#MayPac Preview by Paul Ready

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We are just over a week away from fight week and it has already hit like a tsunami.

  

Tickets went on sale on Thursday and sold out within a minute – ringside seats on the black-market retailing at a cool $140,000.

Closed circuit viewings in hotels along the strip are selling for $150 + $178 add-on, with the admin fee even that is breaking the $300 mark.

It has become the must-see event for the world.

Can Pacquiao do it – can he steal Mayweather’s 0?

I’ve been a fan of both fighters for over the past decade and I couldn’t care less if it’s 6 yrs too late – better late than never! 

  

Like many boxers who enter the Autumn of their careers, both men have had to make necessary adjustments over the years:

Manny the ferocious pressure puncher hasn’t registered a KO since Miguel Cotto in 2009. His style is based much more on movement around his opponent throwing shots from all angles.

Floyd no longer throws multiple combinations that we grew accustom to in his career. It has been well documented that his hands are in a delicate condition.

  

I expect the 36 yr old Phillipino congressman to be the faster man out of the blocks, scoring the early few rounds. 38 yr old Mayweather’s is renowned for taking a few rounds to “suss-out” his foe before outclassing them down the stretch.

I can’t see Pacquiao being able to stop Mayweather as his chin vastly underrated. Despite being a counter-puncher, Money has taken a few on the button and readjusted himself over the years without any real duress.

I expect Floyd from round 5 to run away with the contest till the final bell – I genuinely wouldn’t be shocked if he dropped barely a round in the 2nd half.

Verdict:

Mayweather UD: 8 rounds to 4.

In what is my final post on Elite Boxing (which ironically started with a review of Mayweather v Canelo back in Sept 2013) it felt fitting that my final post was about Mayweather.

I’ve been offered a role within the industry that I simply could not refuse.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has read, shared and supported my posts.

It’s been a whirlwind 18 mths meeting some fantastic people within the sport, gaining Media Accrediation and culminated in obtaining a role faster than I ever envisaged.

The real hardwork starts now!

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

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24/03 – Boxing Update by Paul Ready

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As British Summer Time officially begins in the early hours of Sunday morning, everyone becomes more upbeat.

Longer evenings, beach bodies made at salad bars and of course our glorious sport moves towards the business part of the season. 

  

With Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao finally announced it has yielded a much-needed “double vodka & redbull” to proceedings.

Let’s focus on where we are in the UK.

James DeGale (who I interviewed & spent time with last week) is expecting his IBF world title shot against Andre Dirrell to be announced momentarily.

Warriors Boxing based out of Florida won the purse-bid with an eye-watering $3.1m. Chunky will have to travel to America to make history in May.

Kevin Mitchell off the back of his career-best performance over Daniel Estrada in January has another crack at a world-title against WBC Lightweight champion Jorge Linares.

Matchroom have pulled a masterstroke delivering that fight in Mitchell’s home-town of London – the roof will come off the O2 on the 30th May.

Tony Sims told me a few weeks ago that Kevin Mitchell is the most talented fighter he has ever trained – the 30 yr old does things in camp that you can’t teach.

Mitchell brimming with confidence and I simply cannot wait for that fight.

On the same bill Lee Selby faces IBF Featherweight world champion Evgeny Gradovich.

Selby is the bookies favourite for this fight. I spoke to Selby last month and he was out in Omaha for Gradovich’s last fight. The 28 yr old perceives him as a similar come-forward fighter to Joel Brunker – the Welshman is confident he will break him down and stop him late.

Former two-weight world champion Ricky Burns makes his US debut on 9th May against Omar Figueroa.

Rickster has endured a hellish 12 mths breaking his jaw, losing his world title to Terence Crawford, a long protracted court-case with a former promoter, change of trainer to Tony Sims and culminated with a loss in the first fight under him.

Anything that could have gone wrong for the 31 yr old had. I think it says a great deal about his resolve that he still has that desire to fight – I hope he comes back with a bang.

Anthony Joshua has flown slightly under the radar this year due a back-injury.

The Olympic gold medallist was due to face Kevin “Kingpin” Johnson at the end of January – which has been rescheduled for 30th May – some card that will be!

When Joshua steps in the ring next month in Newcastle against a yet unnamed opponent – it will mark a near six month absence since his last fight.

The 25 yr old was involved in a brief spat on Twitter with former amateur foe Dillian Whyte some weeks back. Whyte who boxed on the recent Carl Frampton and Chris Avalos bill is very keen to face AJ again in the pro-ranks – I hope we get to see that score settled once and for all this summer.

Matchroom Promoter Eddie Hearn is reportedly due to meet Barry McGuigan of Cyclone Promotions tomorrow (Wednesday) morning in London to “thrash-out” a deal for Carl Frampton to face Scott Quigg this summer.

The two Super-Bantamweights have long been affiliated with one-another – all being well we can finally see this match-up in what I anticipate to be THE fight in the UK this year.

Amir Khan seems to be the one man without a date for the summer prom so far. He was stood up again by Floyd Mayweather and unless he moves quick he could be dancing on his own for a while.

Adrien Broner has declared on Twitter & Instagram that he would be keen to face the 28 yr old, but after The Problem was found out at 147lbs against Marcos Maidana – I feel he needs to box a bit longer at 140lbs before moving up naturally.

So who does that leave for Khan?

Timothy Bradley would be a good option but it was challenging enough to get Bob Arum and Al Haymon round the table for Mayweather v Pacquiao. I’m not going to hold my breath on that one.

 

So as you can see, there are fights announced and plenty bubbling in the background.

 

The next few weeks and months will be seductive – time to musk up lads…

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing,net

How the Boxing landscape lies so far in 2015… by Paul Ready

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Happy New Year to one and all.

To quote Michael Woods of The Sweet Science in America:

“I would like boxing to get to a point where so much of our coverage is not regarding negotiations’ and will they or won’t they conjecture.”

That is a vision that I think we all yearn for in the future of the sport. With that being said, let’s look at how the landscape lies currently – which fights are confirmed and who the big-names have been linked with:

 

Confirmed

17th January – MGM Grand, Las Vegas

Bermaine Stiverne v Deontay Wilder – WBC Heavyweight title.

Leo Santa Cruz v Jesus Ruiz – WBC Super Bantamweight title.

 

24th January – 1st Bank Centre, Colorado

Mike Alvarado v Brandon Rios III – Welterweight.*

*Alvarado recently arrested on weapons charge. Fight could be postponed*

Gilberto Ramirez v Maxim Vlasov – Super Middleweight.

 

31st January – O2 Arena, London

Anthony Joshua v Kevin Johnson – WBC International Heavyweight title.

Kevin Mitchell v Daniel Estrada – WBC Silver Lightweight title.

John Ryder v Les Sherrington – WBO International Middleweight title.

Tyler Goodjohn v John Wayne Hibbert – WBC International Light-Welter title.

Ricky Boylan v Tommy Martin – English Light-Welter title.

 

21st February – Monte Carlo, Monaco

Gennady Golovkin v Martin Murray – WBA Super & WBC Interim titles.

Lee Haskins v Omar Lamiri – EBU Bantamweight title.

Hughie Fury v Andriy Rudenko – Heavyweight.

 

21st February – O2 Arena, Berlin

Arthur Abraham v Paul Smith II – WBO Super-Middle world title.

 

28th February – O2 Arena, London

Tyson Fury v Christian Hammer – WBO International Heavyweight title.

Chris Eubank Jr v Dmitry Chudinov – WBA Interim Middleweight world title.

 

28th February – Odyssey Arena, Belfast

Carl Frampton v Chris Avalos – IBF Super-Bantamweight world title

 

11th April – First Direct Arena, Leeds

Josh Warrington v Dennis Tubieron – WBC Featherweight title eliminator.

Martin J Ward v Maxi Hughes – Super Featherweight.

 

There may be some that I’ve missed and no doubt the above confirmed fights will swell significantly in the coming weeks.

So that covers what is signed & sealed so far, but where are we with the pending super-fights and other big names?

 

Kell Brook

IBF Welterweight champion Brook is due to make his long-awaited comeback after the horrific injury he suffered in Autumn last year.

With an inaugural homecoming in March scheduled – attention turns to who he is likely to face. Names such as Juan Manuel Marquez and Paulie Malignaggi have been linked, but he could end up facing his mandatory challenger Jo Jo Dan.

Amir Khan

After a complete shut-out against Devon Alexander before Christmas, Khan has made no secret in his desire to face Floyd Mayweather Jr in May.

The consensus is he will miss out again and a blockbuster fight at Wembley in the summer against Kell Brook for me appears the most logical and lucrative move.

 

Carl Froch

Strong rumours persist that the fight against Julio Cesar Chavez Jr in Las Vegas is signed for 28th March – all we are awaiting is the confirmation.

The fight will be a dual PPV in the UK and in America on HBO. James DeGale is the Cobra’s IBF mandatory and he has had an extension until the end of January to either negotiate with DeGale or vacate – smart money is on the latter.

 

James DeGale

To continue the “dominos-effect” theme in British boxing – DeGale will fight next for the IBF world title, be it against Froch or Andre Dirrell who is next in the rankings.

Promoter Eddie Hearn has openly discussed the possibility of making James DeGale v George Groves II for said belt but whether Dirrell would side step remains to be seen.

Regardless DeGale v Groves II is a must for 2015.

 

George Groves

Similar to DeGale, Groves’ next fight is also for a world title – the WBC belt against champion Anthony Dirrell, brother of Andre…. (try to stay with me!!)

Groves has made no secret in his desire to fight for the WBC belt next, if he was to win a fight with DeGale in a unification bout (should he win of course) would make the rematch even bigger.

 

Ricky Burns

Former two-weight world champion Burns is now back at Lightweight after his last fight was at Light-Welter.

The Rickster has already signed to face a big-name in a rumoured World title fight in America – with confirmation imminent.

 

 

Floyd Mayweather Jr

THE fight we should have had in 2009 but still haven’t – yawn – is “close” to being made.

If I’m honest, I’ll believe it when they are both in the ring – so I will refrain from boring you on it. I doubt it will happen so rumours have been circulating of Mayweather v Cotto II as Cotto’s ongoing talks with Canelo Alvarez appear to be dragging on.

In truth none of us bar Floyd & Al Haymon have any clue who he will fight next.

Miguel Cotto

As above talks are ongoing with Canelo Alvarez’s camp regarding a fight on Cinco De Mayo. Personally I’d love to see that fight – Puerto Rico v Mexico is one of the fiercest rivalries in the sport.

A rematch with Mayweather Jr doesn’t excite me if I’m honest – regardless of having Freddie Roach in his corner.

Gennady Golovkin is now mandatory for his WBC title and that would be monstrous in Autumn.

So as you can see there is plenty happening in the background. This January in boxing feels like the UK football transfer window has a rival with the rumour mill going in to overdrive.

By the end of this month we should know who all the big-hitters are up against.

2015 could truly be spectacular….

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

Meet @irishlightning2 previously trained by Freddie Roach & sparred Manny Pacquiao

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Elite Boxing:

Dean – great to meet you firstly down here. For people who don’t know you how would you describe yourself and your career so far?

 

Dean Byrne:

I’m a mad Irishman!

No I’d describe myself as a globe-trotter. I’ve been over in Australia, won a couple of titles in my first fights as a professional and went on from there. I then went to America and worked with the best trainer in the world Freddie Roach, he managed me, trained me and I sparred with Manny Pacquiao, Amir Khan and Victor Ortiz.

I’ve comeback to the UK as my son Deano was born and I couldn’t do the long distance thing. I missed him too much.

I made my pro debut in Australia – I won Australian Light-Welter title and a couple of minor titles before that. Then I went to America and went 6-0, Freddie Roach seen me & had me spar a couple of his guys then said to me; “We’ll keep you here.”

I had 6 fights out there undefeated, it was a great learning experience – been in and mixed it with the best. I could have got a lot more fights but it’s the luck of the draw. I came back to England, I was 15-0 and I signed with Frank Warren – I learnt the business more and unfortunately had a couple of losses – it was up and down really.

I was in & out of the ring when I signed with Frank – I was fighting once a year. I took a fight at 24 hrs notice and had my first defeat after losing too much weight. My career has never really got going really.

I took a fight in 2012 after two weeks back in the gym against Carson Jones – we all know he gave Kell Brook one of his toughest fights of his career and I got a draw with him. That fight I took at 3 days notice and done that.

 

EB:

So it no doubt made you wonder what you could achieve with a solid training camp and preparation?

 

DB:

Exactly. Everyone saw the fight and the stats proved that I won (against Jones) but that’s boxing. You take the good with the bad. I’ve never had the good unfortunately!

I’m living and learning – I’ve got the boxing bug back and as you’ve seen me this week I’ve been running hills and doing circuits with Peter Sims. It was really hard but I’m determined to get fit and train with this great bunch of lads here.

 

EB:

As a youngster growing up who was your idol?

 

DB:

I used to love Prince Naseem and imitate him. I’d put my hands down, have the tassels on my shorts and give it the biggun. Steve Collins was a warrior and World Champion himself and I used to look up to him growing up.

Today it’s Floyd Mayweather – everyone loves how skillful he is. Of course Pacquiao is someone I admire as I’ve seen his work ethic and how hard he’s driven and how hard he trains. I picked up so much from him.

I’m just looking forward to this year, I’ve got the boxing bug and you’ve got it yourself Paul with your writing and you’re not even training!

It doesn’t matter how you get it – you are just drawn to it.

I was running Christmas day and I have all the experience I just need the regular activity this year.

I haven’t fought for eight months so I need to spar first as the ring time is important. I think a couple of weeks but Peter will tell me.

 

EB:

Dean thanks for your time, best of luck on the comeback trail and I’m looking forward to seeing you in the ring.

 

DB:

Cheers mate – I think that’s the longest interview I’ve ever done! Enjoyed it.

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

 

Boxing Update 17/09 by Paul Ready #Mayhem #SaundersEubankJr #ReturnOfTheSaint

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Plenty of news/reviews to get through today so let’s dive straight in…

Mayweather v Maidana 2

Floyd “Money” Mayweather (47-0) beat Marcos “Chino” Maidana (35-5) via a unanimous decision on Saturday evening. It was a comprehensive victory for Money; I gave Maidana 2 rounds (4th & 9th) but we did see two sides to Floyd in this fight.

My first observation was his footwork was the most fluid I have seen from him for years. The introduction of Yoga in to his training regime is clearly reaping its rewards. However I recall him throwing one possibly two meaningful combinations all night, the trademark lower ab jab and right hook were his bread & butter all evening.

Mayweather vs. Maidana 2 Results: Highlights, Future Outlook for Both Fighters

What was most startling to me was the ease at which Maidana’s straight jab was getting through. Chino isn’t renowned for having a crisp jab but on Saturday he had frequent success with it. Many top welterweights would have watched that fight and seen signs that age is steadily catching up with Floyd. But make no mistake, even a Floyd in decline is still significantly better than the rest of the division.

The challenge for Mayweather’s camp is matching him in his remaining two bouts; do they look to conserve the unbeaten record and pit him against perceived easier opposition?

Or do they put him in with Amir Khan, Keith Thurman or shock the boxing world and finally make the Manny Pacquiao fight?

My belief is Pacquiao is unlikely to happen, Khan is a possibility but the hand speed he possesses will trouble Floyd. Keith Thurman would be my personal choice in May 2015 but he is the most dangerous opponent out there currently.

Love or loath Floyd, you have to admire the man inside the ring and what he has achieved in the sport. He’s one of the best fighters I’ve ever seen. The TBE (The Best Ever) motto is up for debate; I would back Sugar Ray Leonard to have beaten him in a fantasy fight.

The next two fights choices will be fascinating and I expect we will be made to wait until early 2015 to find out who is chosen.

 

29th November – Two big shows, one night

Matchroom and Frank Warren appear to be heading towards a blockbuster clash of boxing on 29th November with cards in Liverpool and London respectively.

Frank Warren has announced “Bad Blood” which is headlined by the rescheduled Dereck Chisora v Tyson Fury 2 fight, with Billy Joe Saunders and Chris Eubank Jr as chief support.

Matchroom are rumoured to be considering this same date to stage Tony Bellew v Nathan Cleverly 2 bout.

Two huge cards; 3 domestic grudge matches between 6 men who can not stand the sight of their opponent – and I’m in New York on holiday!

It’s an evening that will require the need for modern technology; one card on the TV, the other streamed on your tablet.

The Saunders v Eubank Jr fight for me is the most intriguing one. Reading tweets & various articles, opinion is well and truly divided on who will prevail. Some believe Saunders walks through Eubank Jr and it’s the evening he finally gets his comeuppance. Others, myself included feel that Eubank Jr shocks people and beats Saunders in a thrilling fight that has everyone on the edge of their seat.

One thing is for certain that the build-up for those 3 fights is going to explosive; the press-conferences will contain more trash than your local landfill site. The animosity between them will make Froch v Groves look like bum chums. I’m looking forward to the build-up on those fights dare I say more than some of the actual contests themselves.

 

George Groves v Christopher Rebrasse

On the subject of “Saint” George Groves, he makes his return to the ring this Saturday after his brutal knockout by Carl Froch in May. Now promoted by Sauerland Promotions, Saint GG is thrust straight in to a WBC Final Eliminator against durable Frenchman Rebrasse.

Rebrasse (22-2: 6 KO’s) shouldn’t pose a major threat to Groves and I back the Hammersmith man to stop the Frenchman late.

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

 

@EddieHearn on Ryder, Boylan v Goodjohn, Bellew Cleverly 2, Brook v Khan, Mitchell

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Elite Boxing:

Eddie, another great card has been announced by yourselves. I think fight-wise this one does shade the Hull card.

In the press conference you alluded to Tony Sims and John Ryder looking at a number of top fighters in the Middleweight division, could you mention who else was looked at?

 

Eddie Hearn:

He (Tony ) was mentioning everyone in the Middleweight division basically.

You know, he was saying; “John is ready to step-up now”. He was calling out people, going down the rankings saying; “He’ll fight him, he’ll fight him.”

In the end I thought of the Khomistky fight and thought you know what, he’s got the profile as he sparked (Frank) Buglioni out and the response to that fight has been really good. Most people have gone “fucking hell!” you know. But it’s a great fight and there is no reason why Ryder can’t win the fight, but it’s definitely a 50/50 fight.

Khomistsky lost recently to Stieglitz in a really close fight. You look at (Robert) Stieglitz and Ryder, Stieglitz is a former world champion and Ryder lost for the British. Styles make fights and Ryder v Khomistky is a great fight.

 

EB:

Another fight on the card is (Ricky) Boylan v (Tyler) Goodjohn it has been amusing for us all to watch unfold on Twitter.

 

EH:

To be honest with you and no disrespect to those guys, but at English level they do make for great fights. The atmosphere will be great. Boylan will do 500 tickets, Goodjohn will do 300-400 it’s fantastic.

That division (Light-Welter) is really good domestically; you’ve got John Wayne Hibbert here, Tyrone Nurse, Willie Limond, Chris Jenkins, Tommy Martin; it’s a really good division especially in London.

 

EB: 

I agree. On a different note, did you see the recent pictures of Amir Khan looking overweight on holiday?

 

EH:

I couldn’t believe it. I think I’m in better shape than him at the moment!

Obviously he’s enjoying some down time, but I understand he’s fighting on December 6th, he’ll probably start his camp soon. If he wins, then Kell (Brook) wins also on December 6th they can both fight each other soon.

 

EB:

How are talks for that fight progressing?

 

EH:

It’s early stages. I think everyone realises that there is a lot of money to be made, they both would like the fight to happen.

So really over the next couple of weeks a priority is to secure the December 6th opponent for Kell then trying to make that fight asap.

 

EB:

Would you side-step the Khan fight for Brook in the unlikely event that an opportunity to face Manny Pacquiao or Floyd Mayweather presents itself?

 

EH:

In a way I think so, but financially there is more money in fighting Khan for both people than for the Mayweather fight.

It is definitely an easier fight than facing Mayweather. I think Khan will need to look at Brook and he probably thinks that is an easier fight than Pacquiao or Mayweather. But Khan has always wanted the Mayweather fight.

When Brook beats Khan, he can go on and fight those two; if Khan was to lose to Brook, where does he go from there?

 

EB:

Tony Bellew and Nathan Cleverly, I’ve seen a few tweets in recent days regarding whether that is still going ahead in December, could you clear that subject up?

 

EH:

We are looking at having that on the Brook 6th December card. We looked at November 29th in Liverpool but it’s a big fight, should Cleverly have to go back to Liverpool again (to face Bellew)?

Nathan likes the idea of a neutral venue and in Sheffield we have the opportunity to do it.

I’m seeing Tony on Tuesday so hopefully that can be all agreed.

 

EB:

Kevin Mitchell, I know the (Miguel) Vasquez has moved further away since he has signed with Al Haymon, do you have any update on him?

 

EH:

He’s supposed to be the mandatory challenger (IBF Lightweight) but now he’s not. He was due to be on the O2 card, he has a few niggles injury-wise but he will now box before the end of the year. 

It’s frustrating as that would have been the big one for him. But now we’ve got to try find another way.

 

EB:

Finally Eddie on to Lee Selby v Joel Brunker, another great fight. If he wins, with regards to facing IBF champion (Evgeny) Gradovich, when would you look to make that?

 

EH:

He had a mandatory. He’ll have a voluntary around the same time as Selby and we will look for that fight to take place in February.

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

 

Future 147lb Kings by Paul Ready

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The 147lb division for 7 years has been lauded with superlatives as THE weight class in this era. Sat at the top of the throne has been Floyd Mayweather Jr, the P4P king has been impossible to overthrow. The one man who could and some say would have beaten Floyd is Manny Pacquiao, the fight due to boxing politics has never happened.

Accelerating rapidly in the slipstream are a number of Welterweight fighters who believe they have what it takes to be crowned the next king.

Keith Thurman (23-0: 21KO’s – 1 no contest)

One Time is billed as the next big thing in the 147lb division. A frightening KO record that arguably only Gennady Golovkin can rival; Thurman has promised to destroy the Welterweight division and has aspirations to become in his own words “a living legend”.

Already a highly avoided fighter due to brutal destructions of Jesus Soto Karrass and Julio Diaz, the 25 yr old needs a big name scalp on his CV. Thurman was in the crowd for Porter v Brook and has been touted as a potential opponent for Brook which is far too dangerous as a voluntary defence for me.

Displaying an intelligent boxing brain inside & outside the ropes is a rare trait but one Thurman has in abundance, he will certainly be around the top of the tree in the not too distant future.

 

 

Errol Spence (13-0: 10KO’s)

Spence is a slick boxer, patient, picks his punches well. It’s easy to get carried away, but he looks special. Appears to be no ego with this guy either yet, one hopes he stays humble as the victories and women pile up.

The 24 yr old 2012 Olympian became a somewhat overnight sensation for allegedly knocking Adrien Broner down in sparring and giving Floyd Mayweather a black eye whilst training at Mayweather Gym last year. Spence received a black eye himself, in what some described as the toughest sparring Mayweather has had for some years. Mayweather then proceeded to eject him  immediately from the gym in disgust, for him to only be invited back later that day.

Spence needs to now face a former contender as a benchmark of where he really is in the division.

 

 

Kell Brook (33-0: 22KO’s)

The newly-crowned IBF world champion is now amongst the elite within the division. Special K defeated Shawn Porter on points in a career best performance in Carson, California this month. Brook has taken some time to arrive on this stage but you feel this is just the start of things to come for him.

The hard-hitting Brit will need to continue to display his crisp boxing ability as a queue has formed for him. Next up will be a voluntary defence with likes of Brandon Rios being touted as an opponent.

An all British stadium showdown with arch-nemesis Amir Khan will take place next summer; possibly at Wembley Stadium with the caveat for the victor a ticket in the “Mayweather Sweepstakes”.

 

 

Danny Garcia (29-0: 17KO’s)

Swift has stagnated somewhat since his one-sided victory over Lucas Matthysse 12mths ago. Garcia, 26 has been slaughtered on social media with his perceived cherry-picking of recent opponents Mauricio Herrera and Rod Salka. If you were to visit his Instagram page the comments section is filled with cherry emojis and various images of Garcia displayed on cans of Cherry Coca Cola.

Let’s be clear, Garcia has all the attributes to be one of top fighters in the 147lb division when he considers moving up. To regain credibility he needs to fight a big name as when he is thrives under pressure. Let’s not forget he was the underdog for both Amir Khan and Lucas Matthysse, two career best wins.

I believe he was wrapped up in the emotion of fighting in his “mother-land” Puerto Rico against Herrera, took him lightly and thus had to fight a “gimme” in Salka as a confidence booster. I expect him to fight a credible name before 2014 is out.

 

 

Tim Bradley (31-1: 12KO’s)

Desert Storm will be the main man in the division once Floyd Mayweather & Manny Pacquiao hang the gloves up. Bradley, 30 has the strongest resume of the leading pack with notable victories over Juan Manuel Marquez, Devon Alexander, Lamont Peterson and of course a contentious win over Pacquaio in 2012.

The former WBO champion lost to Pacquiao in their rematch in April surrendering his “0” in the process. The orthodox counter-puncher showed some real heart winning Fight Of The Year in 2013 against club-handed Ruslan Provodinkov.

Bradley has long been in the shadows of the big 2, but once they have gone his opportunity to be crowned will never be better.

 

 

Shawn Porter (24-1-1: 15KO’s)

Former IBF champion Showtime lost his title to Kell Brook earlier this month. It would be foolish and naive to dismiss Porter’s credentials in light of this defeat. Victories over Julio Diaz, Devon Alexander and the mauling of Paulie Malignaggi illustrates that the 26 yr old is a dangerous animal.

Described as a mini Mike Tyson, Porter is not renowned as the most fluid of fighters; he tends to lunge in with jabs and throw a cluster of hooks. Putting his opponent under constant pressure until they crumble.

A fight between Porter and Keith Thurman was discussed post-Brook, it’s one I believe both men need at this stage of their careers.

 

 

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

@SpecialKBrook A star is born…. by Paul Ready

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He came, he saw and he conquered.

Ezekiel Brinsly Reid “Kell” Brook won and won big on Saturday night at the Stub Hub Arena in Carson, California.

Brook, 28 achieved a life-long dream by becoming the IBF Welterweight world champion.

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He is now recognised as an elite fighter within the illustrious 147lb division, Special K can proudly exhale like a peacock as he has become a global star overnight.

The current Welterweight world champions read as follows: Floyd “Money” Mayweather WBA & WBC champion; Manny Pacquiao WBO champion and Kell Brook IBF champion.

It is surreal to see his name alongside the two of the greatest fighters of this generation, but this is something he must get used to.

Brook has acted like the home fighter all of last week, appearing cool, calm and composed like a man driving his own destiny. He has been dismissed in a condescending manner for some time by the super-power pugilist nation; Porter was expected to walk through Brook with ease.

Credit must be given trainer Dominic Ingle and the Ingle Gym for the 16 yrs of education to Kell at their fabled Wincobank gym. Brook graduated on Saturday evening with a Msc. The meticulous preparation that took place ensured no stone was left unturned from 3 weeks trans-atlantic acclimatization, employing nutritionists, strength and conditioning coaches right down to the below motivational white-board in the dressing room on fight-night.

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“Showtime” Shawn Porter was in his face from the first bell, applying aggression and putting Brook under intense pressure. Welcome to the elite-level. Kell could hardly breath. Brook struggled early on to find his rhythm and let his hands go, he rocked Porter at the end of the 1st with a big-shot but the bell saved the defending champion. In the clinches Showtime adopted prison-yard tactics headbutting Brook which culminated in a cut above his right eye in the 2nd. The crisper, cleaner shots were delivered from the Brit as he illustrated he was the better boxer throughout. Porter suffered a cut in the 6th and ran out of steam as we headed towards the championship rounds. Brook sensed that he would need to raise his work-rate to avoid an unjust points defeat. He done so by winning the 2nd half of the fight taking 2 score-cards in his favour 117-111, 116-112 the final a 114-114 draw.

Do you prefer an aggressor or do you prefer a boxer? A boxer will always prevail for me on points.

Once Brook has taken some well earned time off to celebrate and saviour this moment with his family, he needs to get himself back to work as a queue is forming to face him. He is now a wanted man, I wouldn’t be surprised to see old fashioned Wild-West style posters donning Brook’s face plastered over the West Coast.

Devon Alexander, Keith Thurman, Juan Manuel Marquez, Danny Garcia and Marcos Maidana were all sat ringside, judging by the post-fight videos I watched last night, they were all impressed and will now all want a piece of Kell.

Amir Khan has been very supportive to the 28 yr old in the build-up last week, Khan is an intelligent man, he knows that a bout between them both is a million-pound-money-spinner. Khan was on the Skysports commentary panel and as subtle as a brick he threw his name in for consideration. It will be a bigger fight and rivalry than Froch v Groves, mark my words.

The history and animosity between both men spans a decade of back & forth bitching. It is a PPV blockbuster that will capture the public’s imagination summer 2015.

You feel this is just the start of bigger things to come from Kell Brook; this wasn’t his career-defining performance, his Froch v Bute, Calzaghe v Lacy, Hatton v Tszyu, Benn v McClellan moment is yet to come.

All of the lights by Kanye West which is Brook’s entrance music rang out post-fight as the fans departed the Stub Hub Arena, the final chorus has the lyrics; “We going all the way this time”, I don’t think you could find a more apt sentence to summarise the direction which Kell is now heading in.

@PaulReady

@EliteBoxingNet

http://www.eliteboxing.net

2014 Fight Wish List By Paul Ready

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Happy New Year one & all.

I hope that you had an enjoyable festive period.

Back to reality of setting an alarm at 6am for work, those long lay-ins a distant memory.

In my opinion, there are some fights that must and will happen this year.

There are some fights that everyone fan, critic and broadcaster wishes to happen which I will list shortly.

Then we have my hand-picked fights which I will discuss in more detail, as to why I would like to see them.

I’m going to exclude Floyd “Money” Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao within this, as it is a pipe dream. This fight is destined for games console as a pure fantasy encounter.

It is up there with other urban myths such as ghosts, goblins, unicorns and lottery wins.

It will always be the fight that never happened for 100 hundred millions reasons.

The main issue being the promoter rivalry between both camps that represent each fighter (Goldenboy for Money Mayweather, Top Rank for Manny) the broadcaster rivalry between both camps (Showtime for Floyd, HBO for Pacquiao).

I feel the same about Carl “The Cobra” Froch and “Saint” George Groves rematch. Froch has no desire to fight Groves again, he is afraid, annoyed at the public and Groves’ perceived behaviour after the controversial stoppage win Froch had in the 1st fight.

That is my genuine gut feel, I hope I’m wrong, but I feel Froch will avoid it at all costs. The Cobra has cited aspirations of fighting in Las Vegas before he retires, I expect him to fight there this year at some point.

The below is a list of fights that everyone wants to see, and I feel they will happen this year at some point:

Miguel Cotto v Saul “Canelo” Alvarez
Scott Quigg v Carl Frampton
Mikey Garcia v Yuriorkis Gamboa
Ruslan Provodinkov v Brandon Rios
Adonis Stevenson v Sergei Kovalev
Floyd Mayweather v Amir Khan
Floyd Mayweather v Marcos Maidana
Tyson Fury v Deontay Wilder
Tyson Fury v Dereck Chisora II
Manny Pacquiao v Tim Bradley II
Andre Ward v Gennady Golovkin
Andy Lee v Matthew Macklin

In relation to the above fights, I feel these have been talked to death by boxing experts on TV, us, the fans and are constantly discussed on social networks.

Boxing is prize fighting remember, so I feel the above will happen due to public demand and money.

The contradiction to the above statement is Mayweather v Pacquiao match as it would be the most financially lucrative of all time. There simply is SO much “red-tape” preventing it from ever occurring.

If you wish to read further into this, there are countless articles, interviews with both fighters and their respective camps on the internet.

Let’s move on now to the fights I personally want to happen:

Andre “Son of God” Ward v George Groves

This is a fight I believe can, and will be made in 2014.
Ward has declared that he is interested in fighting him and Groves’ trainer Paddy Fitzpatrick tweeted in a Q&A with fans that a fight with Ward is a real possibility.

Another fascinating point about this fight, which adds more drama to it, is that Carl Froch has publicly declared on numerous occasions that he wants a rematch with Ward. The Cobra as you will recall lost to Ward a few years ago. It was a boxing lesson from Ward.

For Groves to be chosen by Ward as a more exciting adversary than Froch, speaks volumes about his profile Stateside.

Technically this will be a beautiful fight, two fighters with crisp jabs, dazzling speed and both can whack.

You would have to favour the undefeated “Son of God” on paper due to his dazzling CV, but only a fool would bet against Groves bringing the world to a standstill by winning.

Danny “Swift” Garcia v Adrien “The Problem” Broner

Both fighters have had two contrasting years in boxing, but I feel both need one another in the ring.

Undefeated Garcia, has no credible opponents left at 140lbs (Jnr Welter) having beaten Lucas Matthysse in September. Broner it seems will move down from 147lbs (Welter) to 140lbs after a career first defeat against Marcos Maidana last month.

It is a fight that I believe will happen late 2014, certainly PPV (Pay Per View) and one that would be career defining for both fighters.

The winner will be able to stake their claim to be a future global star in America, ready to take the mantle from Mayweather when he retires.

Garcia, will put himself firmly in front of Mayweather as an opponent for 2015, one that he won’t be able to avoid.

Broner, will show that he is the real deal, that he took the defeat against Maidana like a man, went away, honed his craft and delivered emphatically.

Danny is an accurate puncher, rarely wastes a shot. He struggled in stages against Zab Judah, but looked world-class against Matthysse.

Broner is a big puncher, has good hand-speed but he must work on his conditioning and lifestyle as he will have a short tenure in the sport if he continues to live the way he does.

Amir “King” Khan v Kell “Special K” Brook

Now many of you may scoff at the proposition of this fight;

“How can Khan go from Mayweather to Brook?”

That my friend is a valid question, my answer?

Money.

Khan would earn loads from this fight, domestically it is a PPV fight, Sky and Eddie Hearn would be all-over it like chicken pox on a toddler.

2014 financially could set Khan up for life, two fights, Mayweather and Brook, opposite ends of the scale granted, but both hugely lucrative.

Khan can use the Brook fight as an opportunity to prove to his doubters in the UK that he isn’t “chinny” and can beat the best domestically at 147lbs.

For Brook, if he beats Khan, he becomes a household name; it would announce him on the big stage in America.

Kell would receive much needed recognition there and set up some huge fights in the Welterweight division.

King Khan has a big profile America and receives more “love” than he does at home.

I think it would be a great tear-up, no love lost between them which date back to sparring between them as amateurs.

Brook needs to beat Shawn Porter, the newly crowned IBF Welter Champion when they fight in the summer.

I feel that this can be the carrot dangled in-front of Amir to lure him in to a blockbuster match up.

Khan has blistering hand-speed, but always has that vulnerability factor about him that has you on the edge of your seat.

Special K, at the age of 27 (28 in May) is untested on the world stage. Fights with Shawn Porter and Amir Khan will prove whether he will “sink or swim”.

The stakes couldn’t be higher for either fighter in this, losing is simply unthinkable.

Anthony Joshua v Hughie Fury

This fight draws mixed opinion from most, is it too soon for them to fight? Joshua, 24 is 3-0, Fury, 19 is 12-0.

There is a valid argument that we should wait a few years, let it manifest into a monster fight.

Perhaps they could take a leaf out of the Quigg v Frampton situation as opposed to James DeGale v George Groves.

DeGale v Groves if you recall took place 3 yrs ago this May, was a cracking encounter but it could of been a bigger fight further down the line as both have had only a handful of fights.

The positives of this happening in the summer are that we have a match-up between the two most exciting Heavyweight prospects on these shores.
The loser has plenty of time to come-back and build themselves again, as they are both mere pups for the Heavyweight division.

Joshua may start out for some as the favourite, but write Fury off at your peril as he could surprise many.

The pair of them are big lads, with impressive KO records so far, I would be amazed if this went the distance.

There are a number of other domestic fights I believe we could see, which I will list below:

Callum Smith v Frank Buglioni
Nathan Cleverly v Tony Bellew II
Kevin Mitchell v Ricky Burns II
Tommy Coyle v Kevin Mitchell
David Price v Dereck Chisora
Luke Campbell v Gavin Rees
Frankie Gavin v Kell Brook

I think 2014 will be the year of the Lightweight Division as there are so many fights that can be made there domestically, you could comfortably stage 1 each month.

I will be happy if any of the above happens, 2014 has some huge shoes to fill as 2013 was a phenomenal year for the sport.

Right, I must dash… my salad is getting warm…

#NewYearNewMe

Cheers
Paul

@EliteBoxingBlog
@PaulReady

Mayweather, Ward, Froch & Groves

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Bonjour,

I hope everyone had a delightful festive period. Mine descended in to a sea of wine & cheese spent with those who matter most…

My next post will be the fights I wish, no wait.. Demand.. That we have grace our screens in 2014.

I wanted to discuss the latest news/rumours that have come to light the past few days, hence the impromptu post.

Like the rest of us, boxers have been enjoying the holiday period and have taken to twitter to fuel the flames of potential fights next year.

You can picture it now, Andre Ward sat there after going to midnight mass, his nan has passed out infront of the TV with Santa Claus featuring Dudley Moore playing.

What is a guy to do?

Take to twitter of course and throw his two pence worth in on Froch/Groves!

@andreward: #UK fans still not happy with Carl “The Cobra” Froch huh?? That’s why I respect #UK fans, they ride for the home team, but tell the truth!!

He then went on to say that Froch has only two options.

Not just Groves rematch or retire, but a Ward or Groves rematch. In addition, that he would be willing to face Groves in the future.

What a match that would be.

I was salivating reading that, and I had the meat sweats at that point.

Ward fancies fighting Froch again, and who can blame him! Peak Froch couldn’t beat him, Froch on the slide gets stopped in my opinion.

For Ward to call Groves out shows how high his stock really has risen.

Everyone wants a piece of him, including American promoters.

‘There’s an awful lot of promoters interested in me,’ Groves told Sportsmail. ‘Because obviously I’m an exciting fighter in a good division, and I’ve got a successful future. I’m doing my job right and they’re interested. Plenty from Stateside – four from Stateside, all the big players are interested. I’m in a good position, I’m happy.’

In the aftermath of the Froch fight, I spoke about the merits of Groves taking himself Stateside for a brief period. It appears that this is something he is doing himself, for that I commend him.

Promoter wise, it would make sense for him to sign with DiBella Promotions.

Brooklyn based DiBella has great links with Goldenboy, Top Rank, K2 Promotions.
This would mean Groves could fight on Showtime and HBO, thus not restricting himself, as it would if he chose one of the GoldenBoy or Top Rank.

DiBella is a massive character, a man who tells it how it is, takes no shit and would be great for Groves

DiBella currently promotes Sergio Martinez and having an exciting fighter such as Groves, would prove to be a great asset for his stable.

We also had in typical Floyd style, headline stealing tweets regarding Pacquiao and other potential opponents for him next.

Firstly, he tweeted a picture of a guy in Tokyo who appeared to be a cross between Roach and Pacquiao with the caption “Manny Roach”.

Then preceded by digitally made posters of him versus Khan, Maidana and Pacquiao. Mayweather mocked them all, calling Khan a con artist, Maidana a biscuit boy (no idea) and the proposition of facing Pacquiao would be eating Marquez’ leftovers.

What I feel are intelligent about these tweets and the very nature of them, is that this has been done to gauge the fans perception of each potential opponent.

It’s an open secret that the Khan fight is close to be agreed, but it has been received by lukewarm response over here in the UK and in the States.

Mayweather, a renowned PPV fighter wouldn’t of ignored this and I feel the tweets are a reflection of that.

Mayweather v Khan was never going to topple “The One” PPV buys, but for a guy who has agreed a blockbuster deal with Showtime Sports, Mayweather needs to whip up a frenzy on the opposition.

Fans buy to see him win and lose.

Without having that realistic chance of the underdog winning, it doesn’t become a credible main event.

Hundreds of thousands in the States will shell out $60-70 a pop to see a ridiculously one sided main event.

Mayweather needs to be hitting the 750-900 units to ensure he is getting that “Money” and don’t assume the Khan fight is signed and sealed just yet.

In other news we had confirmation of the very brief Price & Booth partnership.

Rumours surfaced earlier this week that Price’s new promoter Sauerland brothers had an issue with Booth being his trainer and manager.

Only for Booth to take to Twitter to pour cold water on those rumours:

@boxingbooth: Contrary to very inaccurate reporting, my decision to stop working with David Price had nothing to do with @SauerlandBros

So with this one, I have no clue what happened and one can only speculate on a vast number of theories, which I’m sure will be revealed in due course.

Right.

That’s my cheese ridden thought process.

Enjoy the rest of your time off and tune in next week for my 2014 fight wish list.

Paul

@EliteBoxingBlog

@PaulReady