I’m not big on namecalling, but you are a jerkface if you are one of the jerkface jerky weird weirdos looking for any excuse to crap on the Super Six tournament that you can. Here Showtime has pulled a rabbit out of its hat to keep the tournament going, and it was already a miracle that it even came together from the start, and you’re being a weird jerkface about it?
Glen Johnson is an inspired choice to replace Mikkel Kessler and battle Allan Green Nov. 6 in one of the last bouts before the semi-finals. True, as a light heavyweight up there in the years, Johnson runs the risk of draining himself trying to make the super middleweight limit, but you got any better ideas? (I might have picked Sakio Bika, but his father recently passed away and he turned down the chance.) And won’t most people pick Johnson to beat Green in that fight? The guy came just a hair away from beating younger, stronger Tavoris Cloud in his last bout. It’s not like they’re dropping Antwun Echols in there haphazardly the way light heavyweight Joe Spina’s team is doing as a replacement for Ray Oliveira this weekend as part of their Find Any Opponent We Can That Gives Us A Great Chance Of Presiding Over A Hemotoma World Tour. And, word is, the Super Six folk are about to announce a site for Andre Ward-Andre Dirrell Nov. 27, resolving one of the previous hang-ups.
What do you people want from life? What don’t you like about interesting fights in the context of a tournament of some of the best fighters in a division meeting in the ring? What bothers you about dramatic twists and turns, or high-risk bouts where a fighter getting his next big payday is heavily contingent — as it is from a tourney points standpoint for Johnson and Green — on one big knockout? If I could, I would start a charity aimed at separating the jerk conjoined to your face, because it is pitiful to see it grafted to your visage so.
I hope you choke on this logo. But not to the point that you die. Just so it’s uncomfortable for you.
(And, yeah, Showtime’s bantamweight tourney is excellent, too. It’s four terrific fighters in four terrific matchups — Yonnhy Perez, Joseph Agbeko, Vic Darchinyan, Abner Mares — and it’s easier to hold together than the Super Six tourney structure, but I like the Super Six structure just the same.)
Speaking of bantamweights, the two people who said “no” to the bantam tourney, Nonito Donaire and Fernando Montiel, are now enmeshed in a two-fight deal each where they will finally meet in the first quarter of 2011 assuming they win one bout each first, according to Top Rank. Of course, Top Rank has promised us that fight many, many times before, and the first quarter of 2011 would be two years since the first time.
There’s a lot of griping about welterweight Andre Berto’s next potential opponent, some of it justifiable. Let’s talk about who he “should” fight, first, and whether it is conceivable, in order: Floyd Mayweather (unavailable in the short term, managed by Berto manager Al Haymon, Haymon never puts his fighters in against one another); Manny Pacquiao (unavailable in the short term, probably could never be bothered with an opponent outside Top Rank who sells as few tickets as Berto, may be moving up to 154 pounds to stay); Paul Williams (unavailable in the short term, managed by Haymon, may be staying put at 154 or 160); Miguel Cotto (may be staying at 154, Berto’s team — according to Cotto promoter Top Rank — demanded an undeserved better than 50-50 split earlier this year); or Mike Jones (Berto’s team said “no”). The Cotto story, if true, is ridiculous. The Jones story is true, and ridiculous. I left out Shane Mosley because that fight’s ship has sailed with Berto demanding another insane 50-50 split earlier this year, and nobody wants that fight anymore anyway, and I left out Joshua Clottey, because he’s moving up in weight. So who does that leave? It leaves the kind of people Berto’s team is talking about, in my order of preference: Jo Jo Dan, Freddy Hernandez, Sebastian Lujan and Selcuk Aydin. They are all roughly the same, plus Aydin’s people have turned the fight down because they wanted more cash. And, really, I wouldn’t mind seeing Berto fight any of them — they’d be pretty good action fights I bet. But if the question is whether HBO should pay $1.25 million for any of those fights, as it reportedly is doing for Berto-Hernandez, the answer is another “no.” At best, it’s an extremely cheap supporting bout. Berto has screwed his career up in the sense that he could be making a lot more money than he is now if he’d struck while the welterweight division was hot, but I guess if he’s happy making good money fighting lesser opponents, he’s gonna have to stay that way, because that’s his only option for the near future unless he moves down to 140 lbs. (which I’d like to see but he’s strangely resistant to) or up to 154 lbs. (which is ridiculous — he’s little for a welter).
Light heavyweight Chad Dawson and Tavoris Cloud might meet in the first quarter of next year. That’s another good, potential fight for the first quarter. Dawson, for all his flaws, has talent, and Cloud, for all his flaws, has some talent and is fun. It’s a nice matchup of young blood at 175.
Golden Boy Promotions wants to see Mayweather fight Amir Khan. One of these days, maybe, I say. Let’s see if Mayweather can stay out of jail after these latest domestic violence accusations play out, and let’s see if Khan can make it past Marcos Maidana and the other top junior welterweights, and let’s wait until Mayweather-Pacquiao happens, because after that — the only fight involving Mayweather that anyone should want to see — the options for Mayweather are going to thin considerably.
BoxingScene’s Jake Donovan wrote here about a positive trend of upcoming pay-per-view undercards not sucking so hard. I’m not quite as enthused as he is about some of them, but the trend is undeniably moving in the right direction. One of the things that’s suprising is that Top Rank is behind a couple of the improved undercards, after being behind some of the worst undercards in all of boxing. Assuming they don’t do the ol’ bait-and-switch on us Dec. 4 — a Top Rank specialty — the undercard for the 157-pound bout between Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. and Alfonso Gomez looks quite good, even if the main event doesn’t. Lightweight challenge-avoider Humberto Soto might take on actual challenge Urbana Antillon and serial non-challenge-getter Donaire might take on actual challenge Wladimir Sidorenko. Top Rank says those fights are a done deal, and just for kicks, exciting lightweight Brandon Rios might take on veteran journeyman Dorin Spivey.
The fullness of that card likely bumps the 154-pound bout between Vanes Martirosyan and Pawel Wolak to Dec. 18, which is good in the sense that it’ll likely air on the Fox Sports-related channels that don’t cost $50. Martirosyan wins that bout, obviously, but it should be fun while it lasts.
The aforementioned Jones, assuming he wins his fight against Jesus Soto Karass on the Pacquiao-Antonio Margarito undercard, could then square off with Kell Brook, another very talented youngster, in a title eliminator. I dig it. That’s a nice fight.
If serial heavyweight victimizer and heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko doesn’t fight Derek Chisora Dec. 11, he’ll victimize Alexander Dimitrenko instead.
Junior middleweight James Kirkland is out of jail and might fight Dec. 11. He did an interesting interview here. I think some aspects of his story are dubious: Why did he feel so compelled by the emergency of defending his family that he bought a gun, but when he found out he shouldn’t have it as a convicted felon, he goes back to do some risky nonsense test of the law-abidingness of the person who sold him the gun? It’s pertinent because he’ll need to be fully rehabbed if he’s going to stay in the ring rather than ending up in jail for the third time, and if he’s not coming clean, he’s probably not rehabbed. But his potential December opponents are of the not-dangerous variety, as might be expected of a contender just getting back into the ring after a long layoff. They are Delray Raines, the reported frontrunner, as well as Derrick Findley and Francisco Sierra, with Sierra the most interesting because he usually fights at 168 and is a big puncher. Which is why Sierra’s not the frontrunner.
Whoever wins between Zab Judah and Lucas Matthysse will then fight Kaizer Mabuza for a shot at one of Devon Alexander’s 140-pound belts, unless Victor Ortiz is fighting Mabuza for it. Unless Alexander is stripped. I’ve lost track and don’t feel like looking it up anymore to settle it. Just imagine some of those guys maybe fighting each other.
If you don’t like Hector Camacho, Jr. — and there are a lot of you/us — then you’ll be getting a gift-wrapped present Oct. 29 should mega-punching middleweight/super middleweight David Lemieux fight Camacho next, as is under discussion.
New junior lightweight titlist and newly popular Ricky Burns could fight Matt Zegan next, on Dec. 4. Hey, I was just making fun of Matt Zegan!
Loathsome perpetual weight-misser Joan Guzman is fighting Chris Fernandez at junior welterweight Nov. 5, or at 175 lbs., depending on how much Guzman cares about trying to make the proper weight this time. As the gritty journeyman Fernandez is a minor favorite of mine, and Guzman is among my least favorite couple boxers, I would give anything to see Fernandez win that bout, but it won’t happen.
Roy Jones’ cruiserweight bout with Danny Santiago scheduled for Oct. 7 is off due to a Jones injury officially, unless it’s off because nobody cares unofficially.
Back to Spina-Echols for a second. Spina’s team had to look pretty hard to find a more dangerous mismatch than Oliveira, and they didn’t quite get there with Echols. That’ll have to wait until next time. For Spina’s next opponent, I suggest the little fellow below. Tip o’ the pen to friend of the site Corey Erdman for the vid.
(Round and Round sources: ESPN; BoxingScene; Fanhouse; Maxboxing; Yahoo; news releases)