moves up to 175 after his next fight or two, would you consider that running from Golovkin.
No. I wouldn't call that running by any means. Especially if Ward went after Stevenson, Kovalev, etc.
Brian, thanks for taking the time. I'm a big Bradley fan but I think we saw two totally different fighters his last two times out. Against Manny he was deliberate and careful, against Provodnikov he seemed like a man on a mission and neglected his previous approach. Which Bradley do we see Saturday night?
Thanks JD. I actually think we see both. I think Bradley picks his spots and uses his speed to pile up points early. Once Marquez makes his adjustments and begins to land heavy counter shots, I think JMM will be able to lure Bradley into a war. That will be the turning point of the fight. If Bradley can fight his way out of trouble and make it through 12 rounds, I think he holds on and wins.
lol i want to see the crazy Bradley!
He can't hide for the entire fight. He will be there on Saturday.
Brian-Does Bradley have a legitimate shot if JMM does not slow down from his last fight?
I think it's hard to compare because Pacquiao and Marquez are so perfectly matched for each other. It doesn't matter if they were fighting at 126 pounds or 147 pounds -- they were each other's toughest out. I don't think what Marquez did against Pacquiao in their last two fights against each other necessarily shows us that Marquez is a legit welterweight. He was also, you could argue, two more punches from being stopped by Pacquiao at the time of the stunning knockout. Marquez is a true warrior and HOFer, but he's also 40. I think he has his moments Saturday, but ultimately falls short in a great fight.
Many thanks guys for another tremendous chat. Enjoy the fights on Saturday in what should be an epic main event between Bradley and Marquez. Follow me on Twitter @BCampbellESPN and be on the lookout tonight for our latest episode of "Making The Rounds" on the ESPN.com boxing page with special guest Timothy Bradley Jr.