In the words of the immortal Jimmy Cannon…
Nobody asked me, but I tell them I heard the same thing they did – that Floyd Mayweather, Jr. has placed a $10 million wager on the outcome of this weekend’s Super Bowl game between the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks. Mayweather is apparently of the belief that Peyton Manning and the Broncos will ultimately prove victorious.
Nobody asked me, but I tell them I was somewhat surprised to see that the Boxing Writers Association of America chose Floyd Mayweather, Jr. as their 2013 Fighter of the Year. I am a BWAA voting member and I cast my ballot for middleweight Gennady Golovkin. The Ring magazine chose light heavyweight Adonis Stevenson. While Mayweather had a good year with two uneventful decision wins over Robert Guerrero and Canelo Alvarez both Golovkin and Stevenson fought more often and were much more exciting. It’s no knock on Mayweather, but I think my colleagues at the BWAA missed the mark on this one. It says here that Golovkin is a more complete fighter than Stevenson and his upside is more promising. GGG as he is known is kicking off 2014 with a bout this weekend in Monaco.
Nobody asked me, but I tell them that Thursday night’s welterweight bout featuring Luis Collazo versus Victor Ortiz could be a good one to see. While both are world class boxers and fringe contenders they have strengths and flaws. Collazo has lost pretty much each time he has ever faced a higher ranked opponent (Ricky Hatton, Shane Mosley, Andre Berto) while Ortiz suffered a broken jaw in his last bout against Josesito Lopez 19 months ago. Collazo has five loses and a draw in his career whereas Ortiz has four losses and draw in his. Both are southpaws, former titlists and both have struggled when they have faced better competition. Ortiz is the betting favorite, but I’m going with Collazo by decision in this one. Ortiz has been too inactive and is trying to recover from a broken jaw as well as two knockout losses.
Nobody asked me, but I tell them that Timothy Bradley should defeat Manny Pacquiao relatively easily when the two meet on April 12th in Las Vegas. Defense has never been his forte and Pacquiao has taken on too many larger and stronger foes over the past several years and has absorbed a tremendous amount of punishment in the process. Bradley is likely in his prime and he was dominant in his recent win over Juan Manuel Marquez. The late Emanuel Steward perhaps said it best when he noted that each fighter really only has a certain number of fights in him. My belief is that Pacquiao has exceeded his limit.
Nobody asked me, but I tell them that Wladimir Klitschko’s numbers will go down as some of the greatest in all of heavyweight boxing history. If you include his WBO title defenses, Klitschko has defended a heavyweight title belt 20 times, which ties him with Larry Holmes. Only Joe Louis has more with a total of 25. In two reigns as a heavyweight titlist, Klitschko has held a belt for a total of 10 years and nearly 2 months as of this writing. Only Joe Louis held the title longer at 11 years, 8 months, 9 days. Nearing 38 years-old, Klitschko is as good as he has ever been and with little serious competition to challenge him he could conceivably outlast Louis. Klitschko has held virtually every title imaginable (WBA, WBO, IBF, IBO, The Ring magazine belt, NABF, NABO, WBA Inter-Continental, WBC International, EBU as well as being the 1996 Super Heavyweight Olympic games gold medal winner). Klitschko is only missing the WBC title from his collection and has intentions of winning that now that his brother Vitali has given it up.
Nobody asked me, but unless something changes, Freddie Roach may very well win the BWAA Trainer of the Year honors several more times before it’s all said and done. There is a shortage of fighters in the world these days and an even more severe shortage of competent trainers. Roach gives all the credit to the fighters, but he is as hands on as they come and when he is allowed to do his work - he can perform magic. Roach has a plethora of talented fighters in Pacquiao, Cotto and Provodnikov among others and after suffering through a tough 2012, Roach was able to rebound nicely last year.