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14 NOVEMBER 2018

Where am I? Home Columns Paul Upham

Christmas comes a little early this Year

Anyone for Barrera vs. Morales IV in 2006?
Anyone for Barrera vs. Morales IV in 2006?

By Paul Upham: Christmas seems to arrive a little earlier every year. Last week my children wanted to put up the festive season decorations at home. I asked them to wait till December 1, but they didn't listen as usual and started pulling the tinsel out of the storage boxes anyway. The final straw was my next door neighbour Trevor out in the summer heat today putting up his extensive range of Christmas lights on his house. Who I am to stand in the way of this tidal wave of feeling that Christmas is here?

Time to make my list for Santa Claus of boxing matches that I want him to deliver for 2006. It's not always about world title unification and not always about the best facing the best. What counts most is the creation of intriguing contests where you don't know the winner beforehand, with a better than average chance that it will be a real hardcore fans fight.

Heavyweight - Mike Tyson vs. Antonio Tarver: With the division in such a poor state, we need an unusual contest from left field that is going to ignite some interest. Tyson vs. Tarver meets that criteria. It has that car crash waiting to happen feel about it. Backup fight - Hasim Rahman vs. James Toney: The pre-fight trash talk alone would be better than some of the pay-per-view matches that have been seen this year.

Cruiserweight - Wayne Braithwaite vs. Carl Thompson: Two warriors with knockout punches who always come to fight. Backup Fight - Jean Marc Mormeck vs. O'Neil Bell: Already slotted in for January 7, 2006.

Light Heavyweight - Tomasz Adamek vs. Paul Briggs: Their first fight last May was a classic bloody twelve round battle. Backup Fight - Roy Jones Jr. vs. Bernard Hopkins II: Regardless of who wins Taylor/Hopkins II, this is the fight I always wanted to see.

Super Middleweight - Jeff Lacy vs. Joe Calzaghe: The fight is scheduled for March 4, 2006 at the MEN Arena in Manchester, UK. I'll believe it after the opening bell with both boxers still in the ring. Can I get a bet on that it won't happen? Backup Fight - Danny Green vs. Anthony Mundine: Fans in Australia certainly know the hype surrounding this local grudge match.

Middleweight - Felix Trinidad vs. Oscar De La Hoya II: After giving his fans so many great memories over the years, no one wants to remember Tito Trinidad for his shut out loss to Winky Wright. If Oscar is going to fight in 2006, let it be in a super fight with Trinidad. Backup Fight - Winky Wright vs. winner Taylor/Hopkins II: If Winky gets past Sam Soliman on December 3, there is only one fight for him in 2006.

Junior Middleweight - Ricardo Mayorga vs. Fernando Vargas: Has fiery explosion written all over it. Backup Fight - Ike Quartey vs. Vernon Forrest: Two veterans with great jabs.

Welterweight - Floyd Mayweather vs. Zab Judah: Speed versus speed. The trash talk before the fight would rank second only to Rahman-Toney. Backup Fight - Zab Judah vs. Kostya Tszyu: If Kostya is going to come back in 2006, let him be the one to test Zab's chin again.

Junior Welterweight - Floyd Mayweather vs. Ricky Hatton: I don't want SecondsOut Editor Ant Evans complaining in ten years time that Floyd was ducking Ricky. It will be the Roy Jones Jr debate all over again if this fight doesn't happen. Backup Fight - Ricky Hatton vs. Miguel Cotto: Hatton's irresistible force against Cotto's supposedly immovable object.

Lightweight - Jose Luis Castillo vs. Diego Corrales III: Can anyone think of a reason not to stage this fight? The real battle though could be the two camps working out what the contracted fight weight is and then deciding whether anyone actually has to meet it. Backup Fight - Jesus Chavez vs. Marco Antonio Barrera: How long can Marco just keep moving up in weight and winning?

Junior Lightweight - Marco Antonio Barrera vs. Erik Morales IV: You just know it will be another awesome battle. No need for a press conference for this one. Just show a ten minute video highlights package of their first three fights. Backup Fight - Marco Antonio Barrera vs. Manny Pacquiao II: Was Marco just having a bad night, or does Manny really have something on him?

Featherweight - Juan Manuel Marquez vs. Scott Harrison: I will spell it out in three letters. W.A.R. The punch stat operators will need oxygen between rounds. Backup Fight - Scott Harrison vs. Injin Chi: W.A.R part 2.

Junior Featherweight - Joan Guzman vs. Daniel Ponce De Leon: Baby Tyson versus the Mexican southpaw who can really bang. Backup Fight - Oscar Larios vs. Joan Guzman: Mexican Larios keeps getting better with age.

Bantamweight - Rafael Marquez vs. Johnny Gonzalez: It's simply called Mexican civil war! Backup Fight - Rafael Marquez vs. Diego Morales: Mexican civil war part 2.

Junior Bantamweight - Fernando Montiel vs. Martin Castillo: Two division champion Montiel versus the man who finished the career of Eric Morel. Backup Fight - Masamori Tokuyama vs. Jose Navarro: Time for Jose to get another shot at the WBC title.

Flyweight - Vic Darchinyan vs. Jorge Arce: Potentially one of the most explosive match-ups pound for pound. Darchinyan's power versus Arce's macho. Backup Fight - Vic Darchinyan vs. Pongsaklek Wonjongkam: The battle of the southpaws. Darchinyan's power straight left versus Wonjongkam's lethal right hook.

Junior Flyweight - Brian Viloria vs. Will Grigsby: Anything's possible. Two American's fighting off in world title unification at 108lbs? Backup Fight - Beibis Mendoza vs. Fahlan Sakkreerin: Lets see the two entertaining veterans have one more big night under the bright lights.

Minimumweight - Yutaka Niida vs. Ivan Calderon: The man who walked away as champion to become a jeweller, only to come back two years later and regain the WBA title against the undefeated Puerto Rican southpaw. Backup Fight - Eagle Kyowa vs. Muhammad Rachman: The Thai with the cool name versus the veteran Indonesian.

Paul Upham
Contributing Editor

Will we see Castillo vs. Corrales III in 2006? pic by Tom Casino
Will we see Castillo vs. Corrales III in 2006? pic by Tom Casino

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