The Official mendozathejew Boxing Thread

peopleselbow

YiChen BuddhaChrist
Jan 25, 2006
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#1
Let's talk boxing!

Peter beat Mc Cline last night for the WBC Heavyweight Title and Manny Pacquiao used his superior hand speed and punching power to pound out a unanimous decision over Marco Antonio Barrera in their rematch in Las Vegas.
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
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#2
Sam Peter got knocked down 3 times againt Jameel McCline. it was bizaree cause he usually has an iron chin. but mccline had no stamina and lost the decision

Pacquaio is just an animal. hes like bruce lee reincarnated with that speed

[MEDIA]http://youtube.com/watch?v=i7dB_4yXPv4[/MEDIA]
 

peopleselbow

YiChen BuddhaChrist
Jan 25, 2006
1,561
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Chicago
#3
Sam Peter got knocked down 3 times againt Jameel McCline. it was bizaree cause he usually has an iron chin. but mccline had no stamina and lost the decision

Pacquaio is just an animal. hes like bruce lee reincarnated with that speed

[media]http://youtube.com/watch?v=i7dB_4yXPv4[/media]
mendozathejew, to make this thread better, could you link to the best boxing web site?

I like this site.
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
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#4
my favorite site is maxboxing.com (has nothing to do with max kellerman). they are the best for actual journalism. if you want to read quality articles its the site to go to. its a pay site with alot of free articles as well. I'll post articles from them. they also have a partnership with espn.com

boxingscene.com is another good one, its all free including their videos.
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
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#5
maxboxing.com's Steve Kim on Kelly Pavliks' win over Taylor, and what his marketability might be. Arum is talking about trying to put Pavlik on CBS, which would definitely be a big move



Adorned in the scarlet-and-gray of The Ohio State University, Kelly Pavlik would find himself on his knees, buzzed and dazed from a barrage of Jermain Taylor punches in round two of their battle at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey. But in a performance that would make Woody Hayes, Archie Griffin and Eddie George proud, he would dust himself off and proceed to stop Taylor in seven rounds.

While his beloved Buckeyes were taking care of the Minnesota Golden Gophers this past Saturday night, Pavlik would not just capture the world middleweight title, he left the boxing world buzzing with a performance worthy of a Buckeye helmet sticker.

It's been quite a 2007 for Pavlik. From being a relatively unknown prospect who faced Jose Luis Zertuche in January, the fledgling contender who stared down the streaking Edison Miranda in May and now with his pulsating victory over Taylor, Pavlik is now the clubhouse leader for 'fighter of the year' honors.

But this wasn't just a win for Pavlik; it was also a victory for the city of Youngstown and the rest of the northern Ohio region that's in the heart of the Rust Belt, an area that has seen steel mills and factories close up throughout the years. Unfortunately, it's now a place with more blue collar workers than actual jobs.

"I think it was huge," said Pavlik, when asked what his victory did for his hometown. And just like he had to get up off the canvas, the nearby auto plant survived their own eight-count as their strike was settled this past weekend. "There was good news that came out of GM, they just got the deal they wanted to get done the day of the fight. I think it's huge for the area. I think it uplifts everybody’s spirits. People in Youngstown now are going to start working harder. I think the mayor is doing a great job trying to get everything back. Congressman Tim Ryan, who's a big fan of mine, is doing everything to help Youngstown.

"I think we're on the verge of bouncing back."

His life-long trainer, Jack Loew, says, "It's unbelievable, the General Motors plant was on the verge of actually being one of the plants shut down. The day before the news came down from Detroit that the General Motors plant would get the next two car lines, Congressman Ryan called me and he goes, 'It was so coincidental that it's happening on this day, this weekend."

Atlantic City was overrun by Ohioans that made the seven hour ride to support Pavlik. It's estimated that around 5,000 supporters were in attendance for the fight. And while Taylor may have been the house fighter this was a home game for Pavlik.

"They shut down the GM second shift because they didn't have enough people to run the plant because people wanted to go to the fight or go home and watch it," says Loew, a lifelong resident of Youngstown.

"I mean, to shut down a GM plant?"

The fighter himself was taken aback by the adulation he received.

"I was surprised. I knew that there would be a lot of support, but not like that. It was just awesome, not only for me, but just to see people in Youngstown up on their feet and just going after something excited, was sweet. The support was amazing, the weigh-in, everything. I couldn't even believe," said Pavlik on Monday afternoon.

If you saw the HBO Countdown show that previewed this bout, you got an intimate look at the economic and social depression that this area has gone through as residents migrated south for warmer climates, and businesses closed up in search of cheaper labor over 30 years ago.

"They needed it real bad," Loew says of this victory. In the HBO preview show, they showed Loew at his day job laying asphalt. Blue collars abound here. But they support their own. Pavlik and company were sent off at the airport by hundreds of fans, and police units were sent to his home for some crowd control as he arrived home on Sunday night. "It really lifts you up when things go good here," says Loew, "and even when I bring amateur fight shows here, these people in this area still come and support their local athletes. Football, baseball, basketball, now they get a kid like Kelly Pavlik and now he's worldwide, what he did the other night just put him above what he did in the Miranda fight.”

As the city once produced steel on a regular basis, it was also a steady producer of world champions, from Harry Arroyo, Greg Richardson, Jeff Lampkin and most notably, former WBA lightweight titlist Ray 'Boom Boom' Mancini, who in the 80's was a matinee idol with his exciting, fan-friendly style.

This all feels very familiar to some.

"It's funny, I feel like its deja vu all over again," said Mancini, who was in attendance in
Atlantic City. "I'm just reading on the internet here that there going to have a party for him down on Friday. Well, they did that with me. When he came back to Youngstown, they escorted him, similar to when I won the title when I came home. And he's very grateful to the people of Youngstown, much like I was. So it's wonderful to see that. I see comparisons that way. It's 25 years, the silver anniversary of when I won the title, and at that time unemployment was 28-percent. The people were out of work, there was nothing going on. So people needed to latch onto something.

"I came at the right time, they latched onto me. I latched onto them and we took the ride together. The same way with all these big companies closing, Lordstown shutting down. He's coming at a time when there's a lot of economic strain also. So they're latching on to him and he's latching on to them. And they're going to take the ride together."

And another similarity they share is Bob Arum, who promoted Mancini during his heyday. Arum believes he has a fighter who can fill the boxing vacuum that has existed in this region.

"That was always my game plan and our dream, that he would be fighting at the arena in Youngstown on Versus," said the promoter of his well-attended fight against Lenord Pierre at the Chevrolet Centre that took place last November. "That showed his fan support, and I promised the fans that I would get him a title fight. He had to get through Miranda and Zertuche first. They saw him on HBO on those fights. By the time he fought Taylor, everybody realized in Youngstown that he had a real chance. They were confident he would win.

"Now, my goal is to take this victory and his popularity and build on it, not only in Youngstown, but in Cleveland and throughout the Midwest. Because my hope has always been that if Kelly won the middleweight title in a devastating way, which he did, that we would be able to wake up boxing interest in the Midwestern part of the country, which is essential, in my opinion, to bringing boxing back into the forefront."

But can he be as big as Mancini, who had the luxury of being a CBS staple?

"The difference was I exposed to over 60 million people domestically and over 60 million worldwide," explained Mancini of his broadcast clout. "Pay-per-view and cable, the exposure’s not as big, but it's getting there. But the word of mouth is out there. So he's getting exposed. There are still 30 million people seeing him and talking about him. So it's just wonderful to see that."

But Mancini sees a hook in Pavlik - this white guy can really fight. It's been a long while since we've seen an American born, white bread, corn fed, Caucasian fighter of this caliber.

"Boxing's only going to get bigger and better and guys like Kelly will only make it more interesting, because historically, boxing has been about minorities dominating the division. From the Jews in the 20's, to the Irish in the 30's, the Italians in the 40's. Now, to the blacks and the Hispanics," says Mancini, who is of Italian descent. "To have a white kid, a tall, lanky, pasty faced white kid and actually knocking people out? Ohhh, he's in a perfect situation to be the new face of boxing."

Arum, who has stated in the past that Pavlik could be boxing’s biggest marketing tool against MMA, admits his complexion does have something to do with it. But above all that, Pavlik is a bright and personable young man whose fighting style transcends all races and cultures.

But the worst thing that could happen to him is for him to become a bi-annual performer like so many of the other big names in the sport, who are bogged down in network contracts.

"He's going to fight as much and as many times as he can," says Arum, who makes it clear they have no network obligations. "This is no knock on HBO because Ross Greenburg made this fight happen because the Taylor people didn't want this fight to happen and they wanted to screw around with other fights, etc, and Ross said, no, this was the fight he wanted. So we do owe HBO that type of gratitude. But HBO has to understand that if we decide that we will put Kelly on free network television it will only enhance Kelly's popularity and only benefit HBO in the end."

But is this just a pipe dream? Arum, who has quite a rolodex, doesn't think so. His network relationships of the past remain strong, he says.

"Couple of them are my personal friends. So I can call them anytime to schmooze. Now, I have something to offer them because they're all boxing fans," Arum says of men like Les Moonves of CBS and Disney's Bob Iger, who once bought fights from Top Rank while at ABC. He describes this duo as "huge boxing fans."

As for the short term plans for Pavlik, "I would like him to fight in January and I want to get in four fights next year," says the veteran promoter. "Because that's the way guys like Hagler made their bones, that's why they became the stars that they became. They fought frequently, they were seen frequently and people began to identify them."

So is Pavlik ready for that type of schedule?

"Depending on the fights," he answers. "Right now, I'm a little banged up; not so much from the fight, but my hands are a little tender, they're not bad, just a bit tender, I hit him a lot. And the training camp, eight weeks of training. And I don't train like normal fighters, I train hard for eight weeks. So I have to have some down time. I've been in a lot of big fights these last three I had. So four times a year is actually a lot to me. The body can only handle so much."

But he loves the idea of fighting locally.

"I would like to," he says. "But that's up to the promoter. I would like to fight here in Youngstown, but the only problem would be finding some place big enough. We could fight outdoors, but the weather here in Northeast Ohio doesn't always cooperate."

A fight in the Buckeye's football stadium, 'The Horseshoe', would be a dream promotion.

"That would be huge, that would be unreal. I'll have to ask about that, see if we can work something out," said an excited Pavlik, who can count on the support of OSU head coach Jim Tressell.

Oh, and about his last bout? It wasn't bad.

"I look back at these middleweight fights and all these great, great fights, I think this is probably second to Hagler-Hearns, those ferocious three rounds. But this fight is a fight for the ages," said Arum. Now, whether this was the greatest middleweight title tilt ever is debatable, a couple of guys named Zale and Graziano might have something to say about that, but this bout has resonated throughout the industry and beyond.

But Pavlik came thisclose to becoming another great white hope as he got clipped by Taylor in the second round.

"I was thinking we were in deep s**t, and anybody who would say that they weren't is a liar," said his manager, Cameron Dunkin. "I mean, it was a scary time. But it just goes to show you the blood and guts of Kelly. What balls this guy has and it shows you the tremendous conditioning. A lot of guys would've never gotten out of there. It's just unbelievable, all that conditioning that he does paid off."

After getting stung initially, it seemed that Pavlik was in the process of taunting Taylor when he got blasted again. He nearly Nate Campbell'ed his way out of the fight.

"We watched the fight together last night and we looked at each other and I was like, ‘What the hell were you doing?' And he kinda sneered and he goes, 'I guarantee that'll never happen again. That's not me.' But sometimes fighters just get hit with a few shots where the crowd goes nuts and you almost want to prove something to the crowd," Loew would explain.

But Pavlik would quickly gather himself and the fight was on.

"When he came back after the second round, just from being around Kelly, knowing him so well, the minute I asked him if he was alright and the kind of way he answered, I knew he was fine," said the trainer.

Taylor would fight perhaps as well as he had since the early rounds of his initial encounter against Bernard Hopkins, but he could never quite escape Pavlik's sharp jab and crisp right hand, which Arum had compared to a Hearns in terms of power. But in reality, his punching power is more of a thudding variety that wears on his opponents over time.

"We were talking about that and Todd duBoef (Top Rank's president) brought up George Foreman and I think that's a real comparison," said Dunkin to Maxboxing. "Hearns had that missile, I mean that thing came right down the middle hard and very fast. Kelly's more of a like Foreman, very heavy-handed, strong and it beats you down and gets you out of there. He can get you out of there with one shot but he's more of a slower, stronger puncher."

As the rounds went on, Pavlik got stronger and stronger. Taylor, during his middleweight reign, had never faced this type of consistent pressure.

Mancini, who knows a thing about pressure, says, "This is what people don't understand about Kelly, he's 6'2, he comes forward - he ain't backing up. And if you're going to back him up by going toe-to-toe with him, you're going to get hit, too. That's the thing people don't get about Kelly, for a big guy, people think right away he's a lanky, tall, white kid who's going to move back - he moves forward.

"So you got a 6'2 kid cutting off the ring on you with those long arms, constantly throwing punches, you're going to have to fight him, you're going to have to out-punch him."

And for a while, Taylor punched right along with Pavlik, and troubled him with his hand-speed. But Pavlik's superior technique would be the difference. While many of Taylor's salvos missed the mark or were deflected, Pavlik's right crosses seemed to be as straight as arrows. By the sixth round, Taylor was becoming noticeably affected by those shots.

"But I had to be careful," recalled Pavlik, "because he's a very experienced fighter and a lot of times he'd sit on the ropes and I think he would try and take a break, he might have been a little hurt but every once in awhile he'd fire back. And we wanted to be careful, we didn't want to get caught with something."

Finally, in round seven, Pavlik would nail Taylor with a series of sharp right-hands that had him fading faster than the New York Mets down the stretch. As he was trapped in the corner, a couple of well-placed uppercuts, followed by a clean-up left hook, would give referee Steve Smoger no choice but to call a halt to the contest. No count was given, none was needed.

Everyone had questioned the experience of Pavlik coming into this fight. But while he didn't have the names on his resume like Taylor, with the guidance given to him by Top Rank, Dunkin, Loew and matchmaker Brad Goodman, it was clear that he was the more polished and poised prizefighter. They may have not gotten there as fast, but they may be here for much longer.

It was the type of showing that elevates fighters. The chat rooms and message boards were overrun with praise for Pavlik and the fight. After a September full of disappointments, boxing needed this type of night.

Pavlik, while happy with the win, is analytical about his performance.

"I watched the fight and there are a couple of things I did dumb, like the knockdown, I dropped my hands. I shouldn't have done that. I kept my left hand a little too low," he assesses. "But other than that, I thought my jab was faster than his. I just thought I fought a good fight. My hand speed, they kept talking about how slow I am and I thought they were surprised."

This could just be the beginning of something special. Arum, never shy to get on his soapbox, believes that promoting Pavlik can be part of a bigger, much more important discussion.

"Let's show how this country has screwed over Youngstown and places like it, closing down these mills and out-sourcing jobs and let's get this whole situation with Kelly into the context of the national discussion," said Arum, with the passion of a campaigning politician. "I think that's possible and I think that is very, very productive for everybody."

The fighter’s job is simple, keep winning. Like those steel workers of the past, put in hard work on a daily basis.

"I think we're at that level now where we gotta start going over some game plans, watching films a lot before we start our eight weeks," Pavlik says. "And that's what we're going to start doing because this is the first fight that I actually had in training camp where I had fast sparring partners and we're getting back into that like we were early in my career in the amateurs with the hand speed.

"So it's going to be scary in the next fight when I have another eight weeks and train with very fast fighters. Because once you get in that mode of just sparring guys that are right in front of you that are bangers, you get in that habit. But now we're getting back to that habit of hand-speed and boxing."

And oh, yeah, don't go all Maurice Clarett.

"There's a lot of demands," Pavlik says of his new found stature. "I just gotta watch everything, though. There's going to be some bad with the good but we just have to keep our eyes open and do the right things and not put ourselves in a bad position."

So was a star born on Saturday night?

Larry Merchant of HBO says, "Somewhere out there in the boxing sky, the elements are forming to make a star. He's got a shot. There's been tremendous feedback after that fight. It was a very exciting and dramatic fight. Now it's a question of who does he fight next. Can he build on what he's got there? But does he have a shot?

"Absolutely."
 

weakside

He was stupid. I was lucky. I will visit him soon.
Dec 9, 2004
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#6
Sam Peter got knocked down 3 times againt Jameel McCline. it was bizaree cause he usually has an iron chin. but mccline had no stamina and lost the decision

Pacquaio is just an animal. hes like bruce lee reincarnated with that speed

[media]http://youtube.com/watch?v=i7dB_4yXPv4[/media]
I missed that fight. Was it more McCline stepping up or Peter starting off slow?

Peter must have really took it to him after the knockdowns because pretty much everyone agreed Peter won the fight by UD.
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
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#7
I missed that fight. Was it more McCline stepping up or Peter starting off slow?

Peter must have really took it to him after the knockdowns because pretty much everyone agreed Peter won the fight by UD.
it was a bit bizarre. it didnt even look like mccline hit peter that hard, and peter always appeared to have an anchor for a chin. mccline really should have ko'd peter but he just didnt have the energy. its not even that he punched himself out, he just didnt have enough in the tank to throw more punches.

after that peter won a boxing match. not too much heavy action. afterwards peter claimed he broke his right hand a few weeks ago. maybe thats why he didnt ko mccline, or maybe hes a lying nigerian
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
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#8
On Saturday Juan Diaz fights Julio Diaz at lightweight on HBO boxing after dark. this fight is NOT TO BE MISSED. its just gona be two guys in a phone booth seeing who can last longer. its a deep division and they are probably two of the top 3. this should a fight of the year candidate

juan diaz against miguel cotto's brother.
[MEDIA]http://youtube.com/watch?v=ouvxbbb6IUA[/MEDIA]

and beating the will out of acelino freitas
[MEDIA]http://youtube.com/watch?v=C18Xi68-_DA[/MEDIA]
 

peopleselbow

YiChen BuddhaChrist
Jan 25, 2006
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#9
Daisuke NaitoWDaiki KamedaUD1212

WBC Flyweight championship from Japan yesterday (or was it today, friggin time line).

Very strange fight:

[YT]jkDSs8BrMPQ[/YT]
 

weakside

He was stupid. I was lucky. I will visit him soon.
Dec 9, 2004
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#10
Imbragimov vs. Holyfield will be interesting, but I think Imbragimov takes him. Holyfield does not have much left.
 

mendozathejew

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Mar 12, 2005
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#11
Imbragimov vs. Holyfield will be interesting, but I think Imbragimov takes him. Holyfield does not have much left.
agreed. sultan has fast hands and hes pretty skillful for a current hw. but I cant wait for Diaz vs Diaz. might be fight of the year, and free on hbo to boot
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
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#12
WBC Flyweight championship from Japan yesterday (or was it today, friggin time line).

Very strange fight:
its amusing when a boxer cant get it done, and starts using wrestling tactics to basically cop out because he cant hang. and thats what that guy was doing
 

askewcore

Why am I Mr. Sparkle?
Dec 5, 2004
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#13
agreed. sultan has fast hands and hes pretty skillful for a current hw. but I cant wait for Diaz vs Diaz. might be fight of the year, and free on hbo to boot
I am gonna take the over 10.5 rounds in the Holyfield fight, because even though he is old and slow, he still has a brick for a head. Diaz/Diaz is gonna be excellent tonight. I dont know who would pay for Evander/Ibragimov when HBO is offering this for free later tonight.
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
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#14
Sultan won, rather easily. uneventful from what ive read, holyfield had very little output, ibragimov hurt holy with bodyshots. and holyfield still says he will continue fighting. thoughts and prayers evander.
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
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#16
:clap: damn this fight is good. when I hear people yell in angry typing guy voice 'theres no good boxers anymore' its fights like diaz vs diaz that make me want to spit in that persons face
 

peopleselbow

YiChen BuddhaChrist
Jan 25, 2006
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#17
Holy shit! How annoying is Juan Diaz's mother?

Great fight. Nice rip on Chicago, Larry. The fight was at the new Sears Centre, about 15 to 20 miles northwest of Chicago in Hoffman Estates. I was at the Blackhawks game and did not go.
 

mendozathejew

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Mar 12, 2005
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#18
Holy shit! How annoying is Juan Diaz's mother?

Great fight. Nice rip on Chicago, Larry. The fight was at the new Sears Centre, about 15 to 20 miles northwest of Chicago in Hoffman Estates. I was at the Blackhawks game and did not go.
larry just doesnt give a shit who he offends and pisses off. its hilarious.

Juan Diaz is just an animal. it takes alot to make a fighter quit on his stool, and this is the second opponent to do so. he doesnt hit extremely hard, but hard enough that fighters dont want to take anymore and just give up
 

mendozathejew

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Mar 12, 2005
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#19
Steve Kim article on Juan Diaz (that fight is realy worth checking out on hbo on demand) then the negotiations with Pavlik finding an opponent for late january



As HBO was replaying the rematch between Manny Pacquiao and Marco Antonio Barrera this past Saturday night, they cut away into Juan Diaz's locker room before his lightweight unification bout against Julio Diaz. But instead of the customary shadowboxing, Diaz was taking left-handed cuts with a baseball bat to get lathered up.

Just as we suspected, Diaz speaks softly and carries a big stick.

HBO's Bob Papa mentioned that 'the Baby Bull' is not a home run hitter, but one that gets on base time and time again with his high work rate. In wearing out the other Diaz - to add the IBF strap to his collection of belts - he showed once again that he's the most prolific gap hitter out of Houston since Craig Biggio.

Over eight fast-paced rounds, Diaz would swarm all over his namesake, who had no choice but to try and hold his ground and fight. Julio tried to box for about the first minute or so but was forced to abandon that plan early on and dig in.

"It surprised me," admitted Diaz, who improved his mark to 33-0 and is now the WBA, WBO and IBF lightweight champion. "I didn't think that he would stand there and trade toe-to-toe with me and it was very surprising. But if favored me, so it was a good thing for me."

For every shot and flurry that the native of Coachella, California, would throw, he was met with three times the output in return. It was only a matter of time before he would succumb to this onslaught. Diaz's offensive attack is like an army of red ants. Individually they may not do much damage, but as a collective unit, they can wreck havoc with whatever gets in their way.

"I believe I felt him slow down in the fifth and sixth rounds. I felt him slowing down a lot in comparison to the first two rounds," Diaz would say. His corner, led by Derwin Richards and Willie Savannah, implored him to employ his underrated jab as the night went along. The seventh and eight rounds would see Diaz snap his foe's head back repeatedly with his shotgun left.

"I saw that he slowed down tremendously after my jabs," Diaz would recall. "I know that my body punches and all my combinations were wearing him down. So I figured I needed to start using my jab to kind of wear him down a little bit more and once I started using my jab, I saw that it was affecting him. My jab is pretty strong, and to me, I feel as though I throw my jab like a right hand, and I think every time I landed that jab it affected him every time."

After the eighth inning, Diaz and his corner would call it a day. It was like boxing's version of the ten-run rule.

"I was astonished. I couldn't believe that he gave up because he seemed like he was in tip-top shape. The interviews, the two, three press conferences we had, I could see in his eyes he was ready to fight and he wasn't going to take no for an answer," said Diaz.

It was a performance that left everyone duly impressed. Diaz is the type of fighter that could lead a boxing renaissance. Nobody ever leaves a Diaz contest dissatisfied and you don't have to be convinced of his entertainment value.

"I think if we had just about three or four Juan Diazes they'd bring back boxing," said Larry Merchant, who called this past weekend’s bout for HBO. "He is a real phenomenon; I don't recall a fighter like him, as busy, as well-conditioned, being able to sustain such a high punch rate for as long as he does on the highest level. Because there is a vulnerability in a fighter who fights as aggressively as he does. But he just keeps coming. In the modern era I haven't seen a guy like him, because aggressive guys are usually punchers. They usually can break opponents down and get them late in the fight. But he does it a different way.

"The two fighters I've heard him compared to - two old-time fighters, greats - Tony Canzoneri, who was a great featherweight, lightweight in the late 20's and early 30's. I know Teddy Atlas thinks he's the greatest of all the Italian fighters - even over Marciano. A very busy fighter with a fairly low knockout ratio. And Henry Armstrong, now, he doesn't punch as crisply as Armstrong did, probably, but that kind of perpetual motion is unheard of."

It's fighters like Diaz that are boxing's greatest counterpunch to forces like MMA.

"Cus D'Amato used to say that the idea of professional prizefighting was to make money," recalled Merchant of the noted trainer. "The way you make money is by fighting in a style that people want to pay to see and people want to fill the seats, whether it's on television or in the arena. And so after a kind of a lull, in which we saw guys who were safety-first or semi safety-first fighters and happy to box their way to the bank, suddenly, we're developing some crowd-pleasing type fighters, like Kelly Pavlik, like Juan Diaz, like Miguel Cotto, like Ricky Hatton, Mikkel Kessler - who I don't know if he can make an impact here - and this is good.

"Because these are the type of fighters that don't have to win every fight. You have to fight every fight, and people know that when they come they're going to see fighters take risks, they're going to see fighters who move them and make them stand up and cheer after rounds, instead of walking out before it's over because the decision has been in by the seventh and eighth round."

(Uh, Larry, stick to broadcasting, OK?)

Diaz would win the WBA title in 2004 by out-hustling Lavka Sim as a youngster. As he racked up title defenses against the likes of Julien Lorcy, Billy Irwin, Randy Suico and Fernando Angulo, he would come under some criticism by those with myopia, who couldn't see the long-term, big picture for Diaz. Thankfully, those folks aren't managing boxers.

"First of all, I knew we had a developing fighter that needed to be groomed," explained Savannah, who resisted all temptations to over-match his fighter for the sake of a big payday. "I know we had a 20-year old baby. I said, 'No, he's 20 years old.' We went after our first mandatory with Lorcy, which I thought we would beat. The next one was Irwin and then I escaped the Castillos, the Corraleses and Freitases for two, three years. Then I waited until I thought Juan had matured enough mentally and physically to go in with those 27, 28 year old grown men. Juan was a 20, 21 year old kid."

Now, at 24, Savannah is ready to take on all-comers.

"Juan can fight most guys from '30 to '40. He can fight whoever wants to come up from '30 and some of the smaller guys at '40, depending on if it was a big enough deal."

Diaz, who by Monday afternoon was back to attending classes at the University of Houston-Downtown, says of his maturation, "I think that right now at 24 I'm getting into my full man-strength. I think I'm getting stronger and I'm getting faster as I grow older and I think right now it's my time to shine. I believe that I'm strong enough to be in there with any of the lightweights and I'm showing it fight after fight. So I think that from here on out, it's no more turning back and going down. I'm going to improve every time I step in the ring."

And there's no doubt who they want - they got 'Pac Man' fever.

"Our preference would be Pacquiao," says Savannah, "but I don't think Pacquiao would fight Juan. My next preference would be to unify the 'BC belt but I don't think that's going to happen. The sanctioning bodies aren't going to allow that. So I think probably the next guy in line would be Michael Katsidis."

Diaz would say, "Right now, my dream fight would be against Manny Pacquiao. But a fight with David Diaz would also be fantastic. So it all depends on who we can make the contract with and who can agree to fight."

David Diaz currently holds the WBC title. Like Pacquiao, he is handled by Bob Arum and Top Rank, who has a different agenda for his fighters.

"Right now, there seems to be four candidates," he says, when asked of Pacquiao's immediate future. "If he stays at 130, there are three and they are Juan Manuel Marquez, the Humberto Soto-Joan Guzman winner, and if he decides to go up in weight and fight at 135, then there is David Diaz."

Arum says a bout between Pacquiao and Juan Diaz, while a blockbuster, still needs to be built up and nurtured.

"That would be a big fight and obviously I would want it. If Manny were going up to lightweight then it's only right that he fight one of the Top Rank fighters, then somebody else's fighter. Don King called me today looking to do that fight and it would certainly be attractive down the line," he would say on Tuesday afternoon. "Juan Diaz is a terrific fighter; unfortunately, he's relatively unknown outside of boxing circles. As witness, they didn't do a particularly great rating and they didn't do any attendance."

Regardless of who he faces, Pacquiao is slated to return on March 15th in Las Vegas. But there is another enticing option: Katsidis, who is the interim WBO titlist and Diaz's mandatory for that organization. Diaz has a ten day window to make his intentions clear (via letter) on whether he will face Katsidis within 120 days. If he doesn't, the title will then go to Katsidis.

It would be a can't miss battle. Diaz and Katsidis would have no problems finding each other and leather would be flung all night. The transplanted Aussie was stirred by Diaz's latest outing.

"I think it was great," he would tell Maxboxing. "He's getting better and he's improving with every fight. I hadn't seen a whole lot of him in his earlier career, but the fights I saw, with Freitas and just a lot of his snippets they showed in the lead-up to the Freitas fight, and his latest fight with Julio, I think he's a great fighter."

A great fighter he wants to get in there with.

"Of course, how many times can I say it? I'm here to fight and that's what I'm here for and that's what I've got to do to become the outright champion," said Katsidis, who has been involved in two 'fight of the year' candidates in 2007 with Graham Earl and Czar Amonsot.

"We want the fights that are going to make Juan look good and I think Katsidis is probably tailor made," says Savannah, who also mentions their IBF mandatory, Nate Campbell. "But if you go look at it as far as marketability, you just say, 'Nate's a super guy, we love Nate and everything but I don't think Nate's as marketable right now as Katsidis.' If we couldn't get David Diaz or Pacquiao, who else is there?"

Diaz and Katsidis are mirror images in terms of their fight mentality and style. Each has shown an indomitable will to win at all costs.

"This is going to be one of those fights where it's almost like science, and whoever puts in the hardest work will be the bloke that wins," says Katsidis. "You can go on consistency. He's very consistent and I've only had one fight here in the States but a lot of people believe in me and they believe in my power and I believe in myself. So to win the fight it's going to be, I suppose in a lot of people's minds, an upset."

So far, Diaz hasn't faced anyone that has been able to match his fire and intensity over 12 rounds. Some had the technical skill (Julio Diaz), others had the power (Freitas), but none had the passion of Katsidis, who is a heavier puncher than Diaz.

"I believe it would've been hard for him to get to where he's got without facing people with part of what I have," Katsidis surmises. "Like I said, I haven't seen a lot of the fights, only snippets, but I'm sure there would've been guys that did have that power and guys that were as consistent as maybe my work rate. Look, I think he will know what he's expecting. I think now after fighting Julio, he'll have the confidence - if he didn't already have it - he will have it to face me."

When asked about Katsidis, Diaz states, "I've seen him fight and he is a great fighter and very, very strong. So I think that would be a great fight between him and I. My goal is - and my duty is - to fight, to get ready and win fights. I leave all the dealings to my manager and my promoter and whoever they tell me to step in the ring with, that's who I'm going to step in the ring with."

They have taken their time with Diaz, and the timing could not have been better.

"Boxing needs a kid like Juan and they need somebody that can unify and is willing to unify the belts," says Savannah, who has been with Diaz since the fighter was nine.

It's been quite a year so far for Diaz; while other fighters have negotiated their way out of lucrative bouts and sat on the linear title and made themselves irrelevant to the public, Diaz had unified three-fourths of the lightweight division. And with that, he has gotten a newfound respect and recognition.

"I believe that with these two great fights (Diaz and Freitas) that I've shown the people, now they recognize me as a true champion," says the still-humble Diaz. "I think now that people are starting to see me as a threat. And sure, I don't have the one-punch knockout power or the devastating power that knocks people out in one round, but people can see that I've been able to stop high-caliber fighters that I've faced in the recent months."

PAC PLANS?

So what does Freddie Roach think of a Diaz fight for his man?

"It's a tough fight at '35," he would admit. "Juan's very active but not a big puncher. It's a fight we would think about taking, for sure.

But for now, they have unfinished business at 130, it seems.

"Manny told me he wants to fight his next fight at 130," said Roach, who mentioned the same possibilities as Arum that reside at jr. lightweight.

Roach believes that they would have to work their way into being a lightweight before taking on the Houstonian.

"I want to see how Manny feels at '35 first, test the waters a little bit. Why go into a big title fight right away with a guy like him? He's a big, strong guy and he's very active. But he's a little bit slow of hand and so forth. I think Manny could out-speed him, but I would like to see how Manny reacts to 135."

What remains to be seen is just how much punching power Pacquiao - who won his first world title as a flyweight - would carry up with him.

"I think he'd still have good power but maybe not the devastating power he had at '26 and '30, where he's been," said the respected trainer. "His speed I'm concerned about also, because maybe the speed won’t be quite as sharp at '35. He had to lose a couple of pounds for the last fight because he wasn't watching his weight; it wasn't a problem making weight. He has no problems making '30 and after the fight he kept talking about '35, but the next day when he talked to me he said he wanted his next fight at '30."

BATMAN

So why was Diaz taking cuts on a Louisville Slugger before his bout? It's all about balance, leverage and torque.

"I started using that because I'm trying to work on my leg movement in the ring, trying to not just stay flat-footed, trying to get in the rhythm a little bit more while throwing my combinations so I won’t fall in and lean over," he would explain, of the routine put in by Brian Caldwell. "One of the things my strength coach realized was I wasn't turning over my punches, I wasn't using my feet. So he gave me the baseball bat to get more body movement, more leg movement and it’s also a good way to stretch myself.

Diaz says he takes about 25 swings both right and left-handed.

DUDDY DEAL DONE?

No, Kelly Pavlik-John Duddy for January 26th in Atlantic City, New Jersey is not a done deal.

"It is certainly NOT a done deal," said Bob Arum, who promotes Pavlik. "It is far from a done deal for a couple of reasons. I haven't even negotiated with Duddy. Secondly, I have no right to even talk about a Duddy fight because Jermain has a rematch clause. They haven't passed it, they haven't made a deal with me - not that they're obligated to do that. My hands are tied."

Taylor and his representatives have a 30-day window from the date of the Pavlik fight (September 29th) to enforce their contracted stipulation. It's not clear what direction they will go.

"I think Lou (DiBella) would prefer an interim fight and to build the rematch into a pay-per-view," Arum opines. "But I don't know if Jermain feels that way. What I would like to do is - and I'm sort of ambivalent - I would sort of like them to exercise the rematch clause because if you're going to fight Jermain Taylor again, you might as well fight him right after he got knocked out. I mean, that is the stupidest thing. You exercise the rematch clause if you have a disputed close fight, not if you get knocked out cold."

You get the sense that Arum is playing a version of Jedi mind tricks with his last statement. But either way, expect to see Pavlik in late January, one way or the other.

"January 26th is the working date for the Kelly Pavlik fight," Arum would state. "Now, as I said, it could be Jermain in a rematch or if he wants to postpone the rematch and have an interim fight, certainly Duddy would be a good possibility."
 

mik3

fornicating madly
Mar 29, 2004
3,012
0
0
732 Jersey
#23
That's just a straight up violent neck snap, those are the kind that get someone really hurt, much more than the kind Taylor had a few weeks ago.
 

mendozathejew

Registered User
Mar 12, 2005
6,749
0
0
jersey
#24
That's just a straight up violent neck snap, those are the kind that get someone really hurt, much more than the kind Taylor had a few weeks ago.
taylor by the way is enforcing the rematch clause. should be in february at 166 lbs. I guess the belts wont be on the line, but perhaps the rings middleweight title will.

there are boxing writers that say pavlik, when he doesnt have to cut all the way to 160 with that 6'3 frame, has faster feet, and much more pronounced one punch power. maybe it gives taylor a boost too, should be a great fight again
 

weakside

He was stupid. I was lucky. I will visit him soon.
Dec 9, 2004
3,871
0
0
California
#25
taylor by the way is enforcing the rematch clause. should be in february at 166 lbs. I guess the belts wont be on the line, but perhaps the rings middleweight title will.

there are boxing writers that say pavlik, when he doesnt have to cut all the way to 160 with that 6'3 frame, has faster feet, and much more pronounced one punch power. maybe it gives taylor a boost too, should be a great fight again
That fight was my favorite of the year so far. I am looking forward to the rematch.