Carl Frampton assessment
By Gav Duthie: “I had a lot of input into that opponent, so I will probably let my team pick the next one” (Frampton). Carl knew he was in a fight last night, and at times brutal exchange against an opponent Horacio Garcia 33-4 (24) that was meant to be nothing more than a homecoming show.
Over the last 18 months, Frampton has been talking retirement, exit strategy, falling out of love with boxing. After his change of team and promoter he feels reinvigorated but that didn’t seem to translate in the ring. Here we assess what Frampton has left to give.
Change of team
We all thought Frampton and the McGuigan’s were a match made in heaven. Friends as trainer/boxer (Shane McGuigan) and one Northern Irish legend as promoter (Barry McGuigan) to the new blood as a fighter (Carl Frampton). We were all shocked earlier this year when Frampton announced a split. Things hadn’t seemed right when he failed to make weight for a previous comeback attempt, but this was still a surprise. Reading between the lines of comments made an article since the split it seems Frampton was just hating training every day. It was too much, and he was struggling. Josh Taylor who is also trained by Shane said he was in a 14-week camp for his fight last week with Miguel Vazquez and George Groves has also said that Shane never lets him settle. In fairness to Carl this brutal training approach may be just too much now at 30 years old. He has now joined Jamie Moore (Trainer), MTK (advisors) and Frank Warren (Promoter). He says he is enjoying training now and that less is more. Less sparring, more conditioning and feels better than ever, but we’ve heard that before.
It didn’t look it last night.
It was tough, but Frampton was a worthy winner. Garcia scored a knockdown which was more a slip and it was an enthralling fight. The worrying signs were that Frampton looked hurt by body shots, tired in the mid-rounds and couldn’t do any real damage to the stalking Garcia. In fairness I had the fight close, but Frampton was strong in the 9th and 10th so a second wind was there but the signs were still worrying. A boxer’s bread and butter is training, that’s the hardest part. Although he is enjoying training now with Moore is he really getting enough fitness for his stamina. Moore is a great analyst and trainer, but this is a major coup for him getting Frampton. I wonder who is leading the training? Is Moore allowed to push Frampton to the limits? Hopefully after this fight they both realize that Carl needs a bit more.
Post-fight, Carl said the next big one is a summer showdown at Windsor Park, Belfast in the summer of 2018. Frank Warren says the fight will be against a champion. The potential is Gary Russell Jnr (WBC), Leo Santa Cruz/Abner Mares winner (WBA), Lee Selby/Josh Warrington (IBF), Oscar Valdez (WBO). Frampton is a superstar in Northern Ireland, so it doesn’t really matter which champion he fights he will sell out the stadium. My worry is that if he keeps going on like this that he is likely to lose against the top champions.