Wladimir Klitschko – No Country for Old Men?

Anthony Joshua, Wladimir Klitschko - Boxing fans, as we know, are never slow about coming forward. In fight terms, we are marauders who throw vicious punches with bad intentions and social media is the canvas that we dance upon. Since the moment that third man, David Fields, called a halt to the action between Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko, fight fans have gone toe to toe. ‘Joshua is the new Ali …Joshua would have beaten Tyson …Joshua begins a new era’, with one BBC journalist stating that Joshua is ‘unquestionably the biggest star in boxing’. I always think it’s wise to question the ‘unquestionable’. I’m sure GGG, Pacquiao, Crawford, Canelo and even Mayweather (Touting a comeback) would have things to say on that matter. Deontay Wilder might feel justified in claiming that Joshua isn’t even the biggest star in the heavyweight division and, I suspect, the Bronze Bomber will be eager to prove that point sooner rather than later.

Boxing fans, as we know, are never slow about coming forward. In fight terms, we are marauders who throw vicious punches with bad intentions and social media is the canvas that we dance upon. Since the moment that third man, David Fields, called a halt to the action between Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko, fight fans have gone toe to toe. ‘Joshua is the new Ali …Joshua would have beaten Tyson …Joshua begins a new era’, with one BBC journalist stating that Joshua is ‘unquestionably the biggest star in boxing’. I always think it’s wise to question the ‘unquestionable’. I’m sure GGG, Pacquiao, Crawford, Canelo and even Mayweather (Touting a comeback) would have things to say on that matter. Deontay Wilder might feel justified in claiming that Joshua isn’t even the biggest star in the heavyweight division and, I suspect, the Bronze Bomber will be eager to prove that point sooner rather than later.

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The Heavyweights – High on potential or low on talent?

Charles Martin, David Haye, Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury, Wladimir Klitschko - Barely a month into 2016 and we’ve already seen some interesting developments in the normally sleep inducing heavyweight scene.  I hate to open an article with such a statement as, traditionally, the division has always been the jewel in the crown of world boxing but, as we know, times have changed. I grew up in an era where we looked to the golden years of the 70’s when Ali, Frazier, Foreman and Norton plied their trade and it would be an injustice not to mention Holmes in that list.

Barely a month into 2016 and we’ve already seen some interesting developments in the normally sleep inducing heavyweight scene. I hate to open an article with such a statement as, traditionally, the division has always been the jewel in the crown of world boxing but, as we know, times have changed. I grew up in an era where we looked to the golden years of the 70’s when Ali, Frazier, Foreman and Norton plied their trade and it would be an injustice not to mention Holmes in that list.

These days we look to the likes of Tyson, Holyfield and Lewis for inspiration. Names like Tim Witherspoon, Ray Mercer and the late Tommy Morrison are often discussed purely on the level of sheer excitement that they brought to the ring and the world yearns for a warrior of the modern age to capture our imagination.

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Mayweather 49-0: Boxing History Dumbed Down

Floyd Mayweather Jr - 1955 was also the year that bid a sad adieu to screen icon James Dean. The Rebel without a cause would meet his maker on Route 466 when, on September 30th, his Porsche 550 ‘Little Bastard’ car careered off the highway attempting to avoid Donald Turnopspeed’s Ford Tudor. The film world mourned and still does. Ray Kroc started the McDonalds fast food chain and Bill Haley’s ‘Rock around the Clock’ had music lovers dancing off the Big Mac’s and fries. But 1955 would also be a landmark year for the world of boxing when heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano went 49-0 to set, what would become, the longest standing championship record in the history of the sport.

1955 was also the year that bid a sad adieu to screen icon James Dean. The Rebel without a cause would meet his maker on Route 466 when, on September 30th, his Porsche 550 ‘Little Bastard’ car careered off the highway attempting to avoid Donald Turnopspeed’s Ford Tudor. The film world mourned and still does. Ray Kroc started the McDonalds fast food chain and Bill Haley’s ‘Rock around the Clock’ had music lovers dancing off the Big Mac’s and fries. But 1955 would also be a landmark year for the world of boxing when heavyweight champion Rocky Marciano went 49-0 to set, what would become, the longest standing championship record in the history of the sport.

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Manny Pacquaio – The truth behind that shoulder

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I think it’s safe to say that one of the greatest conspiracy comedies of all time is the Robert De Niro/Dustin Hoffman collaboration ‘Wag the Dog’. The film depicts the lengths that unscrupulous spin-doctors will go to in pursuit of a politician’s re-election. The movie is hilarious at times but it is a clever movie throughout and it certainly makes you wonder if you should ever believe more than 50% of what you are fed through the media. I worked in a job for many years where you were advised ‘to believe half of what you saw and absolutely nothing of what you heard’. Having worked there over three decades, I fully concur with that wisdom. People will believe what best suits their interests and, sometimes, the emperor’s new clothes will pass as high fashion if the end result is the one you really want.

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Mayweather vs Pacquiao: Where next?

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2012 was a year dominated by many things. The Italian cruise liner ‘The Costa Concordia’ ran aground causing 32 deaths, Usain Bolt became the first man in history to win the 100m and 200m sprint in back to back Olympics, the USADA stripped Lance Armstrong of his seven Tour De France titles, Barack Obama was returned to the White House for another term of office and the world waited with baited breath to see if the Mayan Doomsday Prophecy would see us all enjoy a last meal on December 21st.

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Mayweather vs Pacquiao – Styles Make Fights

Floyd Mayweather Jr, Manny Pacquiao, Mayweather vs. Pacquiao - I spent this morning watching old boxing clips, compilations of great rounds, profiles of great fighters and the one thing that became obvious was that styles most certainly make fights. Ali was superbly sleek and ultimately elusive until he shared the ring with Frazier whose marauding style negated much of what Ali had to offer. Their trilogy rank amongst the all-time great bouts as styles forced those men into a war that defined an era of the sport. Kenny Norton, the forgotten man, had even more success against Ali and many felt that he actually won two of their three encounters…I happen to be one of those and I always felt a sense of sympathy for the truly brilliant but often overlooked Norton.

I spent this morning watching old boxing clips, compilations of great rounds, profiles of great fighters and the one thing that became obvious was that styles most certainly make fights. Ali was superbly sleek and ultimately elusive until he shared the ring with Frazier whose marauding style negated much of what Ali had to offer. Their trilogy rank amongst the all-time great bouts as styles forced those men into a war that defined an era of the sport. Kenny Norton, the forgotten man, had even more success against Ali and many felt that he actually won two of their three encounters…I happen to be one of those and I always felt a sense of sympathy for the truly brilliant but often overlooked Norton.

On a different level, Marco Antonio Barrera knew all about styles when he opted to face Junior Jones as a warm up for a major showdown with Erik Morales. Jones was no pushover but, on paper, he simply wasn’t in Barrera’s class. I remember watching the bout live and being truly amazed at how inept Barrera was in dealing with the movement of Jones. The rematch was designed to show how a more focused Marco Antonio could easily handle the limited Jones but that backfired also and Junior Jones has a 2-0 record against the legendary Mexican. That Morales later destroyed Jones and Barrera went on to beat Morales is a scenario that highlights the ‘styles make fights’ aspect of what happens in the ring when the talking and the training is done.

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Billy Miske – A Champion Forever

- With less than a month to go to the biggest bout in boxing history, some pundits have taken to reflecting on the past when it comes to finding quality opposition for the men of May 2nd. Perhaps it’s just another symptom of a sport in decline, but the fantasy fight is in full swing and scribes have pitted the silky skills of Mayweather against those of the Sugar Ray’s, Sweet Pea Whitaker and the truly brilliant ‘Homicide Hank’ himself Henry Armstrong. Likewise, the question has been asked as to how Manny Pacquiao would have fared against Roberto Duran, Julio Cesar Chavez and the sadly late and flamboyantly great Hector Comacho Sr. I tend not to contemplate such match-ups. They’re called fantasy fights for a reason and the best we can do is to remember past fighters with the respect that they deserve. May 2nd will establish a champion on the night but boxing history is star studded with ring legends and we shouldn’t need a mega bout to recall their names. Even in the long list that spring to mind, there are those whose stories transcend the sport that made them and none…certainly none that I know of…capture the nobility of the fighting spirit more than the ‘The Saint Paul Thunderbolt’ Billy Miske.

With less than a month to go to the biggest bout in boxing history, some pundits have taken to reflecting on the past when it comes to finding quality opposition for the men of May 2nd. Perhaps it’s just another symptom of a sport in decline, but the fantasy fight is in full swing and scribes have pitted the silky skills of Mayweather against those of the Sugar Ray’s, Sweet Pea Whitaker and the truly brilliant ‘Homicide Hank’ himself Henry Armstrong. Likewise, the question has been asked as to how Manny Pacquiao would have fared against Roberto Duran, Julio Cesar Chavez and the sadly late and flamboyantly great Hector Comacho Sr. I tend not to contemplate such match-ups. They’re called fantasy fights for a reason and the best we can do is to remember past fighters with the respect that they deserve. May 2nd will establish a champion on the night but boxing history is star studded with ring legends and we shouldn’t need a mega bout to recall their names. Even in the long list that spring to mind, there are those whose stories transcend the sport that made them and none…certainly none that I know of…capture the nobility of the fighting spirit more than the ‘The Saint Paul Thunderbolt’ Billy Miske.

Read moreBilly Miske – A Champion Forever