Quick Jabs: Boxing Thrives In Denmark; Top Rank Acknowledges Antonio Margarito Cheated Against Miguel Cotto?; Teeth That Cleave Boxing Gloves; More

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We pause from the all-consuming Floyd Mayweather-Juan Manuel Marquez blogging (especially because of how disgusting that fight now is to me, per the blog entry just below) to catch up with what’s happening in the rest of the boxing world. There are some other fights this weekend, including tonight; Acelino Freitas and Micky Ward are having some scrapes with the law; there is a a picture above, just because, of heavyweight boxer Vitali Klitschko hanging out with heavyweight actor Denzel Washington this week; plus there’s what’s in the headline and more.

We’ll do a Round and Round tomorrow afternoon, looking at all the fights in the works this week.


Quick Jabs

It ain’t anything major, but if you need to scratch your boxing itch before this weekend’s pay-per-view, you can catch either show tonight on ESPN2 or Showtime. Junior featherweight super-talent Guillermo Rigondeaux headlines the special ESPN2 event, and he’ll meet in just his third fight a boxer with 71 fights himself, Giovanni Andrade. Andrade did get stopped by in the 1st round by Juan Manuel Lopez not so long ago, but it’s basically unheard of for someone with Rogondeaux’s pro experience — no matter his extensive amateur background in Cuba — to be fighting someone like that. A bunch of other Cuban exiles do their thing on the undercard. On Showtime, American heavyweight prospect Travis Kauffman — nickname “GW Hope,” as in “great white” — takes on Tony Grano in a bout the network is hyping as another step up, but based on his record alone it’s hard for me to tell. I’m intrigued by Kauffman, but not sold in any way. On the undercard, bantamweight Chris Avalos, who was fun and good in his ShoBox debut recently, takes on Giovanni Caro, last seen giving featherweight Bernabe Concepcion a tough bout. That’s a step up. Then, Saturday in Germany on ARD, Sebastian Sylvester and Giovanni Lorenzo square off in what shapes up as a fun fight between television-friendly middleweights trying to snag an alphabet title belt. That, officially, makes it a three-Giovanni weekend…

I’m already about as sick of Mayweather and his clan as I can get, which is why I didn’t so much as mention until now, not even in a Tweet, that Mayweather Sr. had accused Manny Pacquiao of using steroids. Nor had I mentioned Jr.’s accusation that HBO’s Emmanuel Steward was an “Uncle Tom.” As wild claims go, those two certainly stand impressively at the fore of boxing today. Sr. is probably going to get hit with a lawsuit over it, rightfully so, and that Mayweather said something as nasty about Steward as “Uncle Tom” in the same interview where he said “the country needs to be more positive” shows what a reality-free zone the Mayweathers live in. In other Mayweather antics, he got a car repossessed, giving lie to the other false claim made on HBO’s “24/7″ series that “my shit’s paid for.” I’m really bordering on ignoring this junk from him very, very soon…

In the latest sign that boxing is dead, nearly three-quarters of the people who were watching their televisions in Denmark last weekend chose to watch super middleweight Mikkel Kessler even though he was in a fight he was guaranteed to win. In all, about a third of the populace tuned in. When are we all going to get the hint? Our sport is done, finito, and all the millions and millions of people who watch boxing around the world every weekend are weakly stirring the remaining embers because there’s something wrong with us…

This was a bit of a shocker: In the Top Rank press materials for Pacquiao-Miguel Cotto, according to the sometimes-reliable Michael Marley, the promoter said Cotto had “never lost a fair fight.” That implies very strongly, since Cotto has only lost once, that disgraced welterweight and Top Rank stablemate Antonio Margarito had loaded his gloves for the Cotto fight as well as the Shane Mosley fight, a shocking turn. Since Top Rank boss Bob Arum had called the California commission that took Margarito’s license away because of racism, I wonder what this now means about his own company? Is it that they have suddenly become racist themselves? Were they just slinging such terms around irresponsibly and tarnishing upstanding (and factually correct) commissioners out of revenge for screwing Top Rank out of a cash cow, and now that they know they won’t be getting him back, they’re backing the horse (Cotto) that they should have backed in the first place? Or is it, as Marley says, that Top Rank is turning its back on a fighter who is “rumored” to be making a move to a different promoter? Either way, it’s kind of disgusting. One more note on Pacquiao-Cotto — it’s going up against another UFC event scheduled for Nov. 14, but this time, I’d be really surprised if the UFC didn’t get crushed…

If you’re a Jorge Linares fan and can’t stand the fact that the junior lightweight mega-talent hasn’t fought much in America, you should be pleased by this report that Linares could be fighting more in the U.S. by working out some kind of deal with Golden Boy or Top Rank. Fantastic if true…

There wasn’t much to be learned from Tuesday’s card in Mexico headlined by Jorge Arce other than that Arce most definitey should retire. The junior bantamweight never was very fast, he never was good on defense, but he looked worse on either and his power, which sometimes bails him out against more skilled guys, never came close to doing so against Simphiwe Nongqayi. Nongqayi can fight a little, sure, but Arce was just lost in there and has looked on the decline for a while. If you love Arce — as a boxing fan, how couldn’t you? — you probably want him badly to call it quits. It’s been a tremendous career. There are boxers who are beloved, boxers who are accomplished, and boxers who are both, and Arce surely was beloved and accomplished more than someone with his talent should have…

Semi-retired boxer Acelino Freitas is being investigated in a murder case, and professes his innocence. Retired boxer Micky Ward was acquitted in an assault case involving his wife’s stepfather. As with all crime allegations against boxers, I know nothing and offer no additional comment. I only pass it along…

This award-winning photo exhibit, on boxers before and after fights, is kinda neat…

Julio Cesar Chavez reportedly owes $12 million in back taxes. Wouldn’t it be nice if boxers and ex-boxers could figure out a way to steer clear of tax troubles?…

That controversial decision win for heavyweight Tyson Fury is being investigated by the regulatory body over in the U.K. I’d be surprised if it were overturned…

WTF.

About Tim Starks

Tim is the founder of The Queensberry Rules and co-founder of The Transnational Boxing Rankings Board (http://www.tbrb.org). He lives in Washington, D.C., where he is a staff writer for CQ Roll Call.

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