Manny Pacquiao vs Juan Manuel Marquez: November 12th

Here we go again folks.

Manny Pacquiao vs Juan Manuel Marquez

I love Heavyhweight boxing myself.  See my post about the Top 10 Heavyweight Bouts during my lifetime.

But I have enjoyed quite a few lower weight-class boxers, especially these two fighters.

They ave had two very good bouts and their 3rd fight shoud be just a good.

And then we had the recent Mayweather vs Ortiz.  What a strange bout that was.

Read my post after the fight HERE.

And my thoughts before that bout are HERE.

If Pacquiao loses this weekend, getting Mayweather to fight him will be difficult.

First bout:          a tie

Second bout:     a win for Pacquiao

You could tip the card in either direction for both fights as far as I am concerned.

The difference?  I think the difference in both fights were the knockdowns by Pacquiao.  He knocked Juan Manuel down hard in both fights.  I really thought the first fight was over & done with after 3 knockdowns in the first round.

How did Marquesz make it back in that fight?  Hell if I know.

And Manny’s win in the 2nd fight, I just don’t know.  I had Marquez ahead but it was so tight—-again.  And with the knockdown I can see giving it to Pacquiao.

So now here we are again.  Will it be the same kind of bout?  Do both fighters have it in them again?

November 12th:

What is it between these two very good boxers?  This was another strange fight, very even—flip a coin.

Pacquiao wins a narrow decision over Marquez.  Marquez supoporters will say (again) that Juan Manuel should have won.  And with one bout a tie (??), PacMan is 2-0-1 in this Trilogy but he could easily have been 0-3 and title-less.

Most of the crowd felt Marquez won the fight and Marquez and his camp certainly felt he was robbed once again.

In a bruising battle against a counterpuncher who was both accurate and fast, Pacquiao needed the final round on two scorecards to pull out the win. He got it, even though a third judge scored the round in favor of Marquez.

As boos – and cans and bottles – rang down on the ring, Pacquiao celebrated another victory and another huge payday.

“My fans are very happy because they thought I won,” Pacquiao said.

“My fans” Pacquiao said, not “boxing fans”.

I am disappointed and scored the fight as a Marquez win.  Close, very close.

Don’t be a counter puncher in against a world-wide sensation.  you have to take control of the fight.

Actually Marquez surprised everyone and he DID take control.  That is why I had Marquez down as the winner here.

Marquez punished Pac and kept him at bay all thru the fight.  Marquez by 2 points like 114-112.

November 14th:

Good job here of breaking down the unofficial scorecard of HBO judge Howard Lederer with a focus on “effective aggressor”.

Yes, the author(from the excellent boxing media Bad Left Hook,  did judge his own card as 116-112 Marquez.  But he does a very fair and valid effort reviewing the HBO judge’s card.

We’re told so frequently by Lederman about the criteria for judging fights: namely, effective aggression; defence; clean, hard punching; and, the ever-elusive ring generalship. Indeed, these are the principles upon which Lederman based his 116-112 scorecard for Pacquiao. However, looking at what each category really means, I find it particularly hard to see how his arguments were truly applicable to this fight…

…Taken from the Compubox website, I’d like to cite these statistics: “Since meeting Marquez (in 2008), Pacquiao averaged 79.2 punches per round, of which he landed 34 percent. That percentage was a mixed bag, for while his jab remains inaccurate (4.0 of 30.9, 13.1 percent), his power punching more than made up for it (22.9 of 48.3, 47.5 percent).” Fights which occur at Pacquiao’s speed see him throwing upwards of 950 punches. On Saturday night, he was limited to 560 over the entire fight.”

Read the article at the link above.  Regardless of who you think won this fight the article is well worth a read.

Floyd Mayweather Jr vs Victor Ortiz: After The Fight Thoughts, Questions, The KO And…Other Crap

So the Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs Victor Ortiz fight is over and done.  But the questions and the thoughts and the internet crap will continue for a long time on this one.

Did you watch it?  In person or on PPV or in a local Sports Bar or at a friend’s house?   If you saw this fight you can leave me a comment with your thoughts, feelings or opinions and we can post them here.

I know that many of you will disagree with some or even all of what I will say here.

On one hand you are fortunate if you saw this one first hand.  Right or wrong you are among the crowd that can actually form an opinion and offer it to the public.

You probably read my post from before the fight, if not you can read it here.  My thoughts leading up to the fight were fairly clear and I did pick the right winner (not many were backing Ortiz) and predicted the early KO.  It was clear that Mayweather was the better boxer with much more experience.  His defensive skills were far better  than Ortiz’s.

What both had was strong punching power and I expected a longer fight, maybe 7 or 8 rounds, with more punching leading up to the knockout.

I expected a better fight and it is disappointing that Ortiz decided to purposely head butt Mayweather and it is disappointing that the knockout came in such a strange way leading to all of this confusion.  Instead of a quality title match we are left with a fight more on the order of Mike Tyson‘s ear biting of Evander Holyfield or some of the other ring fiascos we have seen.

On the head butt:  the Ref rightly deducted as point from Ortiz.  He had already warned Ortiz earlier in the fight when Ortiz attempted to intentionally head butt Mayweather.  So the 4th round head butt was the second time Ortiz had done this.   My thought?  One point deduction was not enough.

What did Ortiz say about his head butting tactic?

“Frustrated by the punches he was taking without landing any of his own, he  tried to head-butt Mayweather while they clinched in a corner.

“It was the heat of moment,” Ortiz said.”

And Mayweather?   “Once we touch gloves it’s fight time,” Mayweather said. “It’s open season.”

What was the word at the barbershop b4 the fight??

If you did not get the chance to see this fight, you have heard something about it otherwise you would not be here.  The amount of publicity that has been generated post-fight is enormous and much more than the fight really deserves.

The LA Times had excellent live updates round by round.  Click here to check it out.

The boxing match deserves some amount of public comment just because these are two top-tier fighters and one lost his WBC Welterweight Title.  However, because of the strange things that happened in the ring in the fourth round of this fight it is now part of the daily media frenzy.

So, if you missed it , here is a brief synopsis of the four rounds of this fight.

Fight Results:

Round 1:      Mayweather wins  10-9

Round 2:       Mayweather wins 10-9

Round 3:       Mayweather wins 10-9

Mayweather wins the early rounds with his speed and counter-punching.

“Mayweather consistently beat Ortiz to the punch, and his experience and hand speed appeared to be the difference.”

Round 4:       In Round 4 Ortiz appeared to rally a bit until a truly bizarre series of events unfolded and Mayweather knocks out Ortiz in Round 4.

In (Round 4) Mayweather got a (head) butt, a kiss and a hug–all from Victor Ortiz.”  This quote is from an ESPN article, just click the quote for more.

Here is the head butt, the hug, the kiss and the KO baby!

What I have heard from way too may “sports guys” on TV news (pick a channel, the local news is the worst) is that Mayweather used a “sucker punch” to knock out Ortiz.  This despite the fact that post-fight Ortiz admitted he knew that the fight had restarted and that he (Ortiz) had “followed the rules” from the ref bringing the fighters back together to restart the fight after Ortiz had intentionally head-butted Mayweather.

The sports reporters on TV news (especially the local news guys) just want the airtime and this fight has given them something to talk about.  But few have done any boxing and not too many have been professional athletes.  I respect those guys even if I disagree.  But some guy that had been the weatherman yesterday…and got a “promotion” doing the sports?  Fuck you, get off my TV.

The Referee had deducted a point from Ortiz due to his actions which violated boxing rules.  As the fighters came back together in the center of the ring Ortiz tried to hug Mayweather.  Then he leaned his head in appearing to try to kiss Mayweather.  Ortiz says he was apologizing for his head-butt.

Mayweather says he thought he was going to get head butted again and responded with a left hand that rocked Ortiz and knocked him back.  To that point, the left was the best punch from either fighter.  Ortiz looked at the ref, and he may have said something it was hard to tell.  While Ortiz looked at the ref, Mayweather slammed a massive right hand to the side of Ortiz’s head knocking him to the canvas.

Some folks on the internet are saying Ortiz could have gotten up before being counted out, but I did not see it that way.  It appeared that Ortiz was knocked silly and could not recover within the 10 count.

Did you see it differently?  Comment her or mssg me on Twitter @zenDR and I will be glad to consider what you say.  Hell, you might even be able to get me to change my mind.

I say it on PPV and sometimes the TV angle(s) just don’t give the real deal view of the action that you see in person.  So, if you were at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas for this fight, definitely let me know what you are thinking.  If you saw it on PPV somewhere I’ll be glad to listen to you.

If all you know is what some asshole said on TV news or on the internet…kiss my ass.  I don’t care.

Update September 18th:

Victor Ortiz wants rematch “Fight wasn’t ‘fair'”

On a possible rematch with Mayweather: “I would love the rematch, because you know, I fouled Floyd, and I apologized in the ring, and apologized after the fight as well. Just heat of the moment. It’s one of those things where the ref was in the middle, and they called the break as well, and he caught me after the ref caught me (?). And I guess to a sense, it’s a payback but I agree to disagree, I’d like the rematch, though, it’d be a nice one. … … I do want the rematch, and I’m sure Floyd will give it to me. Well, I  hope, anyways.”

That’s a MAN.  Even though I do NOT think the Mayweather knockout was illegit, unfair or a sucker punch, I have to say…Ortiz is a MAN in stepping up after the fight.

Update September 19th:

Here is (short) HBO’s fight recap.  They state that Ortiz was “stunned” by hard Mayweather right hands at the end of the third round and seemed “lost” as he returned to his corner at the end of the round.  HBO also says that Mayweather had won all of the three rounds.

Assuming Mayweather was also going to win the 4th Round at a similar 10-9 score (easy & correct assumption), he would have been ahead by a score of 40-36.  After Ortiz lost a point in the 4th that would have made the score 40-35.  Just about impossible to come back and win the fight in 12 rounds by decision.

A boxer would have to win 5 rounds just to tie and then continue to stay even.  With 8 rounds remaining that means Ortiz needed to win 5 of those next 8 rounds by a score of 10-9.  Otherwise a decision goes to Mayweather.  And, after the head butt, you gotta figure the judges will score Ortiz a little harsher making it harder to win a round.

He really needed to get lucky and get a KO to win.  And he knew he was getting his ass kicked.

Consequently, the intentional head butt in the corner.  Take a look at that part again.  A little cleaner and that head butt could have knocked Mayweather out,  Is that what Ortiz was thinking?  Or maybe just cause a cut, heavy bleeding?  I dunno.  I just know that mathematically he already lost by the time of the 4th round drama.

Update September 20th:

Today Larry Merchant, the HBO fight announcer/colog guy said Mayweather would be the favoriate against Pacquaio.  Course the 80 year old Merchant was the one that said “If I was 50 years younger I would kick (Mayweather’s) ass”.  Right Larry, right.

If you read his full quote here, you will see he said something very convoluted so it is difficult to determine who he actually thinks would win.

Maybe he should say “If I was 50 years younger I would make a hell of a lot more sense”.

September 20th #2

Pacquaio today says that Mayweather would have been “troubled” by Ortiz in the “late rounds” and would have lost the bout.  Say what dude??  He is suggesting that Ortiz went on the “attack” in the 4th round.  And, yes, Ortiz did land a few shots (mostly on Mayweather’s gloves) when he moved Mayweather into the corner just b4 he jumped at Mayweather and slammed his opponent with the top of his head.  Clearly.  For the second time.

However, even if Ortiz did not get knocked out in the 4th round, as I explain above he would have come out of that round behind by a score of no more than 40-35.  That is the best that Ortiz could have scored.  And, given that score, there is almost no way for Ortiz to win on a decision.  He would need to win at least 5 (and probably 6) of the next 8 rounds.  Otherwise he loses on a decision.  And it was obvious that Mayweather’s defense was stronger than Ortiz could handle.

So maybe he would get lucky and win 5 or 6 rounds, but it did not appear to be possible.

Or maybe he would get lucky and knock Mayweather out.  But things didn’t seem to be heading in that direction.

Or maybe a third head butt would have opened a fight ending cut on Mayweathers face.

But Ortiz was not going to “trouble” Mayweather in the later rounds.  Not gonna happen.

As is often the case with strange fights, the post-fight chatter is pretty interesting.

Everybody has something to say.

September 22nd:

Today in the Sacramento Bee there is an article (I’m not even linking to it because it is such a time waster) where the writer says in his primary 2 points:

  • Mayweather is now the most hated PERSON in the world, after OJ Simpson
  • Mayweather is “ducking & dodging” a fight against Pacquaio

I’m not giving this guy any more room in my blog, that’s it.  He is an ass.  Like the guys writing (way too many) all the racist shit about Ortiz (he’s an American assholes with a proud Mexican background) and the guys with their profanity laced diatribes about Mayweather and how blacks always comeout on top against Hispanics (say what?  They both have been treasted like shit way too often).  I will not say more, will not give them space here, I will continue to delete their comments.  Fuck em.

Late September 22nd:

Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero is ready to get back into the ring and wants to move up to the Welterweight class.  Why?  Guerrero (29-1-1 with 16 KOs) wants to fight Floyd Mayweather, Jr.  I tell you, why am I not surprised?  Guerrero is a good lightweight, but I wasn’t so sure before his injury when he was going to fight in the Junior Welterweights.

If he gets a fight with Mayweather it could be interesting, he’s a good boxer.  But with the injury, surgery, rehab and weight class change Guerrero would have to be really prepared.

September 23rd:

Excellent Al Bernstein video blog (on the boxing channel) regarding the subject of the mainstream sports guys (TV, radio, print dudes) and their inability to look at the big picture of the sport when one single well publicized bout turns out not to deliver as promised.  In other words, they get lost in the hype and then their coverage totally misleads the public who usually does not pay attention to the sport of boxing.  or any other sport for that matter.  Reporters, sports or otherwise, have a duty to help educate their viewers, readers, listeners and not to play their dishonorable “hype”: chip when one event goes bad.

Check it out.

September 24th:

Replay tonight on HBO at 9:30 EDT.

January 16, 2012

Mayweather vs Pacquiao rumors:  rumor had been this fight would happen in May 2012 or Novembember 2012.

This article from Bad Left Hook (one of my new favorite boxing websites) explains that now the rumor is that Bob Arum says Pacman will fight in June.  Since some info is out about a Mayweather fight in May, Bad Left Hook suggests that the May fight rumor for these two fighters is just a No-Go and November is a bd date for a number of reasons.

So, they suggest we just believe that Mayweather will fight Saul Alvarez on May 5th in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand, and Manny will defend his belt aginst someone in June.

Then the whole Mayweather prison sentence in June.

So, maybe still no bout between these two top boxers in 2012.  Another year of waiting.

 

Floyd Mayweather Jr vs Victor Ortiz: Leading Up To The WBC Welterweight Title And Round By Round

Leo, the MGM lion bravely guards the entrance ...

Image via Wikipedia

Floyd “Money”
Mayweather Jr. vs Victor Ortiz, September 17, 2011.

Get ready, the best boxing match of 2011 may be ready to take the bell!!!!!

You already know I have always been a big traditional boxing fan, even though the Mixed Martial Arts thing has grown on me and I can certainly appreciate the skills of the fighters.

That is why I am so looking forward to watching the bout between Floyd Mayweather Jr and Victor “Vicious” Ortiz at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on September 17, 2011.  This match is for the WBC Welterweight Title.

Do you like Heavyweights too??  See my post on my Top Ten Favorite Heavyweight Boxing Matches Of All Time here.

Still, it is boxing in its straight up format that I love.  It truly is an art, although I have to admit I enjoy a good old-fashioned slugfest too, even when the boxers lack skills other than a strong chin and a strong punch.

Although Floyd Mayweather Jr and Victor Ortiz are not heavyweight boxers by definition, they are both skilled professionals with heavy punching power.

Mayweather is a boxing master, with an unbeaten record of 41-0, while Ortiz is the fighter who holds the WBC Welterweight belt and has a 29-2-2 record. Ortiz is a southpaw and Mayweather beings his excellent defensive skills with him which always befuddled Ortiz.

For those who may not have watched the HBO series 24/7:  Mayweather vs Ortiz, you missed Mayweather (“Money”) and his relationship with 50 Cent.  Fun stuff.  50 Cent passing out family relationship wisdom and words of advice to Floyd Mayweather.  Can it help with Mayweather’s training?

September 16th:  Mayweather and Ortiz both weighed in today.  Mayweather at 146.5 while Ortiz weighed 147 which is the welterweight limit.   There was a bit of last-minute trash talk at today’s weigh-in.

While Mayweather says he is totally focused on Ortiz, he continues to talk “Pacquiao“.  Mayweather is known for his boasts of being a boxer with an unbeaten record in 41 fights and declaring himself perhaps the best boxer…..ever.  But the dream bout is certainly Pacquiao. He really wants that fight, and it would be a top bout of two unbeaten boxers.

___________________________________________________________________________________

Update September 20th:

Today Larry Merchant, the HBO fight announcer/colog guy said Mayweather would be the favoriate against Pacquaio.  Course the 80 year old Merchant was the one that said “If I was 50 years younger I would kick (Mayweather’s) ass”.  Right Larry, right.

If you read his full quote here, you will see he said something very convoluted so it is difficult to determine who he actually thinks would win.

Maybe he should say “If I was 50 years younger I would make a hell of a lot more sense”.

___________________________________________________________________________________

What are the dudes in the barbershop sayin?

Mayweather must first get past Ortiz and he cannot take this young champion lightly.

Mayweather is 34 years old , while Ortiz seems just a baby at 24.  But Ortiz’s record and his WBC Welterweight belt speak for themselves.  This man can fight, and Mayweather may have a real bout in front of him tomorrow.  Ortiz has 22 knockouts in his career.

Ortiz even claims that all the boxers Mayweather has fought were “on their way out”.  That is truly calling into question Mayweather’s manhood and questioning his legacy.  Not something I would want to do as I walk into the ring with this boxing machine.  Be careful, because not only is Mayweather undefeated…he will knock you out.  As he has done in 25 of his 41 fights.   And Mayweather has claimed “this fight will NOT go the distance.”

Mayweather is fond of saying “If you think you are the best, take the test”.  Ortiz has said he is going to “teach” Mayweather how to fight.  Might be difficult given Mayweather’s unbeaten record.

Currently, Mayweather is the WBC Emeritus World Super Welterweight Champion.[7] He was formerly rated as the “number one” pound-for-pound best boxer in the world by most sporting news and boxing websites, including The Ring, BoxRec.com, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, BBC Sports and Yahoo! Sports

So who will come away with the victory on Saturday night??

Mike Tyson says “Everyone has a plan …..until he gets hit”.

This is actually  a tough one.  I am a Mayweather fan.  He can box, he can still move at 34 and damn can he hit hard.

Ortiz has a punchers chance which means he needs some luck to win this fight.

However, Ortiz is young and damn can he hit hard.

Get the idea?  These are both boxers in every sense.  But when one boxer gets hit hard by their opponent, boxing skills often get forgotten because all you want to do is hit back.  And you want to hit back HARD!

So what starts out as a boxing match where you expect to see all the traditional skills on display quickly becomes a smash-up hit em hard nose-to-nose brutal war.

In a boxing match I pick Mayweather.  In a war…against any other opponent I would pick Mayweather.

Against Ortiz? Well, oddsmakers say Mayweather. But…..

I don’t the fuck know.  It will come down to a strong chin and conditioning.  While Ortiz is a top welterweight and now holds the WBC belt in this class,  he is actually a light-heavyweight and had to drop weight to come down to the welterweight level.  That can take a lot from a fighter.  Still he is a strong young man, and he youth counts for a lot here.

With Mayweather, it is the pride.  Both fighters talk trash and it got a little rough, but that’s mostly just the show.  In this match however, Mayweather really feels the Ortiz camp has disrespected him.  Ortiz’s vow to ‘teach’ Mayweather something.  And then Ortiz’s manager told a newspaper that Mayweather has “psychological problems”.  The reason?  Because Mayweather has a big house and a collection of 16 cars.  So you can understand Mayweather will not be happy when he enters the ring.

Someone is going to get knocked out on Saturday night.

Mayweather is a 5-1 favorite in the Vegas sports books at fight time.

Watch it on HBO PPV for $69.95 or watch the undercards via live stream on badlefthook.com and some other providers (at least one requires you to install their own software.  Strange.) until the main event, although one says they will show the main bout for free.

Or go watch the fight in a bar/sports bar/friend’s house that will be showing the fight for free or cheap cheap.

I haven’t see any ads for the are sports bars, but you can try:

Bisla’s Sports Bar 7042 Folsom Blvd

Blue Cue 2730 J St

The Coconut Grove Sports Bar & Grill 106 J St in Old Sacramento

Hoppy Brewing Company 6300 Folsom Blvd

MVP Sports Grill 2110 L St

Riverside Clubhouse 2633 Riverside Blvd

Folsom Lake Bowl 511 E. Bidwell in Folsom

Davis Graduate 805 Russell Blvd in Davis

The Purple Place 363 Green Valley Rd in El Dorado Hills

More sports bars here.

This article asks “would you pay $69.95on PPV to watch Mayweather get knocked out?  So would I”. 

But they expect a boring fight and say don’t waste your time or your money.  I agree the price is way too steep, but I don’t think it will be boring.  Then again, few boxing matches have bored me especially with two of the sports top fighters.  Hard to trust online pools, but this one says 97% would not spend the money.

My pick is…..Floyd Mayweather Jr.  Pride over youth.  Hang onto your hat boys and girls, this will be a fight.
Ortiz is dead in the water b4 the first bell is rung.  Unless he gets lucky with a heavy punch.

Who do you think will win?  And why??  Put your comments here and put up your dukes!!!

Fight Results:

Round 1:      Mayweather wins  10-9

The LA Times is providing live round by round updates.  Click here to follow their coverage.

Round 2:       Mayweather wins 10-9

Round 3:       Mayweather wins 10-9

Mayweather wins the early rounds with his speed and counter-punching.

“Mayweather consistently beat Ortiz to the punch, and his experience and hand speed appeared to be the difference.”

Round 4:       In Round 4 Ortiz appeared to rally a bit until a truly bizarre series of events unfolded and Mayweather knocks out Ortiz in Round 4

In (Round 4) Mayweather got a (head) butt, a kiss and a hug–all from Victor Ortiz.”  From an ESPN article, just click the quote for more.

Apparently a bizzare Round 4 (I have not seen it yet) as Ortiz purposely headbutted Mayweather.  The ref broke the fighters up, subtracted a point from Ortiz  and as they came back together, Ortiz once again leaned his head into Mayweather.  Ortiz says he was trying to apologize for the head butting Mayweatherintentionally.  Mayweather unleashes a left/right combination, knocking Ortiz out.  The ref it seems (according to the article) did not even see the KO (??), but the picture below seems to tell a different story.

It was a strange, but legal knockout by Mayweather and a very strange end to a bout in which Mayweather was dominating the action as early as it was in a fight that was scheduled for 12 rounds.

Mayweather improves his record to 42-0 with 26 KOs and gains the WBC Welterweight title.

Ortiz drops to 29-3-2 and loses his WBC title.

From the LA Times:

Ortiz got $2 million for his part in this and said, somewhat lamely afterward, “You can look at this a couple of ways. One is that I came to entertain the fans, and I did that.”

Mayweather earned some $25 million for the fight and declined an interview with HBO’s Larry Merchant.  “Mayweather suggested Merchant just talk to Ortiz “since you’ve never given me a fair shake.” He then used an expletive and questioned Merchant’s knowledge of the sport, to which Merchant replied, “If I was 50 years younger, I’d kick your [rear].”

The KO:

Media Take Out has a bunch of photos from the fight, including this one:

Want to see more of what I have to say about this fight???  Click here.

Updated September 18th:

On a possible rematch with Mayweather: “I would love the rematch, because you know, I fouled Floyd, and I apologized in the ring, and apologized after the fight as well. Just heat of the moment. It’s one of those things where the ref was in the middle, and they called the break as well, and he caught me after the ref caught me (?). And I guess to a sense, it’s a payback but I agree to disagree, I’d like the rematch, though, it’d be a nice one. … … I do want the rematch, and I’m sure Floyd will give it to me. Well, I  hope, anyways.”

Victor Ortiz is a MAN.  He stepped up after the fight, I give him that.  I gots new respect for the man.

Update September 20th:

Today Larry Merchant, the HBO fight announcer/colog guy said Mayweather would be the favoriate against Pacquaio.  Course the 80 year old Merchant was the one that said “If I was 50 years younger I would kick (Mayweather’s) ass”.  Right Larry, right.

If you read his full quote here, you will see he said something very convoluted so it is difficult to determine who he actually thinks would win.

Maybe he should say “If I was 50 years younger I would make a hell of a lot more sense”.

The Top 10 Heavyweight Boxing Matches

Mixed martial arts is growing on me, but there are so many poor fighters it seems to me.  And regardless, the matches just don’t go head-to-head with the ultimate heavyweight traditional boxing matches.

Traditional boxing just seems so much more thoughtful.  At least the great ones.  And no one matches Ali.

Now, the heavyweight division just suxes.  I dream of the old days, but enjoy the guys in the lower-weight classes while I await the next great heavyweight.

About.com lists the current Top 50 heavyweight boxers.

The Bleacher Report has their Top 10 Heavyweight Boxers of All time.  Can’t argue with their list.  Nice!!  Find them @BleacherReport.

But that is not what this post is about!!

So, here are my Top 10 matches I have ever seen in person, on TV or on pay-per-view.

10)    Larry Holmes vs. Ken Norton. June 9, 1978. Las Vegas. Result: Holmes W15 (split)

Two top boxers of all time trying to fill the void left by Ali.  Ali had recently lost to Leon Spinks.  No comment.  Larry Holmes had that monster jab of his, just punishing his opponent.  But Ken Norton always could take a punch.  Then he just got mad.  And he had powerful punches of his own, winning the middle rounds.  Norton just hammered Holmes in Round 14 with a barrage of heavy overhand rights.  Round 15 was even as both boxers went toe-to-toe trading massive punches.  The bell found them exhausted and a split decision in Larry Holmes’ favor.  Great fight.

9)    The Rumble in the Jungle, Muhammed Ali vs George Foreman 1974.  No one gave Ali a chance of winning.  Foreman was the giant monster who had knocked out BOTH Joe Frazier and Kenny Norton.  Ali had beat both boxers, but he also had lost to both.  This was Ali’s chance to regain the title.  No one expected him to do it.

Ali surprised everyone with his rope-a-dope tactic, hanging on  the ropes and inviting Foreman to hit him.  Foreman did.  Over and over and over for 7 rounds.  But his punches were ineffective and he was exhausted.  Round 8:  Ali knocks Foreman to the floor with a strong combination and won back his title.  I remember cheering and even a few tears.  Ali was my hero.

A personal note:  Once when I was at Harrah’s in South Lake Tahoe, I wound up eye to eye with Foreman in the casino.  When I was younger I was 6’5″ and 220ish.  Usually the biggest guy in the room, sometimes I would meet up with guys my size or bigger.  Kind of like a club.  I’ve known other heavyweights and pro football players.  Big guys.

Foreman was not only tall & big, he was so massive he actually made me feel small.

OK, he made me feel frigging tiny.  Tiny.

Never happened to me before or after.  We shook hands.  Well, I had a hand.  He had a giant something.  I never have seen hands that large.  He could have been frightening, but with a huge smile and a soft voice he said, “Nice to see you, man.  Nice to see you.”

Cool.

8) 7)  6) & 5)   I really have a hard time picking one over the other so we get the two Ali vs Kenny Norton bouts and the first two Ali vs Frazier bouts.  All four were split, Ali beat each man and lost to each man.  Those bouts set up the third Ali vs Frazier which is number:

4)   The Thrilla in Manila.  Ali vs Joe Frazier for the third and final time.  1975.  Each boxer had bested the other in some great prior bouts.  Everyone seemed to expect Smokin’ Joe Frazier to win.  Ali had just fought Chuck Wepner in a bout that inspired the original Rocky film.  Wepner, a journeyman with no real skills besides being able to survive hard punches to his face,  had knocked Ali down like 3 times.  How shocking.

This match went 14 hard rounds in grueling 100 degree heat with the Manila humidity.  Frazier’s eyes were swollen shut.  He could not answer the bell for Round 15 and Ali prevailed.  Ali always surprised.  A master of so many boxing styles.

November 8, 2011:

Joe Frazier dies, Ali will remember him with “respect”.  Read the article HERE.

3)    George Foreman vs. Ron Lyle. Jan 24, 1976. Las Vegas. Result: Foreman KO 5

Foreman had recently lost to Ali and this was a tune-up for him to try to regain his title.  No one really expected much of a fight here.  Both had recently lost to Ali and were looking for a path to another title bout.

Lyle was a fearless fighter and registered badass.  He had spent over 7 years in the penitentiary.  While in prison he was stabbed and actually pronounced dead.  So, was he afraid of the massive Foreman?  Sure didn’t seem to be.

Ron Lyle scared the hell out of me.  He always seemed to be just on the edge of exploding.  Even Cosell seemed to be afraid of Lyle when he interviewed him.

What a fucking slugfest!  Each boxer kept slamming and each kept reeling  as both fighters threw big big punches.  Heavy punching was the only skill on exhibit here.  It was an amazing and entertaining fight.  And much much too short.

Round 1, Ron Lyle staggered Foreman with many hard punches.

Round 2, Foreman turns it around and Lyle is really only saved by the bell.  He seemed to be in deep trouble.

Round 3, pretty much a draw as both men tried to box, but ended up trading massive punches.

Round 4, Lyle slams Foreman early with a hard right hand and a number of massive left-right combinations and Foreman gets a standing 8 count.   It was vicious.

Lyle moved in for the win, only to meet Foreman’s huge overhand right, smashing him to the canvas.  Now Foreman moves in for the kill.  Lyle is desperate but manages one tremendous left hand punch as he was against the ropes, sending Foreman to the mat once again!!  Foreman was flat on his face, but somehow beat the ten-count and was saved by the bell.

Round 5, Foreman just reels from a hard right and crushing left by Lyle.  A huge uppercut actually lifts the massive Foreman up off the canvas.

Foreman gets Lyle against the ropes again and just punishes his body.  Punch after punch after punch.  Finally Lyle slumps to the canvas and is counted out.

That fight crowd is still cheering!!

I read somewhere that there was a very large earthquake like a week after the fight.  The guy thought that maybe it was caused by all the heavy hitting in this bout.

You MMA fans check this shit out.


2)    ok, I take it back.  Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier 3, Oct 1, 1975 Manila, Phillipines. Result: Ali TKO
14

yes, I listed this fight as my #4.  But it has to be higher, maybe even #1 from a sheer spectacle perspective.  So sue me for listing it twice.

I was never a Frazier fan.  But I gained tons of respect for him in this fight.  He nearly killed Ali.  Ali says he actually thought of quitting after Round 10.  He said it was the closest to death in the ring that he had ever experienced.

Round 11 was just more of the same as Frazier seemed to be just too brutal for Ali.  After that Ali seemed to hit Frazier whenever and wherever he wanted.

Frazier had no answer.  Round 14 ended and Frazier’s trainer would not let him come out for Round 15.  Ali wins and regains his title.  Somehow.

The 3 matches between these two were some of the best bouts ever, and the 3 matches together were just amazing.

1)  Ali vs Frazier first fight, 1971:  The Fight of the Century

                                 OR–

    Ali Vs Floyd Patterson

                                OR–

    Ali (then Cassius Clay) vs Sonny Liston, 1967

I know, I know….pick one dude,  just pick one.

The first Frazier fight was great with Ali winning and setting up his loss in fight #2 and his great win in the Thrilla in Manila.

Ali vs Patterson was just kind of surreal, so I pick:

Ali vs Sonny Liston, 1967.  I was 15 and a Liston fan, listening to the Saturday Night Fights on the radio.  Boxing matches on radio were just so exciting as you conjured up the fight in your head, hanging on the announcers every word.

Clay (Ali) was a skilled Olympic gold medal winner but had no chance against the experienced champion Liston.  Liston was a strange guy but had been a good  and consistent champ.

Liston had great powerful punches, but Ali was a dancer.  And his jab was just lightening quick back then.  Heck, it was quick even in his later years.

But against Liston the jab was magnificent, and Ali shocked the world as Liston refused to answer the bell for Round 7.

People hated Ali the next day, as if he had done something wrong, when maybe it was actually Liston who had fought dirty.

Many said he had smeared something toxic on his gloves between Rounds 3 & 4, blinding Ali in the 4th round.

And then, suddenly we had a new heavyweight champ and even though it was definitely not #1 based on all of Ali’s other great matches, shocking the world counts as the greatest ever in my book.

No, none of Mike Tyson’s bouts are on the list.  He was amazing.  For awhile.  Then Tyson’s brain exploded and so did his career.  Prison did nothing for his boxing skills, but mostly I think losing Cus D’Amato early in his career was an event he just was unable to recover from.  But if first round knockouts constitute great fights, then Tyson is your man.

For me:  Ali Ali Ali

What are your Top 10??  Let us know.

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