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ATE: Can Pacman & RJJ win, Tarver’s Mouth, Pavlik vs. Abraham and More

Does Jones have a chance against Calzaghe?
Does Jones have a chance against Calzaghe?

In today’s edition of Ask The Editor (ATE), we take a look from a different perspective at the Oscar De La Hoya vs. Manny Pacquiao and Joe Calzaghe vs. Roy Jones Jr boxing matches. Antonio Tarver’s mouth gets a mention, we consider a possible Kelly Pavlik vs. Arthur Abraham middleweight war and more.

Name : Thomas Peak
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
Hi guys, I am flabbergasted to read so many experts and boxing people predicting that De La Hoya is going to bash up Mr. Pacquiao. That is the most ridiculous prediction I have heard since many so called experts came out with the prediction that Tyson would beat Lewis all those years ago. If Oscar De La Hoya receives anything less than abject humiliation at the hands of Manny then I will eat my hat!!

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: I suggest you order a side salad to go with the hat, Thomas. I’m sure the hat will taste much better

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Thomas, I think Pacquiao-De La Hoya is competitive for a while, but gradually De La Hoya will begin to take over in the second half of the fight.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: I agree that there seems to be a lot of people predicting a very, very easy De La Hoya win. If Oscar doesn’t hurt Pacquiao in the first half of the fight, I could see Pacquiao winning rounds as De La Hoya begins to tire.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: There can be no comparison between those two fights, Thomas. Both Tyson and Lewis fought in the same division for their entire careers and there was, however foolish it may look in hindsight, still that menacing aura of sheer power about Tyson and a niggling question mark over Lewis’ chin. Pacquiao is simply too small to be fighting top 147lb fighters. If he pulls it off I’ll be the first to put my hand up, but I just can’t see him winning this fight.

Name : Sean Duffy
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
When I first read about the Calzaghe vs. Jones Jr and the Pacman vs. De la Hoya fights, the first thing that came into my head was that all parties involved wanted to get their biggest ever payday and secure their financial futures. More recently though, I’ve been starting to think that Jones Jr and Pacman have been, for lack of a better word, bought by Calzaghe & De La Hoya so that they can massage their own egos and have a P4P No.1 on their resume. At his best, Jones Jr beats Calzaghe every time without a shadow of a doubt and I think at 135lbs or below the same applies with Pacman winning. Both De La Hoya and Calzaghe are tarnishing boxing by taking opponents so far out of their comfort zone its unreal. Roy Jones Jr, as great as he was, hasn’t beaten a top ten ranked fighter in 5 years, how on earth can he be expected to be competitive against a very good boxer in Calzaghe? Pacman will probably give up nearly 20lbs to De la Hoya on fight night and that is far too much at that weight. De La Hoya and Calzaghe have never had the skills to become P4P No.1 by taking on and beating the best in their prime. De La Hoya tried and came up short. Calzaghe was too scared to lose his ’0’ and only fought the best around him when they had aged past 40. I know fighters should look to secure their financial future but surely these fights can’t be good for boxing?

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Sean, in theory I can see where you’re coming from, but De La Hoya’s first choice was a rematch with Floyd Mayweather Jr before he settled on Pacquiao. In the case of Calzaghe-Jones Jr, I think Calzaghe is going to have his hands full on November 8, so things may not seem exactly as they appear.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: I can’t imagine that De La Hoya would have taken the fight with Pacquiao if it wasn’t pound for pound No.1. Greg is correct, De La Hoya was originally going to rematch Mayweather. I think there is actually more pressure on De La Hoya to win. It is going to look really bad for the Golden Boy if the Pacman finds a way to eat him up. As for Calzaghe, I have stated before in ATE that after finally proving himself as one of the best boxers in the world, he decides to fight an over the hill Jones Jr. Don’t be fooled by his win over an equally past his best Felix Trinidad, Roy is finished as an elite fighter.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: Fights at different weights or eras would definitely play out differently between this quartet, Sean. A lightweight Pacman vs. a younger lightweight De La Hoya would be a fantastic battle and a 168lbs RJJ vs. Calzaghe match-up, say seven or eight years ago would be extremely interesting.

Name : Danny Johnson
Country : Australia
Your Question :
From what I can gather, most of you at SecondsOut favour Joe Calzaghe to beat Roy Jones Jr. in their scheduled November 8 match at MSG but, having followed most of Roy’s career, and been witness to several of Calzaghe’s bouts, I am not so sure it is going to be as one sided as some of you may believe. Granted, Calzaghe has fought and beaten the everybody who has stepped in to the ring with him, and a few superstars have been among his victims, but in subscribing to the theory that any boxer is as only as good as his last fight, then you’d have to say with a fair degree of confidence that Roy has as good a chance as anybody has of beating Calzaghe and I wouldn’t be surprised if Roy was to win a majority, or even unanimous, decision just as I wouldn’t be surprised if Joe won a points verdict. The only difference I can think of relevant to the result is that a knockout could be on the agenda too and I think we all agree on who would be the one being temporarily removed from his senses, and it probably wouldn’t be Joe. What are your thoughts?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: I must be in the minority as well, Danny. I will not be surprised at all to see Roy beat Joe. I was shocked at how a 43 year-old Hopkins took Joe to the wire. Joe keeps saying he had an off night but Hopkins exploited Joe’s limitations and Roy can be just as cagey. I won’t be surprised if Roy spoils the party.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Danny, the longer the fight goes on November 8 the more I think it favors Jones Jr. If it’s a close fight, the New York crowd will start to really get behind Jones Jr. and I think he might win a decision over Calzaghe.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: Danny, in his prime as the best boxer in the world, I admired Roy as much as anyone. But there is no doubt that Jones is nowhere near what he once was. Calzaghe will win this fight very comfortably. There is an interesting comparison between Jones and Hopkins. At their best, Jones was the better fighter with his freakish, speed and movement. But when he slowed down in hid mid to late 30’s, he faded fast. For Hopkins, as he aged, he had his technique and skills to fall back on, which has allowed him to have a much longer sustained career at the top level.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: I agree that Jones looked pretty good in his last outing, but that was against Felix Trinidad at 170lbs, David. I’m sure you would agree that Tito is not close to the threat that a bigger, faster and stronger Joe Calzaghe poses to RJ.

Name : Alan Richards
Country : USA
Your Question :
I haven’t seen too much of IBF middleweight champion Arthur Abraham, but he looks damn tough. I’d really like to see Abraham v Kelly Pavlik. How do you see that fight outcome?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: I’d like to see that fight as well, Alan. I think once Abraham has fought in the states a few more time this is a fight that could happen. At the moment I’d have to say I’d fancy Pavlik.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Alan, if the fight is in the United States, I like Pavlik on points. If the fight is in Germany, I like Abraham on points.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: Pavlik vs. Abraham is one of leading fights on my list that must be made in 2009. Two undefeated knockout punchers battling for the middleweight championship of the world, what is not to like? I don’t see it going the distance. One of them is getting knocked out.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: I think it is an extremely competitive fight, Alan. I love Abraham’s defense and how he can just explode to life and savage an opponent when you least expect it. On the other side you have an even more monstrous puncher and a fighter who I consider to be the best finisher in the sport. Not sure how it would end, but I hope we get to find out.

Name : Bill Pickering
Country : USA
Your Question :
Shane Mosley might have stopped Mayorga, but it is clear at the age of the 37 that he has slipped a bit, not that he won’t beat a lot of guys out there. What do you see as the best big fight for Shane now?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: Lets be fair about this, Shane is entitled to be past his best at age 37, especially after such a successful career. I’d like to see him try and crack Vernon Forrest.
GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Bill, I think Mosley is headed into third fights against Vernon Forrest and/or Oscar De La Hoya.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: I want to see Mosley fight Vernon Forrest for a third time.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: Bill, I expected Mosley to handle Mayorga a lot more convincingly than he did. Mayorga had shown a lot of overall improvement when he defeated Fernando Vargas in his previous fight and he continued that into last weekend’s contest. I still think that Mosley would give anyone fits in the 147/154lb range including Paul Williams and Antonio Margarito, so I would go straight after one of those guys before it does get too late.

Name : Robert Parker
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
I heard Mosley was 10-1 on to beat Mayorga by TKO or stoppage, is this correct?

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: I think that was pretty much the case and it wasn’t surprising to me. I always thought that the most likely outcome was a stoppage for Mosley. What did surprise me was that it took him so long. At such crappy odds, I’m sure there were a few people biting the old nails in that 12th round having had to lay down a pretty penny to ensure a decent payout.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Robert, I’m not sure if those were the odds of a Mosley KO win, but I didn’t expect Mosley to stop Mayorga.

Name : Patrick Rourke
Country : Canada
Your Question :
I see that Antonio Tarver is shooting his mouth off again. Looks like he thinks he is in another movie scene instead of a real fight. I can’t wait for Chad Dawson to shut his big mouth. Please tell me it is going to happen and we won’t have to listen to Tarver anymore?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: Patrick, if the very best Tarver shows up and Dawson is not at his best I feel Tarver wins.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Patrick, I’m not sure who wins Tarver-Dawson. I think Tarver’s best days are behind him, but I’m not overly impressed with Dawson.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: If Dawson wants to push himself forward as the best at 175lbs, he needs to beat a Tarver who is past his best days. Tarver is talking a good fight, but it will be interesting to see what he can do against the younger Dawson.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: I wouldn’t take Tarver too lightly if I were a Chad Dawson fan, Patrick. He is a curious fighter sometimes but he gets the job done and I actually favor him (slightly) to hand Dawson his first loss when they meet up.

Name : James Linley
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
Can you think of a high profile fighter who has retired without ever being knocked down?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: That’s a good question. I think Marvin Hagler is one. There was one so called knockdown against Juan Roldan, but that was highly disputed to say the least.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: The most impressive to me is former heavyweight tough guy George Chuvalo. The Canadian went through 93 fights without a painful trip to the canvas and that includes battles with Floyd Patterson, Muhammad Ali, George Foreman and Joe Frazier. Impressive.

Name : Davey Hayes
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
Hi guys, just a message about Amir Khan. Before you all groan, I was just wondering what your opinions are on Khan’s possible next fight (Dec 13) being on PPV? Now, I’m not too bothered either way because I didn’t subscribe to the Prescott fight on principal and won’t lose any sleep if I have to listen to another Khan fight on the radio. My point is, surely putting this fight on PPV is a little, sadistic? Maybe that’s a strong word but lets face it, the only people who are going to pay extra to watch Khan fight now are people who will be hoping to see him get pasted again. Since the Prescott battering, Khan haters have poured out of the woodwork, and it would seem to me the only way Warren and Sky could justify making the fight PPV from a business perspective would be to tap in on this negativity. In other words, make one last goldmine out of Khan by putting him in with someone who has a good KO record and could do a repeat of what Prescott did. I suspect however, that Khan’s next fight will be a confidence builder against a feather-fisted, china-chinned has been, but surely such a fight warrants no place on a PPV now that Khan has been exposed? Potential massacre in front of a baying crowd or a rip off walkover? Either way, it won’t be a proud night for British Boxing

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: I totally agree, Davey. Sadistic is not too strong a word at all. But I can assure you if Sky lost big money on the last Khan PPV event and I suspect they did, I can’t see them doing it again. It’s not good business is it?

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Davey, I agree with what you’re saying. Either way, a guy with less than 20 fights and who just got knocked out in the first round, doesn’t deserve a slot on a PPV event.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: Khan will be built back up again and has at least one more PPV fight in him, when he steps faces someone who can really punch again – if that ever happens.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: Khan’s next few fights will need to both grow his confidence and allow him to work on his game without real worry. I don’t think you will get a PPV worthy fight from Amir Khan until maybe 2010. I really do think he can recover and make his mark if he is properly handled.

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