Boxing sacrifices Cotto, one of Her favourite sons, to remind us She is the only God.

The days and weeks before Miguel Cotto’s final bout were a curious, wandering period. Immersed in nostalgia and solemn reverence, writers and ring side observers seemed to succumb to the narrative that Sadam Ali’s selection, and the sense of underwhelm they felt toward him and duly projected to their own parishioners, would assure Cotto’s career enjoyed a decorative final triumph. Without a perceived threat in the opposing corner, or, as they determined, even the prospect of a competitive bout, they opted to start the party early.

Such was the extent of this homage the actual fight became an inconvenience, an after thought, akin to collecting the discarded paper plates and half-empty champagne flutes when all you want is a taxi or your bed. As the great and good of the written and spoken word laid their respective garlands at Cotto’s feet and fans bowed their heads in respect, Boxing grew tired of this veneration and the disrespect to Her final commandment, that nobody leaves on their own terms, the tsunami of obituary represented. Sincerity was increasingly sacrificed in the media’s quest to draw the most emotionally laden tribute to Cotto’s career, great as it was, slipped into the apocryphal.

Continue reading “Boxing sacrifices Cotto, one of Her favourite sons, to remind us She is the only God.”

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Boxing: DeMarcus gets the Corley never expected; disappointing for McCloskey

Criticising boxing promoters is a popular business. Both historically and in matters topical. A fighter’s promoter, who can be his manager too, despite the conflict of interest inherent in that scenario,  is often lumbered with blame for all manner of peaks and troughs in a fighter’s career. As uninformed bystanders, it is easy to point the finger of blame at those who determine the trajectory and strategy of a fighter’s career. Beyond the knowledge of the ‘man in street’ are the unknown variables; from a fighter’s form and focus to the sensibilities, pliable and otherwise, of the regulatory bodies and television networks who fund and benchmark the process. To date, Matchroom Sports has proved a reinvigorating presence in the stagnant waters of British Boxing and thus far remain untouched by criticism. DeMarcus Corley as an opponent for Paul McCloskey on May 5th, even as a late replacement, should provide dénouement to that honeymoon period.

Continue reading “Boxing: DeMarcus gets the Corley never expected; disappointing for McCloskey”

Boxing: Judah back to Brooklyn; but a ring is a ring is a ring

I read today Light Welterweight contender Zab Judah is promoting his next fight on the notion it represents his debut in his native Brooklyn and is therefore, publicity implies, likely to evoke a return to the glories of his past. Like many 34-year-old pugilists before him, Judah is attempting to invert the natural course all fight-careers take; decline, by reaching for the placebo effect fleetingly afforded by trainer change, managerial move or in this case a fight in his home town.  Continue reading “Boxing: Judah back to Brooklyn; but a ring is a ring is a ring”

Insatiable Figueroa rocks IT!

elgatoFor those who have succumbed to the phenomenon of Facebook or its instant contemporary Twitter and opted to ask Francisco “El Gato” Figueroa for friendship the Light-Welterweight is a constant companion. Such is his thirst for improvement his march toward world-championship fights has its own tag-line “Can’t Stop, Wont Stop” and should further assurance that El Gato is serious in the adoption of this mantra be required, it is helpfully adorned by the suffix, “Not a saying, a movement”. Miguel Cotto is the latest to get in the way. Continue reading “Insatiable Figueroa rocks IT!”

Boxingwriter.co.uk Fighter of the Month; June 09

boxershadowThis award, which has laid dormant since Shane Mosley’s richly earned January residence as the BoxingWriter.co.uk fighter of the month, is the one fighters really clamour – forget Ring championships or PPV figures, the award they’re all looking for is this one. Selected unscientifically by a panel of one, the award seeks to recognise the eye-catching result or performance of the month. There is usually a splash of non-conformity about the choice and a sprinkling of sentiment over the significance of the bout or bouts the winner has participated in. Continue reading “Boxingwriter.co.uk Fighter of the Month; June 09”

Not to be or not to be, Jennings falls to Cotto in 5.

cottowallIt is a while since I’ve perched on the end of the sofa to watch a fight, a while since I’ve felt the rush of a heart-felt connection to a fighter but on Saturday night, as 31-year-old Michael Jennings strode to the ring, that familiar surge of anxiety raced through me. I recall this was a feeling I had when Frank Bruno retreated toward the ring for his rematch with Tyson and I felt it when Dennis Andries kept rising from the canvas against Thomas Hearns. When Brian Hughes asked between the 4th and 5th rounds if the twice floored Jennings was okay, Mick’s response of “Sound, yeh” it just warmed this fan’s heart a little more. Continue reading “Not to be or not to be, Jennings falls to Cotto in 5.”

Crack the Fig Rolls, Jennings v Cotto is live!

CottoFollowing a day of two of consternation among boxing fans, and particularly those in possession of a Setanta subscription, the now widely reported news Michael Jennings attempt to overcome Miguel Cotto tomorrow night will shown live by the Irish based network will be warmly welcomed. Whatever the reasons for the hiatus, and the fact Jennings contract with Frank Warren with regard television rights overlaps with Setanta’s contract to show Top Rank fighters (Cotto) appears to have been the crux of the issue, the main thing is nice guy Mick will be live on British screens for the biggest night of his life. Continue reading “Crack the Fig Rolls, Jennings v Cotto is live!”

Jennings v Cotto; Setanta coverage unconfirmed

JenningsTo many, this fight is of little less than passing interest. Miguel Cotto predictably rebuilding from his shattering loss to Antonio Margarito with a regulation comeback fight against Michael Jennings – a fighter with a pretty record and precious little experience at elite level. Its an industry standard tactic for the Puerto Rican Welterweight. However, to me the fight holds far more appeal.

Continue reading “Jennings v Cotto; Setanta coverage unconfirmed”

Some other mountain; Oscar continues his PPV voyage

Amidst a global credit crunch it could prove harder than ever to defend the choices of a multi-millionaire like Oscar DeLaHoya and harder still if he is to assume the role of the big guy in his David and Goliath showdown with Manny Pacquiao. However, for all the criticism his selection of the Filipino piranha, instead of the entirely more imposing challenges of Paul Williams and Antonio Margarito, drew, I for one believe it is a sensible match-up for a fighter who operates outside boxing’s accepted parameters. Continue reading “Some other mountain; Oscar continues his PPV voyage”

Boxing: Natural order is restored – Forrest dominates Mora

The Contender series wasn’t a reality show in the popular sense of the word. I’m always disgusted when mainstream reporters refer to its contestants, when partaking in significant out-of-show bouts, as “reality show winners”. It misleads the uninitiated, implying those who featured were not ‘real’ boxers but talented wannabees, celebrities even. Fighters like Steve Forbes, Peter Manfredo and Alfonso Gomez were professional fighters long-before their participation in the ground-breaking series.

Continue reading “Boxing: Natural order is restored – Forrest dominates Mora”

Paul Williams covers every base to land big shot

“Starvin’ Marvin”, as one or two insensitive souls have dubbed Paul “The Punisher” Williams, today featured in a new press release from Aceves PR, one of the busiest promotional houses around in the boxing business. For those who love stats, this was the 62nd I’ve received since October. So if you’re an aspiring promoter or fighter, consider Aceves, they’re busy on your behalf. Someone once asked me, where I was when JFK was shot, I said I wasn’t sure but I bet I was reading a release by Aceves.

Continue reading “Paul Williams covers every base to land big shot”

I’ve tried, Oscar, but Paul Williams doesn’t excite me

Much though there is to admire in Oscar De LaHoya’s glistening career and despite the perfect role model he represents for any aspiring pugilist his status as boxing’s Golden Boy, and the enormous cheques his crossover appeal allows him to accept and write, is beginning to leave me a little nauseous. Oscar isn’t the Light-Middleweight champion, nor is he a Welterweight titleist – you need to go back to 2002-2003 for the last time he won and defended a belt – and yet he remains the ultimate goal of every fighter from 130 to 160 pounds. With this financial luster comes responsibility. One he will ignore if he opts for Paul Williams.

Continue reading “I’ve tried, Oscar, but Paul Williams doesn’t excite me”

By ‘eck those Mexicans can fight; Margarito prevails

I’ve little new to add to the thousands of column inches already afforded to the outstanding contest between Miguel Cotto and Antonio Margarito last Saturday night. A tumultuous encounter that achieved that rarest of triumphs, it lived up to its promise. Both fighters were exceptional and though Margarito emerges with maximum credit for unseating the WBA Welterweight champion I believe now is the most opportune moment to applaud the performance and courage of his vanquished opponent. Continue reading “By ‘eck those Mexicans can fight; Margarito prevails”

Behind enemy Lynes against bucking, ducking Branco

Most writers will confess to soft spots for certain fighters. I pointed out my own affection to John Ruiz, the most unloved of heavyweights, only this week but the reasoning or events that form and fuel these affiliations are often curious and minuscule. It doesn’t stop at boxing, I always urged old Rex Williams on in the snooker championships because we share a birthday. Tenuous but a rivet-strong bond all the same. Colin Lynes is another fighter for whom I always wish good fortune.

Continue reading “Behind enemy Lynes against bucking, ducking Branco”

Boxing: A Tsyzu Return is Gonna Kostya

Kostya2Former Light-Welterweight king, should that be tsar, is certainly not a fighter to be rushed into a comeback despite his 37 years and long sabbatical from action following the seminal defeat to Ricky Hatton in 2005. Of course, he may not come back at all – rather like Lennox Lewis does from time to time – Kostya seems willing to tease and tantalise, perhaps in a bid to promote other business pursuits or, alternatively, to pacify the element of his personality that craves the combat. Convincing himself he could comeback at anytime to paradoxically ensure he never actually does it. Continue reading “Boxing: A Tsyzu Return is Gonna Kostya”

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