It’s been a bad spell for Mexican fight fans, Juan Manuel Marquez the latest Mexican warrior to fall

Let’s not even start about the latest slice of poor officiating witnessed last night in Las Vegas. Tim Bradley, a worthy and clear winner over an always-game but suddenly old-looking Juan Manuel Marquez, had to listen to how one judge had somehow scored the fight against him. Still, the right man won via split decision and Bradley – a fighter I learnt never to bet against some time ago – can now go on to even bigger fights (maybe even one with Floyd Mayweather Junior?)

As for Marquez, it’s tough to see where he goes from here, although he may well demand a return with Bradley, feeling as he does that he deserved the win. But whatever happens next for both great fighters, it must be agreed how it’s been a tough time for Mexican fighters and their fans just lately.

We’ve seen Rafael Marquez, Juan Manuel’s brother, lose by stoppage and decide the hang ’em up, we’ve seen new superstar in the making Saul Canelo Alvarez comprehensively schooled by Mayweather, we’ve seen Julio Cesar Chavez Junior receive an undeserving win over Bryan Vera and now we may have seen the last of “Dinamita.”

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Thrill-a-Minute slugger James Kirkland close to ring return, likely to face unbeaten Glen Tapia on Dec. 7th on HBO

PIC_2409Fight fans who love a slugfest are likely to be in luck. According to Bob Arum, who spoke to Ring Magazine’s website, once-beaten southpaw slugger James Kirkland is thisclose to getting the all clear to return to the ring. The word is Kirkland – inactive since March of 2012 and having been fighting a number of legal issues with his former promoters – will face unbeaten contender Glen Tapia on December 7th, probably on the Gulliermo Rigondeaux-Joseph Agbeko super-bantamweight clash set for Atlantic City.

Some fans have been turned off by classy Cuban Rigondeaux, even to the point of being bored when the former amateur superstar does his stuff. Rest assured, even if Rigondeaux-Agbeko is somewhat dull to those fans who love a barnburner, the planned co-main event will make up for it. His lacklustre (shoulder injury) showing against Carlos Molina side, Kirkland has never been in a dull fight. Wickedly powerful, naturally aggressive and also vulnerable, Kirkland is the ultimate ‘don’t blink’ fighter.

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Lennox Lewis having fun again, says he’d come back ………….for $100million!

It seems as though, every now and then, the mischievous side of heavyweight great Lennox Lewis rears its fun loving head. A while ago, Lennox saw to it that a date was released on his official website for his ring return, set as it was for him to dust himself off from the comfort of retirement and fight Wladimir (or it may have been Vitali) Klitschko.

Of course the whole thing came to nothing but the web sites and even the broadsheets went into a mini-frenzy, writing about the then 46-year-old and his chances of pulling off a George Foreman-like comeback. Now, just yesterday, the 48-year-old all-time great and last undisputed heavyweight king made more comeback talk.

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Bruised, beaten, frustrated – but not broken: Alexander Povetkin wants a rematch with Wladimir Klitschko

wlad793Russia’s Alexander Povetkin had a lot to deal with when he was in the ring challenging for Wladimir Klitschko’s collection of heavyweight titles. The Olympic gold medallist had to cope with Wladimir’s significant advantages in height, reach, weight and physical strength, and Povetkin also had to do his best to come to terms with “Dr. Steel Hammer’s” punching power. To add to these problems, Povetkin had to deal with the champ’s excessive holding, grappling and pushing – these three elements of Klitschko’s game prompting some people to feel the king should have been removed from his throne via disqualification.

But despite all this, Povetkin has called for a rematch with Klitschko. Speaking to The Moscow News today, Povetkin, 26-1(18) said he feels he can improve on last Saturday’s ultimately bruising and frustrating performance.

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Miguel Cotto: Back with a bang and ready, willing and able for some more sizzling super-fights!

cotto552Puerto Rican legend and future Hall of Famer Miguel Cotto put two successive points losses behind him last night in blitzing a usually sturdy Delvin Rodriguez, in the process setting himself up for further massive fights. Cotto, now working with the great Freddie Roach, looked like a beast last night: strong, fast, powerful and full of energy, Cotto absolutely ruined a good fighter.

Okay, some critics have commented how Rodriguez is and never has been on Cotto’s level and that Cotto’s win was expected. But that is doing both fighters a disservice. Cotto showed he still has the stuff to intimidate and overwhelm a fighter who has hung tough in a number of wars in the past and not too many experts were predicting as quick a victory as the one Cotto emerged with.

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Earnie Shavers: Pure Power, Pure Punching, Pure Passion

shavers643277Having just read another article on heavyweight punching legend Earnie Shavers (this fascinating piece on Ringtv.com), I wanted to put up my own piece on “The Acorn,” a man who was once dubbed “The Puncher of The Century.”

I’ve had the privilege of speaking with the 1970’s and early ’80’s heavyweight terror a number of times and here he kindly lists for me his top-three all-time heavyweight punchers; as well as telling me how he feels he would have done – in his pure-punching, zinging prime – against fellow legends, Tyson, Foreman, Liston and today’s kings, the Klitschkos.

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Wilder vs. Firtha on Hopkins-Murat card next month

003WildervictoryIMG_3358Unbeaten KO artist Deontay Wilder will face experienced big guy Nicolai Firtha in his next pro outing, on the Bernard Hopkins-Karo Murat under-card at The Barclays Centre New York on October 26th.

Wilder, 29-0(29) is coming off that scary 1st-round destruction of former WBO heavyweight titlist Serhai Liakhovich and it will be interesting to see if he can keep his KO streak going against the 34-year-old who is both big and game.

Firtha, 21-10-1(8) is not a top-rated contender and his record is somewhat patchy, yet he has been in with some big names and acquitted himself well. Since being stopped (arguably prematurely) in the 5th-round by Tyson Fury in what was a sizzling slugfest while it lasted, Firtha has dropped a 12-round decision to Johnathon Banks (who went on to ruin Seth Mitchell via 2nd-round stoppage, before Banks lost the return via forgettable 12-round snoozer) and won a stay-busy six-rounder against Robert Hawkins.

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Haye-Fury has new date of February 8th – but Team-Fury not convinced, say Haye might “cry off again”

fury54David Haye and Tyson Fury will now meet on February 8th of next year, various media reports have confirmed. The fight, postponed due to Haye suffering a cut eye in sparring, will still take place at The Phones 4U Arena in Manchester.

Haye is delighted with the news:

“I was absolutely devastated this weekend, and felt as though I’d let a lot of people down. But now, with this new date, I couldn’t be happier,” Haye said. “My fans will still get the chance to see what they all wanted to see this weekend – they’ll get to see Tyson Fury sparked out in spectacular fashion. Fury might start to get brave now that he’s received a stay of execution – and he might call me names and accuse me of ducking him – but that will all be short-lived, I can promise you.

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Haye-Fury is off, but could next Saturday’s show be saved? – How about Fury-Deontay Wilder?

wilder33Whenever a big, exciting fight is cancelled, as bad as it is for the fighters who would have headlined the action, it’s also time to have some sympathy for the under-card fighters and of course the fans who have bought tickets to the show. Fans, and under-card stars such as Scott Quigg and Yoandris Salinas (who would have fought for the vacant WBA super-bantamweight title) are currently reeling over the news of next Saturday’s Tyson Fury-David Haye fight being postponed due to Haye suffering a nasty cut in sparring.

The main event is obviously now destined to take place at a later date, but could next Saturday’s show be saved? I think it can be. Here’s how. Instead of scrapping the whole card, why can’t Tyson Fury get it on with a suitably intriguing/Box Office-worthy late replacement? You know who would, in my mind at least, be ideal? Deontay Wilder.

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David Haye “gutted” at having to postpone Tyson Fury fight due to cut eye

If fans didn’t know already, September 28th’s all-British clash between Tyson Fury and David Haye has been postponed due to Haye suffering a cut above his left eye during training.

Haye suffered the injury on Friday evening and will require six stitches. According to reports, the stitches will remain in place for five to seven days and Haye is waiting on further medical advice when it comes to when he will be able to return to action.

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