Jennings breaks down Mayweather-Cotto; Jhonson vs. Nelson on May 11th

On Saturday evening at the MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Puerto Rican national treasure Miguel Angel Cotto faces the ominous task of trying to snap the 42 fight unbeaten streak of the sports ‘pound for pound’ leader Floyd Mayweather (The fight shall be broadcast live and exclusive in the UK on BoxNation, Sky Ch. 456/Virgin Ch. 546)

The Brit best equipped to assess Cotto’s chances is Chorley’s Michael Jennings, the former English, British and WBU welter king who shared five very painful rounds with the Puerto Rican when debating the vacant World Boxing Organization (WBO) welter strap at Madison Square Garden, New York in February 2009.

Now back in light training with Joe Gallagher at Amir Khan’s Gloves gym in Bolton following a 20 month hiatus due to an ongoing shoulder complaint, the 34 year old Lancastrian offers this assessment.

“The reason that Floyd Mayweather is ‘pound for pound’ is because he’s got everything. For a start, he doesn’t look 35. He’s super fit and does everything right; really lives the life.

People go on about his speed, and it is scary, but he can also dig. He’s so confident and elusive, so hard to catch, so relaxed. He does carry his hands very low which might lure his opponents, give them a bit of confidence but his reflexes have been so good.

I know he’s getting older but I still don’t think the inactivity is going to harm him. He’s had long breaks before and returned without any deterioration. His preparation is impeccable. You can guarantee he’ll have got in the best sparring on the planet.

Cotto was a million miles above anything I’d fought previously. At the weigh-in, I was bigger than Miguel but his frame changed remarkably between the scales and getting into the ring. He was absolutely massive.

But what really distinguishes him as a brilliant fighter is his accuracy. I’ve never been hit before like he hit me. Though he’s not southpaw, he’s a natural left hander. His first jab landed straight on my nose and really made my eyes water. That hadn’t happened since the first time I sparred when I was a little kid. He had easily the heaviest hands of anyone I’ve been inside a ring with.

Miguel never wastes anything and they all hurt! Every time, he’d land right under the front ribcage. Having been caught once, I was really mindful of defending against those shots, tucking up tight yet still he’d be able to find the exact spot, time after time.

Whenever I’d throw a shot, he’d slide away and make you miss by an inch....then make you pay. I thought I had fast hands but he was faster, far faster than he appears when on TV. His speed’s deceptive.

On the downside, it’s not impossible to tag him with the straight right hand. We’d identified that in our camp and I did catch him with a few. If Mayweather sees an opening, he’ll catch him.

While Cotto’s a very good boxer, Mayweather’s the master class in that department and I can’t see any way that Cotto could stand off and outbox him. To get any level of success, Cotto will need to attack clever, apply controlled pressure then, if he can get inside, stick to the ‘Pretty Boy’ like Velcro. There’s no point just letting ones or twos go, he’ll need to bang in those body shot combinations. But it’s a hard task.

I’ve been watching those 24/7s on BoxNation and I’d like Cotto to win. He seems a really sound guy, down to earth. Floyd can come across as arrogant but I guess he’s plenty to be arrogant about.

I expect Mayweather will just sit off, take no risks, force Cotto to rush him. Then he’ll look to pick him off. Though Cotto’s too good for it to be totally one sided, I think Mayweather will probably outpoint him pretty comfortably. A good boxer usually beats a good fighter.”

Mayweather v Cotto is live and exclusive on BoxNation (Sky Ch. 456/Virgin Ch. 546) this Saturday. Join at

BoxNation is the first dedicated subscription boxing TV channel in the UK to bring together the biggest names in amateur, domestic and international boxing with an unbeatable schedule of matches from across the globe.

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Betfair Prizefighter hopeful dons special briefs with Betfair Mobile QR codes

IRISH boxer Eamonn O’Kane will show that he’s got the full package when he trials a new marketing technique encouraging punters to scan his crotch at the weigh-in for Saturday’s Betfair Prizefighter Middleweights show in Belfast.

In what’s thought to be a world first, O’Kane will step on to the scales wearing a pair of boxer shorts specially designed by event sponsors Betfair. The smalls boast a Quick Response (QR) code on their front, which when photographed on a smartphone takes users straight to the boxing betting markets on Betfair Mobile.

Betfair is trailing the innovative advertising method following the crowds seen at the weigh-in for a previous Betfair Prizefighter show in Wolverhampton in February.

Betfair’s Alex Bake said: “The weigh-in is an important part of any fight and, from a betting perspective, will have an impact on our exchange prices.

“As the early favourite for the Middleweights crown all eyes will be on Eamonn, so any punter wanting to place a bet need just scan his pants.”

Eamonn O’Kane said: “I’ve never thought of myself as an underwear model, but maybe I could have a second career when I retire from boxing.”

The move comes after the award winning team at Betfair slapped QR codes on the bikini bottoms of Britain’s beach volleyball champions, Zara Dampney and Shauna Mullin.

Willie Nelson Steps in to Face Yudel Jhonson ShoBox: The New Generation Telecast to Go Forward as Doubleheader

Cleveland's once-beaten Willie "The Great" Nelson (17-1-1, 11 KOs) will step in to face Cuba's Yudel Jhonson (12-0, 8 KOs) in the 10-round junior middleweight main event of the ShoBox: The New Generation telecast presented by Warriors Boxing, entitled "Shootout at Texas Station", scheduled for Friday, May 11 (11 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast), from the Texas Station Gambling Hall & Hotel in Las Vegas.

Original Jhonson opponent, Freddy Hernandez, has been forced to pull out with an injury.

In addition, East Los Angeles lightweight Aalan Martinez has also been forced to pull out of his eight-round bout against Rances "Kid Blast" Barthelemy. Barthelemy (15-0, 11 KOs) will still fight an opponent to be determined but his bout will not be televised.

The eight-round co-featured battle of undefeated super middleweights Badou Jack "The Ripper" (10-0, 8 KOs) of Sweden and Colombia's power-punching Alexander Brand (17-0, 15 KOs) will go on as scheduled.

Cleveland, Ohio's 25-year-old Willie "The Great" Nelson (16-0-1, 10 KOs) stands an enormous 6' 3" and has a massive 76-inch reach. Before turning pro at age 18, the quick-fisted southpaw had over 230 fights as an amateur and was ranked #1 in the United States. He is also a former USA and European amateur champion.

In January of this year, Nelson rebounded from the only loss of his career (last April via majority decision to Vincent Arroyo) by scoring a TKO 2 over Brad Jackson. Nelson is in shape, as he was originally scheduled to fight May 18 in Missouri.

Also a southpaw, Jhonson was the Pan American Junior Champion at light fly in 1998 and the Cuban National Champion at welterweight in 2002 before capturing a silver medal at the 2004 Olympic Games. Overall, he went 379-16 in the amateurs while winning numerous titles.

The 5-foot-10, 30-year-old Jhonson is coming off a third-round TKO over Eduardo Mercedes last October 15 in the Dominican Republic.

"It is unfortunate that Freddy Hernandez got injured," said event promoter Leon Margules. "But in his place steps Willie Nelson, which I think makes the main event an even better, more significant fight on the world stage. This will be a tremendous battle between two young, strong, up-and-coming contenders."

Tickets for "Shootout at Texas Station" are on sale now, priced at $27 and $52 and are available at Ticketmaster, any Texas Station rewards center or at SCLV.COM/CONCERTS. A few VIP seats are available at a price of $102 can be purchased by calling (954) 985-1155.

On fight night, doors open at 6:30 and the action starts at 7:00 pm.

Station Bucks may be used to purchase tickets. All ages welcome. Under 21 must be accompanied by an adult 21 or over. Show subject to change without notice. Management reserves all rights. Digital Photography and video prohibited. Tickets can be purchased at any Station Casinos Boarding Pass Rewards Center, The Fiesta's, by logging onto or by calling 1-800-745-3000.

Texas Station Gambling Hall & Hotel is located at 2101 Texas Star Lane in North Las Vegas. Telephone: (702) 631-1000 or (800) 654-8888.

Article posted on 03.05.2012

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