#FrochGroves2 Main Event by Paul Ready

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This is my 50th post on this blog, I could not have picked a better fight to preview for this milestone…

 

Whatever happened to Lemar? Anyone know………

I’m sure Keith Thurman is an extra in that video…

 

So the time for talking is done,  no more press conferences or interviews for the fighters which no doubt they are delighted about.

I was present at the weigh-in today and both men looked in ridiculous condition. Froch always sports an 8 pack but Groves for the first time in my memory was ripped.

Wembley Arena was littered with posters carrying the slogan “I am part of history” accompanied with a picture of each fighter competing and their opponent.

The weigh-in was packed, it felt American; big and brash with the addition of a raucous terrace crowd

Mayweather v Canelo “The One” was the real trail-blazer of weigh-ins to create a huge public turnout, designed to really stir and stimulate your senses prior to the main event

Courtesy of IFLTV

A few words were exchanged but the most dramatic thing to occur was heated words between a security guard working for Matchroom and one of Groves’ personal entourage.

I believe this week it has finally dawned on them both the sheer magnitude and spectacle of Saturday 31st May, and the stakes could not be higher.

As a fan, I have no idea what to expect, the atmosphere will be a pure one off you can’t train or mentally prepare yourself for something no one has ever experienced.

Judging by the respective receptions both men received today, I expect the crowd to be 60-40 possibly 70-30 for Groves.

So how will fight go?

It has been the hardest fight to call, few people have a definitive winner, opinions have changed more than Piers Morgan towards Arsene Wenger, minus of course the fickle natured tweets.

I’ve imagined this fight in my head countless times this week, weighed up all possible intangibles and this is what each man needs to do to win.

 

Groves:

George is technically one of the best boxers in the Super Middle-Weight division, he announced himself in the last encounter 6 months ago to the world as an elite fighter. But what does he need to do different?

For me, tighten up defensively is the first thing. On numerous occasions in the first fight, his hands were low making him susceptible to counter-punches. As the 26 yr old began to tire, the hands were fully by his waist as he proceeded to slug with The Cobra before the “stoppage”.

Despite his public proclamations of KO’ing Froch in 3, I will be astounded if he boxes that way. I’m expecting a much tighter encounter from both men.

I expect St GG to box on the back-foot and bank the first 5 rounds at a canter. Getting behind the jab, keeping Froch at range and evading trading.

Where the fight hangs for me delicately in the balance is Groves’ stamina.

He looks in career-best condition, low body-fat and that clearly is a testament to the addition of a conditioning coach purely focused on developing stamina in the latter stages.

If Groves’ petrol light comes on in the 8/9th round, I fear for him.

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Froch:

Carl Froch is Ronseal of boxing, he does exactly what he says on the tin.

He is a tough bastard, great chin and even at the ripe age of 36 he is in better shape than most 21 year olds.

The Cobra is guaranteed to still be standing and throwing shots right up until the final bell, he has spoken numerous times that he wishes it was still 15 championship rounds.

I draw comparisons with a group of young boys in the summer still playing football at 9.45pm as the sun is setting, refusing to give-in and let the darkness halt their 5-a-side match.

Froch is the same, he would be in his element left on a pitch black Wembley at midnight punching holes in Groves. Carl is a fantastic fighter, but he is not a boxer in the purest of form.

The Cobra needs to make this into a gritty fight, get Groves in to scrap, make him slug with him in the centre of the ring, I feel it is the only way he can beat him.

The 36 yr old is unable to out-box Groves. He would not have all of a sudden developed slick footwork, a crisp jab and the ability to slip shots.

He needs to stick to what he does best and fight, rather than trying to do something completely out of his comfort zone and end up chasing shadows for 36 minutes.

Having seen footage this week of Froch sparring Chris Eubank Jnr, who I felt in stages man-handled him with speed and combos I’m now convinced he is on the decline.

 

Verdict:

Groves UD

I’m backing Groves to box patiently and with plenty of movement. I expect Froch to come strong in the 10th, but despite weathering a late storm that will draw gasps from the crowd and audience at home, I expect a Unanimous Decision (8 rounds to 4 or 9 rounds to 3) culminating in the crowning of the next British superstar.

But I stress the key is Groves’ discipline and stamina. If he runs out of steam, we will see a brutal late stoppage from Froch.

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

#FrochGroves2 Undercard by Paul Ready

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So here we are, fight week.

Unless you have been residing under a rock or in the International Space Station orbiting our planet, you would have found it nigh on impossible to avoid the frenzy this weekend.

scene composition: litho, frame 22

Whilst most will tune in to view the main event, we shouldn’t overlook the fights on the under card which contains some of Britain’s biggest and brightest talents.

 

Anthony Joshua v Matt Legg

 

First up is Joshua (5-0: 5KO’s) who faces Matt Legg (7-2: 3KO’s) in a 6 round Heavyweight contest.

Whilst some criticism has been levied at Matchroom for not finding a more attractive opponent for the Olympic Gold Medallist, it is becoming increasingly more challenging to locate willing suitors to face him.

Michael Sprott so I’m told was a strong contender to face Joshua but with him due to face Martin Rogan in New Zealand next week it was a non starter.

 

More important than the opponent is the chance to box on the biggest spectacle in British boxing history, something Joshua cites as bigger than the Olympics.

“I’m starting the show but hopefully one day I’ll be headlining. I hope to start the night off with a bang. I’ve got a domestic fighter who’s coming to give it a go. He’ll be trying to catch me so may the best man win.”

With the opportunity for him to not only box in-front of 80,000 the exposure he will receive being shown on HBO Boxing Stateside will do wonders for his growing his profile.

 

Jamie McDonnell v Tabtimdaeng Na Rachawat

 

Former IBF Bantamweight World Champion McDonnell (23-2: 10KO’s) faces Na Rachawat (52-2: 34KO’s) from Thailand for the vacant WBA Regular title.

Na Rachawat has boxed his whole career in Thailand and I’ve heard he is an aggressive, come-forward pressure fighter.

My concern with him as an unknown quantity is the level of opponents he has faced.

Let’s hope he is more a Daniel Brizuela (who gave Tommy Coyle a life & death fight) than a Mikheil Avakyani (who boxed like Mr Bean and Kevin Mitchell could have dealt with in his sleep)


“You can expect the best of me. I want to put in the best performance I have ever done, especially in front of all these people,” he told the Ringside Toe 2 Toe podcast.

“When I win a world title back, it’s a stepping stone. I want to unify this division before I move up, so it all happens on the 31st at Wembley.”

Kevin Mitchell v Ghislain Maduma

Kevin “Mighty” Mitchell (37-2: 27KO’s) faces Maduma (16-0:10KO’s) in an IBF final eliminator on Saturday night.

29yr old Mitchell will be have a huge fan-base present on Saturday evening as he bids to make it 3rd time lucky on the World title trail.

Having lost to Australian Michael Katsidis and now stable-mate Ricky Burns, some would argue that this is Mitchell’s last chance to realise a boy-hood dream of becoming world champion.

Having spoken to people around The Hammer, he is more focused and determined than ever before. The penny has well and truly dropped for him, he knows this is his time, the chance to showcase to the world what he is capable of.

Mentally & physically he is in the shape of his life, you only had to see the zip and snap in his punches yesterday at the open work-out.

Mitchell is living the life of an elite athlete now, taking his nutrition and boxing much more seriously.

Inheriting the “senior” fighter status in the gym since rejoining Tony Sims last summer, he has the bit between his teeth and I’m looking forward to seeing a sparkling performance from him in his home-town Saturday night.

Mitchell told Sky Sports News:

“It’s a great opportunity for me. It’s a world title eliminator and after this I’ve got Vazquez in my sight. What a platform to do it on – it’s the biggest show in history

“I’ve put my whole year into this training. I’ve made my comeback properly, training solidly for a year and having regular fights for Eddie Hearn with Tony Sims, who’s been working wonders with me in the gym.

“I’ve been sparring the likes of Martin Ward, Ricky Burns. It’s been going brilliantly. All the boys like Anthony Joshua are alongside me in the gym. I’m flying for this fight.

“Everyone’s buzzing. We’re happy. You’ve got to work hard in this game and working alongside other athletes like that shows you how hard you have to train. We’re all working harder to get faster times and it’s great.

“I’ve seen quite a few fights of Maduma’s and he likes doing things his own way. He’s got fast hands and I imagine he’ll be very fit for this fight but if it has to be a war, that’s how it will be.

“I’ve been in a few wars. I’ve been beaten in two but I wasn’t prepared for them. Trust me, when I’m prepared the way I’m prepared now, I’m ready for whoever it has to be.

“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime crowd. I don’t think we’ll ever see it again. I said to Anthony Joshua a couple of months back that the only person who could get this kind of crowd again would be him in a few years’ time for titles at world level.”

Supporting the main-event and with one eye on the victor is James DeGale, another local lad who like Mitchell is a whisker away from a World title shot.

James DeGale v Brandon Gonzales

DeGale (18-1: 12KO’s) faces the toughest test in his career against undefeated American Gonzales (18-0: 10KO’s)

Gonzales trained by Virgil Hunter regularly spars with Andre Ward and isn’t travelling to London to sit on an open-top-bus with his bum bag taking pictures of Buckingham Palace.

They are coming to win and DeGale needs to deliver…. massively.

Having boxed in small arena’s in Lakeside predominantly, “Chunky” feels he is returning to stage where he belongs.

He would admit himself that since the narrow defeat to Groves, his profile reduced dramatically and the move to Matchroom has been long-overdue.

Initially focused on the WBC path and a showdown with Sakio Bika, he has now wisely pursued the IBF route as a fight against Froch or Groves rematch would fill Phones4U Arena in Manchester or the O2 with ease.

“Flawless” hasn’t knocked an opponent out since 2010 and I fully expect him to take the fight to DeGale for the full 12 rounds.

I fancy DeGale to outbox Gonzales down the stretch and take a split decision.

“He surrounds himself with good talented people like Amir Khan and Andre Ward, is trained by a good trainer in Virgil Hunter so I’m up against it but training camp has gone great.

“I’m injury free, mentally on point and as Eddie Hearn says, I’ve got my mojo back. I’m feeling nice and I’m ready to do it.

“I needed the right person to push me there and shouts to Eddie and Matchroom Sports with Team Chunky. We’re doing it big and I just can’t wait for Saturday night. It’s going to be a hell of a show so whoever’s got tickets, fasten your seatbelts.

 

**Tune in Friday for my breakdown of the main event…. Do not miss it!**

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

Wadi Camacho “My time to shine” by Paul Ready

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In boxing there are many fighters who polarise opinion.

They are some adored by many who support, cheer and will them on to succeed.

They are some despised by many who wish them to be battered in brutal fashion.

If you asked anyone over Hadrian’s Wall what they thought of Spanish-born Wadi Camacho they would certainly fall in to the latter category.

Wadi wouldn’t want it any other way, he feeds off the hatred. It makes him laugh and smile as people are giving him the attention he craves.

Thus creating a buzz around him and his fights.

They will tune in to see him lose, they will continue bait and goad him on Twitter as he builds up to a huge rescheduled grudge match against Stephen Simmons for the WBC International Silver Cruiserweight title.

The Canning Town Catalan, a huge Southpaw Cruiserweight with monster power was in a relaxed mood when we spoke at Simsy’s Gym.

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Elite Boxing:

Wadi, I appreciate your time as you are right in the thick of your training camp, so tell me what got you in to boxing?

 

Wadi Camacho:

 

What got me in to boxing? I was always intrigued by boxing, I used to watch Holyfield, Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis.

I was always in to different types of sport. When I was 19-20 I was in to football and basketball. I achieved a lot in those sports and I still found I had lots of energy inside me when I finished matches.

I started going to a gym, do weights and that then I met my good friend Gary Delaney, after that 1 day I jumped in the ring with him, he gave me a black eye.

I felt so relaxed after a good sparring season, after that I went all the way in.

 

EB:

You ended up getting in to the sport quite late I see. I looked at Box Rec the other day and was surprised that you’ve only been professional for 2.5 years, you seem to have been around for ages.

You fought 6-7 odd times in 2013, I watched the Conquest fight back the other day and I felt you’d nicked it.

 

WC:

I take a lesson out of each fight, the China Clarke situation (Wadi lost to him last year) I wasn’t in great shape, my mind-set wasn’t there.

I was running around doing too much outside the ring, trying to sell tickets & going out, staying up too late.

So my mind wasn’t where it should have been.

I went out in Round 1, all guns blazing and ended up losing. But I took a big lesson out of that and took it in to the next fight.

With the Conquest fight, I was gutted as I trained really hard for it. I’m not looking to blame anyone, but I am the fighter I admit I should of had my killer instinct on to take the guy out but at the same time I listened to the instructions I was given and lost.

But a another lesson learnt, but where I am now is amazing.

 

EB:

You’ve been with Peter (Sims) now since January and I’m sure you’ve talked it to death you leaving Don Charles, but from your perspective what has been the most refreshing thing about coming to Simsy’s gym and working with Peter?

 

WC:

During my previous fights I sparred here against Ben (Benga Ileyemi), I boxed here as an amateur and knew everyone, John Ryder, Kevin Mitchell I’ve known them from way dot.

It just felt nice being here, me and Pete had a connection. Then I called him and asked if he’d take anyone else on, and basically after that he gave me a trial.

I was really excited, as I felt he could get a lot out of me and where I can go with my career.

After that it’s been amazing, I talk to him every day, he rings me, I do my runs he checks up on me. That’s what I need.

Not just as a trainer as I see him as more than a trainer. It’s a big family in the gym. Whenever I hear Pete’s voice, it pushes me.

Last week he wasn’t in as he was ill, when I was training and feeling a bit tired I just got Pete running through my head.

 

EB:

I get that impression that Peter like Tony has an aura about him and you respect him a lot. You said that you previously “took your eye off the ball”, having someone like that is going to be on your case is going to get the best out of you.

You could tell the importance of the first fight you had together (Wadi beat Toni Visic in April) putting the extra training in to practice what with the Simmons fight being delayed.

 

WC:

With the Simmons fight, it was good he pulled out due to injury as now the bond me and Pete have now is to the next level.

We were going back in the corner of the Visic fight and having normal conversations which relaxed me and put me at ease.

Certain guys sit there and just listen to instructions nodding.

You need to have conversations to acknowledge what the trainer is saying to you.

 

EB:

You and Tyler have a great relationship together as well, you were there supporting him in Manchester, he walked you out last month, no doubt the same will happen in Glasgow.

 

WC:

Totally, most people know that boxers are selfish. I would be the first to admit I’m very selfish just about me. But I do help out where I can, sometimes I do want to just finish training and go home. But he is my little bro and we are close.

Boxing is lonely, you have to push yourself with your runs. But when I’m in the gym with the boys, it gives me a boost.

I thrive on attention, if I don’t get attention I get down.

I’m loving this with Simmons, do you know why? Because people are giving me attention, regardless of if it’s negative or positive it drives me.

Without attention, I’m a light bulb with no electricity.

 

EB:

You are an energy fighter, feeding off that type of volatile environment.

 

WC:

There you go. I was supposed to have a press conference 2 weeks ago that I couldn’t go to and I was disappointed as there would be loads of people there.

Pete told me to stay away from Twitter for a few weeks, so I stayed away from Twitter.

I’ve got another one in June, then the weigh-in, I can’t wait.

 

EB:

Looking at Simmons’ record, would you say you’ve had tougher fights than him to date?

 

WC:

I’ve been there and felt the decision going against me. I don’t want to feel that again. Which is why me and my team have put everything right for this fight coming up.

He hasn’t felt that yet, but he is going to feel it on the 27th June. 100% he is going to feel it.

 

EB:

I’ll be amazed if this fight goes the distance. In your last fight, you showed glimpses of your punching-power and the work you’ve done with Peter.

 

WC:

I’ve prepared to go any round, everyone knows what I carry; extreme power. It’s not something I have to build in to, when I do land, they do go.

The last fight the guy was awkward, we knew he was going to switch from Southpaw to Orthodox. We wanted to show the amazing people who tune in to Prizefighter a great show. I wanted to show everyone what me and Pete had been working on, I used my jab and showed everyone I’ve got a serious weapon without relying on my back-hand.

Once Pete told me to put my foot on the gas, I switched it up.

 

EB:

You and I spoke outside just now about Nathan Cleverly joining Matchroom and joining Tony Bellew in your division. Naturally you wouldn’t be naïve enough to look beyond Simmons but no doubt you have plans to get in the mix of that.

 

WC:

Oh yeah of course, it’s not some point. Those fights will 100% happen. I’m not going to look too far ahead, Simmons has the WBC Silver International and he’s my path currently.

Once I finish him, all the doors are open.

But good luck to those two, they will end up fighting each other later this year in a rematch.

 

EB:

I believe Matchroom are planning to have them both fight on the next Liverpool show in July to drum up interest then late November face each other again.

 

WC:

It’s great for the fans to see that rematch, last was Light-Heavy, this time Cruiser.

But I’ve got my own big domestic fight and trust me it’s going to steal the show in Scotland.

Every single session I’m training hard.

The next level is when we go away to Spain next week.

All the hard ground work has been done with regards to fitness so we’ll be having top sparring out there.

Come back, keep ticking over, my fitness levels are really great.

 

EB:

You spoke earlier at being disappointed in missing the last pre-fight press conference, do you have anything planned try antagonise Simmons at the next one?

 

WC:

We’ve got a hearing with the Scottish Board on June 1st, I’m staying over then there’s another press conference on 2nd.

Like I said, I’m a cool person… sometimes. But if he gives it, I’ll have to put him in his place.

He’ll get wound up again. He says he won’t, in my presence he does get wound up.

I’ve seen the parody account that makes me laugh, it doesn’t effect me.

I have cussing matches with mates on a Whatsapp group where we rip each other daily, with my best friends so it’s nothing.

When I didn’t go to the last press conference, I wrote a letter to Eddie (Hearn) to read out saying if he wants to make a bet that I will put him on the floor and he’s going to say “Yeah Buddy”. Simmons said no, he’s not going to agree, when he puts me on the floor he’s going to say “Yeah Buddy”.

At the next press conference I will tell him again that he’s going to smell the canvas.

A lot of people used to laugh at me saying “Yeah Buddy”, now everyone is using it. People are wearing my t shirts, hats, shorts. It makes you feel nice. Rather than saying just “Yeah”, you say “Yeeeeaaah Buddy”

 

EB:

You never know, if you get past Simmons, in to the mix with Bellew & Cleverly you could end up developing it as a clothing brand. You only have to look at Lethal Bizzle and his successful Dench range.

Where did the phrase “Smell the Canvas” come from?

 

WC:

He just went crazy, he doesn’t have any punching power. He talks like he’s a banger, like he knocks people out for fun, which is what I do. The guy is just crazy. I know myself, I don’t hype things up but he will 100% smell the canvas.

 

EB:

You can make comparisons with Froch Groves 1 as Groves really got under Froch’s skin and pissed him off. You’ve managed to do that without really doing much yourself.

 

WC:

He was wound up before he got there. My fans on Twitter they were saying stuff about him, his missus and his friends. I had nothing to do with it, I didn’t put anyone up to it.

Then I started getting loads of abuse from his fans for no reason.

I can’t control what the fans say, if I want to RT something I will do so. No one controls me but Peter… haha!

 

EB:

We’ll wrap it up there Wadi as you’ve got training to do shortly. Do you have any messages to your fans & friends making the trip to Scotland?

 

WC:

I don’t want no-one to come to Scotland. Anyone that’s routing for me, stay at home and watch it. If you want to come up, it would be nice. It’s going to be exciting, make sure you tune-in.

Keep following Wadi Camacho as I’m going to do the business, I’m very nice and focused right now in a good place.

When I’m happy, everything is beautiful.

 

EB:

Wadi, thanks for your time, best of luck with rest of the training and no doubt we will speak in the near future.

 

WC:

Thanks man, I really appreciate it.

 

 

You can follow Wadi Camacho on Twitter: @wadicamacho and on Instagram: teammacho1.

For tickets to see Camacho v Simmons, they are available through Matchroom Boxing please contact Wadi for availability.

Interview by Paul Ready

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

www.eliteboxing.net

 

@tornadotyler Goodjohn: “I want Boylan next!”

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Elite Boxing:

I’m here with Tyler Goodjohn today, in reflection of the fight with Tyrone Nurse that had clips shown on Ringside this week.

Naturally a disappointing result, but you gave a good account of yourself and can take positives from the fight
Tyler Goodjohn:
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Like you say, it was a disappointing result but there was circumstances that took place before, but I want to take nothing away from Tyrone, he’s probably the best person in the division, certainly the most awkward and will definitely be avoided.
It was my 12th fight, we summed it up the other day when we spoke;
“Do I think I would beat Nurse if I had as many fights as he had, 28?
I think I would have stopped him to be honest, in the later rounds.
He’s a good fighter, I’ll take that experience and move on.
I think he was more prepared due to having had more fights, at 24-25 it was his time.
I knew before going in to the fight that maybe it had come a year to early, but at the same time I can’t be turning those kind of fights down.
No one else wanted it, Bradley Saunders pulled out, Lenny Daws pulled out as did Shane Singleton. I got the opportunity and I’m the only person that wanted it.
I want those hard fights, it’s the only way you will progress in this sport and get better is by fighting the best, that’s what you’ve got to do.
EB:
You’ve certainly gained more fans by your come-forward style in that fight, taking some big shots and still applying pressure.
So now you’ve taken some time out to relax after a heavy camp that kicked off in January, do you have a date in mind for when you’ll next be out?
TG:
At the minute I’m back and living the life training and eating well.
I had some pretty bad injuries in the lead up to the fight so me and my trainer (Peter Sims) are looking at September now.
I just want to get back and get back to feeling good in training again as the last one was a nightmare. I had cuts, damaged my ribs, hamstring injury to be fair it couldn’t have gone any worse, but do you know what, that’s boxing.
No fighter ever goes in to the ring 100%, but I’ve learnt from experience that I can’t go in to fights that big with those types of injuries. I’m going to take a month of just plodding along training, then be back big in September.
EB:
Like you’ve said you need to give the body some rest after such a long camp. But I can tell that result hasn’t dampened your desire to succeed in the sport.
You’ve got time on your side (Tyler turned 23 today; Saturday) with the majority of the fighters around you 3-4 years older.
I know it’s a few months away from us September, but is there anyone in mind you’d like to fight?
TG:
I’d like Ricky Boylan next, I like Ricky a lot, he’s a great lad, we get on well. But it’s a fight that makes a lot of sense in London, We’ve got great support between us, both got crowd pleasing styles.
I think Tom Stalker is another one as well, I’d love to be the first person to put a loss on his record, over 10 rounds I think I’d beat him.
There’s no fear of fighting anyone now, I’ve fought the most awkward unnatural style boxer out there.
I’m 23 tomorrow, I have got time on my side, if I wanted to do all that build my record up, easy 6 rounder’s against Latvian’s I could do all that, but it’s not what I’m about
I want to be in great fights.
I’ve had some fantastic messages, people love my style.
EB:

You’ve named a few there, you and Boylan would be a great fight.

TG:
Too much these days is made of unbeaten records, you look at peoples records, it looks pretty on paper but how many fighters do we see, 15/16-0 get chucked in their first real test and get knocked out or beat.
Then they don’t come back, I don’t see the point in that, I’ve never seen the point in that.
It looks good on TV and I appreciate TV wants unbeaten fighters but at the end of the day there comes a time you’ve got to step up which I’ve already done when I was young and I can jump in to big fights now.
EB:
I was just talking to Peter (Sims) about the addition of Ricky Burns ex World Champion to the gym, it’s another world class fighter for you to eventually spar with.
TG:
He’s a really nice fella and has settled in to the gym well. I’ve had a few weeks off but it will be greatt for me when that does eventually happen. Kevin Mitchell and I get on brilliantly so I’m looking forward to learning off Ricky as well.
EB:
I’ll make sure I’m down here for that when it happens.
Is there any message you’d like to say to your fans the Fen Army who came to support you in Manchester?
TG:
I’d like to say to everyone who not only came to this fight, but who have come to all my fights throughout my career that always believed in me, I really am grateful for all the support you give me, we are going to go on and do big things. Without them, I wouldn’t be able to do it’s as simple as that.
EB:
Tyler I won’t keep you any further (Tyler was wrapping his hand throughout the interview) as you’ve got work to do, no doubt we will catch-up in the near future.
Best of luck with the training, Happy Birthday for tomorrow and we’ll speak soon.
TG:
Cheers mate, always good to see you, speak soon.
You can follow Tyler Goodjohn on Twitter at @tornadotyler.
Tyler is always looking to add new sponsors to his growing portfolio, if you are interested in sponsoring him, please get in touch.
Interviewed by Paul Ready.
@PaulReady
@EliteBoxingNet

Boxing Update 12/05 by Paul Ready

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With the WBC Heavyweight Title being won by Bermane Stiverne on Saturday evening, aptly this week in boxing history two of the greatest Heavyweight’s in history also fought for the prestigious accolade:

 

1955 – Rocky Marciano TKOs Don Cockell in 9 for Heavyweight title

1975 – Muhammed Ali TKOs Ron Lyle in 11 for Heavyweight title

1977 – Muhammed Ali beats Alfredo Evangelist in 15 for Heavyweight title

 

Haitian Stiverne stopped Arreola in the 6th to claim the belt vacated by Vitali Klitschko and can now look forward to facing Deontay Wilder in his first mandatory defence.

Promoted by Don King who still wears that battered denim jacket claimed this victory was ushering in a new era of Heavyweight boxing .

Whilst it is refreshing to see a non Klitschko holding a belt, Bronze Bomber Wilder would knock-out Stiverne inside 7 rounds for me.

 

Eubank Jnr v Swierzbinski

 

Another easy night for Eubank Jnr, he toyed with his opponent and regardless of an injury he obtained sparring Carl Froch that prevented him from throwing jabs, he should have finished him sooner.

Scoring 7 knockdowns, Jr was forever searching for that killer uppercut to win in spectacular style.

An emotionless 7th round stoppage by the referee brought down the curtains on a tedious encounter for spectators.

“I injured my shoulder sparring Carl Froch which is why I didn’t throw my jab and why I didn’t throw many combinations. I knew I had to go in there calm as, by using foot movement I’d be too tempted to jab.

So I had to calm his pace down and it worked out for the best. The guy was going down but credit to him, he has a big heart.”

After going to 15-0, we still don’t fully know how good Eubank Jnr really is.

I believe he is talented but we need to benchmark him against a credible 160lb fighter.

A sterner test must transpire sooner rather than later,  I would really like to see him face John Ryder, Nick Blackwell or of course Billy Joe Saunders.

When asked about Saunders in the post-fight interview, Jr responded:

“Who is this Billy Joe Saunders? I’ve never seen the guy fight. I don’t know him, but if he ever gets the privilege of facing me in the ring, he will wish he hadn’t”

Shy and retiring is our Eubank Jr. Not to be out done by his son, Chris Sr spoke about where he rates his son currently:

“Only one fighter in the world beats my son now and that is Andre Ward. That’s because he is a thinker and only come forward when he wants to”

My first reaction?

Laughter of course like the rest of the country, but to make a statement of that magnitude sums up the self-belief with in the Eubank camp, which you have to admire.

With rumours of Kerry Hope facing Jr on the Fury Chisora 2 card being quashed in some outlets this weekend, I really do hope he is matched better moving forward.

 

Gethin v Mathews

Derry Mathews won a split decision over Martin Gethin on Saturday evening.

Mathews won the British Lightweight title after some confusion on the scorecards being read out.

“Dirty Derry was deserved winner in a great bout and still harbours a dream of winning a world title.

Experience and guile won Mathews the early rounds and down the stretch out-boxing Gethin.

Mathews can look forward to an outing on the Fury Chisora bill 26th July.

Fury Chisora 2 

Earlier on Saturday afternoon, down the M62 in Manchester we had a meeting between both men in the Printworks with Steve Bunce as mediator.

As expected, things got heated and if you haven’t watched any footage yet, watch the below video courtesy of IFLTV.

 

Second Coming – Cardiff 17th May

The Matchroom roadshow takes us back to Cardiff on Saturday evening.

With a busy few weeks in store with a maiden outing to Leeds on Wednesday 21st May followed by Froch Groves 2 on 31st May at Wembley.

Lee Selby v Romulu Koasicha

WBC International Featherweight title & Eliminator for WBC Featherweight title

 

The self-proclaimed Welsh Mayweather fights in a WBC eliminator on Saturday evening, Koasicha (21-3: 12KO’s) holds the WBC US Featherweight title, the Mexican sports a 50% KO record and will certainly be game come Saturday evening.

For Selby this represents the final hurdle before he challenges for a World Title against champion Jhonny Gonzalez.

 

Nathan Cleverly v Sean Corbin

Vacant WBA Inter-Continental cruiserweight title

Nathan Cleverly makes his long-awaited bow as a Matchroom fighter and as a Cruiserweight.

9 months ago Clev was stopped in brutal fashion by Sergey Kovalev and takes the first footsteps on the path to becoming a 2-weight World Champion.

 

Gary Buckland v Gavin Rees 2

The rematch I thought we would never have.

I genuinely felt Rees would call it a day after both men threw the kitchen sink at one another in February.

It was a scrap that would have done a final fight scene in any movie justice and personifies exactly why I love this sport.

Rees has vowed to bow out in style in front of a partisan home-crowd Saturday;

 

“I will leave everything I have in the ring on May 17 and I am proud of everything I have achieved,” said Rees. “Winning a World title was a dream come true and of course all British fighters want to win the British title and claiming that for the first time in 2010 was a huge honour.

“Gary Lockett has done a brilliant job getting me through training camps in the last few years but I can’t keep doing it. I’ve had a fair few injuries and they are catching up with me, but I’ve still got a great fight left in me and I plan to empty everything left in me out in Cardiff and put on a real show for the fans who have been great to me.

“The first fight was a classic and you could not argue with the decision going either way. Of course I thought I did enough to get it but there were no complaints. Gary is a fantastic fighter and you know what you are going to get with us – all-action for 12 rounds.

“It’ll be an emotional night for me knowing that it’s the end of a brilliant road, so I want to bow out in style and say I ended my career with a great win in Cardiff.”

Rees is a great character and British boxing will be all the poorer without him.

Callum Smith v Tobias Webb
WBC International Super Middleweight title

Mundo takes on Tobias Webb in what will be his toughest fight to date. Callum is my favourite prospect on these shores and i’m looking forward to another comprehensive victory.

 

Other fights making up the rest of the undercard are:

Chris Jenkins v Miguel Aguilar

Dale Evans v Mark Douglas

Mitch Buckland v Daza Usher

Robbie Turley v Marc Callaghan

Alex Hughes v Mark Till

 

International

Forum, Inglewood – California

Juan Manuel Marquez v Mike Alvarado

The renovated Forum hosts a cracker this weekend between Marquez and Alvarado.

Marquez is man who needs no introduction, Alvarado has been in some wars of late with Brandon Rios and Ruslan Provdonikov, expect both men to stand in the middle of the ring and trade until the sunrises.

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

 

Mayweather v Maidana by Paul Ready #TheMoment

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The Moment is almost upon us.

Will the fight bomb in PPV sales Stateside?

I very much doubt it. There seems to be a major buzz around this fight and the undercard, I can see it doing well.

It certainly won’t be as low as the Mayweather v Guerrero figures from Cinco De Mayo weekend in 2013.

So let’s analyse in detail what each man is bringing to the table:

 

Fitness & Conditioning – Mayweather

Unquestionably the fittest boxer in the world today.

I saw an interview this week with his father and trainer Floyd Snr who divulged that Floyd Jnr spars 6-8 minute rounds with no rest in between.

He regularly spars for 25 mins without a rest, truly remarkable.

What I admire most about Money May is he trains with the intensity of an unproven amateur, even at 37 yrs old.

When he is out of shape he is still more in shape than the rest of the boxing world.

A known perfectionist, Floyd is an exercise bunny, displaying a stalker level obsession with the gym which he attributes to why he has remained at the top of the game for 17 yrs.

Tee-total, he epitomes the word athlete and is an example to every aspiring sportman & sportswoman.

Mayweather takes care of his hands post training by place them in ice buckets for an extended period of time.

Everyone has seen him “jump-rope” but it is something that even to this day I never tire of watching.

“I tell the guys in my gym to not watch TV but to watch me”

“When you watch TV, you better be watching me”

“When you watch me, you’ve got to pay”

 

Fitness & Conditioning – Maidana

With the addition to Alex Ariza in the Maidana camp, a noticeable difference has occurred, Chino clearly is fitter and hitting harder than ever before.

The transition from 140 to 147 has been seamless for the 30 yr old.

The improvement in conditioning hasn’t gone unnoticed in the Mayweather camp, with Floyd pointing out that Khan & Pacquiao were better fighters when Ariza was in the corner alongside Freddie Roach.

He feels Ariza’s absence has been a key factor in the drop of power & fitness of both men since.

With the introduction to track work and morning sprints up the famous Santa Monica steps, Maidana has ensured he is going in to the fight of his life in the best possible condition.

I’ve watched countless videos of Maidana adopting all manner of modern and old school training techniques, from plyometrics to pulverizing a punch-bag with a baseball bat.

 

Tactics & Game Plan – Mayweather

Despite his public declarations of being willingness to stand and trade with Maidana, I fully expect him to box in the manner he has done for his past 4-5 fights.

Sharp, stinging single shots, and stepping out, frustrating Maidana, encouraging him to bomb forward and swing wildly. Thus “banking” more rounds in favour of the undefeated champion.

Mayweather no longer throws quick combinations, he has made adjustments perhaps due to his damaged fists not being able to withstand 12 rounds of 4-5 punch combos anymore.

Floyd has faced all types of fighters, their tactics will be if it’s not broke don’t fix it.

Canelo a better boxer and bigger man than Maidana couldn’t get near Floyd, can Maidana get close enough?

The Mayweather camp are well aware of Maidana’s knockout prowess, Leonard Ellerbe has described Maidana as the biggest puncher he has ever faced:

“In my opinion, Maidana’s the biggest puncher that Floyd’s faced. Maidana’s the biggest puncher that Floyd has faced until this point,” said Ellerbe.

“He has the highest knockout percentage that’s out there. Like I said, he’s never ever not in an entertaining fight.”

 

Tactics & Game Plan – Maidana

Chino is for me one of the most awkward fighters Floyd has faced for sometime.

Yes he is a pressure and power puncher, we have seen these fighters disposed of with unassuming ease before, how can Maidana box differently?

Despite Oscar De La Hoya’s claim, there is no blueprint to beat Floyd, but he is just a man, he bleeds and can be hurt.

We have seen that before against Shane Mosely, Mosely caught him flush with a huge right hook, Floyd’s legs buckled, he latched on in to the clinch and survived.

Now whilst Maidana isn’t as quick as Mosely, he does possess an unconventional style that can cause problems should he be able to get on the inside.

Chino throws shots from all angles, his trademark shot is the overhand right that appears from a blind-spot. With the increase of strength work, most notably focused on power punches, I feel the tactics Robert Garcia will adopt will be to get up close, work the body.

They want to hurt him.

“You’re going to hurt his ribs. Definitely,” said Garcia to Maidana.

“The fighters that give Floyd trouble are those that are aggressive, that keep coming forward, that don’t respect him. If Chino lands, and Chino hurts Mayweather, then it’s over.”

 

Verdict

My conclusion is it is very hard, almost nigh on impossible to look beyond a comprehensive Floyd win.

Maidana I hope will hurt him, drop him drag in to a war, but in reality there is more chance of me facing Mayweather next.

Floyd via a unanimous decision.

@PaulReady
@EliteBoxingNet

#TheMoment Undercard by Paul Ready

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Some good fights supporting the big one this Saturday at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, let’s have a look at them and a few Brits who are competing…

Anthony Ogogo

Ogogo (5-0: 2KOs) makes his Las Vegas bow in his 2nd fight across the pond against Jonel Tapia (8-4: 5KOs) .

The 2012 Bronze Medalists fight unfortunately won’t be televised on BoxNation in the UK, but will be shown at a later stage.

The 25yr old from Lowestoft last fought on the Burns v Crawford card in March and will be looking to continue to grow his profile Stateside.

Tapia, was knocked out in 1 round by Badou Jack of The Money Team (TMT) last year.

 

Ashley Theophane

“Treasure” Theophane (34-6: 10KOs) faces American Angino Perez (15-4: 13KOs).

Perez, 30 has fought Carlos Molina in 2012 and lost on a unanimous decision.

Theophane, 33 has had a fairy-tale journey to the Mayweather Gym in Chinatown Las Vegas. He has been described by many as a journeyman boxer, having fought the majority of his career in small arenas in the UK, York Hall being the “plat principal”.

The rags-to-riches tale sounds like fictious football player making the grade at a star team, Theophane quickly earned a credible reputation as a solid sparring partner in New York and subsequently went to Las Vegas for a change of scenery.

It was there that he came to Floyd Mayweather Jnr’s attention and under his watchful gaze he received plaudits Stateside for his hunger to learn and train with the intensity usually displayed in a young pro.

The one wrong he wishes to right is against Danny Garcia who he lost to on a split points decision some years ago.

Theophane is 2 wins away from the opportunity of sharing the ring with Garcia or Lamont Peterson and the first semi-final is on Saturday night.

J’Leon Love v Marco Antonio Periban

Firstly I rate Love, he is the most talented fighter in the TMT stable bar Money May.

Learnt to fight at the Jerusalem of boxing; the Kronk Gym in Detroit before turning pro and joining Mayweather Promotions.

Having steamrolled through the majority of his first fights with stoppages galore, the acid test finally arrived against menacing Gabriel Rosado.

Watching the fight back, Love was fortunate to get the win, when many myself included felt Rosado had done enough to get the victory.

Coupled with him failing a post-fight drugs test and a 6 month suspension he then had a Soprano-style “sit-down” with Floyd and CEO Leonard Ellerbe who spelt out what the expectations of him were.

He was labelled by many as the next big thing and a change in behaviour & more focus in training has encouraged Floyd & Ellerbe that they were right to stick by their man.

Love (17-0: 13KOs) is now operating at Super-Middleweight has to really deliver in emphatic fashion on Saturday evening.

In front of the 26 yr old stands Marco Antonio Periban a former WBC challenger, having lost to current champion Sakio Bika for the title vacated by Andre Ward in 2013.

Periban, (20-1-1: 13KO’s) is regarded by some as a gate-keeper, but I feel he warrants better labeling than that. Having drawn against fellow TMT stable-mate Badou Jack, make no mistake that Periban is not in Vegas for the Lobster Buffet this weekend.

He is a tall ask for any 168lb fighter and I take my hat off to Mayweather Promotions for making this fight as it is a dangerous one for a prospect on the verge of world honours.

There will be no love lost from Periban as he focuses on his own path of contesting for world honours (sorry had to get a pun in!)

Intriguing one to watch unfold and I would favour the 29yr old 60-40 from the outset but I envisage Love to win by late stoppage.

 

Adrien Broner v Carlos Molina

Adrien “The Problem” Broner has picked up where he left off  with his narcissism after his first defeat to Marco Maidana.

I admire the man as a boxer, he has unquestionable ability that has made him a 3 weight-world champion at the tender 24 yrs of age, but outside the ring he has plenty to improve on.

Broner (27-1: 22KO’s) faces Carlos Molina a man he yesterday described as a “punching-bag”.
“People want to know if the loss [against has humbled me and of course it has,’ he said.
‘If I would have won that Maidana fight people would be calling me an asshole”
“People still call me that, but now I thank God that he slowed me down in my tracks even though it is still a heavy and fast train. Right now, Denzel Washington couldn’t stop this train”

“This fight is huge for me. Everyone wants to see what Adrien Broner is going to do next after this devastating loss I took in the early part of my career. I know why everyone has their eyes glued to me.
“Carlos Molina is a hell of a fighter and he is going to come to fight. He’s going to come to kick my ass because I’m sure as hell going to come to kick his.”
“I’m trying to have some fun. I will be pretty, fresh, fly and still flashy”
“I do agree with Broner that Molina should be “easy-work” and I fully expect him to win via a KO within 5 rounds.”
“In the 140lb Jnr Welterweight division, there lays some big money fights for him; most notably Danny Garcia and Lucas Matthysse as he looks to gradually climb back to Welterweight.”

Whilst he would never admit it publicly, I do believe Broner slightly regrets the jump from Lightweight to Welter, in hindsight he should have allowed his body to naturally adapt to the increase in weight.

Amir Khan v Luis Collazo

Amir “King” Khan (28-3: 19KO’s) makes his bow at 147lbs as the chief support for Mayweather Maidana.

Khan 27, appears to have finally got over missing out on the “Mayweather Lotto Sweepstakes” and now gracefully admits that the time wasn’t right for him to jump straight in to that fight.

Collazo (35-5: 18KO’s) is coming off the back of a brutal KO to Victor Ortiz in January.

I for one am delighted that Khan is finally getting back in the ring, mainly as the talking will stop about him and Mayweather – for now and he can focus fully on boxing.

This for me will be fight of the evening, I fully expect both men to go toe-to-toe, King Khan has spoken repeatedly about boxing differently, being patient and not getting sucked in to a war.

But despite the change in trainer and a prolonged 13mth absence from the ring, I feel it is very difficult to make adjustments to your style after 10yrs as a pro.

I fancy Khan to get a late stoppage, around round 9, but Collazo will put him under intense pressure and almost certainly put the Brit on the canvas early on.

“You’re going to see an improved Amir Khan, the best Amir Khan, there’s no doubt in my mind about that,” he said.

“Over the last 12 months I’ve been in camps with Virgil and we’ve been working on certain aspects of my game that I never really got the chance to work on because I just didn’t get the time as I was fighting so often.

“Through the last few months I’ve been focusing on improving myself and adding certain things to my game. Because I didn’t have an opponent lined up and I wasn’t fighting I had the time to look at myself and work on things I wanted to work on.

“On May 3rd I’m going to put that all into practice on the biggest stage and not only beat Collazo but look to beat him in real style.”

 

Tune in tomorrow for my surgeon esq dissection of the main event, Mayweather v Maidana.

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet