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title Haye Gives Up WBC Cruiserweight Belt

haye5743331.jpgBy Scott Gilfoid: David Haye (21-1, 20 KOs) has reportedly givin up his WBC cruiserweight championship belt, and asking the WBC to rate him in the WBC heavyweight division. However, he still has yet to give up his other two cruiserweight belts, the WBA and WBO. One can imagine that Haye, 27 will shortly be giving up those belts as well as he moves forward with his hopes of winning a heavyweight title in the near future. As for Haye’s WBC cruiserweight title, it will be fought over by Rudolf Kraj and Giacobbe Fragomeni. The latter fighter is no stranger to Haye, having fought a life and death battle with him in November 2006, in which Haye, who was bloodied and hit often, eventually prevailed with a 9th round stoppage.

Since letting his plans known that he wants to move up to cruiserweight, Haye has not been shy about wanting to take on the best in the division. Unlike most fighters, Haye has no interest in taking things slow and moving up in small increments the way that it’s normally done in the boxing world. Almost immediately, Haye called out IBF/WBO heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko , asking him to fight him. After getting not getting a positive response from Klitschko, Haye recently confronted him at a charity press conference in April, getting face to face with Klitschko and calling him out. Klitschko looked both startled and afraid, as if he wasn’t sure if Haye was going to reach out and clock him with one of his big trademark right hands. Read the rest of this entry »

title Is Witter Washed Up?

witter463232.jpgBy Eric Thomas: While watching former WBA super welterweight champion Junior Witter (36-2, 21 KOs) struggle in this past Saturday’s bout with Timothy Bradley, I got a general sense that Witter, 34, is past his prime and should really strongly consider ending his career. He looked well past it and his advanced age seems really has nothing to do with my thoughts on this. Many fighters still can fight effectively well past 34, Lennox Lewis, a prime example of that. But, in Witter’s case, he looked old and slow from the very get go, struggling with both his timing and his speed against the younger, stronger Bradley.

I’ve seen many of Witter’s fights and have been a big fan of his for many years, and for that reason I kept out hope for him that he would somehow eventually start fighting like his old self and take over the fight. The problem was, this isn’t the same fighter that I’ve come to know in the past. Witter’s speed was largely gone and his defense, once impregnable and nearly flawless, was wide open for pretty much anything that Bradley chose to throw his way. When Witter was dropped in the 6th round by a badly telegraphed right hand from Bradley, that pretty much clued me in that Witter just doesn’t have it anymore. Read the rest of this entry »

title Abraham vs. Miranda: Will Edison Get His Revenge?

miranda6464.jpgBy Erik Schmidt: Edison Miranda (30-2, 26 KOs) hopes to get a fair decision this time out when he takes on unbeaten middleweight Arthur Abraham (26-0, 21 KOs) in their revenge match in June 21st at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, in Hollywood, Florida. Miranda, 27, was given what many people consider a poor decision when he lost to Abraham by a controversial 12-round unanimous decision in September 2006. Miranda, who dominated most of the rounds, breaking Abraham’s jaw in the fourth round and appearing to do more than enough to get the win over Abraham.

However, Miranda was penalized a total of five points in the fight, ranging from low blows to the use of his head. There’s no question that Abraham was guilty of using his head on one occasion but as far as the low blows go, those were punches on the border of Abraham’s beltline and it seemed way out of line to penalize Miranda for such questionable shots. Worse, however, was that the fight was stopped in the fourth round to have Abraham’s jaw looked at by a ring side doctor. Abraham ended up being allowed to continue fighting but he mostly was limited to brief flurries in every round, missing the vast majority of his punches every time. Abraham only landed a small handful of punches in each round following the fifth round, while taking tremendous punishment from Miranda, who continuously landed big bombs with both hands. Read the rest of this entry »

title Junior Witter: “No Way Am I Retiring”

witter574633.jpgBy Aaron Klein: After last Saturday’s split decision loss to undefeated American Timothy Bradley (22-0, 11 KOs), a fiercely determined vowed to fight on, saying “I’m still going to carry on, no way am I retiring after that,” Witter said. “There’s a lot more in the tank. There are better nights for me to come and Junior Witter will be back – as a world champion.” To be sure, Witter, 34, still seems to have a lot in the tank based on the closeness of the fight against Bradley. If not for his tiring out in the last three rounds of the fight, Witter would have won the fight. Even then, Witter still came close to getting a draw.

The loss, however, does have a big impact on Witter’s career because he now is no longer in the running for a potential bout with Ricky Hatton. It was a long shot at best regardless of whether or not Witter won the fight, because Hatton had shown zero interest in fighting him all these years when Witter was winning constantly. Now that he’s lost to Bradley, obviously Hatton will use this as an excuse to side step Witter for the remainder of his career. Read the rest of this entry »

title Truscott Defeats Akaba

truesot4.jpgBy Chris Williams: Undefeated British featherweight Paul Truscott (11-0, 1 KOs) defeated Osumanu Akaba (10-4, 8 KOs) by a tough 12-round unanimous decision on Friday night to win the vacant Commonwealth (British Empire) featherweight title at the Eston Sports Academy, Middlesbrough, in Yorkshire. Truscott, only 22, traded rounds with the hard-hitting Akaba, who refused to give any ground to the highly skilled Truscott. The final judges’ scores were 116-112, 115-113 and 116-112, all for Truscott. Many of the rounds were very close and difficult to score because Akaba often wouldn’t land as many shots as Truscott, yet his punches were much harder than the weaker-punching Truscott.

In the first round, it appeared that Akaba would simply be too strong for the rail-thin Truscott as landed a high number of powerful hooks to the head of Truscott. However, after being dominated for the first two minutes of the round, Truscott showed what was in store for Akaba later on in the fight, as he began to return fire with piercing combinations and excellent hooks. Though his punches were not even close to being as hard as Akaba, they were thrown with excellent form and were quite constant in nature. Read the rest of this entry »

title Sanchez Decisions Thompson

sanchez464323.jpgBy Manuel Perez: Fresh off his 6th round stoppage at the hands of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., in December 2007, light middleweight Ray Sanchez (21-2, 15 KOs) squeezed out a close 10-round majority decision over Patrick Thompson (13-13-1, 5 KOs) on Friday night at the Isleta Casino & Resort, in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The final judges’ scores were 97-93, 96-94 and 95-95. It was a mostly ugly fight with Sanchez doing a lot of running and clinching for most of the bout, and landing counter shots whenever he’d spot an opening in the defense of Thompson.

For his part, Thompson, 35, put a lot of pressure on Sanchez for the entire fight, keeping him against the ropes for much of the action where Thompson would land mostly body shots and a small amount of uppercuts. It looked overall as if Thompson had done more than enough to get the decision but the outcome came to no surprise to me because Sanchez was fighting in his own hometown. Some in the audience weren’t in full agreement with the ultimate decision, however, as they loudly booed Sanchez afterwards. Like I said, he looked to have lost the fight by at least 1-2 rounds, and wasn’t the one making the fight. Read the rest of this entry »

title Murray Decisions Hamidi

murray4432.jpgBy Scott Gilfoid: In an especially badly scored fight, BBBofC English lightweight champion John Murray (24-0, 12 KOs) defeated Youssef Al Hamidi (4-9-1, 1 KOs) in a scheduled 8-round bout at the Nottingham Arena in Nottinghamshire, England on Saturday night. Murray, 23, won by the score of 77-75, which seemed like a gift decision because it was Hamidi who appeared to win six of the first eight rounds of the fight. Many in the crowd hated the decision and gave a chorus of boos to Murray, letting them know what they thought of the decision. To say that Murray struggled against Hamidi would be putting it lightly.

In most of the rounds of the fight, Murray couldn’t lay a glove on Hamidi, as he followed him around the ring taking repeated shots from the 5’5” Syrian born fighter. Up until the 7th round, Murray was only able to land in the single digits against the elusive Hamidi, who used foot movement and twists of his torso to dodge the slow and labored punching style of Murray. In terms of speed, Murray has got to be one of the slowest punching lightweights I’ve seen, and it’s frankly astonishing that he’s a champion of anything. Whatever the case, he may have got the decision but he didn’t win the fight, not as far as I’m concerned. That was a case of a fighter winning when they shouldn’t have. Read the rest of this entry »

title Bradley Defeats Witter

witter46342.jpgBy Eric Thomas: WBC light welterweight champion Junior Witter (36-2, 21 KOs) lost a narrow 12-round split decision to undefeated American challenger Timothy Bradley (22-0, 11 KOs) at the Nottingham Arena, Nottingham, in Nottinghamshire, England, on Saturday night. Witter, 34, was knocked down once in the fight after getting hit with a big sweeping right hand in the 6th round. Witter trailed in the first half of the fight, looking four of six rounds. He then rallied and appeared to win rounds seven though nine. After the 9th round, however, Witter faded badly and allowed Bradley to retake command of the fight.

In turn, Bradley would go on to win the remaining rounds 10 through 12. The final judges’ scores were 115-113, 114-113 for Bradley and 112-115 for Witter. I personally scored it 115-113 for Bradley. I had hoped that Witter would win the fight because I wanted him to continue exerting pressure on former light welterweight champion Ricky Hatton, who has been reluctant to fight Witter for some reason. With this loss, this now gives Hatton an even better excuse not to fight Witter. Though I highly doubt Hatton will get anywhere near the new champion Bradley, who like Witter, would box circles around Hatton and very likely knock him out like Floyd Mayweather Jr. did in their recent championship bout in December. Read the rest of this entry »

title Froch Too Much For Rybacki

froch463221.jpgBy Dave Lahr: In a stay busy fight, undefeated super middleweight contender Carl Froch (23-0, 19 KOs) destroyed his Polish opponent Albert Rybacki (15-1, 8 KOs) in the 4th round on Saturday night at the Nottingham Arena, in Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, England. Froch, 30, the #1 ranked fighter in the WBC super middleweight division, controlled every round, hurting Rybacki with tremendous shots. The end came in the fourth after Froch landed a series of hard combinations, ending with a big uppercut that snapped the head back of Rybacki. The referee John Keane them moved in and stopped the fight at 2:35 of the 4th round. Froch looked good throughout, although he tended to load up a bit too much in the fight, making him seem kind of slow and mechanical in the process.

The fight was never expected to be a competitive bout, since Rybacki, 37, was nowhere near the same class as Froch. However, the win served a purpose in that it kept pressure on WBC champion Joe Calzaghe, who will either have to make a decision to fight Froch, the number one contender, or vacate the belt. Froch said afterwards about Calzaghe, “He has to give it to me (a fight) or vacate the belt.” Read the rest of this entry »

title Kentikian Destroys Ortega

kentikian46325.jpgBy Erik Schmidt: Undefeated WIBF Women’s International Boxing Federation flyweight and WBA Female flyweight champion Susi Kentikian (21-0, 16 KOs) successfully defended her titles with a destructive 1st round TKO of American Mary Ortega (29-5-2, 8 KOs) of a scheduled 10-round title bout at the Brandberge Arena, Halle, an der Saale, in Sachsen-Anhalt, Germany, on Saturday night. Kentikian, 20, making her second defense of her WIBF title, dropped Ortega twice in the 1st round and was pummeling her against the ropes afterwards causing the referee to come to Ortega’s rescue and stop the fight.

Ortega, 27, never had a chance in the bout, as she was stopped with a blistering 1-2 combination from Kentikian just seconds into the fight. I’m not quite sure whether Ortega ever recovered from the knockdown because it was a devastating combination, which Ortega seemed to never see coming. The reason for that, perhaps, is because Kentikian started slow in the round, mostly throwing weak combinations with very little power put on the shots. She seemed to just be trying to make contact with Ortega and wasn’t loading up with her shots like she usually does against her opponents. Ortega, though, should have had an idea that Kentikian can punch a little because she’d knocked out 15 of her 20 opponents going into the fight, which should have been evidence enough that Kentikian is a fighter that you have to be very careful with in the ring. Read the rest of this entry »

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