BLOW BY BLOW: THIS WEEK IN BOXING PART 3
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Welcome to the third installment of Blow by Blow, our quick look back at boxing’s news over the last week.
Tyson Fury snuffs step aside suggestions:
Tyson Fury said he’s not willing to pay Deontay Wilder any step-aside money, he wants to beat him again in the ring to cement his dominance. Fury believes he won their first match which was ruled a draw, the second was apparently “not the real Wilder” because of his ‘heavy costume’, so he’s happy to go in and silence the Bronze Bomber for good. We can’t wait.
Fury also went back on his word about retiring after the remaining three fights on his contract are over. He said he feels great and has a lot of other good Heavyweights he wants to face, just for fun. Basically, Fury doesn’t know what else he’d be doing with his time if he wasn’t fighting, so he’ll keep going.
Eddie Hearn on Anthony Joshuas 2020 activity:
Eddie Hearn has been very vocal on the Matchroom Sports YouTube channel, giving his insight into boxing’s return and the fights in the near future for AJ.
Hearn said that promoters need to be putting on big fights behind closed doors, even if they don’t make as much money, because it’s necessary for the health of the sport. We wholeheartedly agree. He was hugely supportive of Dana White’s recent UFC event, saying that it’s the kind of creative problem solving the boxing world needs right now. He wants to see big fights without crowds, making big PPV sales.
However, having previously said AJ will likely fight twice in 2020, with Pulev in July or August followed by Fury hopefully around December time. Hearn explained the reality of the logistics is that AJ will only appear once in 2020. Whether he is willing to hold Joshua – Pulev behind closed doors if it comes to it, as he claimed big fights should be, will show whether Hearn is a man of his word.
Anthony Joshua said that he would have no issues fighting behind closed doors, for lower money, as he has the desire to fight and considers it a blessing that he can make decent money of any amount through boxing. It’s encouraging news from a world champion, we just hope Matchroom is equally willing to get him in the ring sooner rather than later.
Teddy Atlas says “Dana White should run boxing”
‘On The Fight’ with Teddy Atlas, on Wednesday, Atlas explained that White is the ma who has the correct mentality for the fight game and that he should be running boxing.
Atlas said that the UFC sees more competitive fights, closer matches, and more underdog upsets that modern-day boxing because the fighters aren’t able to pick and choose fights as easily. With White in full-control, which he admits is not completely a good thing, the fighter’s don’t have promotional teams who can turn down deals and protect unbeaten records.
Atlas said that UFC fighters far more frequently have to fight the person ranked directly above or below them, as opposed to boxing where you often see top-ranked fighters facing weak opposition just to sell tickets, which leads to more one-sided fights. It also leads to situations where the top-ranked guys and fan-favorites can end up circling each other for years, with negotiations repeatedly breaking down and fighters retiring without ever having fought the big match they should have fought.
The issue with fighter’s separate promotional teams has long been a topic of contention for fans. In no other sport can a team turn down a match because of money. If Man City is drawn against Chelsea in the premiership, they play the game.
There’s no negotiation or game dodging in Basketball or Rugby. It’s the same in Tennis tournaments, the UFC, even Darts, and Golf. Only Boxing has this added element to it which many see as nothing but detrimental to the integrity of the sport itself. I’m inclined to agree with Atlas, in that boxing should be run more like the UFC, but definitely not in the hands of Dana White.
Claressa Shields squashes beef with Laila Ali:
Claressa Shields said over twitter that she was sick of talking about Laila Ali if the fight wasn’t going to happen. She said that her team tried to talk with Ali, but Ali didn’t even want to discuss the fight. With that, Shields seems ready to wash her hands of the situation and get on with her career.
Shields is reportedly looking at Marie Eve Dicaire next in August and that’s all she’s focusing on. We for one applaud her stance, she’s a boxer who wants to box, not talk.
Shawn Porter to fight Manny Pacquiao and Terence Crawford:
Kenny Porter, the father-trainer of Shawn Porter, took to YouTube to relay his son’s thoughts on his future fights. Porter wants the big money, big talent fights, in Pacman and Crawford.
These are both fights that have been speculated about for a long time now, whether they’ll happen is apparently up to the promotional teams as Porter himself is clearly game.
Joe Joyce v Daniel Dubois:
Joe ‘Juggernaut’ Joyce recently said he isn’t too hopeful that the Dubois fight will go ahead as planned in July, citing the COVID-19 delays and problems stemming from behind-closed-doors earnings.
He wants the fight to happen, is willing to take less money, but doesn’t know if everyone else involved is too. He said in the meantime he said he’d probably end up taking a stay-busy fight.
His promoter Frank Warren separately stated he would not like to hold the fight behind closed doors, as it’s too big of a spectacle. This ties in pretty well with what Eddie Hearn and Teddy Atlas had to say about the problems with staging fights in the sport under these circumstances.
Dana White likes Eddie Hearn:
White, who has running feuds with most personalities in the fight game, said he thinks Eddie Hearn is the one guy who is doing it right. He is publicly critical of Bob Arum’s inability to hold big fights and make money, doesn’t think most boxing promoters care about the health of the sport but likes the way Hearn does business.
He said the Hearn is willing to do what is necessary to hold big fights, even in the current environment, and has the business savvy to make money it regardless. Just as Teddy Atlas thinks White should run boxing, it seems White believes Hearn should have more control over the sport himself.
Bob Arum gives mixed messages:
Arum said he wants to hold big fights again and will be making some announcements in the next few weeks for July events. He said he wants big events and not purely padded out undercards with weak headliners. He also said he doesn’t want to hold Vasiliy Lomachenko v Teofimo Lopez, or Jamel Herring v Carl Frampton until after COVID-19 restrictions are done. So, pretty mixed messages from Arum there.
Ryan Garcia continues to ruffle some feathers:
The aggressive young puncher is keen to take his ring personality out in public, taking to Twitter and Instagram to call out some big names and generally just start beef with whoever will listen.
A few weeks ago he took a shot at Floyd Mayweather, saying Manny Pacquiao has a better record. He’s been starting beef with Teo Lopez, Gervonta Davis, Devin Haney, and Jorge Linares.
It seems Garcia is wanting to make a name for himself, but should probably focus on getting a title first. Everyone he has called out so far is a champ, Garcia has a great record so far but has yet to reach the top spot.
Mayweather said it best in his response Garcia, speaking to fighthype.com, “before you call out Devin Haney before you call out the Lopez champion, and before you call out Gervonta Davis, get passed Rolly first”. Mayweather is, of course, referring to Rolando Romero, the undefeated 5’8″ lightweight prospect who many believe Garcia is ducking.
There’s footage on YouTube of Romero sparring Garcia at Mayweather Boxing Gym, it wasn’t one-sided in either direction. In a full-fight, it would definitely be a hard one for Garcia.
That concludes our brief look at the boxing news this week.
Check out last weeks Blow By Blow Part 2
If you feel we’ve missed anything and want to get your voice heard, let us know down in the comments so we can cover it next.