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29 NOVEMBER 2014

 

ATE: Mayweather-Marquez Review, Money’s Weight & P4P, Cotto-Pacquiao, Fury-McDermott, Showtime at 168lbs & More


Floyd Mayweather Jr: HoganPhotos.com
Floyd Mayweather Jr: HoganPhotos.com

In today’s edition of Ask The Editor (ATE), we consider a number of comments from varying viewpoints on the Floyd Mayweather-Juan Manuel Marquez fight. Some readers demand that Mayweather be held accountable for his weigh-in and question his boxing pound for pound ranking. The upcoming Miguel Cotto-Manny Pacquiao fight gets some attention, we reconsider the Tyson Fury-John McDermott decision, continue to applaud Showtime’s super middleweight tournament and much more.

Name : Alex Pacey
Country : Australia
Your Question :
I wanted to raise a point that will no doubt be discussed in length post Mayweather vs. Marquez - weight. More specifically, the question of fights at ’catchweights’. Over the years, the number of weight classes has increased along with the number of governing bodies meaning it’s hard for the casual fan to know who’s champ at any given time. Additionally, it seems lately that the practise of fights at a catchweight has become increasingly prevalent. For me, this is a step too far and could really begin to erode the sport of boxing. It’s not so much that fighters choose to fight at a pre-agreed weight, it’s more that it allows for situations like this one where PBF comes in over the agreed catchweight knowing he’ll cop the fine and go into the ring with a huge (some say 10+ pounds) weight advantage. At this point, the integrity of the fight is done for many and for a fan who has watched a few fights the outcome starts to look all too predictable. PBF was always going to be quicker, more skilled and bigger - but now he’s way bigger. Really it was just a case of whether or not he’d win by stoppage at that point. All he’s done here is hugely minimise the risk at the expense of his integrity presumably in a bid to knock out Marquez. All a bit murky and predictable for me. Just for once I’d like to see him lay it all on the line and not stack the odds in his favour. Dreaming?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: I see your point, Alex. Mayweather Jr has been accused of stacking the odds in his favour before. But let’s not forget he only has the odds stacked in his favour because he is allowed to get away with it. Marquez was always going to be the smaller man, he knew it and so did everyone else. I just hope the pay was worth it for Marquez.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Alex, I think the reason we’re seeing more ‘catch weight’ fights is because as boxing becomes more marginalized and lacks marketable superstars, it’s getting harder and harder to make great fights within each division…sad, but true. I don’t like the fact that Mayweather disregarded the contracted weight vs. Marquez simply because he knew he could get away with it…if that’s true, that’s not cool, which probably answers the integrity portion of your questions. I don’t necessarily agree that Floyd has never put it on the line…guys like Corrales, Castillo, Judah, De La Hoya, Hatton and Marquez were not necessarily considered easy touches going into those fights.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: While Mayweather Jr was coming back to face the second best boxer in the world, your comments about weight are spot on Alex. But Marquez knew what he was committing to. Let’s see if Floyd will now face the winner of Manny Pacquiao-Miguel Cotto. That will be the test for his mojo. Is Mayweather back for boxing history, or is he just in it for the money?

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: Murky and predictable indeed, Alex. The extra weight added onto the already high hurdles that Marquez had to overcome to be competitive in the fight. I thought that the Mexican would have won rounds but, when you’re slower and much smaller I guess there can be only one outcome. Marquez did well to see out the twelve rounds, but it was a dastardly ploy by Mayweather if indeed he had no intention of achieving the agreed. To someone as proud and as noble as Marquez is, US$600,000 is not enough justice.

JERRY GLICK ANSWERS: Alex, you can see through brick walls. There can be little question that he allowed himself to lose money in order to gain an advantage. I don’t condone such strategy but sometimes greatness is partly built on gaining the advantage; remember when a young Ali was decked by Henry Cooper and trainer Angelo Dundee took a tiny tear in his glove and turned it into the Grand Canyon? While they got new gloves for Ali, his head was clearing. Strategy. I am a big fan of Floyd’s. It’s not that I like his attitude, it’s that he is a truly great boxer in the way that, Leonard, Robinson, and Ali were.

Name : Naeem Hussain
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
I watched the Mayweather-Marquez fight and it went pretty much as I thought it would (felt good to get a prediction right for a change). Marquez was just too small to cope with Floyd’s skills. I never quite understood how people could give JMM much of a chance. If you’re smaller, with a shorter reach, less foot speed and slower, I don’t think it’s possible to beat Money, despite you’re experience or intelligence. I think that’s why Mayweather hand-picked JMM. A good name, who he knew he could easily beat. Interesting how Floyd didn’t seem too interested in facing Shane Mosley in the post fight interview. What are your opinions on the chances of that fight happening, and the possible result? Sugar Shane might have more of a chance than Pacquiao.

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: I agree, Naeem, Mosley is the one fighter out there at the moment that could match Mayweather for skill and speed. He is also very strong and is still very much on top of his game. Not so sure Money will be rushing to make this fight, but I think he would do his credibility the world of good to fight Shane next. Great fight.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Naeem, I thought Marquez was a risky choice for Mayweather because you’re never sure how a guy will look after being away for two years, but to his credit, it doesn’t look like Floyd missed a beat. As far as Money’s next opponent, I think a lot depends on the outcome of Pac-Man vs. Cotto. If Pacquiao scores a KO, I gotta believe we’ll see Manny fighting Floyd next (I’m praying).

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: Mayweather was bigger of course, but he was still facing the second best boxer in the world. Floyd was still doing some very impressive things in the ring against Marquez. I’m with you, Mayweather was put off a little by Mosley’s challenge. Great fight. I want to see Mayweather face either Mosley or the winner of Pacquiao-Cotto in 2010. If he doesn’t take either one, then his critics’ complaints will gain further traction.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: I would LOVE to see a Mosley vs. Mayweather fight, Naeem and if Mayweather’s claims that legacy seeking victories is what he is now pursuing is true, then it should happen. It would be a great fight and I think Mosley has more than a good chance of upsetting the apple cart.

JERRY GLICK ANSWERS: I think there is a good chance of Mayweather meeting Mosley. I think that Sugar Shane has the best chance of all of beating Floyd. He is a consummate boxer as is Mayweather. The difference is that Mayweather is younger and faster. If they were closer in age it would be a heck of a confrontation. As is, I would love to watch these two craftsmen ply their trade against each other. Based on Shane’s performance against Cotto, I agree with you that he would do well against Pac-Man, and be more of a challenge than Pac would be for Mayweather.

Name : Daley Francis
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
Hi Legends! I never thought I would hear myself say this, but I actually felt for Money Mayweather against Marquez. Seriously, what does he have to do? Floyd came back from 21 months out and fought a man regarded by many as top three P4P. Marquez signed for the fight, HBO showed the fight. I think it was a little rich of Max Kellerman to start on the weight issue (before Oscar’s merry band of men gatecrashed the interview - I’m surprised B-Hop didn’t challenge Floyd!) I know why Floyd won’t fight Mosley, because Cotto already beat Mosley. Floyd isn’t stupid. He knows if he waits for Cotto vs. Pac-Man and fights the winner and wins - 100% accolades. Beating Mosley means nothing now, what did it really do for Cotto? Before the Margarito win, everyone presumed Shane was damaged goods, and he still might be. Margarito has always been a straight forward guy with a great chin. But when he fought his first genuine top-flight fighter? Eating right hands all night long. My final comment on the weight issue: Nobody ever questions B-Hop’s wins over Trinidad, Oscar, Winky and Pavlik - all smaller men putting weight on to fight him. We shouldn’t do it to Floyd either. Not unless he fights Rafael Marquez next!

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Daley, I was surprised how easily Mayweather handled Marquez. I really thought it would be more of a chess match for a while before Floyd’s size advantage eventually showed up. That being said, I agree, how can you knock Mayweather? The guy is 40-0. I mean, what else does he need to do besides take on Pac-Man?

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: Full credit to Mayweather for beating Marquez. I don’t have a problem with that fight. But, Floyd will be criticised if he doesn’t fight either Mosley or the winner of Cotto-Pacquiao next, and rightly so.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: I was one of the writers who gave Mayweather a degree of respect for fighting someone like Marquez. The Mexican is a great fighter and, sometimes, great fighters can leap up weight divisions and perform just as well. I must admit that the weight issue was a disgrace and highly, highly unprofessional from Mayweather – a guy apparently out to secure his standing in the sport as an all-time great. Mosley will test Mayweather in ways that Marquez and, to a lesser extent, Pacquiao can’t. He is fast, strong, technically brilliant and, most importantly, he is a welterweight.

JERRY GLICK ANSWERS: Maybe I’m nuts, but I just don’t see anyone in the welterweight merry-go-round who is damaged goods. Some claim Cotto is damaged from the Margarito mugging; others say that Sugar is shot. The only one who is not whole any more is Margarito, and that’s because he has shown that he can’t be trusted. Cotto and Shane are looking good as far as I can tell.

Name : Viel Mervic Nuestro
Country : Philippines
Your Question :
Hi SO team, what a boring Saturday fight night. As soon as the 2nd round ended, I knew the ending already. Marquez should stop trying to one-up Pacquiao now. As gallant and brave as he was, he is not a welterweight, and unlike Pacquiao, he didn’t carry his skills with him moving up and the fact is, he’s getting older. Still, kudos for a courageous fight. For those who are and will continue to be blinded by Floyd, how can you give credit or worse anoint him the best P4P fighter after dominating a much much smaller man? I mean, people are now talking that, “Floyd’s the best. Pacquiao never did what Mayweather did to Marquez”. Yeah, because Pacquiao fought Marquez on equal terms, while Mayweather won only a unanimous decision against a guy whom he has every advantage of, yet he still can’t or won’t KO the guy because of his risk-free safety-first boxing style. Plus, Floyd purposely missed the catchweight (I guess) since he knew the fight will still go on and refused to be weighed just before the night of the fight. And while Pacquiao is consistently fighting bigger and stronger guys, Floyd is continuously handpicking his opponents and worse, consistently fighting smaller guys he knows he will win against. Yes, Floyd’s a defensive genius and the best skilled fighter since Ray Leonard, but I believe he’s putting his own career in a quicksand. And, as for the meaning of the words Pound-for-Pound is concerned, isn’t Pacquiao defining its true meaning than what Floyd is doing? Are all of my observations reasonable?

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Viel, I’m in total agreement with you Sir. Hopefully we’ll get to see Mayweather vs. Pacquiao sometime in 2010 to clear up all the surrounding PFP controversy.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: Anyone think there will be a time many years in the future when Mayweather would do anything for an extra US$600,000 in his bank account? Tyson and Holyfield have shown that anyone can blow a fortune. Yes, Mayweather is to be criticised for not making weight, but he paid the financial penalty and Marquez and his team surely must have considered this a possibility when they signed for the fight? Winning and being the best skilled boxer does not always translate into exciting fights. Arturo Gatti was loved by fans because of his heart and courage, which he exhibited due to some of the technical boxing skills he was missing. But people still loved him. When it comes down to the fine art of boxing, Mayweather is a skilled exponent. That doesn’t mean everyone will appreciate him for being that. Many fans just want to see a toe to toe fight.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: I didn’t really have a problem with Mayweather fighting Marquez at the beginning, Viel. Marquez is a great fighter and he said he was more than up for the challenge – he drank his own pee for goodness sakes - arf. My main problem is the blatant disregard for the agreed weight that Mayweather displayed. It was crafty and wrong and he benefited from it. He’s still probably the best talent in the sport, but he keeps on allowing arguments and drama to taint his standing.

JERRY GLICK ANSWERS: Yes, Viel, you are reasonable. Your logic is in sync with the facts. Manny, by fighting bigger guys, is defining PFP, but boxing is not so simple. Styles make fights and talent makes winners. Mayweather is the most talented fighter today and he needs to prove it by taking a chance against someone whom the public will accept as a big challenge for him and with an obvious chance to beat Floyd. Someone who would be favored to win. Who???

Name : Michael Parsons
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
After Floyd Mayweather’s, in my opinion, a total shut out of JMM and the fact that Floyd will totally disregard any weight limit set, unless it’s the weight he wants to fight at, can you really see the Floyd, Pacquiao bout ever taking place? Personally, I can’t see it happening. If it does, I can only see the same result as the JMM bout, total shut out in Floyd’s favour. What do you guys think?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: Michael, if Pacquiao does beat Cotto, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao has to happen. The stumbling block as always will be who gets the lion share of the money. Maybe a 60/40 split to the winner could resolve that one.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Michael, I think Mayweather vs. Pac-Man will happen if Manny gets by Cotto. And, there’s no way Mayweather pitches another shutout in my opinion. Pacquiao will make Mayweather fight. I think the fight ends in a TKO victory for somebody.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: If Pacquiao defeats Cotto, the boxers would be leaving a lot of money on the table by not fighting. You would think there would be enough money involved to satisfy both Floyd and Manny. What eventuates will tell a lot about Mayweather. I think it happens after some extended negotiations. After Floyd’s comeback win, I’m not sure Pacquiao can beat him. Mayweather simply has the answer for any move made by his opponent. But if there is one man who can land the money punch, it is the Pac-man with those fast hands of his. My pick this far out would be Mayweather W.12, but I am very interested to see what tactics Pacquiao employs.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: Mayweather will have his hands full of he fights Pacquiao, Michael. He presents a much more dynamic, brazen and dangerous challenge than Marquez, so I wouldn’t use last Saturday as a yardstick.

JERRY GLICK ANSWERS: I said it before, Mayweather wins against Manny, Margarito, Cotto, Sugar, Clottey, etc. One man’s opinion.

Name : Philip Tann
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
Does there need to be more control over judging when a decision clearly goes against majority opinion such as the recent Tyson Fury fight?. Surely, if a fight could be reviewed and the judges or referee made to explain their verdict & even have decisions reversed, it would help to regain credibility in a sport that seems to be losing it big-time if Friday’s debacle is anything to go by?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: The British Boxing board have now ordered a rematch between Tyson Fury and John McDermott. Phillip, I think the British Boxing Board of Control have no choice but to have three judges in all title fights not just British. And that includes eliminators. I don’t think its right that one man has the power to make a decision in a title fight. Think about it? The referee has enough to do already controlling the fighters and enforcing the rules. For the record, I thought John McDermott won the fight by at least three rounds, but it was not the highway robbery some thought it was.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Philip, reviewing controversial fights is nothing new. Hell, in the 70’s there were prime time round-by-round specials on TV to review fights. I think there was an Ali-Jimmy review if I’m not mistaken. However, bad decisions are as old as boxing itself and I don’t see them being reversed…only dissected and talked about.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: I’m surprised that there has not been a push much earlier to remove the UK British system of the referee solely scoring the fight. The referee is there to referee the fight. Get three judges in there at ringside to score. Um...not that it has always removed every problem.

JERRY GLICK ANSWERS: All sporting competitions have their version of bad calls. In baseball it’s the strike zone & who got to the base first, the runner or the ball? In football it’s was he in bounds or out? Did he have possession or not? In boxing was it low, did he beat the count? Who deserved the decision? Sometimes you have to live with it and there are times when something is so egregious that it bares a second look.

Name : Gary Young
Country : United Kingdom
Your Question :
What are your thoughts on the upcoming super middleweight tournament? I have to admit I am a little disappointed that Sakio Bika is not involved as I think he is more deserving of his chance than either Andre Dirrell or Andre Ward and brings more to the table. However, on the whole I am really looking forward to the tournament and believe the Europeans will continue to dominate this division with Mikkel Kessler coming out on top.

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: Hi Gary. You’re not Scottish junior-middleweight Gary Young are you? I’d have like to see Sakio Bika in the tournament as well, but as Showtime are bank rolling the tournament it makes sense for the American participation. I agree, Kessler for me, but if Abraham can carry the extra weight at super-middle he could surprise a few people.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Gary, I’m totally excited about the 168lbs tournament and I like Ward to upset your man Kessler in the first round…picking the home-towner in Oakland. Kessler is the “goods,” I’ll agree, so hopefully and most importantly, we’ll see an exciting fight!

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: A standing ovation to Showtime and all the boxers, managers and promoters involved. This is boxing at its best in a new tournament format. Agreed, Sakio Bika should be in there, but Showtime needed some Americans in there to justify the expense. One again everyone is ducking the “Scorpion”. Not surprising, considering Joe Calzaghe said Bika was the most physically demanding battle of his career. The rest of us may want to see Bika in there, but I think there would be a boxer or two who is glad he ain’t part of the round robin format! I see Kessler vs. Abraham in the final.

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: Gary, I think Bika would have made an interesting addition to the tournament. For me, Kessler is the man to beat right now but keep an eye out for Abraham as well. Overall, I agree with your assessment – a European fighter should win it.

JERRY GLICK ANSWERS: I think that Allan Green could have been included too, but you can’t include everyone. They made certain choices and they were good ones as well. As far as who will win, maybe Kessler or maybe Andre. Which Andre? I don’t know.

Name : Ndumiso Mbele
Country : South Africa
Your Question :
How does the team feel about Cotto putting his WBO 147 lbs strap on the line against Pacquiao in a contest contracted at a catch-weight?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: I expect Cotto is not happy at having to fight at catchweight but saying that he must be earning big money and it’s a fight he stands a good chance of winning. If he does win, Cotto becomes a very marketable commodity indeed.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Ndumiso, I’m okay with the catch weight scenario for Cotto-Pacquiao. I think it’s going to be a gruelling, exciting fight while it lasts.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: It’s all about making the fight and ultimately if Cotto wins, he will be glad he made the concession to get the fight. He could have stood his ground and refused the condition, but then Pacquiao may have looked to another fight. Would Cotto have wanted that?

MICHAEL NORBY ANSWERS: I think Pacquiao will win, simple as that.

JERRY GLICK ANSWERS: I think it will be a great fight and I look forward to it. As to my thoughts on catch weight, not too in love with the idea, but it works in the case of Pac-Man quite well

Name : Mozes Yehudaioff
Country : Canada
Your Question :
Any info on what has happened to Israeli boxer Roman Greenberg? Did he decide to retire after his loss last year?

CLIVE BERNATH ANSWERS: Hi Mozes. I’m told Roman does intend to fight again and is training at home in Israel. He has not retired, but to be honest with you, unless he decides to come back to England or train in the US, very soon I’m not sure we will see him fight again.

GREG JUCKETT ANSWERS: Mozes, like many promising fighters who experience a shocking first defeat, I think Greenberg is taking his time to re-evaluate his ring career before getting back into the gym, so I’m guessing things are still on hold for now.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: I am reminded that the great Bernard Hopkins lost the very first fight of his career and did not fight again for sixteen months. Maybe Roman is re-tooling for a big comeback?

Name : Garret Smith
Country : Australia
Your Question :
For Paul Upham, seeing as you are probably the No.1 boxing journalist in Australia, I was wondering if you could please tell me why you believe Jamie Pittman did not get a chance to compete in The Contender Australia. I am an avid boxing fan and a long time fan of Jamie. I think it is absolutely criminal that he has been deprived of a chance to showcase his skills to the country and possibly have a shot at Anthony Mundine. Jamie is one of the best boxers Australia has ever seen. He boasts an
amateur record of 137 fights for 111 wins and just 26 losses. He was the Amateur Boxing Association champion in 1999 (67kg), in 2002 (71kg) and in 2003 (75kg). He represented Australia at the 2002 Commonwealth Games as a middleweight. He is a three-time Oceania champion and in 2004 was selected as the Captain of the boxing team for the Athens Olympics. Jamie has won a number of regional titles including the Australian super middleweight title, the WBF super middleweight world title, the PABA middleweight title, the WBO Asia Pacific middleweight title and the WBA Pan African middleweight title. For Jamie to be able to attain these achievements is absolutely incredible and is up there with some of the best boxers in the world. As a professional, Pittman has had a total of 19 fights for 18 wins and only the 1 loss. That loss coming to the German star Felix Sturm. Sturm is a three-time world champion and has stepped into the ring with some of the biggest names in boxing including Randy Griffin and Oscar De La Hoya. Jamie managed to last seven rounds with the German maestro finally succumbing to a nasty cut over his right eye. This was a huge
achievement for Jamie after only having a handful of professional fights. So there you go, Jamie obviously has the boxing talent to mix it with the best in the business, something The Contender apparently prides itself on. Bringing the best boxers together and fighting it out for the grand prize. It has been documented that Jamie did not have an interesting enough story to make it into The Contender and that he would not appeal to the audience. Jamie has overcome a massive amount of personal suffering in getting to where he is today. He was raised in a housing commission and had it a lot tougher than most. Jamie is a foster carer for DOCS and is as passionate about helping the children he works with he is with boxing. Jamie’s work ethic in and out of the boxing ring is unimaginable. Jamie has worked extremely hard for everything in his life and to be robbed of a once in a lifetime opportunity like this is immoral. The individuals involved in boxing in Australia, the individuals involved in The Contender and Anthony Mundine and the people in his camp, if in fact they had anything to do with it should be ashamed of themselves. Australia wants to see the best fighters fighting the best fighters and because of politics Jamie has been denied this opportunity.

PAUL UPHAM ANSWERS: You sold me Garret. I can’t explain it.


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