The training camp of WBO Heavyweight Champion Sultan Ibragimov is in full swing, and as the champ prepares for his February 23rd unification bout with Wladimir Klitschko in New York’s Madison Square Garden, the action at the South Florida gym affectionately referred to as “Sultan’s House” has been fast and furious, something trainer Jeff Mayweather has been very pleased with..
“Sultan came into this camp in the best shape I’ve ever seen him in, and he’s getting better and better by the day,” said Mayweather. “His speed for a heavyweight still amazes me, and I know Klitschko is not going to be able to handle it on fight night.”
With five weeks to go before the highly-anticipated clash, Ibragimov began sparring this week for the fight of his life, and he couldn’t be happier. Read the rest of this entry »
By Chris Thomas: According to the latest rumor mill, Oscar De La Hoya is considering fighting former junior welterweight Steve Forbes (33-5, 9 KOs) for his May 3rd tune-up bout. Nothing has been nailed down at this time, but the 30 year-old Forbe’s name has rose to the head of the list for potential opponents. At 5’7,” Forbes would be at a considerable disadvantage against the taller 5’11” De La Hoya, who could stand back and pound away at him all fight long without even getting a scratch. Though it’s quite normal for fighters to fight less than impressive fighters in their tune-up bouts, I had expected a little better from De La Hoya than this, if this indeed turns out to be his opponent for his tune-up bout. Read the rest of this entry »
“Saloon-keeper Tom Sharkey, retired heavyweight contender,
is doing some fancy footwork in avoiding the current NYC
ban on boxing by awarding ‘membership’ to every fighter
he books for his Athletic Club brawls in his Lincoln Square
cellar.”—The New York Times, 1909
The kid comes down Sharkey’s stairs slapping
Snow off his great-coat, the threadbare elbows
Sporting ragtag patches cut from the hem.
He’s got a fresh shiner from one of the 3 other
Smokers he’s already worked tonight & a few
Random welts starting to fade. He weaves his way Read the rest of this entry »
In the latest boxing news, former three-time champion James Toney (70-6, 43 KOs) is reportedly planning on making a March comeback against an un-named opponent. Toney, now 39, has been out of action for almost a year since winning a 10-round split decision against Danny Batchelder in May 2007.
After the bout, however, Toney tested for a banned substance and was subsequently suspended from boxing for a year. Though the suspension was later lowered to six months, it’s still a lot of time for a boxer as old as the 39 year-old Toney, who hasn’t looked good in the ring since losing a controversial 12-round split decision to Samuel Peter in a World Boxing Council title eliminator bout in September 2006. Since then, Toney came back and fought Peter once again, this time looking in even worse shape and losing a lopsided decision in January 2007. Read the rest of this entry »
This Saturday night, #2 rated heavyweight in the IBF, undefeated Alexander Povetkin (14-0, 11 KOs) goes up against what I personally consider to be the best American heavyweight Eddie Chambers (30-0, 16 KOs) when they meet in the International Boxing Federation elimination fight at Tempodrom, Kreuzberg, in Berlin, Germany. Most people feel that Povetkin, 28, the former 2004 Olympic super heavyweight boxing champion, to be the one that will come out on top and thus move on to a late 2008 showdown with the winner of Wladimir Klitschko vs. Sultan Ibragimov.
Povetkin, however, has faced mostly limited competition in his short career, most recently defeating Chris Byrd by an 11th round stoppage on October 27, 2007. Povetkin looked vulnerable against Byrd, and was repeatedly hit with straight left hands all night long. Povetkin had trouble hitting the badly slowed 37 year-old Byrd, and looked even slower than he did. In contrast, IBF heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko, made it look easy blasting apart Byrd a year earlier on April 22nd, 2006. Of course, Povetkin isn’t fighting Klitschko this Saturday, and will only have to deal with the speedy and elusive Chambers. Read the rest of this entry »
Despite accomplishing little in his career in recent years, eight-time title winner Roy Jones Jr. (52-4, 38 KOs) has firmly set his sights on the winner of Jermain Taylor vs. Kelly Pavlik or the Joe Calzaghe vs. Bernard Hopkins bouts which are coming up. Of the two bouts, Jones would prefer to fight Calzaghe, 35, who figures to be the one that will emerge as the winner over the 43 year-old Hopkins. However, from a fan’s perspective, the thought of a champion like Calzaghe or Pavlik having to face a 40 year-old Jones, at least to me, seems rather disappointing. Jones may have had a handful of die-hard fans in the 90s, with his Floyd Mayweather Jr. like pot shotting style of fighting, but I think there’s just as many fans who disliked watching him fight. Read the rest of this entry »
In an outcome that surprised few, Roy Jones Jr. (52-4, 38 KOs) defeated Felix Trinidad (42-3, 35 KOs) by a 12-round unanimous decision on Saturday night at Madison Square Garden, in New York. Trinidad, 35, was taking the fight after a two and half year layoff, without any kind of a tune-up bout before hand. However, Trinidad looked mostly good in the first six rounds of the fight, out-working and out-landing the 39 year-old Jones, who looked badly over-the-hill.
Trinidad dominated each of the first six rounds with a good body attack, ripping hooks to Jones’ midsection and head. As usual, Roy would throw an occasional pot shot and pose a lot in between. However, he wasn’t able to keep up with the pace that Trinidad was setting for him in the early going. Quite frequently, Jones would retreat to the ropes and play the rope-a-dope routine, covering up and letting Trinidad tag him. The final judges’ scores were 117-109, 116-110 and 116-110, awarding the decision to Jones. Read the rest of this entry »
In a fight that was marred by excessive wrestling on the inside, undefeated World Boxing Association heavyweight champion Ruslan Chagaev (24-0-1, 17 KOs) won a hard-fought unanimous decision over 40 year-old Matt Skelton (21-2, 18 KOs) on Saturday night at the Burg-Waechter Castello, in Dusseldorf, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany. In the opening round, Skelton found a way to negate Chagaev’s superior offensive attack, namely by grabbing him and trying to maul him on the inside. It worked perfectly, at least for awhile, as Skelton expertly used fine inside fighting tactics, such as holding and hitting, leaning on his opponent and rabbit punches, all to perfection.
The inside fighting also had the effect of wearing down Chagaev, who was making his first defense of his title which he won last year in April 2007, with a controversial majority decision over then champion Nikolay Valuev. Chagaev looked poor on that night, hardly seeming to win any rounds against the 7-foot giant, and didn’t look a whole better against Skelton. The problem for Skelton, however, is that he looked even worse than Chagaev, for he quickly ran out of gas after round three of the fight, and was like a large slug for the remaining rounds. Read the rest of this entry »
Undefeated junior welterweight prospect Devon Alexander (14-0, 9 KO’s) had little trouble grinding out a 12-round lopsided unanimous decision against former World Boxing Organization junior welterweight champion DeMarcus Corley (31-8-1, 17 KOs) on Saturday night at New York’s Madison Square Garden. Aside from the opening round when the 33 year-old Corley appeared to land the harder shots, Alexander had smooth sailing for the rest of the way, as he used his jab and straight left hand to easily defeat Corley. Read the rest of this entry »
Undefeated super bantamweight champion Steve Molitor (26-0, 10 KOs) won an impressive, albeit bloody, 12-round unanimous decision over the hard-hitting Ricardo Castillo (33-5, 22 KOs) on Saturday night at the Casino Rama, Rama, in Ontario, Canada. Molitor, 27, had problems with the power of Castillo, the younger brother of famous fighter Jose Luis Castillo. However, by the second half of the fight, Molitor adapted his style and was able to avoid many of Castillo’s big right hand shots and easily out-box him in the remaining rounds. The judges’ scores were 118-109, 118-109 and 118-109, giving Molitor the victory.
Molitor was cut in the fourth round over his left eye, from a looking right hand thrown by Castillo. The cut would remain a problem for the duration of the fight, often leaking blood into Molitor’s left eye and making it hard for him to see. Castillo, 28, applied a tremendous amount of pressure on Molitor in the early going, trying to get in close so that he could land his sharp hooks. However, Molitor would quickly reach out and spin Castillo around, turning him to the ropes where he’d be trapped. The southpaw Molitor would then land straight left hands and right hooks, catching Castillo as he would come forward. Molitor showed beautiful boxing ability, using the ring to keep a cushion between him and Castillo. Again and again, Molitor would land combinations and stopping Castillo in his tracks. Read the rest of this entry »