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Alex Leapai The Latest Challenger To Wladimir Klitschko’s Throne

By Iain Langmaid February 8th, 2014 All Boxing Articles

While his elder brother and retired former WBC title holder Vitali Klitschko campaigns for political change in their native Ukraine, younger Klitschko brother Wladimir, who holds the WBA, WBO, IBO and IBF Heavyweight belts, has announced that he will return to the ring on the 26th April in Oberhausen, Germany’s against the World Boxing Organisation number 1 contender for the title, Samoan born Australian Alex Leapai.

The 34 year old Leapai will be the younger Klitchsko’s 65th professional contest since turning professional back in 1996 after winning Gold Medal at Super-Heavyweight at the Atlanta Olympic Games.

It will also be Wladimir's 25th World title fight in what will be a Hall of Fame bound career and 16th World title defence in his current reign as the best Heavyweight prize-fighter active in the world today.

Wladimir's dominance started back in April, 2006 when he defeated American Chris Byrd for the second time in his career to clinch the IBF and IBO portions of his throne with a 7th round stoppage.

Since then, only four men: Alexander Povetkin, Mariusz Wach, David Haye and Sultan Ibrahimov, have heard the final bell against one of the most powerful and dominant heavyweight champions of all time.

The Samoan born Leapai earned his crack to topple Klitschko from his throne after defeating highly touted Russian prospect Denis Boytsov in a WBO eliminator back in November, 2013.

Leapai’s record of 37 fights contains 30 wins, 24 by knockout, four losses and three draws since turning professional back in 2004 in his adoptive home country of Australia. More...


Has Floyd Mayweather Jr Ducked His Way To Greatness?

By Bruce Dingo January 22nd, 2014 All Boxing Articles

Floyd Mayweather Has Floyd Mayweather Jr Ducked His Way To Greatness?

There is the perception among some boxing fans that perhaps Floyd Mayweather Jr. has achieved his 45-0 record and world titles in five weight classes by avoiding many deserving opponents during his 18 year professional career.

It's an interesting theory and one that deserves a closer look.

After exhaustive research, taking into account many variables too numerous to list here, the following is a list of potential top level opponents, who were in the same weight class at the time, who Floyd Mayweather Jr. did not fight:

Super Featherweight 1998-2001
Acelino Freitas, Joel Casamayor, Robert Garcia, Steve Forbes, Jong Kwon Baek, Takanori Hatakeyama, Lavka Sim and Jorge Barrios.

Lightweight 2002-2003
Paul Spadafora, Leonard Dorin, Stevie Johnston, Artur Grigorian, Raul Balbi, Juan Lazcano and Javier Jauregui

Light Welterweight 2004-2005
Kostya Tszyu, Miguel Cotto, Ricky Hatton, Vivian Harris, Carlos Maussa, and Junior Witter

Welterweight 2006
Miguel Cotto, Ricky Hatton, Antonio Margarito, Kermit Cintron and Luis Collazo More...


Is The “Luck” Of WBO Champ Ricky Burns About To Run Out?

By Ricky Jones January 10th, 2014 All Boxing Articles

March 1 will be the most important day in the career of two-weight world champion Ricky Burns as the Scot meets the challenge of America's Terence Crawford at Glasgow's Scottish Exhibition Centre in defense of the WBO lightweight title.

Burns, 36-2-1 (11), did a genuine tightrope act in 2013, when the level of competition he faced went up a notch in the form of Jose Gonzalez and Raymundo Beltran.

Gonzalez came into his challenge to Burns last May as an 22-0 undefeated fighter and spent the first seven rounds taking "The Rickster" to school. Burns could do absolutely nothing with the Puerto Rican puncher and was badly hurt on several occasions.

But Burns did bite down hard and was miraculously saved when Gonzalez injured a wrist and promptly fell apart, retiring after the eighth round, otherwise it's very unlikely the Coatsbridge man would still be wearing the WBO crown.

In August, Burns had another difficult defense, this time against Mexico's Beltran, one of Manny Pacquiao's chief sparring partners.

Trouble came to the champ early as he suffered a broken jaw in just the second round. Amazingly, Burns made it through the remainder of the fight with the horrible injury, showing incredible toughness.

The bout was a action-filled contest that saw Burns hitting the canvas in the eighth and he appeared to lose the fight in the eyes of many observers but kept the title on a split draw after 12 rounds. More...


Evander Holyfield Enters Celebrity Big Brother UK

By Jane Warburton January 3rd, 2014 All Boxing Articles

 Holyfield workout1 Evander Holyfield Enters Celebrity Big Brother UK

Former Undisputed boxing World Cruiserweight and Heavyweight Champion - Evander ‘Real Deal’ Holyfield, entered the Celebrity Big Brother house tonight shackled to Luisa Zissman who came second in ‘The Apprentice, UK, 2013.’

Holyfield said he was confident of winning the UK Reality show – despite not really knowing what the programme was about, but didn’t seem too upset (although slightly bewildered) at being (last minute) handcuffed to the self-confessed ‘Duracell Bunny with the sex appeal of Jessica Rabbit and a brain like Einstein’ aka Zissman.

All twelve housemates were sent in to the house ‘two-by-two’ and will endure the wrath of Big Brother for the next three weeks.

Watch this space for further updates!


Will 2014 Finally Bring About Middleweight Unification?

By Ricky Jones December 29th, 2013 All Boxing Articles

The middleweight division could be the best weight class in the sport today, featuring a talented cast of characters from nearly every continent on the globe but will the titles ever be unified?

Just who is top man at 160 pounds? That's impossible to determine until the major players face each other, as the super middleweights did in the "Super Six" tourney of 2009-2011 that proved Andre Ward to be the king at 168.

If a similar scenario were to occur at middleweight, which six fighters would make the grade for a tournament?

The first two entrants are easy - Sergio Martinez and Gennady Golovkin; after that, it gets hard to fill the remaining four slots as the competition is fierce.

After some deliberation, Peter Quillin, Dmitry Pirog and Felix Sturm gain spots three, four and five and that leaves the hardest decision of all, number six.

Martin Murray, Sam Soliman, Daniel Geale, Marco Antonio Rubio, Darren Barker and Matthew Macklin all deserve consideration but given his strong performances against Martinez and Sturm, Murray gets the nod.

Soliman, Geale and Rubio are on the stand-by list

If we go with the hypothetical pairings Martinez vs. Sturm, Golovkin vs. Murray, Quillin vs. Pirog, the first round of the tournament should be interesting. More...


A Look At The Welterweight Division Of 2014

By Gonzo Glenn Gasket December 20th, 2013 All Boxing Articles

Now that 2013 is on it's way out the door, let's take a look at what 2014 may hold for the star-studded welterweight division.

Floyd Mayweather, 46-0 (26): the top man at both 147 and 154 pounds, "Money May" is, at age 36, winding down a career that has seen him win an amazing 22 world title bouts in five weight classes and will probably retire if he indeed breaks the mythical 50-0 barrier.

Who will he face in 2014? Probably the opponent who will make Mayweather the most amount of money and right now, that could be a fight against Amir Khan, 28-3 (19), in the UK.

The pairing could fill 75,000 seat Old Trafford stadium in Manchester and not in the least threaten Mayweather's unbeaten record as he would toy with Khan.

After that, we could see a clash with Timothy Bradley before the long-anticipated battle with Manny Pacquiao. Both those fights are intriguing and represent at least some level of danger for Floyd but, let's face it, he'd win both.

Timothy Bradley, 31-0 (12): having already defeated Pacquaio and Juan Manuel Marquez, a fight with Mayweather seems to be a natural fit for Bradley but if that big time opportunity comes, it won't be until later in the year.

Bradley will need a good, competitive scrap that he will likely win to help stoke interest in a Mayweather showdown and that could come against Robert Guerrero, 31-2-1 (18).

Guerrero seems to be a natural fit for Bradley, who would seek to top Mayweather's points defeat of the hard-nosed southpaw earlier this year. For Guerrero, it would be a chance to jump right back into top level but he'd likely get outworked by the faster Bradley. More...


Why Is Gennady Golovkin Not Getting That Big Fight?

By Jose Espinoza December 11th, 2013 All Boxing Articles

On the 1st of February, Gennady Golovkin, (28-0 with 25 KO’s), will be taking on Osumanu Adama (22-0 with 16 KO’s) in Monte Carlo, Monaco.

Not to discredit the fighter Adama, but “GGG,” as Golovkin is know, should have secured a premium opponent in a bout held at Las Vegas.

Instead, the fighter originating from Kazakhstan but who resides in Germany is getting an obscure opponent in a fight being held away from the mass media market that is America. So what went wrong?

Let’s take a look at the factors that lead to what I call "The Golovkin Snub".

According to Abel Sanchez, Golovkin’s trainer, his fighter is driven by the pursuit of excellence. In his last 15 fights, Golovkin scored 15 consecutive knockouts. He has an impressive 89% knockout rate that is well documented thanks to statistics released by compubox.

Ever since he started his professional career as a fighter in 2006, Golovkin has earned a reputation as a brawler who is technically sound and has that hard punch that can floor a fighter at any time.

Because of his reputation, there are not too many fighter that are willing to exchange blow for blow with the reigning WBA world middleweight champion, says Sanchez.

That reputation is part of the problem here. There is a lack of substantial fighters who actually want to step into the ring with “GGG” and risk getting knocked out.

In a recent interview in the Assosiated Press, Golovkin said of Sergio Martinez: “he is a very good boxer. Right now, he deserves to be called the middleweight champion of the world. I think I am better, but I do not know that for sure. I would like to fight him to find out.” More...


Can Tony Bellew Upset WBC Champion Adonis Stevenson Tonight?

By Jane Warburton November 30th, 2013 All Boxing Articles

Tonight at the Colisee de Quebec, in Quebec City, Canada, Liverpool’s Tony ‘Bomber’ Bellew challenges Adonis Stevenson of Quebec for the WBC Light-Heavyweight Title.

This will be Stevenson’s second defence of the title he won in June this year, when he scored a first round KO over Chad Dawson. He then successfully defended it against American - Tavoris Cloud in September, when he forced a retirement in round seven.

Both Bellew and Stevenson have just one defeat to their records, with Bellew’s coming by way of a Majority Decision to Welshman Nathan Cleverly two years ago.

Bellew’s last two fights (defending his WBC Silver Light-Heavyweight Title) have been against Isaac Chilemba of South Africa. They drew in March of this year but Bellew got the Unanimous points decision when the pair met again in May.
Tony ‘Bomber’ Bellew v Adonis Stevenson – WBC Light-Heavyweight Title will be shown in the UK Live on SkySports2 - December 1st at 1.00am


Final Thoughts On Carl Froch vs. George Groves

By Jane Warburton November 28th, 2013 All Boxing Articles

The Carl Froch v George Groves fight on Saturday night is sure to be debated for a long time in terms of it’s ‘edge of the seat’ drama. 'The Cobra' was defending his WBA and IBF super-middleweight titles against undefeated 'Saint George'.

It was an enthralling contest which saw the Champion on the canvas in round one, but which ended eight thrilling rounds later in genuine controversy.

Referee Howard Foster ended the fight in the ninth when Froch offloaded a flurry of hard punches and Groves looked smothered, briefly. Yes, to all watching – it seemed unbelievably premature and the incredulous reaction to the stoppage by Groves, his corner and the watching crowd was understandable.

But, the Referee is closer to the action than anyone else. Gut instinct and a split-second judgement is all ‘part of the job’.

Groves was booed into the ring but then cheered like a hero – on his way out of the ring. That's little consolation when you’ve suffered your first defeat and were winning on all three judges scorecards 78-73, 76-75, 76-75, going into the ninth round.

But I think Groves will be proud now, not only of his performance during the fight – but also the enormous achievement in changing thousands of fight fans' opinions in less than an hour.

He left the Phones4U Arena in Manchester with far more respect than anyone could have expected.

The immediate reaction to the result was a universal call for a rematch – and no doubt Groves will be going into it next time with an equal share of support (at least).


The Cobra vs. The Saint: Can The Upstart Pull Off The Upset?

By Nick Chamberlain November 22nd, 2013 All Boxing Articles

Carl Froch George Groves The Cobra vs. The Saint: Can The Upstart Pull Off The Upset?

Credit to George Groves for managing to get himself into mandatory position for the IBF super middle title that Carl Froch has or we would not be seeing this fight between the two boxers, which takes place this Saturday night in Manchester, England.

Froch would have done exactly what Joe Calzaghe did to him years ago and essentially fobbed Groves off and ignored him.

So straight out of the gate…Froch doesn’t really want this fight, and why would he? Maximum risk, minimum reward.
Now however (thanks to Groves’s attitude) I think he does want this fight, so again, credit to Groves.

I am not sure it is the best thing for Groves to have done but fair play to him; clearly he is trying to wind Froch up and get under his skin.

But wouldn’t it have been better if he was polite, dignified, and respectful in the build-up, so Froch would think little of this young pretender and then on fight night release a monster with a game plan?

Either way it has been great to watch the hostilities, I just don’t think it will do Groves any favours. He is effectively throwing more coal into the locomotive that will be heading his way.

I think Groves is missing a lynchpin; his ex-trainer Adam Booth. And because of this, Groves is screaming to the world ‘I can do it on my own’. More...


British Phenom Anthony Joshua Injured, Off Froch vs. Groves Bill

By Iain Langmaid November 22nd, 2013 All Boxing Articles

Earlier this week it was announced that rising British Heavyweight star Anthony Joshua has been forced to pull out of his forthcoming contest against Argentine journeyman Hector Alfredo Avila with a torn bicep.

The match up, which would have been over six rounds on the bill of Carl Froch’s grudge match against fellow British Super Middleweight George Groves, would have been Joshua’s fourth professional contest this year, since turning over after striking gold at Super Heavyweight in last year’s London Olympics.

Avila is a former Argentinian Cruiserweight champion whose last visit to these shores saw him stopped in nine rounds by Dereck Chisora.

However, it is hoped that Joshua will appear on the Christmas Cracker bill on December 14 against Welsh Heavyweight Dorian Darch.

This writer, like many a British fight fan, wishes the likeable London Heavyweight a speedy recovery so we can continue to see him develop.


What If Manny Pacquiao Loses To Brandon Rios?

By Jose Espinoza November 22nd, 2013 All Boxing Articles

Manny Pacquiao is coming off two straight losses at the hands of Timothy Bradley and Juan Manuel Marquez, however, the Filipino fighter has said in the press that he has moved on from those defeats and he is looking forward to a new chapter in his boxing career.

His upcoming fight against Brandon Rios on November 23 could prove to be a catalyst for Pac Man's triumphant return but what would happen if he loses this bout?

It's a question that not many Pacquiao fans want to explore, but according to Rios it's a sure thing. Let's talk hypothetically about what's the possible outcome of yet another loss for Manny Pacquiao.

"While he's focused on the fight, obviously it's a distraction because he cares about his people," said Freddie Roach in an interview to the media about Pacquiao's focus and how the recent devastating Typhoon Haiyan is affecting his fighter.

The suffering of the victims in the Philippines has been on the mind of everyone worldwide but more so on one of it's own citizens.

In fact, Manny Pacquiao has dedicated his fight against Rios to the victims of Typhoon Haiyan. The pressure of fighting is hard enough when you're just thinking about your opponent but add to add the burden of winning a fight for a nation and that pressure can be too much for even the most clutch fighter.

In the last few years, Manny Pacquiao has been at odds between his responsibilities as a Congressman for the Philippines and his boxing career.

There is an innate sense of responsibility instilled in Pacquiao that makes him passionate to help his countrymen. There is no need for him to keep fighting, especially if his responsibilities to his country take precedence over the sport.

Should he lose his third fight in a row, he is an intelligent man who knows about business and can make money from branding, public appearance and other lucrative endorsements to help him generate income for his future endeavours. More...


Will Nathan Cleverly Return As A Cruiserweight?

By Iain Langmaid November 7th, 2013 All Boxing Articles

Sergey Kovalev Nathan Cleverly Will Nathan Cleverly Return As A Cruiserweight?

Recently it has been announced that the former WBO Light-Heavyweight champion Nathan Cleverly will return to the ring on the 30th November at the Copper Box Arena at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to challenge the Australian, Daniel Ammann, for the vacant Commonwealth Cruiserweight title.

The 26 year old Welshman, who has held the British, Commonwealth and European titles at the classical 12 stone 7lbs division, returns to the ring three months after losing his WBO Light Heavyweight title and his 26 fight unbeaten record to the big hitting Russian, Sergei Kovalev, at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff in August of this year.

There had been speculation that the Cefn Forest native, who also holds a Mathematics degree from the University of Cardiff, may have chosen to retire from the sport following the crushing loss against Kovalev, but it appears that wiser council has prevailed Cleverly’s cruiserweight debut against the 30 year old Ammann, who was born in Wagga, Wagga in New South Wales and now lives in Stockton in the same state in Australia, is a two time Australian champion at Cruiserweight.

Ammann brings with him to the ring a record that consists of 29 wins and 5 losses, of which 2 were by knockout. More...


Let’s Try Again: The Battle For Best Canadian Fighter

By Jose Espinoza November 6th, 2013 All Boxing Articles

It's official, the fight to determine Canada's elite fighter will take place on January 18 at the Bell Centre in Montreal.

Following the announcement in late winter last year that the mega fight to determine the best Canadian fighter between Jean Pascal (28-2-1) and Lucian Bute (31-1) on May 25 would be rescheduled, some of us worried it would never actually happen.

After several months of speculation, the kick-off press conference to make it official occurred on October 31 in Montreal, Canada.

According to promoter Yvon Michel, 15,000 tickets are already sold from a possible 21,000, which makes sense since all those ticket holders bought their ticket for the May 25 fight and were told to hold on to the tickets since a new date would be announced shortly.

Well, the tentative date was set but no one knew if the fight would actually happen until now.

This will no doubt be the biggest fight in Canadian history as both boxers are fighting for bragging rights and survival. No doubt, the loser will see his career decline from this bout. Another added bonus is that HBO will market this fight on their network and will make one of these two men a true rising star.

It was announced to the press during the conference that both fighters agreed to a WADA anti-doping test. Also, Bute will be training in Montreal, perhaps to soak up the importance of this bout whereas Pascal has chosen to train in Las Vegas, likely to get away from distractions.

Of course, neither fighter said this was their reason for choosing their training facilities, but you could suspect as much from their tone and what their respective trainers were saying.

There is no word yet on the undercard and there won't be until after the Adonis Stevenson fight vs. Tony Bellew, scheduled for November 30.


What’s Up Next For Timothy Bradley And Juan Manuel Marquez?

By Iain Langmaid October 30th, 2013 All Boxing Articles

Within the past two weeks, American two weight world champion Timothy Bradley successfully retained his WBO Welterweight title against the Mexican legend Juan Manuel Marquez at the Thomas and Mack Centre in Las Vegas. It was second time Bradley defended his title, the first being against the Freddie Roach trained Russian crowd pleaser Ruslan Provodkinov.

The question for Bradley and Marquez is the inevitable: what next?

For the 30 year old Bradley, who extended his record to 31-0 with 12 knockouts, he is not exactly starved for attractive pay days in a very talent rich division. The most obvious one is inevitably the sport’s number one attraction in the shape of Floyd Mayweather Jr, who holds the WBC’s portion of the Welterweight crown.

This option has complications due to Mayweather’s current television deal with Showtime, and Bradley’s promoter’s Top Rank currently tied into a deal with HBO. However, as Mayweather promotes himself through the Mayweather/Money Team umbrella, there is still a possibility that such a match up that could happen.

Other options for Bradley could be the winner of Devon Alexander and Shawn Porter’s IBF Welterweight title clash. Should Alexander emerge victorious against the younger, unbeaten Porter, Alexander will look to avenge a 10th round Technical Decision loss to Bradley down at Light-Welterweight for the WBC and WBO portions of the 10 stone title.

A slightly more distant option could be the winner of Adrien Broner fighting the Argentinean banger Marcos Rene Maidana due to both men fighting under Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy umbrella and the on going rift between that organisation and Top Rank, which is causing much frustration, not just for fighters trying to make a living, but to the fans who want to see the best fighting the best.

Breaking away stateside and from the Golden Boy and Top Rank cold wa, one fighter who could be an option for Bradley is the unbeaten British Welterweight Kell Brook, who stopped the former WBA title holder Vyacheslav Senchenko in a IBF eliminator this past weekend. More...


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