Dream Match-ups of Each Division: What if?
By Angel Olguin: From strawweight greats like Donnie Nietes (5’ 3” 105 lbs) to heavyweight titans such as Wladimir Klitschko (6’ 6” 246 lbs), boxing consists of professional fighters scattered throughout 16 different divisions. Each division holds their share of elite fighters and top prospects, as well as their number of “paper champs” or “risk vs reward” mentalities. But what if… what if we could see the match ups throughout the divisions we been yearning to see? What if, boxing fights were chosen by the most important people of the sport, the fans? With so many dynamic warriors and skillful boxers out there, one has to wonder who’s skill set and superior technique topples the other?
With so many sanctioning bodies, powerful promoters and “advisers”, we the public don’t really know the full extent of politics being played behind the scenes of the boxing world. Therefore, there’s many match ups we yearn for that will never come to fruition. But once again, what if? Many believed Mayweather vs Pacquiao would never take place, but 3 weeks from now we’ll get to witness history in one of the biggest fights in recent memory. With this article I would like to go through a few divisions and indicate the fights I would like to see the most, or the fights I believe that will have significant impact on said division. For each fight mentioned, I would like to believe there’s a good possibility for these fights to be fulfilled in the near future.
Lightweight: Terrance Crawford was the man of this division, but with him recently vacating the title to move up to junior welterweight he left the doors wide open. The one fight I would look forward to seeing would have to be Omar Figueroa (24-0 18 KO’s) vs IBF champion Mickey Bey (21-1 10 KO’s). When Bey was asked about a specific champ he sees himself going after he responded, “Any of em. But you know the one fighter that put on a good fight, Figueroa? Yeah, I saw him fight. We work with the same people, so I think that that one would be a good one. Showtime also mentioned that’s the one they wanted to see.” Both fighters have been on Mayweather’s ppv cards, and this was a fight I was hoping to be added to the May 2nd mega-fight undercard. It’s a fight that can be made. Hopefully in the near future both sides could come together and make it happen. If Figueroa plans to leave the division for good then Yurokis Gamboa (24-1 17 KO’s) vs Bey would make the most sense.
Junior Welterweight: Love him or hate him, Danny Garcia is the man of the division and recognized as the Ring Magazine champion. But with that being said, the boxing world knows he’s beatable and the sharks of the division smell blood. One baby shark who’s new to the division but knows all too well the obligations of being a champ is undefeated former lightweight champion Terrance Crawford. This Saturday night I’ll be in attendance to see him try to capture the vacant WBO title against Puerto Rican boxer, Thomas Dulorme (22-1). Since Garcia is making his way up to full-fledged welterweight, this division is there for the taking as well. If the vulnerable fish is leaving the sea, sharks will have to battle fellow sharks, no more excuses. With that being said, the fight I would love to see is Terrance Crawford (25-0 17 KO’s) vs Adrien “The Problem” Broner (30-1 22 KO’s). Arum said in the past he would like to match the two fighters together. After Crawford’s win over Breidis Prescott, as quoted by Steve Kim, Arum said “I want to do a winner takes all, (Crawford) against Broner.” That fight would be amazing. Speed vs speed, power vs power, this would be a classic chess match and would hold great significance in the light welterweight division. Who wins?
Welterweight: Boxing’s most loved division and by far the deepest talent wise. On May 2nd we’ll get to see the #1 fight the world been waiting on, but what other fights could be made in the near future that would impact the division? Bradley vs Brook would make sense. Brook already turned down a fight against Bradley in 2012 in favor of earning a mandatory status with the IBF. People say that was an “excuse” to avoid Bradley, but given the time and reasoning it did make sense on Brook’s behalf. But now that he holds the IBF belt which was the goal from the beginning, it really does baffle me why he chose to fight Gavin instead of Bradley? Either way it’s a fight that can easily be made in the near future. The fight I would rather see would be Keith “One Time” Thurman (25-0 21 KO’s) vs tough veteran Marcos Maidana (35-5 31 KO’s). The fight was close to being made back in 2012 when negotiations fell apart. Since then both fighters added credence to their names and respectable careers campaigning in the ww division. That fight would be must see television, and it would also stamp Thurman’s legit place in the welterweight division given he could pull off the win.
Junior Middleweight: I believed the boxing world was being gifted a great fight when Demetrius Andrade (21-0) was being matched against Jermall Charlo (26-0). It was painful to later learn the fight had been called off due to disagreements in the purse. I believe both fighters are young, talented, and skillful enough to threaten Saul Canelo Alvarez (44-1 31 KO’s) #1 ranking in the division and possibly dethrone him. Canelo has an upcoming fight against hard-hitting James Kirkland on May 9th while Andrade is busy chasing down Erislandy Lara. I hope Charlo and Andrade could come together one more time and try to resolve the past issues which prevented them from getting in the ring together, they’re the future of that division.
Middleweight: The fight that boxing fanatics want in this division is a no-brainer, such as the case in the light HW division (Kovalev vs Stevenson). Miguel Cotto (39-4 32KO’s) vs Gennady Golovkin (32-0 29 KO’s), a unification bout, pay per view worthy, and possible candidate for FOY. Of course, out of all fights mentioned this one is probably the least likely to be made. Cotto already admitted he’s going to do what’s best for him, and if that includes giving up the MW belt then so be it. I’m a Cotto fan and believe he’s done enough to be respected as a great fighter and champion throughout his career. He is for sure a future hall of famer, but a spade is a spade. Besides Rigondeaux, Golovkin is the most avoided monster in the boxing world.
Super Middleweight: Andre Ward cleaned out this division and there’s absolutely nothing left for him here. Why he haven’t moved up and challenged himself to bigger and better fights is another question which seems confusing and without answer? He has the talent to capture belts at Light HW, and I seriously doubt he’ll be a Vegas underdog in any given fight there, even against Kovalev. Maybe he’s waiting for the little guys to move up and offer him new competition, who knows.
Light Heavyweight: As a boxing fanatic, it’s really frustrating to see the recent decisions of lineal light-heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson (26-1 21 KO’s). Besides Mayweather vs Pacquiao, Stevenson vs Sergei Kovalev (27-0-1 24 KO’s) makes the most sense hands down in the sport. With Stevenson switching to Showtime and Kovalev still under contract with HBO, there’s a few hurdles to jump through before this fight can happen. But I believe this is another case of Pacquiao vs Mayweather, meaning with enough public pressure and limited options for the champ (Stevenson), this fight will eventually come to fruition within time. Before Kovalev’s fight with Benard Hopkins, Adonis posted on his Facebook page “I will be ringside November 8th for the Hopkins-Kovalev fight. I will fight the winner for the unification,” I guess only time will tell.
Heavyweight: Last but not least, the Battle of the Titans. Wladamir Klitschko (63-3) vs Deontay Wilder (34-0 33 KO’s). Klitschko gets far less credit than he deserves. He haven’t lost in over a decade, has made 17 consecutive title defenses, and handed 9 undefeated HW’s their first loss in them 17 title fights. Deontay Wilder is huge and athletic, and for the first time in his career Wladamir will be fighting someone who has a height, reach, and power advantage. How things would pan out is anyone’s guess, but it sure is a fight I would love to see in the near future. Tyson Fury (24-0 18 KO’s) is no doubt an interesting figure, but given the fact a cruiserweight made him hit the canvas has to make you wonder what the heavy hitters of the division would do to him.
What about you? Besides the welterweights, what’s your other favorite division and what fight would you like to see come out of it? What are the top 5 fights you would like to see that yet haven’t been made? Be sure to tune in every Monday at Boxingnews24.com for a new article and feel free to email me at email@example.com with any comments, questions, or debates. Thanks for reading…
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